SS Arandora Star plaque
On 2 July 1940, the 15,000 ton Blue Star luxury liner, S.S Arandora Star, was torpedoed and sunk in the Atlantic Ocean, 75 miles off the north-west coast of Ireland. Bound for Canada, she was carrying over 1200 passengers, consisting mainly of Italian, German, and Austrian internees, plus a military guard of British soldiers and a crew of Merchant Navy seamen.
Over half of those on board perished, including nearly 450 Italians, many of who had been arrested and interned in the summer of 1940. Of those, thirteen men were from Teesside, where they had made their homes, married, raised families, and become well-known and respected members of the local business community.
Leandro Beltrami, Luigi Bertoia, Allesandro Borsumato, Domenico Greco, Tullio Greco, Amedeo Lucantoni, Antonio Nardone, Antonio Ranaldi, Camillo Rea, Domenico Rea, and Guiseppe Tortolano from Middlesbrough, Antonio Todisco from Redcar, and Domenico Pontone from Seaton Carew all died. 'For all of them their graves remain known only to God'.
On 2 July 2009, a memorial plaque commemorating this tragic event was unveiled in the Town Hall. It recognises and commemorates the lives and achievements of these men, their contribution to our community, and the tragic loss which was suffered when the SS Arandora Star was sunk.
You can find out more in the SS Arandora Star plaque commemorative booklet. If you're struggling to read the PDF, please email email@example.com.