Tributes paid to long-serving Trustee

Tributes have been paid to a Battle of Britain Memorial Trustee who committed many years’ service to the charity and who died this morning, just three days before his 95th birthday.

Flight Lieutenant Bernard Hyde AE*, who became the first site manager at the Capel-le-Ferne memorial in 1993, died peacefully in hospital after 27 years of support for the Trust. Appointed to the manager’s role by no less than Wing Commander Geoffrey Page DSO, OBE, DFC*, the inspiration for the Memorial, he was invited to become a Trustee after standing down from the post.

“Bernard’s death is very sad,” said Trust Chairman Richard Hunting CBE. “He was absolutely pivotal to the Memorial in its early days. Geoffrey Page, Clive Hunting – then chairman of the Trust – and others relied on him hugely.”

As well as making a tremendous contribution to the operation of the Memorial in its early days, Flt Lt Hyde played his part on active service. He received the Air Efficiency Award twice, one for his war service and later as a post-war reservist. 

He was a navigator on Dakotas, took part in Operation Market Garden and then flew in Burma, which inspired the Trust to name the secondary access to the Capel-le-Ferne clifftop site the Burma Road. After VJ Day he served as an air traffic controller at Jakarta until the Dutch could take over.

Former President of the Trust, Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Graydon GCB, CBE, described Flt Lt Hyde as “a very special man”, while Trustee Andy Simpson said the news was “very sad”, adding: “Bernard was a gentleman who was always generous with his advice and support. The Trust and the Capel site owe much to him.”

Fl Lt Hyde’s wife Marian and daughter predeceased him.

Bernard Hyde

 

5 thoughts on “Tributes paid to long-serving Trustee

    Bernard’s passing is a very sad loss. It was a pleasure to know him and his family for over fifty years. Will always remember him with fondness.

    Bernard was a good bloke. first knew him, his wife Marion, and daughter Bernice in the early 60’s when we both bought houses at Northfleet and ended up as next door neighbours.
    went on holiday on the canals with them, Bernard was the one to go into the water to remove nasties from the propeller.

    Bernard was a great support to many Ex Service
    Associations. In 1944 he was stationed at Down
    Ampney,flying Dakotas to Arnhem,Crossing the Rhine,and D.Day _ glider towing,parachute
    dropping and resupply and casualtyEvacuation .He gave the greatest of support to Alan Hartley on his Mission to reunite all who served at
    48 group in the Cotswolds .
    He will be remembered with great respect
    by all who knew him

    A delight to know – a man with generosity of spirit, good humour and wise counsel. He faithfully attended the annual Arnhem Service at All Saints’ Church, Down Ampney for many years – a place close to his heart. His ashes will be interred here, as was his wish.

    May he rest in peace, and rise in glory.

    Canon John Swanton, Vicar of Down Ampney

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