TWO special memorials to mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and as a tribute to those based at RAF Northolt who lost their lives in the battle, were unveiled by the Leader of Hillingdon Council during a service at RAF Northolt last night, Wednesday, 15 September.
Councillor Ray Puddifoot unveiled a new Hurricane Gate Guardian in the colours of Group Captain, later Air Vice Marshal, Sir Stanley Vincent, who was the Station Commander at RAF Northolt throughout the Battle of Britain. His daughter and grandsons attended the ceremony.
Air Vice Marshal Vincent’s daughter, Elisabeth Banham, 79, said: “I couldn’t get over it when I found out about the plane, I felt the tears coming. It was such an unexpected and wonderful thing. It’s been a day to remember”.
“I thought the world of my father, he was a great man. I think he would have loved today and felt very proud. He was very fond of Northolt, and the RAF, and loved flying.”
A granite memorial stone was also unveiled to commemorate the nine Squadrons that were based at RAF Northolt during the Battle of Britain, and showing the names of those that died during the battle.
Councillor Puddifoot said: “The RAF bases at Uxbridge and Northolt are part of our heritage. The young men who gave their lives during the Battle of Britain enable us to have the freedoms that we enjoy today – we owe them so much.”
The council donated the memorials to the RAF as part of its Civic Pride and Heritage programme.