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BOMBER COMMAND MEMORIAL FUND



The Heritage Foundation Support The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal

 
No one can deny the tremendous sacrifice made by RAF Bomber Command in defense of this country and indeed Europe during WW ll. In 2007, The Heritage Foundation Chairman, David Graham discovered that to date, no permanent memorial currently exists to commemorate the 55,000 air crew who lost their lives fighting for this cause nor to remember those injured and imprisoned in the ensuing atrocities. Contacting Bomber Command, The Heritage Foundation immediately initiated plans to rectify what it considers to be an unacceptable oversight. Working closely with the Bomber Command Association, Ministry of Defence, Heritage Foundation President Robin Gibb CBE, Vice President Mike Read, Jim Dooley, Tony Edwards and with the early and enthusiastic support of Alec Lom and The Daily Telegraph Media Group to whom we are most grateful, over half the funds required to complete the task have now been raised. Vice President of Bomber Command, formerly Chairman, Squadron Leader Tony Iverson DFC and Secretary Douglas Radcliffe MBE are regular attendees at The Heritage Foundation fundraising events while other committee members work tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure continued progress is made and the goal achieved as soon as possible. Architect and Planning Consultant Liam O’Connor has been appointed to the project and it is hoped that the completed memorial will be unveiled in Central London by mid 2011.

Anyone wishing to make a donation to The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal Fund may do so by sending a cheque made payable to The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal Fund direct to Douglas Radcliffe MBE, Secretary of The Bomber Command Association, RAF Museum, Grahame Park way, Hendon, London, NW9 5LL

The Bomber Command Association Memorial Committee Members
From Bomber Command

President – Marshal of the Royal Airforce, Sir Michael Beetham GCB CBE DFC AFC
Vice President - Squadron Leader Tony Iverson DFC
Chairman of Bomber Command – Air Commodore Charles Clarke OBE

From The Heritage Foundation
President – Robin Gibb CBE
Chairman – David Graham

From The Bomber Command Association

James Dooley
Tony Edwards


Members of the MOD



Campaign supported by The Telegraph Media Group
See Latest News for updates

 

The RAF Bomber Command Memorial

Under the threat of Nazi Germany, thousands joined RAF Bomber Command to help save Europe. Men at the average age of 22, many of them teenagers, volunteered themselves knowing full well the risks that entailed. For today’s generation it may be inconceivable to imagine what life was like for these young heroes. However, it is even more unthinkable that the only memorial to these soldiers is the airfields in which they died.

Finally, thanks to the Heritage Foundation and other contributors, the men who gave their lives will be honoured with a more illustrious memorial. It’s been a long hard road for Chairman of the Foundation, David Graham, who initiated the campaign back in March 2008, but he and Robin Gibb CBE (President) can at long last celebrate success as the first stone of the memorial was recently laid.

         

This is a momentous occasion not just for The Heritage Foundation, but also for the veterans of Bomber Command, and the families of the brave men who fought for their country.

One of the directors and dedicated supporters of the foundation, Dennis Gimes was there with David Graham in Green Park, London to witness the placement of the first stone. The Duke of Gloucester led the ceremony with the presence of veterans and many prominent guests, including the Marshal of the Royal Air Force and President of The Bomber Command Association, Sir Michael Beetham. Representative of the RAF Benevolent Fund, Lord Craig was also present, as well as entrepreneur and philanthropist John Caudwell and Lord Ashcroft who have both made major donations to the memorial. Unfortunately, key supporter and donor Richard Desmond was unable to attend. 

The service to consecrate the stone was conducted by the Air Vice-Marshal Ray Pentland, Chaplain-in-Chief of the RAF and included a reading by Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton.

Also present at the ceremony were the Right Honourable Andrew Robathan Minister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, Councillor Alan Bradley Lord Mayor Locum Tennens, the architect Liam O’Connor and sculptor Philip Jackson.

It was an emotional moment as the service was ended by a magnificent flypast by The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Lancaster Bomber Aircraft, which jerked many a tear. 

During a reception following the ceremony, President of The Bomber Command Association, Sir Michael Beetham thanked the donors, and others for their support, whilst President of The Heritage Foundation, Robin Gibb CBE paid tribute to those that defended our freedom. He emphasised the example that the memorial sets to the young generation of today.

‘We have young men out in the world defending our freedom and we must show the world that we recognise them and respect them.’  He said.

The memorial is due to be completed by 2012 ahead of The Queen’s Jubilee celebrations. It will feature a centrepiece of a nine foot bronze sculpture by Philip Jackson.

Initiator of the memorial campaign and The Heritage Foundation Chairman, David Graham is delighted that the 55,573 volunteers for Bomber Command, who gave their lives, have finally been remembered and honoured by this country.

 “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” Martin Luther King Jr.

By Chris Edwards

 

THEY GAVE EVERYTHING

ROBIN GIBB BRINGS THE BOMBER COMMAND MEMORIAL MESSAGE TO AMERICA

To coincide with Robin’s recent visits to the States, the Bomber Command Memorial campaign is reaching out to North Americans to help support the fund. A commemorative and fundraising website has just been launched and thanks to Robin’s tireless efforts the memorial’s completion is getting nearer. Having raised £1.7 million already, the campaign is on its way to raising the £3 million pounds needed to turn the plans for a sculpture near Buckingham Palace into a reality.

 

It was a childhood dream of Robin’s to one day create a memorial fit for the air crews of Bomber Command to be remembered. Not to glorify the horrors of war, but to remember, in order that no generation should ever have to endure again what took place in World War II. And, to act as an inspiration to all age groups. In recent weeks, Robin has taken the cause to the U.S. to raise further awareness for the commemoration and the much- needed funds to create the memorial, and the new website They Gave Everything reminds us that airmen from the US as well as from many other nations flew as part of the R.A.F Bomber Command. Robin explains: “The Memorial will finally honour the bravery of those who died defending Britain and ultimately the rest of the world from Nazi tyranny. On my visits to the U.S. people there were surprised that a commemoration had never been approved; a memorial that families of the fallen could recognise as a fitting tribute, and that the rest of the nation and those from across the globe could visit, and remember the sacrifice others made for our freedom to exist today. Although we have faced many, many obstacles, I am glad that I have been able to play a part in helping convince those in power and with influence to view the Bomber Command Memorial as important and fitting after all these years.” Robin continues:

“We are on our way to reaching our final goal of raising just over £3 million and I hope that the new website will encourage even more generous donations than have taken place so far, both from the U.K. and across the world.” Bomber Command’s vital task of defending freedom fell to 125,000 volunteers with an average age of 22, from all corners of the Commonwealth and allied countries. They were crucial in turning the tide but victory came at a price. Of the thousands who took to the skies, more than 55,000 gave their lives. One in five of those who died were from the US or Canada. Half of these brave airmen, have no known grave. As Bomber Command, many nations fought together to free Europe and ultimately the world from the Nazi threat. In doing so they endured losses greater than those of any other service, and yet, they are currently the only WWII servicemen to have not been publicly honoured in Britain. The planned Memorial will change this forever.

Please help build the memorial by donating now! For further info about the campaign and to learn how you can make a donation, visit www.theygaveeverything.com, or go to www.rafbombercommand.com

 

THE BOMBER COMMAND MEMORIAL UPDATE

Success at Last

As you will see from the letter below from Air Commodore Malcolm White OBE, Chairman of Bomber Command Association, work on the Memorial in Green Park is due to start in the very near future. This is tremendous news not only for all of us at The Heritage Foundation but for the Veterans of Bomber Command and the families of those brave and dedicated men who sacrificed their lives on behalf of their nation.

We are very proud that we kick started this Campaign back in March 2008 and both Robin and I would like to thank all of you who have supported this project since then.

 David Graham - Chairman & Robin Gibb CBE - President

 

Letter From Bomber Command Association

Dear Member

The Bomber Command Memorial – Good News

In my message in the Association’s Autumn Newsletter, I promised to keep you informed on progress with the Memorial. Save for the occasional and often incorrect article in the media, you will have begun to wonder “what the hell is going on”. The short answer is -  a lot of very delicate and often difficult work by a small and dedicated team which is determined to see the Memorial  built before the start of The Queen’s Jubilee Celebrations (and 2012 Olympics). You will have to take my word for it but the discussions have been both complex and time consuming.

I am delighted to say that at our meeting on 24th February, the Bomber Command Memorial Board was able to agree to proceed to contract for the construction of the Memorial. This is a momentous step forward and one which has been made possible through the drive of our President; the support of The Heritage Foundation, the sustained work of “our duo” at the RAF Museum, the professionalism of the architect and sculptor and importantly, the sheer energy of the fundraising team and our many supporters.

The architect and appointed contractor have done an excellent job to refine the design and costs and we are now able to re-engage in discussions with Westminster City Council and the Royal Parks on the final detail. The necessary pre-contract discussions will probably take a further month and once complete we will be able to announce the precise date for the Unveiling and Dedication Ceremony which we intend to be in May 2012.

Many of you have asked when the Memorial will be unveiled andI know that some of you living overseas will want to book flights in order to be here on the day. Let me say this, during the 12 months that it will take to build the Memorial, we will have ample time to nail down the detailed plans and provide you with everything you need to know in order to join with friends, family and former colleagues for what will be a very special occasion. Before then, our President will attend a short and discrete “Turf Cutting” Ceremony, probably in May 2011. This will define the start of building works and I will report on this in our Spring Newsletter.

I am delighted to add that in February, the Chief of the Air Staff was able to view the third of the seven “larger-than-life figures” of the Second World War Airman which will form the centrepiece of the Memorial. Each figure more than 3m tall and sculpted in clay by our sculptor Philip Jackson will be cast in bronze. Philip’s previous works include the Memorials to HM Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother on The Mall, and Sir Bobby Moore at Wembley Stadium. Philip’s brief was that the sculpture should be neither jingoistic nor triumphalist but reflective and hence it depicts a crew just back from their mission. The developing statue is magnificent and should be completed later this year and well ahead of the unveiling.

The architect Liam O’Connor, best known for the design and construction of the Commonwealth Memorial Gates on Constitution Hill, London, has created a design which will gradually unfold from the current park railings, to engraved screens (including the RAF and Bomber Command Crests) and carved Portland Stone walls enclosing the bronze sculpture. It will also feature a glass roof including sections of melted down aluminium from a Halifax Bomber (Halifax LW682 from Number 426 Squadron), shot down over Belgium on the night of 12th May 1944 in which eight crew were killed.

The Memorial Board believes that once complete, the Bomber Command Memorial will provide a fitting and lasting memory for generations to come. It will insure that we never forget the debt we owe to the commitment, service and sacrifice of those airmen of Bomber Command who lost their lives in pursuit of peace and freedom in Europe.

Finally, none of this would have been possible without your magnificent support and the generous response from key benefactors and donors from across the UK and around the world. I promise to keep you updated as we make progress and progress we will but in the meantime, thank you for your patience and loyal support.

 

Malcolm

Malcolm White

Chairman

 

Designs by Architect Liam O’Connor for the Bomber Command Memorial have recently been released for planning application. The memorial will hopefully be erected in Central London in mid 2011.

 Designs by Architect Liam O’Connor for the Bomber Command Memorial Designs by Architect Liam O’Connor for the Bomber Command Memorial 

To view the latest television interview by Robin Gibb CBE on the appeal, please click here

 

Current Charity Update

The Heritage Foundation is pleased to announce that Robin Gibb CBE has generously agreed to be Annual President for 2011. The role of Vice President will be taken by Mike Read.

MIKE READ, DAVID GRAHAM, ROBIN GIBB CBE


The Heritage Foundation Support The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal.

© Daily Telegraph
AIRMEN KILLED OVER GERMANY DESERVE MEMORIAL

Click on photo to read article and watch interviews with David Graham and Robin Gibb CBE.

If you wish to make a donation via our charitable trust to this worthwhile cause you may do so on our credit card hotline 0208 3429953 and state the donation to be for The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal.
You may also send a cheque direct to Douglas Radcliffe MBE, Secretary of The Bomber Command Association, RAF Museum, Grahame Park Way, Hendon, London. NW9 5LL
Cheque should be made payable to The Bomber Command Memorial Appeal Fund.

 

 

 

 


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