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216 Squadron Memorial at the National Arboretum

The idea of a 216 Squadron Memorial was muted in 2014, when 216 Squadron was disbanded. That same year at the 216 Squadron Association AGM Wg Cdr Pete Morgan was appointed to the post of 216 Squadron Memorial co-ordinator. Pete spent some time overseas in 2014 but at the 216 Squadron Association AGM in 2015 was able to present to those present details and choices of the proposed memorial. After some discussions it was decided that the 216 Squadron Association would seek to raise funds to create a 216 Squadron Memorial at the National Arboretum.

Some funds were available which were left in the 216 Squadron Fund after the squadron was disbanded. SIF had agreed these could be used for the Memorial once an official proposal had been made, this was done so at the AGM. It was agreed at the AGM that we would only seek corporate donations after publicity aimed at ex 216 personnel and their families so they could be involved in the creation of this memorial.

October 2020

From the 2019 AGM, a sub-committee was formed and remitted to revive the aspiration of erecting a 216 Squadron Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum. Whilst other activities have stalled, the sub-committee have continued with this endeavour and I am delighted to say we have made great progress, a special thanks to Ian Lyon and Mick Pearce for driving forward and maintaining the momentum to achieve our goal of a fitting 216 Squadron Memorial at the NMA.

The proposed Memorial is for 216 Squadron and it is vitally important that we enthuse, involve and capture the whole 216 Squadron fraternity, old and new. Correspondence on this will be shared with all existing contacts we have by email, Royal Mail and across social media platforms in a drive to be fully inclusive across the demographic of 216 Squadron. The hard work of getting the message out, fund raising and seeing this endeavour through to fruition is about to start - further correspondence on this will be sent over the next couple of weeks, please feel free to pass on to any ex 216 Squadron personnel

Doug Swinney
Chair
216 Squadron Association.

January 2021

I would like to provide an update on our endeavour to have a 216 Squadron Memorial erected at the National Memorial Arboretum (NMA). We have made progress towards this becoming a reality, though we realise that the hard work has yet to start!

We have been in discussions with a sculptor (Matthew Sanderson) for some time, Matthew is as enthusiastic as we are to create a striking and fitting memorial. Matthew has listened and taken our ideas / vision and through a series of iterations has created a maquette of what is nearing the final design for the 216 Squadron Memorial, an exciting milestone for us all. With the exception of the Memorial Committee, Matthew and the NMA, everyone will have to wait until the unveiling to see the results of Matthews work!

We are in the process of completing the NMA application which is scheduled to be presented to the NMA Committee in February 2021. Endorsement by the NMA Committee will see the clock start to tick as the expectation of the NMA is that from application to the installation of the memorial is 2 years, with a possible extension of 6 months in certain circumstances.

We are progressing with our application for charitable status for the 216 Sqn Association, if successful then all fund raising for the Memorial will be channelled through the association in order to benefit from the charitable status.

Our main fund raising for the memorial will be through selling shares in the memorial, with various levels of ‘share ownership' available from 1 to 100 shares and multiples thereof with each share costing £2.16. the 3 proposed level of share ownership is as follows:

1 share (£2.16) = Shareholder's name on a scroll within a ‘time capsule' within the monument. ( Bronze  share ownership)

50 shares (£108.00) = Shareholder's name on a scroll (larger font) within a ‘time capsule' within the monument. Receipt of a ‘memorial gift' (T-shirt or similar). ( Silver  share ownership)

100 shares (£216.00) = Shareholder's name on a scroll (largest font) within a ‘time capsule' within the monument. Receipt of a ‘memorial gift' (Created by the Sculptor Matthew Sanderson). ( Gold  share ownership)

The above fund raising proposals are work in progress and still being refined, we will update with progress with the finer detail as we approach the start of the fund raising efforts.

As previously mentioned it is vitally important that we enthuse, involve and capture the whole 216 Squadron community. Correspondence will continue to be shared with all existing contacts we have by email, Royal Mail and across social media platforms in a drive to be fully inclusive across the demographic of 216 Squadron. The hard work of getting the message out, fund raising and seeing this endeavour through to fruition has started and will continue - further correspondence on this will be sent out once we have achieved the milestone of NMA acceptance of our application.

Doug Swinney
Chair
216 Squadron Association.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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