Local Memorials Project

In 2006, the Museum decided to erect permanent memorials to all those Battle of Britain pilots who lost their lives within a ten mile radius of Shoreham.

The list of names is not a short one. Amongst others it includes Flt/Lt James Paterson and Sgt Trevor Oldfield (both of 92 Squadron), F/O Nathaniel Barry (501 Squadron), Sgt John Ellis (85 Squadron), and Sgt Jack Hammerton (615 Squadron).

Over the coming years, our aim is to erect a suitable memorial at, or as close as possible to, the spot where each of these brave young men made the ultimate sacrifice.

The project is an ambitious and expensive undertaking, for which we rely heavily upon volunteers and funds raised by our Signing Days. If you would like to help us achieve our goal, please get in touch.

Alternatively, help us by buying a limited edition commemorative print from Geoff's Avi-Art website. All proceeds from the sale go directly to the project fund.

The next memorial will be for P/O Colin Francis of 253 Squadron, who lost his life on 30th August 1940.

The memorial is currently planned for Friday 22nd March 2024 at 12:00 noon.

Contact us for more information, or for ways to help with the memorials project.

Memorial 11 (July 2022)

Flying Officer Malcolm Ravenhill

229 Squadron

The tenth memorial was dedicated to Flying Officer Malcolm Ravenhill of 229 Squadron on 1st July 2022, in the village of Ightham, Kent.

F/O Ravenhill tragically lost his life on the morning of 30th September 1940 when he was shot down in combat following a patrol over Biggin Hill. His Hurricane, P2815, was on fire and he managed to belly-land it in a field on Church Road. Despite brave attempts by locals to save him, he died. His memorial stone is situated just down the road, directly opposite St Peter's Church.

The memorial was well attended and included a Hurricane flypast and recital of the poem 'High Flight' by Air Vice Marshall David Hobart.

Some relics of his Hurricane (P2815) shown below were previously found at F/O Ravenhill's crash site.

Flying Officer Malcolm Ravenhill memorial
Flying Officer Ludwik Paszkiewicz VM, KW & DFC
Photo courtesy of bbm.org.uk
Memorial 10 (October 2018)

Flying Officer Ludwik Paszkiewicz VM, KW & DFC

303 'Polish' Squadron

Having previously honoured Battle of Britain pilots from the UK, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, the Shoreham Aircraft Museum 'Local RAF Memorials Project' has now dedicated a ninth memorial to 'One of The Few' from Poland. A magnificent stone memorial was unveiled on 29th September 2018 to honour Flying Officer Ludwik Paszkiewicz VM, KW & DFC, of 303 'Polish' Squadron.

He lost his life on 27th September 1940, when his Hawker Hurricane was shot down and crashed on Crowhurst Farm, Plaxtol, near Borough Green in Kent.

The dedication service was well attended including representatives from the 'Polish Airmen's Association UK', 'Polish Air Force Memorial Committee' and 'The Children of 303'. The service included a superb and poignant tribute flypast by the Hurricane from the Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar flown by Clive Denney.

The relics shown below were found at the crash site. At the time of the memorial, his pocket watch was found. An incredibly poignant find...

Flying Officer Robin McGregor 'Bubble' Waterston memorial
Photo courtesy of bbm.org.uk
Memorial 9 (September 2017)

Sergeant Jack Hammerton

615 Squadron

The eighth memorial was dedicated to Sergeant Jack Hammerton of 615 Squadron on 23rd September 2017 at Noah's Ark, near Sevenoaks.

During a squadron patrol on 6th November 1940 in Hurricane L1886 Jack was last seen leaving the formation, apparently in pursuit of enemy aircraft. He was killed when he crashed in bad visibility near the railway line at Noah's Ark, near Sevenoaks.

Many people attended the service and there was also a Hurricane flypast.

There is a display of relics found at the crash site in our museum:

Sergeant Jack Hammerton museum display
Memorial 8 (September 2014)

Flight Lieutenant Reginald Rimmer

229 Squadron

A 'new' stone memorial was unveiled at Franchise Manor, Burwash in East Sussex on Saturday 27th September 2014, to honour 21 years old Flight Lieutenant Reginald Rimmer of 229 Squadron and 'One of The Few', killed in action at this location exactly 74 years previously. This memorial replaced an older brass plaque.

The service of dedication was led by the Reverend Alan Weaver of St. Michael & All Angels, Jarvis Brook and a poignant moment came when Daniel Rimmer (nephew of the pilot), read some of Flt Lt Rimmer's last letters home that described vividly the stress and extreme tiredness from continual action. 'Reg' Rimmer wrote of looking forward to heading home on leave, but it was never to be as he was tragically killed a few days beforehand.

The memorial was instigated jointly by the Fitzgerald family of Franchise Manor, the Rimmer family and The Shoreham Aircraft Museum. Almost 50 members of the Rimmer family attended the unveiling and there was a terrific tribute flypast flown by the Hawker Hurricane from the Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar; appreciative applause on the ground went to the pilot Clive Denney for his spirited aerial display.

Additional thanks goes to the Cadets of 1414 (Crowborough) Squadron, Air Training Corps, the Bexhill-on-Sea & Battle Branch, Royal Air Forces Association and to Brian Rance for his wonderful rendition of 'Last Post' and 'Reveille'.

It was a proud moment for the Rimmer family, Franchise Manor and the Shoreham Aircraft Museum to see a brave young pilot honoured.

A limited edition print of Flt Lt Rimmer is available to purchase from Geoff Nutkins' Avi-Art website.
All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Local Memorials Project fund.
Memorial 7 (July 2013)

Flight Lieutenant 'Dick' Reynell

43 Squadron

On a damp and rain filled 28th June 2013, the Museum was delighted and proud to unveil the 7th memorial as part of its celebrated Battle of Britain Pilot Memorials Project.

The Australian test and fighter pilot Flight Lieutenant 'Dick' Reynell, of 43 Squadron who lost his life over Blackheath, London, on 7th September 1940 has now been remembered by the unveiling of a magnificent stone memorial in Point Hill Park.

The service was attended by many members of the Reynell family and friends along with Museum volunteers, the Mayor of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, 56 (Woolwich) Air Training Corps and varied local organisations and members of the public.

As with all the previous memorials unveiled by the Museum, it is hoped this stone will be a 'beacon' to those who wish to remember a very brave and skilled pilot and be a focal point to local people not to forget the sacrifices made where they live.

Memorial 6 (September 2009)

Flying Officer Robin McGregor 'Bubble' Waterston

603 Squadron

The sixth memorial was dedicated to Flying Officer Robin McGregor 'Bubble' Waterston of 603 Squadron on Tuesday 29th September 2009, adjacent to the entrance into the Royal Artillery Barracks at Woolwich in London.

F/O Waterston tragically lost his life during the early evening of Saturday 31st August 1940 when he was shot down in his Spitfire X4273, which crashed in Repository Road outside the Barrack gates.

The memorial was unveiled by his Worshipful The Mayor, Councillor Allan MacCarthy; Harold Bennett, a wartime veteran pilot of 603 Squadron laid a wreath on behalf of the RAF. Those attending the unveiling were afterwards kindly granted the privilege of entry into the historical Woolwich Barracks Officers Mess, where refreshments were served.

Memorial 5 (August 2008)

Flight Lieutenant Paterson Clarence Hughes DFC

234 Squadron

The fifth memorial was dedicated to the Australian Battle of Britain 'ace', Flight Lieutenant Paterson Clarence Hughes DFC of 234 Squadron on Saturday 23rd August 2008 alongside Main Road, Sundridge, near Sevenoaks in Kent.

It was during the early evening of Saturday 7th September 1940 that Flt/Lt Hughes was tragically killed after his Spitfire X4009 apparently collided with a Dornier Do17 bomber over Sundridge.

The memorial service was well attended by notable names including Wing Commander Bob Doe DSO, DFC & Bar and Group Captain Peter Norford, the Air Attaché of the Royal Australian Air Force. The occasion ended with a wonderful tribute flypast by the Biggin Hill based 'Spirit of Kent' Spitfire.

Memorial 4 (May 2008)

Sergeant John Ellis

85 Squadron

The fourth memorial was dedicated to Sergeant John Ellis of No.85 Squadron on Saturday 17th May 2008 alongside Warren Road in Chelsfield, Kent.

It was on the afternoon of Sunday 1st September 1940 that Sgt Ellis, better known as 'Hugh' fell from combat high above Orpington. He was listed as 'missing' and it was not until 1993 that his subsequently recovered remains were positively identified.

The memorial stone overlooks the field where Hawker Hurricane P2673 drilled itself and the forever young 'Hugh' into the Kent soil. The memorial service took place in the pouring rain, but the rotten weather did not stop over 200 hundred people attending to remember a brave RAF pilot who gave all he had to give.

A limited edition print of Sgt Ellis is available to purchase from Geoff Nutkins' Avi-Art website.
All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Local Memorials Project fund.
Memorial 3 (September 2007)

Sergeant Trevor Oldfield

92 Squadron

The third memorial was dedicated to Sergeant Trevor Oldfield of 92 Squadron on the 67th anniversary of his death - 27th September 2007.

Trevor was shot down in combat with Me109s over Dartford in Kent at 3.18pm on 27th September 1940. He died in his Spitfire R6622 at Hesketh Park, Dartford.

The memorial service was marked by an RAF bugler and a Spitfire flypast.

A limited edition print of Sgt Oldfield is available to purchase from Geoff Nutkins' Avi-Art website.
All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Local Memorials Project fund.
Memorial 2 (May 2007)

Flying Officer Nathaniel Barry

501 Squadron

The second memorial stone was dedicated to Flying Officer Nathaniel Barry of 501 Squadron on Saturday 26th May 2007.

Nat was a South African volunteer. On 7th October 1940, he was involved in combat with Me109s over Wrotham. His Hurricane was hit and severely damaged and he was forced to bale out, but he was dead before he reached the ground.

Nat's memorial dedication service was marked by a Hawker Hurricane flypast and took place at Court Lodge Farm, Darenth near Dartford, Kent.

There is a display of relics found at the crash site in our museum:

Flying Officer Nathaniel Barry museum display
A limited edition print of F/O Barry is available to purchase from Geoff Nutkins' Avi-Art website.
All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Local Memorials Project fund.
Memorial 1 (Septempber 2006)

Flight Lieutenant Jimmy Paterson

92 Squadron

The first memorial stone was dedicated to Flt/Lt Jimmy Paterson on Wednesday 27th September 2006 at Sparepenny Lane, Farningham.

Jimmy died on the same spot on 27th September 1940, after his Spitfire was shot down by Me109s.

The memorial service received widespread media coverage and was marked by a Spitfire flypast. In attendance were members of Jimmy's family who had travelled all the way from New Zealand.

You can read a full report of the dedication in the Winter 2006 edition of Friends of the Few magazine (pdf file).

A limited edition print of Flt Lt Paterson is available to purchase from Geoff Nutkins' Avi-Art website.
All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Local Memorials Project fund.