Northern France Tourism : official website

Monument aux Victimes de l'Explosion de la Poudrière des 18 Ponts

Monument to the dead (LILLE)

On 11 January 1916 the 18 Ponts munitions depot in Lille suddenly exploded, killing 134 people, wounding 400 and destroying 21 factories and 738 houses. Today, a monument to commemorate the catastrophe stands on rue de Maubeuge. During the 'terrible years' of the Great War the people of Lille were forced to live in extreme conditions. The German occupiers confiscated anything of use, including mattresses, and 'deported' 10,000 young people, mostly women, to work on the farms of Aisne and Ardennes.