Duxford 2015 – Battle of Britain Commemoration

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The inevitable pressures at the start of a new teaching year mean I can’t offer a great deal of reportage on my trip down to Duxford yesterday with Bev, suffice to say it was an astonishing and remarkable tribute to Fighter Command and their victory over the Luftwaffe in 1940, which became simply known as the ‘Battle of Britain’.

It was my first time to Duxford and I will obviously be going again, when there aren’t the crowds of an event.

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The day was about Fighter Command, Spitfires and Hurricanes. I felt a bit defensive, feeling a little like the only representative of Bomber Command – but I probably wasn’t. I have often tried to explain to people the nature of a Squadron and perhaps its similarity between following one, rather than another football team. I am not sure the analogy between Fighter and Bomber Command, but I did feel a little as if I was on another’s patch.

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Nevertheless, it was breathtaking to listen to the Merlins rip the air apart and even more lump in the throat inducing to watch 20 piston engined fighter aircraft from, literally another century, ‘ploughing the field’

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Bev and I were not alone. With us, we bought the Pilot’s Wings and War Medal of Sgt. Philip Aubrey Thomas ‘Pat’ Reid, Pilot.

Pat Read, too late for the Battle of Britain, was killed on the the 3rd of March 1943, age 22, whilst instructing with a trainee at No. 7 (P) A.F.U. Shortly after takeoff, the aircraft they were in, lost power and crashed. Both were killed instantly.

Sgt. Philip Aubrey Thomas ‘Pat’ Read, RAFVR 1380251, was my Uncle.

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8 thoughts on “Duxford 2015 – Battle of Britain Commemoration

  1. haspara

    We were there for the Flying Legends show and were impressed by the sound and view. When I see your photos and see the text, I can only imagine how great this Battle of Britain Commemoration was!

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    1. 75nzsquadron Post author

      We may well have wandered past each other! – I thought about saying before I was going down I would be there, but from past experience you sometimes then spend the whole day trying to meet up with people and miss everything above your heads!

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  2. mark gosling

    I too was at duxford for the first time (both days). What an outstanding experience. The sound of the merlins is more felt than heard. I’m now trying to collate all my photo’s & videos from the weekend.

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