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Queen attends service for 18 children killed in WWI air raid

By Tony Jones

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh have honoured the memory of 18 primary school children killed 100 years ago in a First World War bombing raid on London's East End.

On June 13, 1917, a daylight bomb from a German aircraft hit Upper North Street School in Poplar, killing the youngsters.

The Queen and Prince Philip attended a memorial service at All Saints Church, Poplar, where the funerals of 15 of the children took place, before meeting relatives of some of the victims including Donald Challen (90), whose cousin William Challen died aged five. The former fruit merchant who served in Italy with the 16/5 Lancers in the Second World War and escaped from his own family home in north-east London when it was hit by a V1 "buzz bomb", saw the service as part of efforts to bring reconciliation between Britons and Germans.

"I think it's needed to bring us and Germany back to the status we had in the time of (Kaiser) Wilhelm I, when the Germans were our best friends," he said.

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