We enjoyed some fantastic events here at Capel-le-Ferne in 2019 and we are working hard to make 2020, which marks the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, even more exciting. The Memorial and The Scramble Experience are great to visit at any time, but on special event days there is even more to enjoy. Don’t forget the cafe and shop are always open, too. Check our our Day-by-Day Events Listing to see what’s coming up next.
We are still working hard on this year’s events, but here’s what’s already in the pipeline:
Sunday afternoon talks
We have a regular Sunday afternoon programme of talks on Battle of Britain-linked themes, along with the occasional free family film day. The talks are all held in the comfortable surroundings of The Geoffrey Page Centre in the stunning Wing building. Refreshments are available from the Cockpit Cafe.
All talks start at 2.30pm. Tickets can be booked by ringing 01303 249292 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Keep an eye on this page for new talks as they are arranged. Here’s what we already have planned:
March 22: Sunday afternoon talk – Richard Kornicki: For Your Freedom and Ours – The Polish Air Force in the west
Richard Kornicki is Chairman of the Polish War Memorial Committee. His illustrated talk will focus on the role of the Polish airmen and the Polish Air Force in WW2.
April 5: Sunday afternoon talk – Anthony Inglis Howard-Williams: My RAF Family
No fewer than seven of the Inglis Howard-Williams family have served or are serving in the Royal Air Force, including one who flew in the Battle of Britain. Anthony will talk about his distinguished relatives and their contributions to the RAF over the years.
April 26: Sunday afternoon talk – Andy Saunders: Some Battle of Britain Oddities
The founder of the Tangmere Battle of Britain Museum, Andy Saunders is an author and researcher from East Sussex who specialises in military aviation history, particularly the Battle of Britain and the air war over north-west Europe between 1939 and 1945. He is a former Editor of Britain at War magazine.
May 3: Sunday afternoon talk – Melody Foreman: The Wreck Hunter
Melody will tell the story of Terry Parsons’ six-decade long career as a pioneer in the field of aviation archaeology. Now in his eighties, Terry has dug 900 RAF and Luftwaffe aircraft throughout Kent and Sussex. Melody will also talk about the air crews connected to the artefacts, including those members of ‘the Few’ who, in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, accompanied Terry on digs for Spitfires, Hurricanes, Me109s and Heinkels.
May 31: Sunday afternoon talk – Christopher Joll: The Spoils of War
Christopher Joll’s book Spoils of War, which is being published in early 2020, tells the story of some of the lesser known or forgotten ‘spoils’ acquired by Britain’s armed forces over the past 400 years. This specially prepared, light-hearted illustrated talk for the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust, Christopher will talk about items including Eva Braun’s silk knickers and tell the extraordinary story of how captured Luftwaffe aircraft were formed into a special RAF Flight known as the RAFwaffe.
June 28: Signing event for Dilip Sarkar’s new book, Battle of Britain 1940: The Finest Hour’s Human Cost (booking and other details to be announced shortly).
Spitfires over Capel-le-Ferne
Our friends from Aero Legends offer unique flights alongside – or even inside – vintage aircraft, including the iconic Spitfire and Hurricane. The good news for us is that most of their flights take in the Memorial, giving those of us watching from the ground almost as much of a thrill as those who are experiencing the trip of a lifetime.
So come down to the site on any spring or summer day and you stand a great chance of seeing a Spitfire, Hurricane – or perhaps even both – in the sky over the Memorial. Even the accompanying aircraft – a De Havilland Devon – is a classic machine that’s worth seeing in its own right. We’ll add the scheduled dates below as soon as we know what they are.
Memorial Day 2020
We enjoyed a very special Memorial Day in 2019 and we are already planning for this year’s event, which will commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. Memorial Day is a chance to pay your respects to the men who fought so valiantly to protect this country in the summer and early autumn of 1940. This year’s commemoration is on Sunday 12 July. Gates open at 10am.
Classic car show
Sunday 6 September (details to be confirmed).
Battle of Britain Day
Join us on Sunday 15 September when we mark Battle of Britain Day with our usual 11am commemoration service.
On Monday 11 November the Trust will mark Remembrance Day with a Service of Commemoration at 11 am.