How honoured we were to be invited to attend today the ground breaking ceremony for the Avro Lancaster Bomber Sculpture which is to be erected on land at Brills Farm, Norton Disney, just on the Notts/Lincs border and very close to Highfields School. Our dear great friend Johnny Johnson was there as one of 10 guests of honour RAF veterans who each dug a spadeful of soil to mark the start of this ambitious installation project. Many dignitaries from the area were also in attendance and the land was blessed by the Rev Dee Freeman of the Withamside United Parish.
This land is an especially appropriate spot as many returning Lancasters would have flown over this particular field as they approached the end of a sortie on their return to their Lincolnshire base. A permanent memorial sited here to those who flew over this spot will be an impressive and important sight, visible for miles around from its high vantage point.
The children were invited to scatter wildflower seeds across the meadow where the sculpture will be built. (They also got a goodie bag as a thank you which included a lovely badge of a Lancaster which they may attach to their blazers! Yippee!)
We are pictured here with generations of Highfields pupils and teachers. Johnny is shaking hands with Mr Mark Pashley who attended our reunion in 2014 and was taught by Johnny at our school in 1967/68 when Johnny was our Form 4 teacher. Two old boys now in every sense! it was lovely for them to see children who now attend Highfields and who continue the legacy of our school.
This event attracted wide media coverage and you can see Quentin Raynor’s report on BBC East Midlands today tonight, ITV, local radio and the Newark Advertiser newspaper. See it there if you don’t see it here first! But here’s a little link to the lovely piece in this evening’s news, after our gorgeous gallery of a wonderful day…