Jan. 25th Saturday
The Historic Aircraft Collection is hosting another of its popular ‘At Home Events’ in its hangar at IWM Duxford on Saturday 25 January. The subject of this event is ‘The role of the Polish Air Force in Britain during WW2’ and will be presented by the Chairman of the Polish Air Force Memorial Committee Richard Kornicki CBE, DL. The talk will be followed by a tour of the hangar and the opportunity to sit in the HAC’s MkVb Spitfire, which was actually flown during the war by Richard Kornicki’s father Franciszek Kornicki in the Polish 317 City of Wilno Squadron.
March 28th Saturday
The Historic Aircraft Collection is hosting another of its popular ‘At Home Events’ in its hangar at IWM Duxford on Saturday 28 March. The subject of this event is ‘The de Havilland Mosquito. The People’s Mosquito project and 307 (Polish) Squadron who flew Mosquitos during WW2’. This will be presented by the Chairman and Managing Director of The People’s Mosquito Project John Lilley.
The talk will be followed by a behind the scenes tour of the hangar and the opportunity to sit in the HAC’s MkVb Spitfire which flew in the Polish 315 and 317 Squadrons during WW2.
T: 01580 830215.
The People’s Mosquito project has a simple vision: to not only return a de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito FB.VI to the skies above Britain, but, for the first time in more than 75 years, build this iconic aircraft in the UK. As a not-for-profit restoration project and registered charity, its aim is to inform and educate the public and future generations on the Mosquito and its place in history. Full details about the project are available at this link. http://www.peoplesmosquito.org.uk/
April 4th Saturday
The Historic Aircraft Collection is holding a ‘Poland Day Event’ in Hangar 3 at the Imperial War Museum Duxford, on Saturday 4 April starting at 11.30 for a day of commemoration and celebration of the contribution of the Polish Air Force during the Second World War. Full details are available by clicking this link.
April 18th Saturday
Memorial service for two Polish pilots
The Royal British Legion’s New Romney Branch is holding a Remembrance Service for two 303 Squadron pilots, P/O Bogusław Mierzwa and P/O Mieczysław Waszkiewicz, on Saturday 18 April 2020 at the Polish Memorial in Dungerness, Kent.
Both pilots were shot down and killed on 16 April 1941 while on a ‘Circus Operation’ from their base at RAF Northolt escorting bombers on a raid to Berck-sur-Mer on the French coast. P/O Mieczysław Waszkiewicz’s Spitfire P8039 RF-R was shot down by a Bf109 and crashed into the sea off Dungeness Point and his body and aircraft were never found. P/O Bogusław Mierzwa’s Spitfire P7819 RF-S, also shot down by a Bf109, crashed alongside the railway branch line from Lydd to Dungeness and close to the site of the Memorial.
The programme for the day is as follows:
• 10.45 – Meet at the Romney Hythe and Dymchurch Railway station car park at Dungeness next to the old lighthouse, at the end of the Dungeness Estate road. (The Postcode for Dungeness Station is TN29 9NA)
• 11.00 – A short drumhead service will take place by the car park, with wreaths being laid.
• 11.30 – Wreaths transferred to the Memorial (300 yards north of the car park across shingle and a rough uneven pathway).
• 12.00 – Refreshments at the TS Veteran Sea Cadet Hut, The Greens, Littlestone, TN28 8AS.
For further information, please contact New Romney Branch Royal British Legion Membership Secretary David Harris E:firstname.lastname@example.org, T: 01797 361807.
June 5th Friday.
Due to the Coronavirus this event has been cancelled in accordance with Government advice.
French Commemoration of Polish Air Force sites.
The small village of Plumetot in Normandy will commemorate the 76th anniversary of the D-Day Invasion on Friday 5 June at 14.00 with a service and wreath laying ceremony at its Plumetot Memorial, which was unveiled on 9 June 2019. The Plumetot Memorial commemorates the role of the Polish Air Force in the Liberation of France and, in particular, the Polish 131 Fighter Wing, comprising 302, City of Dęblin, 308 City of Kraków, and 317, City of Wilno Squadrons. They flew from Plumetot in August and September 1944, as the first units of the Polish Air Force to be based in France since 1940.
All are welcome to attend and the PAFMC is inviting requests from descendants to lay wreaths for each of the three Polish Squadrons. Anyone wishing to be considered for the wreath laying should contact PAFMC Chairman Richard Kornicki E:email@example.com. Plumetot is a short drive from the ferry port of Ouistreham and anyone attending will need to make their own travel and accommodation arrangements.
The village will also be welcoming the French-based organisation Kultura Polska, which will be visiting all Polish military sites connected with the 1944 Invasion and Battle of Normandy.
The Plumetot Memorial was unveiled in the small Normandy village on 9 June 2019
Sept. 5th Saturday
Northolt Commemoration Ceremony
We regret that due to COVID-19 the Commemoration has been cancelled this year.
In its place we are producing a filmed tribute to the role of the Polish Air Force in the Battle of Britain which will be freely available on this web-site by mid-September.
Sept. 20th Sunday
We regret that due to COVID-19 the Commemoration has been cancelled this year. It will be replaced by a symbolic service not open to the general public.
Thanksgiving Service for the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain
Westminster Abbey, London, SW1P 3PA.
Applications for tickets, stating all names, addresses, place and date of birth and Passport or Driving Licence number of individuals wishing to attend, should be made in writing and are to be accompanied by a stamped self-addressed envelope. Applications should reach Mrs Michèle Small, SO3 RAF Ceremonial Events, RAF Ceremonial Office, Bentley Priory Building, RAF Northolt, West End Road, Ruislip, Middlesex, HA4 6NG by the 17th July.
To assist with seating in the Abbey, applicants are requested to state which of the following categories is appropriate:
* former Battle of Britain aircrew who would like to escort the Roll of Honour during the Service;
* relatives of aircrew who lost their lives in the Battle of Britain or since;
* past or present members of the Royal Air Force and its Reserve Forces;
* members of the Emergency Services or ground support staff during the Battle;
* members of the general public.
Please state if a wheelchair user.
Tickets, and a note on dress and timings for the occasion, will be issued two weeks before the Service.
Applications are not to be made to Westminster Abbey.
Representatives of the Polish government, the Polish Air Force, the Polish Air Force Memorial Committee and Polish squadron veterans and their descendants are expected to attend.
The 147 fighter pilots in the Polish Air Force engaged in the Battle of Britain played such a vital role in the conflict. They represented 5% of the 2,936 aircrew that took part, but at the time were officially credited with 8% or 216 of the RAF’s overall 2,692 aerial victories for the loss of 30 pilots, 5.5% of the 544 aircrew lost during the Battle. The 303 Polish Kościuszko City of Warsaw Squadron, flying Hurricanes from RAF Northolt, became by far the most successful fighter unit during the 16 weeks of the Battle. In the eight weeks it was operational 303 Sqn was credited with 126 victories for the loss of eight of its pilots; six in actual combat. The Czechoslovakian Polish Air Force pilot Sgt Josef Frantiŝek, flying with 303 Sqn, was the most successful pilot in the Battle, credited with 17 aircraft destroyed and one probably destroyed.
"Had it not been for the magnificent material contributed by the Polish squadrons and their unsurpassed gallantry, I hesitate to say that the outcome of the battle would have been the same." - Air Chief Marshall Sir Hugh Dowding, Commander of RAF Fighter Command during the Battle of Britain.
Sept. 27th Sunday
We regret that due to COVID-19 the Commemoration has been cancelled this year.
Air Bridge Commemoration Service in remembrance of the casualties of the 1944 Warsaw Uprising
British Commonwealth and Polish War Graves Cemetery, London Road, Newark, Notts.
Guests and Standard Bearers assemble at Cemetery Gates 13.45.
Procession to the Air Bridge Memorial 14.00.
Remembrance Ceremony 14.15.
Oct. 25th Sunday (TBC)
All Souls' Ceremony in remembrance of the Polish Airmen who gave their lives in WW2.
British Commonwealth and Polish War Graves Cemetery, London Road, Newark, Notts. 14.30.
Guests and Standard Bearers assemble at the Thoresby Avenue entrance for the procession to the Polish War Graves Cemetery.
Wreaths and lanterns will be laid by representatives of the Polish government, local authorities, the Polish Air Force, the Royal Air Force and veterans and their descendants.
The service will conclude at approximately 15.15 and all are welcome afterwards for light refreshments at Newark Town Hall, Market Place, courtesy of the Town Mayor. Please note there is no vehicular access to the Market Place and charges apply in car parks on a Sunday.
The Friends of Newark Cemetery will open the cemetery’s Chapel Interpretation Centre with its General Sikorski exhibition.
For further information please contact: