Henley Standard Property
HOME

Date:

Order your copy Advertise with us! HENLEY PAGES
Delivering the news from Henley on Thames and South Oxfordshire for over 100 years
  News     Sport    Celebrity   What's On Regulars Community Info Henley Standard TV Lifestyle Property Jobs Classifieds Gallery Trade
                               Follow us    Follow us    Newsfeed Search the Henley Standard  
75th birthday of RAF base
Published 12/05/14



THOUSANDS of people enjoyed celebrations to mark the 75th anniversary of RAF Benson.

Personnel from the base and the Central Band of the Royal Air Force marched through Benson on Sunday morning to St Helen’s Church, where a service was held.

In the afternoon stalls were set up around the playing field in Sunnyside and Merlin and Puma helicopters from the base landed. Families were then able to look inside the aircraft.

A Winston Churchill lookalike gave a rousing version of the former Prime Minister’s famous “Finest Hour” speech, which he delivered in June 1940 as the country prepared for the Battle of Britain. Then an air raid siren went off.

The climax of the day was a fly-past by a Spitfire, which performed four laps of the fields. The fighter aircraft was based at the station in 1944.


Gp Capt Nigel Colman, station commander at RAF Benson, said: “It was wonderful to see hundreds of our neighbours lining the streets as we paraded through Benson for only the second time in recent memory.

“We are honoured by the support that both Benson and Ewelme have shown the station over the past 75 years.

“This event was about coming together to celebrate our shared history and I believe it definitely achieved that, with somewhere in the region of 2,000 people enjoying the afternoon with us at Sunnyside. The whole spectrum of RAF Benson heritage was on display, with vintage vehicles, historical archives and even Winston Churchill as well as our fantastic helicopters taking centre stage and, of course, the wonderful music from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force.

“The stunning Spitfire display was the perfect way to close such a fantastic event, which I’m sure will be in our memories for years to come.” RAF Benson was opened in 1939 and during the Second World War was the home of an experimental unit that carried out photographic reconnaissance over enemy territory.

Spitfire pilots found their speed enabled them to avoid interception and their camouflage and height rendered them virtually invisible. It was a pilot from this unit who spotted the Bismarck near Bergen in May 1941.

After the war the Queen’s Flight was located at Benson until 1995 when it moved to RAF Northolt. Today, the base is a frontline support base working within the Joint Helicopter Command.

Published 12/05/14

MOST POPULAR
Travellers camp on Jubilee Park
Drug dealer jailed
Annual swan upping shows stable count
Purse stolen from shopper in Waitrose
Refurbished playground to open this weekend
Stars share stage at Henley Festival 2014
Henley rocks at Music on the Meadows
Empty shop could house new business
LATEST NEWS HEADLINES
British National Team at Sheepdog Trials
Extreme hair cut for cancer charity
Henley rocks at Music on the Meadows
One-of-a-kind play area opens in Henley
10,000 consultation cost for housing offer
Mayor of Wokingham opens Sunrise tea dance
Council to carry out tree cutting
TV presenter performs at school barbecue
Local philanthropist causes feminist stir
History of Wilfred Owen in Dunsden researched
Family are best newcomers at rag regatta
New role curries favour with businesswoman
Latest Video View more from   Henley Standard TV
ADVERTISE WITH US
LATEST SPORTS HEADLINES
Teenager chosen as volunteer in Glasgow
Successful Masters Regatta for Upper Thames
Henley Rowing Club’s GB junior eight triumph
Villagers secure bragging rights
Runner representing England in Commonwealth Games
Top Videos
 
Most Popular
 
 
 
 
Higgs Group
HIGGS GROUP
Tel: 01491 419400
www.higgsgroup.co.uk
HENLEY PAGES
Tel: 01491 419419
www.henleypages.com
HIGGS PRINTING & DESIGN
Tel: 01491 419429
www.higgsprinting.co.uk
HIGGS OFFICE SUPPLIES
Tel: 01491 419499
www.higgsofficesupplies.co.uk
HENLEY LIFE MAGAZINE
Tel: 01491 419449
www.henleylife.co.uk
HIGGS GROUP, Caxton House, 1 Station Road, Henley on Thames, Oxfordshire, RG9 1AD.

Cookie Policy | Copyright and Terms | Competition Rules | Contact Us | Advertise with us | Site Map
© Higgs & Co (Printers) Limited 2013  |  Registered in England number 1418717