A SERVICE of remembrance and dedication was held today to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.
The service was led by the Reverend Dr (Squadron Leader) Giles Legood at the site of the No.11 Group Operations Room at RAF Uxbridge.
Assembled VIPs and ex-servicemen paid their respects, and wreaths were laid by Sir David Brewer, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Greater London, as well as Richard Barnes, Deputy London Mayor, John Randall MP for Uxbridge, and representatives from Hillingdon Council and other armed forces.
Mr Richard Kornicki, honorary secretary of the Polish Air Force Association led the commemoration, saying: “Let us remember before God and commend to his safe keeping, those who died in the Battle of Britain. Those who, on the ground and in the air, faced assault of the enemy, so that evil may be vanquished. Those who in every age have sought to bring peace and justice to mankind.”
Following the Last Post, a Hurricane aircraft in 303 Sqn markings was blessed by the Reverend Legood. A Spitfire is expected to join the Hurricane over the next few days on a second plinth, and both aircraft will stand as ‘Gate Guardians’ to the Group Operations Room.
The congregation stood and watched the flypast of a Spitfire and Hurricane, as the Central Band of the RAF played the National Anthem, and the Polish National Anthem, followed by the hymn, I vow to thee my Country.
Councillor David Yarrow, the Mayor of Hillingdon, returned the RAF Uxbridge Freedom Scroll to the Station Commander for safe keeping in the Operations Room.
He thanked the RAF for the ‘very special’ relationship between the RAF and the borough.
Battle of Britain Sunday commemorates the victory won by the RAF, which saved Great Britain from invasion in 1940.
September 15 was called ‘one of the decisive battles of the war’ by Winston Churchill, and was the day of the Luftwaffe’s greatest defeat.