A thread to say what you were doing on 9/11

I was on the Professional Skills Course in Birmingham with my fellow trainees just about to start.  We were staying in halls in the city centre university campus.

We were in an exam as the first plane hit.  As we came out of the exam and turned on our phones we started getting bleeps of messages from friends and family.  As we were walking through the porters lodge the telly showed the second plane hitting.

My fellow trainees said they were going to the library to revise for exams the next day.  I went into town and bought a portable radio and supplies for the day and binge-listened.  One of my fellow trainees got locked in the library that night because she was revising so long.

I was walking back from lunch and passed Dixons in Moorgate opposite the station and saw the TV helicopters flying around the first tower and reporting back to base on the "accident" and then saw, live, the second plane plough in and we all thought holy shit. I went back to the office and there was a bomb scare and we were evacuated.  New pants please.

It was another day in a bizarre week where my cousin died, then 9/11 happened then I qualified.  Finished the week not quite sure what I thought about anything.

At my desk at the top of Citypoint. Was having email conversation with a mate and she said 'oh my god, a plane's just flown into the World Trade Center'

when the second one hit everyone panicked and got out of the building sharpish

I was thinking “goodness, that thing that happened 2 months ago was quite shocking”

Was playing football in the garden with a uni mate who was down visiting. Went in to watch Diagnosis Murder only to see the second plane hit. Still cant believe how many people lost their lives that day


While it was actually happening, I was out with friends. I didn’t actually hear the news until several hours later.

Queenie - it was an evac. There was a suspicious bag in the basement health centre. I recall everyone had to get out.

Someone's gym bag in Champneys was left in a corridor and everyone was having a cow about it

As uni hadn't started yet I was still at home and I'd been watching neighbours with some lunch when BBC1 moved to live coverage of New York. I called my Mum into the room and we both watched, horrified. The thought of the feeling of terror as the second plane went into the tower and the realisation that this was no accident makes the hairs on my arms stand on end just thinking about it. And then the helplessness of watching the fallout unfold. Utterly grim.

I was WFH and listening to Simon Mayo on R5.  He interrupted the film review slot with Mark Kermode to give the news. I turned on the telly and saw the horrors unfold. 

I am annoyed you stole my tun but

I was walking along Sherbrooke in montreal at about 9am and a guy with an open-top car had the radio up full blast and I thought it was a war of the worlds type radio play

my friend emailed LOOK AT THE NEWS so I did briefly (too briefly) and made a "crazy yanks eh" joke to a boy I really fancied, thinking it was just a minor incident.

So he learned about it from me and will I guess always remember what a total fanny I am on this anniversary date.

Were you already at Uni then, Meh? U look younger than that.

I was working as a white van courier and had just delivered a package to Canary Wharf. Got a text from my wife and then it came through on the radio. Took hours to get home as everyone was getting out of the City.

Heh Mutters I don't remember that...!

I just remember one of the mad Americans we had running around screaming 'everyone get out now' as at that point no-one knew if other tall buildings in other cities were being targeted too.

I think I went and 'worked' in the main office for the rest of the day anyway

Sorry I have literally never seen a thread on this topic.

I had bunked off school with older boys who had already left. We were getting stoned behind some shops. Then wondered out on to the high street and we watched it on the TV screens facing the street in Dixon’s 

I was in a cave in the Tora Bora trying to fix a satellite TV dish. 

Can’t remember the first plane, other than when I did hear it I first dismissed it as some idiot in a little private plane accidentally hitting. Then, as I returned to my office on Fleet Street I saw the news in the foyer of the old Reuter’s building.

Watched the second plane hit live there, along with many other stunned City workers. 

sitting at desk like a zombie, having been on the overnight flight home from Boston. Office jnr came running in to tell me and I snapped at him saying don't be ridiculous. A number of people at the wedding I'd been at were in the towers (inc Fergie, fact fans)

on honeymoon in Italy. The hire car broke down and we spent a pleasant afternoon sitting on the kerb outside a garage while they looked at it. From the tense exclamations followed by silences we heard from the staff room we surmised there was an Italy game on the telly.

eventually taxi home, driver in slience. Remote villa no telly.

stroppy call to travel agent next day 12 sept about our hire car. Taxi back to garage, radio on. I said to mr m, I think George Bush has got a bloody nose from somewhere ( o level italian grade C)

drove to Trasimeno for leisurely coffee. Across the square saw all the tourists had usa Today newspapers with pics on the back.

bought the newspaper.

phoned travel agent to appol for stroppy call earlier.

college of law on Store Street.  first plane standing having a fag on store street.  second in the pub with the rest of my class.

IIRC, Teclis was either on one of the planes and parachuted down to Brooklyn or was having breakfast on the 91st floor and surfed his way over the falling concrete, managing to spill only a bit of his tea

escers - on 7/7 my mum called me at 9 am about the bombs and I also snapped at her.

lots of apologising, right Minkie? 7/7 was horrific - one of the kids in the office (she had that millennial blue hair long before it became The Thing) was on the next carriage and actually turned up in the office hours later covered in soot and dirt and shellshocked to fuck.

and it was the former princess. Groom's deceased sister had been her lady in waiting / best mate or sthing. Not sure what she was doing in WTC that morning but it was in the papers at the time.

I don't know how people who survived 7/7 manage to keep their total fucking fury at the American administration that caused it in check

i was drunk that evening (morning in NY) in HK - and just returned from a dross place in Wan Chai

happy days when I was peddling my tricks in finance 

Escers at 10 am a partner from Leeds office arrived in the office v shaken having arrived at kings X to see one of the buses.

as I recall I was the only one to sit him down with sweet tea. Horrible firm all wasp males middle aged. Left eventually.

working; just started third year of training.  


in the office, watching the news, very glad not working in high rise/canary wharf


on 7/7 I was on my way to edgeware road - but by the time i'd got to the tube station at (?London bridge) the tubes had all been cancelled. so went home for the day.


Was bumming about at home (doing the ironing actually) to get my stuff ready for uni, which was starting a few weeks later. Rang my mum at work and said that a plane had flown into a tower in the US and to check out the news. It was a very weird day.

Just before I started university.

I was on a dual carriageway driving home from an early hospital appointment in Wolverhampton.  I noticed all the cars had noticeably slowed down despite there no being dense traffic.  I flicked on the radio to learn about the first plane.  Saw the second plane hit on TV at home with my parents.

I was at Heffers in Cambridge browsing the biography section. I got a text (they were just about a thing) and I rushed to the nearest Curry's (in Lion Yard, I think) to watch through the window at the telly. There were about two dozen other people doing the same thing.

Don’t like my name being brought up in this context tbh panda.  Anyway, I was on holiday in portugal.

Working at the Shed in Manchester 

no one did anything except watch the big tv in reception or talk about it at their desks 

my boss was going around saying whoever did that was going to regret it

After all the blood and gold that’s been wasted since then  I doubt he’d say the same today 

I was in year 11 at school, I didn't even realise anything had happened until I got home that afternoon. 

Got a text from my mum whilst I was playing pool in the sixth form common room. I saw the second one hit live on telly 

I was a trainee. In the office in Canary Wharf.  Everyone was glued to the news on the internet (which was still relatively new at that point).  After a couple of hours they sent us home.  We, being Brits did what we always do in that sort of situation, we went to the pub and got p1ssed watching the rolling news coverage.  Ended up having a curry on Brick lane about 7 or 8pm and almost getting into a fight with a couple of (I think) Pakistani teenagers who were shouting 'you're next' at us on the street. Then some older blokes of similar ethnicity arrived in a car, pulled a big stick out of the boot and started beating the crap out of the teenagers and we decided it was probably time to call it a night. 

i was a trainee , worrying about what I'd do after qualification. it took a while for the enormity of the event to register

many of us of the same generation on here - I was also a trainee at the time

I was a trainee in a foreign city.  I was skiving due to beer injuries and watching the only English channel I had.  BBC news 24.  Watched the whole thing unfold.  Then I went to the American video store and rented 2 series of friends

"my boss was going around saying whoever did that was going to regret it"

'ard as nails

I was at home with Young Gwenners. I watched it all, from before the first plane hit. At the time it felt like I was watching a Bruce Willis disaster movie. At first it seemed like a terrible accident and then the second plane hit and it was clear it was terrorism.

Trying to get on the bbc website at work but it kept crashing.  There were rumours that there were planes heading for canary wharf and we were evacuated after the Pentagon plane hit. The tube was closed and I caught an overground and bus home. It was all very "cheerful shocked" and British on the way home.  Spent the rest of the day following the bbc and thinking wtf...

I was at work and one of the secretaries told me; at first I assumed it must have been a private plane. Another secretary had a portable telly so watched bbc news on that for a while and then went home and sat in front of the telly trying to contact family members in New England to check they hadn’t flown out of Boston. My brother in law has an uncle whose ex wife was on one of the planes. 

A lingering effect of the day was that hearing news coverage of people talking about losing a spouse rather than a partner changed my now wife’s views on getting married, which she had been adamant she would never do since we met. 

I remember a colleague of mine not turning up to work for a couple of days because she was worried they'd try and hit the Bank of England and miss and end up hitting our office.  She wasn't persuaded by the argument that places like Canary Wharf were much easier targets.

Asturias Es Mi Patria we must have been at the Shed in Manc at the same time.  Which dept if not too outy?

Genuine question- why were people watching before the first plane hit? 

Because the news channels were tracking the fact that a plane was flying off its flight path towards New York.

Oddly, gwenllian, I was also on a training course in Brum. 

I think I was a trainee at that time. It wasn't the accounts course, I remember that one. It was the management one or something. 

the first I heard was when the guy hosting the course said about it, at 4pm. 

Fair enough - I guess now they would probably send a couple of fighter jets up to neutralise it before it got close to a building.

Shooty I wasn't on a training course in Brum or anywhere else. I was spooning gunk into my toddler's mouth while watching the news. On reflection not that different.

Oh. My bad. Thought you started this thread. It was Alan Partridge. 


I guess now they would probably send a couple of fighter jets up to neutralise it before it got close to a building.


That would be profiling and 'phobic. 

Naughty corner for you!

Back in Oz.  Got up early and turned on the news, just in time to see the second crash.  There was a ticker saying "America under attack" and continuous footage but no voiceover or context, so had no idea what was going on for about 10 minutes.

I am not sure you can profile someone who air traffic control cannot see.

If the West Wing is anything to go by they give you a chance to respond after a few warnings and then push the neutralise button.

Pretty similar to Wang.

I also remember Kay Burley announcing on Sky News that the whole of the U.S. Eastern seaboard had been destroyed by a terrorist attack.


Classic lawyer in the office i was in - secretary says "A plane has hit the World Trade Center" and the partner says "Actually it was two planes". In times of strife, pedantry and oneupmanship will see us through. 

My friend was completing a gap year commission with HM Forces and after much competition, considered himself very lucky to have been selected to sail on one of the 'Trident' submarines for a few days.  He boarded on the morning of September 11th.

He was stuck on the sub for several months and to this day has no idea where the sub sailed to.

very few people indeed know where they sail to.


I have a theory they just hunker down on the mud outside the clyde.


I was on a beach in central America (Pacific side) with a friend who worked for Morgan Stanley and had been in their WTC offices two weeks before

we spent most of the day surfing news from an internet cafe with v slow connection interspersed by poor attempts at actual surfing