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WWII Bomber Command heroes to get London monument

Artist's impression of what the monument will look like
The monument will have quotations from Winston Churchill

A £3.5m permanent monument to the World War II heroes of RAF Bomber Command is to be built in central London.

Westminster Council gave permission for the open style pavilion at the Piccadilly entrance to Green Park.

The memorial, which should be built by 2012, will commemorate the 55,573 crew of Bomber Command, with an average age of 22, who were killed in World War II.

Its role was to attack Germany's airbases, troops, shipping and industries connected to the war effort.

During the war the command ensured the damage caused to London's squares, streets and parks from German bombs was not as extensive as it could have been.

Halifax bomber

Councillor Alastair Moss, chairman of Westminster City Council's planning applications sub committee, said: "This new landmark for London is a fitting tribute to the heroes of Bomber Command who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

"It is a sign of this country's gratitude to these exceptional people who were brave enough to fight for us and it will stand as an iconic London monument marking how good came to triumph over evil for many generations to come."

The roof of the 8.5m-tall pavilion, made from Portland Stone, will be open to the sky and the open entrance will be made from melted down aluminium sections of a Halifax bomber shot down during the war and in which all seven of the crew were killed.

It will also house a sculpture of the seven aircrew by the sculptor Philip Jackson.

The memorial will contain inscriptions, carvings, and a dedication.

Some objections

There will also be inscriptions from Winston Churchill, who said in a speech to Parliament in 1940: "The gratitude of every home in our island ... and indeed throughout the world except in the abodes of the guilty goes out to the British airmen who undaunted by odds, un-weakened by their constant challenge and mortal danger, are turning the tide of world war by their prowess and their devotion."

The monument had been promoted by the Bomber Command Association with assistance from the Royal Air Force and the Heritage Foundation.

The concept behind the memorial, its size, design and location in a Grade II listed park, has attracted some objections from groups including the Westminster Society, the Knightsbridge Association and the London Parks and Gardens Trust.
(Source: BBC)

Click to view image: 'BC mem'

Added: May-14-2010 Occurred On: May-14-2010
By: shashi2005
Tags: bomber, command
Views: 7865 | Comments: 7 | Votes: 0 | Favorites: 1 | Shared: 1 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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  • It was their role not to bomb "Germany's airbases, troops, shipping and industries connected to the war effort" but the civilian population to demoralize them.

    "It seems to me that the moment has come when the question of bombing of German cities simply for the sake of increasing the terror, should be reviewed. Otherwise we shall come into control of an utterly ruined land." - Churchill in a memorandum to Air Marshall Arthur Harris (28th March 1945!!!!)

    Posted May-14-2010 By 

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    • Bombing the civilian populations of the big cities was certainly part of Bomber Command's role, but it also bombed Germany's airbases etc. It only did the civilian thing as a result of tit for tat escalation: Germany started it (albeit by accident) on 24 August 1940, so Britain sought revenge. That then triggered the German "Blitz", killing over 43,000 British civilians. In November 1940 Germany almost completely destroyed Coventry. Seeing this, Churchill said "they have sown the More..

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    • The German Wikipadia claims that the RAF started the bombing of cities on may/12/1940 with the bombing of MŲnchengladbach and continued to do so.

      The first German attack on Britain was on september/07/1940.

      But fact is that the RAF started already on september/05/39, shortly after Great Britain declared war on Germany, with bombings of Wilhelmshaven and Cuxhaven.

      The RAF developed a doctrine of industrial air bombardment in More..

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  • About time because of our post war guilt of area bombing we didnt erect a memorial to the men who died .

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    • About ten years ago, out of the blue, my family received a letter from the RAF. It seems they had finally got around to putting the name of my uncle and his comrades onto the local war memorial.

      He was shot down and killed while in a Lanc on his way to Nuremburg in March 1944.

      It took them 50 years! I went to the ceremony & it was very touching. I never pass the spot without pausing to remember the gentleman after whom I am named.

      Bomber Command crews did not receive a campaign medal, as More..

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  • Shashi2005 - yours is an interesting post, and I am very interested in reading your Uncle's flight log.

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  • Shameful this has'nt been done sooner.

    Posted May-16-2010 By 

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