Outer Zone   -   Aviation News and Features from around the local area and beyond.

 

Middleton St George Memorial Association 

Annual Remembrance 

2019 Ceremony

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2018 Ceremony

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With the impending closure of the St George Hotel at Durham Tees Valley Airport the Middleton St George Memorial Association held what could be it's last Remembrance Service there on Saturday 10 November 2018 and there was an excellent turn out of both veteran's and serving RAF personnel . 


The Address was given by the Reverend Colin Lingard and wreaths were laid by representatives of the Air Cadets , the Royal Air Forces Association and Shaun Woods on behalf of Durham Tees Valley Airport. 



Wreaths were also laid by the Royal Canadian Air Force representative Captain  Stuart MacWilliams, a CP-140 Aurora pilot currently on an exchange posting with 56 Squadron at RAF Waddington and Squadron Leader Phil Stewart of 100 Squadron at RAF Leeming . 


Personal tributes were made remembering those that had 'Failed To Return' .

David Thompson

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Rededication of the Cheviot Memorial

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A new memorial to allied airmen who lost their lives in the Cheviot Hills of Northumberland in the Second World War, and the shepherds who tried desperately to save them, was unveiled by His Royal Highness, the Duke of Gloucester in one of the final events to mark 100 years of the Royal Air Force.

The memorial, set against the stunning backdrop of the Northumberland National Park, was overhauled as an RAF100 legacy project, with fundraising led by the Alnwick and Rothbury branches of the RAF Association. Originally unveiled in 1995, the polished granite and bronze memorial has been updated to recognise the courage of the shepherds who rescued and cared for some sixteen airmen who survived air crashes.

A moving ceremony was attended by the Duchess of Northumberland, Civic Dignitaries, Senior Royal Air Force Officers, veterans, local farmers and shepherds. A guard of honour was provided by personnel from RAF Boulmer , whilst a Hawk jet from RAF Leeming’s 100 Sqn flew through College Valley for a poignant a low-level flypast.

 

Wreaths were laid by Air Force representatives from New Zealand, Canada, Australia, America and Germany. Lieutenant Colonel Stefan Kershner from the German Air Force said: “I really appreciate the friendship that has been shown to me today and that our loss has been included.”

 

There were several stands for those attending to visit, including Royal Air Force Association and the Mountain Rescue Team based at RAF Leeming, members of which took part in the ten-mile Cheviot Bomber trail race raising funds for the memorial earlier this year.

 

The Duke concluded the event by unveiling a commemorative plaque in Cuddystone Hall, He said: “I congratulate you all for restoring and rededicating the Cheviot Memorial and for including a memorial to those who were not part of combat.”

September 2018

 

 

Mynarski Memorial

Photo - P. Charlton

Andrew Mynarski Statue and RCAF Memorial Garden

 


The present Durham Tees Valley Airport was previously RAF Middleton St George which operated as a bomber airfield during the Second World War. In June 1944, Lancaster KB726 of 419 (Moose) Sqn, RCAF, part of 6 Group Bomber Command, was taking part in an attack on the rail junction at Cambrai. It was fatally attacked by a Ju88 which left the aircraft burning and rear turret jammed, trapping the gunner, F/O George Brophy. Delaying his orders to abandon the aircraft, the mid upper gunner, P/O Andrew Mynarski attempted to free his fellow gunner, Brophy despite his own clothes being on fire. After unsuccessfully attempting to move the turret, Mynarski was told to jump by Brophy before it was too late. In a final gesture to his friend, Mynarski stood to attention and saluted the trapped George Brophy. By now his clothes and parachute were burning fiercely and sadly Andrew Mynarski died from his injuries shortly after being found by French civilians. All the Lancaster crew survived,  including George Brophy, remaining in the rear turret which had stayed intact in the crash.


On the crew’s return to England after the war they told of Mynarski’s amazing courage for which he was awarded the VC on 11th October 1946.  In recognition of his courage, a statue of Pilot Officer Andrew Mynarski was erected in the RCAF Memorial Garden at the St George Hotel following a successful campaign locally. The photographs were taken at the Rememberance Ceremony in June 2008, attended by veterans, local groups and officials, the Canadian and Royal Air Force, friends and members of the public. Following the ceremony and marchpast by veterans, a Hawk from our host 100 Squadron at Leeming, made a salute flypast in clear bright sunshine.

 

For more information follow the links below.


 http://homepage.ntlworld.com/phillip.charlton/mynarski.html

 

http://www.northeasthistory.co.uk/the_north_east/history/wwtwo/forgottenhero/index.html

rememberance veterans
419Sqn RCAF
rememberance ceremony