Memorial to Canadian air crews who fought in WWII
PERSONNEL from two RAF bases are finalising preparations for the unveiling of a memorial to Canadian airmen who fought alongside British troops in the Second World War.
The Canadian Air Forces Memorial, at the National Memorial Arboretum, in Staffordshire, will be dedicated in a ceremony on Frday, July 8.
RAF Leeming and RAF Linton-on-Ouse both housed Canadian air force personnel during the war.
The bases helped set up a fundraising project to create the memorial, which features granite information panels in English and French, topped with a stone maple leaf.
The fundraising effort has included organisations in both Canada and the UK.
Flight Lieutenant Alfie Hall, of RAF Leeming, which opened during the Second World War, said: "The Royal Canadian Air Force contributed more than 130,000 air crew to the war effort – and more than 10,000 lost their lives.
"The arboretum already contains memorials to the Royal Australian Air Force and the Norwegian Navy, but a monument to the Canadian airmen is conspicuous by its absence.
Personnel from both bases have started their rehearsals for the ceremony and the RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will provide a Spitfire fly-past to mark the celebration.
Donations have come in large and small from both sides of the Atlantic, with one Canadian province providing a substantial donation.
For more information, or to contribute to the project, visit rcafmonument.ca or call Flt Lt Hall, on 01677-457125.