The day the Queen met patients and medics 24 hours after 7/7 bombings
- Credit: PA
The A&E at the Royal London Hospital looked like a war zone as fleets of abulances brought in the severly injured on stretchers and the walking wounded from the 7/7 bombing at Aldgate Underground station on the morning of July 7, 2005.
Wards were cleared as 171 injured were brought in, with 27 of the most serious being detained. Another 37 were treated for shock after being caught up in the bombing.
Some arrived in a comandeered double-decker bus from the devastation at Aldgate, just a mile down the Whitechapel Road.
They were among 821 commuters injured that day, in addition to the 52 killed, in the four bombings across London at Edgware Road, Russel Square and Tavistock Square as well as Aldgate.
The Queen toured the A&E hsopitals the next day to meet the nurses, doctors and paramedics caring for the injuured and to meet ambulance and fire crews involved in the mass rescue.
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At one time, 10 operating theatres were working simultaneously at the Royal London.
Dr Sam Everington, a GP who runs the Bromley-by-Bow medical centre, was at a British Medical Association meeting in Tavistock Square when the bomb went off just outside. He and colleagues rushed outside to treat the casualties.
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Volunteers Stephanie Maltman, founder of the Firemen Remembered charity paying tribute to Britain’s wartime firefighters, and Marion Frederick, from Wapping, later arranged refreshments at St Botolph’s church in Aldgate for the exhausted recue workers emerging from the tunnel between Liverpool Street and Aldgate who could only work for a short time in the sweltering July heat.
Cafés and restaurants donated food in what Stephanie later recalled was a “true community spirit and integrity dealing with life and death”.
Yet life carried on. Martine Wright, 32, lost both her legs in the Aldgate bombing and had to be revived five times on the operating table—she survived and exactly four years on gave birth to a healthy son, Oscar, by caesarian, her first child.
She was in the carriage blasted by the terrorist’s deadly device in which seven of her fellow passengers never made it.