Memorial to Churchill’s Few unveiled

Randolph Churchill, great grandson of the wartime leader, has unveiled a new tribute

When the 2022 Chelsea Flower Show opened its gates in May this year one of the main attractions was the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund garden which featured a 12ft metal statue of an airman from the Battle of Britain gazing up into the sky. It became the talk of the show and the entire garden and statue have now been moved to RAF Biggin Hill where it will remain a permanent memorial to those whom Winston Churchill called ‘The Few’ and to the part that RAF Biggin Hill played during the battle and after.

The station motto ‘The Strongest Link’ became synonymous with the squadrons of Hurricanes and Spitfires that flew from the airfield in the defence of the realm. Despite constant bombing from the Luftwaffe, the station remained operational throughout the four months of the Battle of Britain and went on to carry the war back to Germany.

The garden is situated at the entrance to Churchill Way and together with the statue was unveiled on September 30 by Randolph Churchill, the great grandson of the wartime leader. Opening his speech he called those whom had flown from Biggin Hill in wartime as ‘knights of the air’ whilst the CEO of the airport, David Winstanley, said that ‘London Biggin Hill Airport has a clear vision today yet remains proud of its wartime role’. With several wartime veterans in attendance the occasion ended with a flypast from one of the Spitfires from the Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar. The garden is now open to the public and will offer a place to sit and reflect upon the history of this famous airfield.

Left to right: Wg Cdr Colin Bell DFC, Sgt Harry Winters, Flt Lt George Dunn DFC and Corp Reg Lawrence looking at Biggin Hill's new memorial
Left to right: Wg Cdr Colin Bell DFC, Sgt Harry Winters, Flt Lt George Dunn DFC and Corp Reg Lawrence looking at Biggin Hill's new memorial WITH THANKS TO ROBIN J BROOKS