A well-respected author who helped the Trust create the award-winning Scramble Experience was one of a number of VIP visitors to the site during a busy weekend.
Dilip Sarkar MBE is an internationally acclaimed author and historian who specialises in the Battle of Britain and who contributed to the high-tech, audio-visual introduction to the Battle on offer in The Wing.
He enjoyed a close relationship with many of the Few and has written nearly 40 books on a variety of subjects. He was accompanied on Sunday’s visit by his son James.
“Although Dilip assisted the Trust in putting together the Scramble Experience, his visit at the weekend was the first opportunity he had to see the completed work,” explained Trustee Andy Simpson.
“He said he was impressed with what the Trust had produced and felt it was a fitting tribute to the Few as well as doing a great job of educating and informing visitors about the Battle.”
Another visitor who took advantage of the spring sunshine to visit the clifftop memorial and take in the magnificent views over the Channel was publisher Martin Mace.
As the publisher of Frontline Books (an imprint of Pen and Sword), Martin was instrumental in getting the third edition of the Trust’s Men of the Battle of Britain into print but had not been able to visit the Memorial at Capel-le-Ferne for some time.
“Martin was keen to see the improvements and additions made in recent years. He was impressed with what he saw and vowed to come back soon as he said he needed more time to take it all in,” said Andy.
In the afternoon, the Trust welcomed Judy Williams, the daughter of Wing Commander Ronald Kellett DSO DFC, and her brother Victor Kellett to the site.
They gave a fascinating talk on their father, who commanded 303 (Polish) Squadron during the Battle of Britain.
The talk focused on his time with the Polish aircrew but followed through to his later postings when he formed 96 Squadron at Cranage and served as Wing Leader at North Weald.
The talk was illustrated by readings from his (unpublished) memoirs and gave the audience an insight into how he was able to get the best from the squadron members. As always with talks at The Wing, the after-event discussions were long and informative.
The next talk at the Memorial will take place on Sunday 14 April, when Mary Smith, until recently the headteacher at Maidstone Grammar School for Girls, will tell the story of school life in Kent during World War Two. There is more information here.
The talk takes place at 2.30pm, and with only a limited number of places left, booking is highly recommended. Tickets are FREE for Hurricane members of Friends of the Few and just £5 for Spitfire members, while non-members pay £10. Tickets can be booked by ringing 01303 249292 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org