The annual Service of Remembrance for 57 & 630 Squadrons, Bomber Command, was held at the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre on Sunday 3rd July. Taking place on a pleasantly warm afternoon, a sizable number of veterans and their families from East Kirkby’s wartime past assembled in the museum’s main hangar, suitably seated alongside Avro Lancaster NX611.

 

Providing music for the service was the The Mareham-Le-Fen Victory Silver Band and the address was by The Reverend Richard Benson (honorary Chaplain to the 57 Sqn Association).

 

The Last Post was played and followed by one minute’s silence, The Reveille and the laying of wreaths at East Kirkby’s Memorial. Many veterans remained behind after the service to witness what was once an undoubtedly familiar sight and sound, as NX611 ran up her four Merlin 24s and taxied out on to the grass strip.

 

630 Squadron disbanded in July 1945, but 57 Sqn was represented by an immaculate colour party from RAF Wyton where the Squadron now operates the Grob Tutor T.1 as 57(R) Sqn.

 

 

Personnel based at RAF East Kirkby Killed in Action 

 

 

57 Squadron

630 Squadron

RAF

349

301

RAAF

40

29

RCAF

43

43

RNZAF

8

11

SAAF

1

1

USAAF

3

1

RNorAF

3

0

Total:

447

386


 

 

 

In addition to the 833 lives lost on operations, a number of non-aircrew station personnel also lost their lives during the same period. For more information please see the history of RAF East Kirkby HERE.

 

 “They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

We Will Remember Them”