News Section

South Derbyshire Teams mark WWI Anniversary at Menin Gate

Article posted: May 06, 2014 by Flt Lt Rayson-Flynn

2014 Marks the 100th Anniversary of the start of the First World War and members of the 1211 (Swadlincote) Squadron Air Training Corps, Royal British Legion and South Derbyshire District Council travel on Good Friday to mark the event on the battlefields of the Western Front.

Organised by 1211 Squadrons, Pilot Officer Matt Leedham, the visit will include visits to WW1 battlefield sites, various war museum and to war cemeteries. The tour will culminate with a service at the Menin Gate which has inscribed upon it many members of the Armed Forces who originated in South Derbyshire.

Matt told us, “We are really pleased to be part of an event which includes the Royal British Legion and the District Council led by Chair, Councillor Ann Hood. This is an opportunity for all members of the South Derbyshire Community to come together from all age ranges to mark this very historic occasion”

Squadron Commander Alyn Thompson added that “ We also intend for our Cadets to visit a high ropes course activity to give them a break from the formalities which an event like this will naturally incur. Pilot Officer Leedham has done an excellent job in liaising with our partner organisations and I am extremely proud of him. This is our second trip overseas which he has arranged with the Squadron visiting Normandy last year.”

The crack South Derbyshire Squadron were originally formed in Swadlincote’s Town Hall with the support of the local council and former members of the Royal Air Force, many of whom had flown in the First World War.

Today the team go from strength to strength with 100 Cadets on their books who go on to Fly, Glide, Shoot and attend Camps both in the UK and overseas.

Flt Lt A Thompson RAFVR (T)
OC 1211 Sqn