Funding boost for Kedington Air Memorial plans

Members of the Kedington Air Memorial Group during their presentation  at Kedington British Legion Hall. From left: Jay Waite, Kevin Betts, Jim Halpin and Peter Deeks
Members of the Kedington Air Memorial Group during their presentation at Kedington British Legion Hall. From left: Jay Waite, Kevin Betts, Jim Halpin and Peter Deeks

A group’s goal of creating a memorial to the 21 serviceman and one civilian who died as a result of military air crashes in Kedington during the Second World War received a recent financial boost.

More than £500 was raised when members of the Kedington Air Memorial Group gave a presentation about its ambitions to a packed British Legion Hall in the village.

The monies raised means that more than £5,000 has now been put into the kitty towards the cost of creating the memorial, which will be cast using some of the materials recovered from the crash sites and will be displayed in Kedington Community Centre.

The talk was given by the group’s chairman and instigator of the initiative, Kevin Betts, who grew up in the village and whose parents both witnessed separate plane crashes.

Mr Betts had previously said: “I’ve always felt that the men who came down in the village, their lives should be marked here.”

During WWII five planes crashed in Kedington, killing 21 servicemen and on one occasion, after a Stirling bomber came down in Kings Hill, a local farmworker and Home Guardsman, George Smith, 20, who was fatally electrocuted while trying to rescue the plane’s occupants.

George’s brothers, Will ‘Winkle’ and Charlie still live in the village.

The next fund-raising event is a quiz night at the Barnardiston Arms on April 14 at 7.30pm.

To donate to the group go to https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/kedingtonairmemorial or call Marion Farrant on 07833431184. Cheques can be made payable to Kedington Air Memorial Group.