Fylde Spitfire Memorial Fund – A fitting tribute in the North

August 15, 2009

Click the button to ‘Donate’ on-line

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 1:13 pm


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October 14, 2008

Possible layout of new RAF Memorial. Remembering Aircrew & Aircraft

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 2:01 pm

 

Possible layout of the new scheme

Possible layout of the new scheme

September 19, 2008

The collection fund for a new Spitfire Memorial takes off!

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 3:50 pm

The Fylde Spitfire Memorial Fund was set up initially by the Fylde Borough Council Leader John Coombes.  The fund aims to raise at total of £130,000 for the full three aircraft scheme. The first aircraft to be built will be the Lytham St Annes Spitfire W3644.  The replica will be exact in every detail as the original aircraft carrying the 19 Squadron RAF markings and the name of Lytham St Annes.

 The Mark Vb Spitfire W3644 which was shot down by a FW190 whilst escorting Boston’s on a bombing mission of Morlaix, France. The mission started over Start Point, Devon and once hit the Spitfire crashed into the sea.  The date June 23rd June 1942.  We hope to add more information to the site as we collect it.

We also need your help to raise funds and supporters can opt to make a donation by cheque, cash or if you hold a Pay Pal account you can ‘Donate Now’ by clicking on the button above. You can also help support our cause by simply shopping for your on-line products via our Easy Fund-raising account (Click ABOVE RIGHT) Over 600 high street retailers have agreed to support our fund by making a donation based on your spend, you may even receive additional discount!!  By encouraging friends and family to use this site we could quickly raise the £10,000 needed to get the scheme under way

If making a donation by Cheque please make payable to the Fylde Spitfire Memorial Fund and post to: Fylde Spitfire Memorial Fund, 2 Deal Place, St Annes on Sea, Lancashire, FY83EN, England, UK. 

Donors sending more than £5.00 should enclose a stamped self addressed envelope, to receive four limited edition WW2 aircraft postcards, including W3644

We are also asking for Fylde Borough residents who had relatives which served with both Fighter and Bomber command during the war to write to us with stories, pictures and memorabilia. As part of our memorial we hope to work with a sponsor to install an interactive screen which will contain details of those aircrew, information on the aircraft and local stories relating to life on the Fylde Coast during WW2

If you would like to join our display team, pass on information or be involved in the interactive research we would be delighted to have you on board.  Please contact John on 01253 714818 or email info@fyldespitfire.co.uk

August 21, 2009

Pilots Sister found in Bingley

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 11:38 am
After almost a year of searching a concerted media campaign across Greater Manchester has traced the last living relating of the Pilot of Spitfire W3644 Lytham St Annes.  Articles published in the local papers in Heywood and Middleton, the birth place of Sgt Alan Leaver Ridings have lead us to the door of his 86 year old sister Mrs Joan Selka whom now lives in Bingley in Yorkshire.  Although members of the Spitfire Memorial Team have yet to meet her in person, a recent telephone call with her shed light on some of the background of Alan and “she was moved and delighted that the people of Lytham St Annes are planning a lasting tribute to her brother” who sadly was killed at the age of just 21 when he was shot down over France.
 
John Coombes, Lead Fundraiser for the memorial said “it was a moving experience to speak with Joan after all this time of searching as she had no idea of W3644 and of our campaign to raise funds for the replica aircraft which will now include her brothers details, she was over the moon”
 
Joan was contacted by a former neighbour who heard the story on Greater Manchester Radio and got in touch.  There are lot’s more details to follow about Alan and his RAF career and he will shortly be able to put a face to the name we have known for 18 months. 
 
The fund raising campaign will receive a boost in August with the delivery of “Lucy” a Mark IX Spitfire and former gate guardian to RAF Speke.  The aircraft has been sponsored by Fylde Executive Cars as the centre piece for a new mobile display which will travel the Region raising donations and collecting memories from Lancashire folk about their experiences of life in Fighter and Bomber command in WW2.  The Spitfire will carry 611 RAF West Lancashire Squadron Markings and will be available to attend events or private functions in return for a donation to the fund. 
 
Dave Hobson said “readers will be aware that Lancashire in the 1940’s incorporated a huge area including Manchester and the links with the old Shire County are still strong, that is why we chose to paint the aircraft in 611 colours”
 
The memorial will be a Northern tribute to the brave aircrew and their aircraft and will incorporate an interactive screen which will display historical facts, names of those killed and of those that came back and their lives after the war.  The team are also looking for artefacts to add to their mobile exhibition trailer. 
 
 
The team has now written to Lord Shuttleworth to enquire about a member of the Royal Family carrying out the unveiling ceremony which has been set for the 21/22 August 2010.  This weekend will also see a host of 1940’s events taking place across the Borough.
 
Dave Hobson added “Local Fylde businesses have been very supportive with people offering secure storage for the Spitfire and potential sites to display the Spitfire to help raise awareness.  The team now needs help with the temporary loan of exhibition trailer and access to a  towing vehicle”
 
Barry Wallond aviation artist added “fund raising is a tough business but I think Lytham St Annes has a very unique asset here, which people will hopefully support as they did in 1940.  The Spitfire is part of the Fylde’s civic heritage and a reminder of the sense of community spirit and civic pride the area once had. To have such a unique memorial and attraction can only be good for the area – we now just need to raise the £130,000 needed for the scheme”

June 6, 2009

June 27th – 28th 2009 Static Spitfire Display, Lytham Green, Lytham St Annes

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 5:13 pm
One of the Fylde Coasts last remaining Spitfire Pilots

One of the Fylde Coasts last remaining Spitfire Pilots

As part of the fund raising for the Fylde Spitfire Memorial Fund we recently held a Spitfire static display on Lytham Green. Although it was a busy weekend sadly it was cut short due to bad weather.  Many hundreds visited the display and we raised seven hundred and fifty two pounds during the weekend.

Thank you to all those people that shared both their individual experiences and those others that passed on useful information about relatives that served in the RAF as Aircrew during WW2, we will be getting back to all those who gave us their details shortly.

We will host another display in the Summer hopefully next time bringing along a Hawker Hurricane for people to see.  Keep yours eyes on the site for information.  I would also like to thank Flt Lt Peter Brearley DFC (retd) a former Spitfire and Mosquito pilot (amongst other things!!) for coming along on the 28th and speaking to the team and visitors.

Now the memorial fund has taken off we are looking for other committee members that would be willing to help with fund raising, collecting artefact’s, helping on any future displays and collating the personal accounts etc for the proposed book!  Please get in touch via info@fyldespitfire.co.uk

October 16, 2008

Remembering those Aircrew from the Fylde that were KIA

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 9:11 am

As part of the project we are keen to build a record of the men and women that fought in the Battle of Britain.  Below is an intitial list of Servicemen from across the Commonwealth whom were based on the Fylde Coast and died on active service.  The list below lists where they are buried and the Fylde memorial on which they are remembered.  We would like to  build a profile of these people, collect pictures of them from their service years with a view to putting together a history of the people and aircraft behind the memorial.  Please forward any information or photographs to Cllr John Coombes, Leader, Fylde Borough Council, Town Hall, St Annes on the Sea, Lancashire, FY81LW

KIRKHAM (ST. MICHAEL) CHURCHYARD AND EXTENSION

ASPIN, STANLEY VICTOR
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Leading Aircraftman
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 01/01/1946 

BANNER, ARTHUR LEONARD GEORGE
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Leading Aircraftman
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 22/11/1943 

CARDEN, PERCY THEODORE
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flight Lieutenant
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Age: 57
Date of Death: 12/02/1942
Service No: 72623
Awards: M C
Additional information: Son of Major-General George Carden and of Mary Gertrude Carden (nee Blaine); husband of Marjorie Ruth Carden (nee Scott), of Maida Hill, London. M.A., B.C.L. 

LYTHAM (ST. CUTHBERT) CHURCHYARD

BARLOW, FRANK
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flying Officer
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 05/04/1944
Service No: 111672
Additional information: Husband of Annis Mary Barlow, of Ansdell, Lytham. 

WILKIN, WILLIAM
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Aircraftman 2nd Class
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 10/03/1941 

LYTHAM (ST. JOHN THE DIVINE) CHURCHYARD

HARDMAN, ALAN
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Aircraftman 2nd Class
Royal Air Force
Unit Text: 38 Sqdn.
Age: 18
Date of Death: 05/11/1939
Service No: 628360
Additional information: Son of Thomas and Jane Hardman, of Lytham St. Anne's. 

LYTHAM (ST. PETER'S) ROMAN CATHOLIC CEMETERY

ROGERSON, JOHN TURNER
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Pilot Officer (W.Op./Air Gnr.)
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 427 (R.C.A.F.) Sqdn
Age: 33
Date of Death: 03/10/1943
Service No: 156417
Additional information: Son of Rudolph and Fanny Rogerson; husband of Gladys Gertrude Rogerson, of Lytham. 

LYTHAM ST. ANNE'S (PARK) CEMETERY

BEST, BRIAN BERTRAM HORACE
Nationality: United Kingdom
Royal Air Force
Unit Text: 153 Sqdn.
Date of Death: 13/11/1941 

CARLETON, DUDLEY CONWAY
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flight Lieutenant (Pilot)
Royal Air Force
Unit Text: 217 Sqdn.
Age: 28
Date of Death: 17/09/1941
Service No: 70846
Additional information: Son of Webber Dunscombe Carleton and of Mabel Margaret Dorothea Carleton (nee Conway). 

CLIFFORD, NOEL ANTHONY JOHN
Nationality: New Zealand
Rank: Sergeant (Air Gnr.)
Royal New Zealand Air Force
Unit Text: 256 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 23
Date of Death: 27/08/1941
Service No: 402166
Additional information: Son of Denis C. Clifford and Margaret Ellen Clifford, of Wellington City, New Zealand. 

ELLMERS, LINCOLN JOHN
Initials: L J
Nationality: New Zealand
Rank: Sergeant (Pilot)
Royal New Zealand Air Force
Unit Text: 256 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 24
Date of Death: 27/08/1941
Service No: 40760
Additional information: Son of Frederick and Mabel Ellmers, of Gisborne, Auckland, New Zealand. 

FEENEY, BERNARD
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Aircraftman 1st Class
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 08/02/1941 

JOHNSON, ROBERT WILFRED (BOB)
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Warrant Officer
Royal Air Force
Unit Text: 245 Sqdn.
Age: 36
Date of Death: 13/04/1941
Service No: 335827
Additional information: Son of Robert and Frances Sinclair Johnson; husband of Eva Johnson, of Chester.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead 

JOYCE, FRANCIS WILLIAM
Initials: F W
Nationality: New Zealand
Rank: Sergeant (Pilot)
Royal New Zealand Air Force
Unit Text: 256 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 22
Date of Death: 26/02/1942
Service No: 404376
Additional information: Son of Frank Joyce and of Annie Maud Joyce (nee Mitchell), of Wanganui, Wellington, New Zealand. 

MARLATT, SHOLTO PATON
Initials: S P
Nationality: Canadian
Rank: Flying Officer (Pilot)
Royal Canadian Air Force
Unit Text: 4 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 29
Date of Death: 29/11/1942
Service No: J5971
Additional information: Son of Charles Reid Marlatt, M.D., and Mary Sybil Marlatt, of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada; husband of Vera Marlatt, of Vancouver. B. Comm. (University of British Columbia). 

McAFEE, ALEXANDER
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Sergeant
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 198 Sqdn.
Age: 35
Date of Death: 09/01/1947
Service No: 1017565
Additional information: Son of Andrew and Annie McAfee; husband of Margaret McAfee, of Ansdell. 

ROSBOTHAM, FRANCIS JOSEPH
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Sergeant (Pilot U/T)
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Age: 26
Date of Death: 28/08/1940
Service No: 758059
Additional information: Son of Joseph and Alice Beckett Rosbotham, of St. Annes-on-Sea; husband of Hope Mary Rosbotham. 

VERITY, RICHARD LAWRENCE
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Pilot Officer (Obs.)
Royal Air Force
Age: 26
Date of Death: 29/11/1940
Service No: 85279
Additional information: Son of Walter Henry and Edith May Verity, of St. Annes-on-Sea. B.A. (Leeds). 

WALDEN, GORDON FITZGERALD
Nationality: New Zealand
Rank: Flight Sergeant (Air Gnr.)
Royal New Zealand Air Force
Unit Text: 256 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 26
Date of Death: 26/02/1942
Service No: 402117
Additional information: Son of Richard and Ada Evelyn Walden; husband of Vera Olive Walden. 

WALTERS, ROBERT RALPH
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Pilot Officer (Pilot)
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 198 Sqdn.
Age: 20
Date of Death: 26/05/1943
Service No: 144462
Additional information: Son of Leonard Ralph and Anne Kathleen Walters, of Matfield, Kent. 

WATSON, JOHN EDWIN
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Sergeant (Air Bomber)
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Date of Death: 14/12/1942 

WILLIAMS, EDWARD VIVIAN
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flight Sergeant (Air Gnr.)
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 256 Sqdn.
Age: 21
Date of Death: 04/11/1941
Service No: 746874
Additional information: Son of Edward John and Mary Williams, of Southend-on-Sea, Essex. 

WOOD, ALBERT DOUGLAS
Nationality: New Zealand
Rank: Sergeant (Air Gnr.)
Royal New Zealand Air Force
Unit Text: 256 (R.A.F.) Sqdn.
Age: 24
Date of Death: 08/04/1941
Service No: 401819
Additional information: Son of Norman Cecil and Violet May Wood, of Helensville, Auckland, New Zealand. 

FRECKLETON (HOLY TRINITY) CHURCHYARD
 GARLICK, JAMES THOMAS
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Leading Aircraftman
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Age: 38
Date of Death: 02/11/1945
Service No: 1505037
Additional information: Son of Arthur Thomas Garlick and Ann Jane Garlick; husband of Isabella Garlick, of Freckleton.

September 23, 2008

Lytham St Annes Spitfire W3644

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 1:00 pm

This is an artists impression of how the Lytham St Annes Spitfire will look once built

This is an artists impression of how the Lytham St Annes Spitfire will look once built

Lytham St Annes Spitfire

 In 1941 the residents of Lytham St Annes took part in the War Office Spitfire Fund saving scheme.  Residents of all ages donated pocket money, savings and what spare cash they had left to help raise the £6000 needed for the Boroughs own Spitfire.  The amount was matched by the Ministry of Aircraft Production and although £6000 does not sound alot – by todays prices it would have been the equivalent of almost £212,441 based on the Retail Price Increases since 1941 or a massive £735,441 based on the increase in the average wage from 1941 until today.  The overall cost for a Spitfire was approximately £10,000

The Spitfire was a mark VB’s; given the tail number W3644 which we think we can decipher in the photograph.  Records show that this aircraft was apparently shot down by Focke Wulf 190’s on 23rd June 1942, over Start Point whilst on escort duty.  It’s pilot, Sgt Allan Lever Ridings aged just 26 of 19 Squadron RAF is still posted as missing.  I have already started a search of any living relatives of Sgt Ridings who lived in Middleton in Manchester during the War.
The replica Spitfire will carry these original markings of W3644 and will carry the Lytham St Annes name in tribute not only to the brave pilots who flew her but also to mark the generosity of those people that donated what little they had to the War effort.

September 19, 2008

Gate Guards UK – Proposed Project Managers

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Coombes @ 4:09 pm

Frontal view of Spitfire model
Frontal view of Spitfire model

 

Gate Guards UK recent completed this project for the RAF.  The detail and finish of the aircraft is amazing, both models included full cockpit instrumentation.

banking Spitfire

banking Spitfire

 This picture gives a fell of the aircraft and how it will look mounted above the Lancaster Bomber garden.

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