Don’t Stand and Stare at the Sky…

David says:

I live in Maze Hill (specifically around Tuskar/Frobisher Street). Every now and then I get woken at 7am in the week by what I can only describe as a WW2 air raid siren.

Ive gone through the possibilities in my head….Maybe a novelty alarm clock in the flat above; maybe post traumatic stress disorder passed down through 2 generations to me, and my clear favourite; that someone actually has a WW2 air raid siren in their back garden….

Could it be a factory alarm or something? I need to know if anyone else hears it….I need to know what it is…. You may be able to tell it’s driving me a little bit mad!!!

The Phantom replies:

You’re not going mad, David, I’ve heard it too, though until you mentioned it I thought I was going doolally as no one else admitted to hearing it. I have no idea what it is, but it does sound exactly like a WWII warning siren. Here it is for anyone who doesn’t know what I mean:

Now I know I’m not imagining things and it must be real I can’t help feeling it must give a few local pensioners a bit of a scare. There’s never an all-clear…

Anyone know what this siren is? Blitzwalker Stephen, perhaps? (whose latest walk is Bank Holiday Monday, btw – see Parish News for details…)

In the meanwhile, you know the drill. Do not rush, take cover quietly then others will do the same.


the attachments to this post:

do not rush
do not rush

Do not rush 2
Do not rush 2

14 Comments to “Don’t Stand and Stare at the Sky…”

  1. Darryl says:

    There’s a flood siren next to Trinity Hospital, isn’t there – is it a test for that? (Or am I dreaming it? I know there’s definitely one in Lewisham, where the Quaggy splits from the Ravensbourne.)

    There was one on Westcombe Park police station in Combedale Road, which was tested occasionally, scaring the life out of me…

  2. Darryl says:

    here you are – the blood-curdling late 70s/early 80s GLC ad:

  3. Old China says:

    I’ve also heard it. The first time was early in the summer when I was in the park one morning. Was a very surreal experience, made me want to run for shelter before jerry flew over. I’ve heard it since, and made a rough note of the time (7:00am).

    I don’t know what it’s for, but I like it.

  4. Trevor says:

    As far as we know in GMV (and info from Mary Mlls on the GMV website) it is something to do with the Thames Barrier – testing the warning signal.

  5. Old China says:

    Ah good. I’m glad the siren still has a practical “London in Danger” use.

  6. LG says:

    The sirens still sit atop most police stations.

  7. David says:

    Interesting….If it is all the way down at the Barrier, wouldnt everyone in Greenwich know about it if I can hear it sufficiently loud enough to wake me from my slumber?!

    I thought it might be more geographically logical to suggest the power station or something?

    Like Old China,I like the Barrier idea so I suppose that is that! Thanks for the input!

  8. Chris says:

    There’s definitely a siren at the barrier. It’s used to warn shipping when the gates are being moved.

    Sine the gates are tested quite a few times a year the siren will be going off every now and then.

    That said, I would have thought that for it to be heard in Maze Hill it would have to be pretty loud and I would have thought more people would comment on it.

    As an aisde, when my mum used to watch Dad’s Army she would have to leave the room when the titles ran as she couldn’t stand hearing the siren at the end. Too many memories of old friends who didn’t make it through the Blitz….

  9. David says:

    I dont think it can be the barrier then…I hear it more than once or twice a month Im sure, and if the sound travels as far as me (and Greenwich Park) then wouldnt all of Woolwich, Charlton and East Greenwich be running for cover more often!!!?


  10. Chris says:

    Dave, that was my point in para three.

    Tell you what, my father-in-law lives next to the power station, I’ll ask him about the siren.

    He’ll know if the siren is there!

  11. Bob says:

    I have heard this and I am in Blackheath! Never worked out what it was.

  12. Chris says:

    Realise this is very late but my father-in-law says there is no siren at the power station that he’s heard.

    This mystery persists and I’ve still not heard the thing!

  13. I can hear it most mornings from the other side of Charlton Park. I’ve no idea where it comes from but it isn’t an Air Raid Siren – the sound is slightly different from the classic ‘Carter Siren’ made by Gents of Leicester that we all know from WW2. The Flood Barrier is a possibility but do they really need to test it every day? This would seem to be ‘Crying Wolf’ and would have no effect in the event of the real thing. Perhaps it is a factory siren of some sort?

  14. Mats says:

    I hear this alarm quite often as well, at 7am. I live in Greenwich Millenium Village. Any new info on what this might be? Scared me shitless the first time I heard it!