MEMBERS of the Evesham Branch RAFA, ex members of the Royal Observer Corps, The Royal British and other Service representatives and friends attended a short service last Tuesday to honour the two Canadians and three British Servicemen who died in Broadway on June 2, 1943.

The crew was flying a Whitley bomber at the end of their training course. On the second circuit the aircraft crashed into the top of the hill, near to Broadway Tower. The five people were: F/Sgt H.G Hagen, RCAF; F/Sgt R.S. Phillips, RAF; Sgt D.H. Kelly, RCAF; Sgt D.A. Marriott , RAF (VR); Sgt G.E. Elkins, RAF (VR). At the time of this tragedy, Broadway Tower was being used as a Royal Observer Corps post and first on the scene were two corps members, Albert Lowe and Ernest Hollington. Despite the flames, the two men pulled all five airmen clear. Five were already dead, the fifth man was still alive. He was taken to the shelter of the nearby tower, but died soon afterwards.

R.A.F. Veteran Danny Rollinson, and chairman of the Bretforton Royal British Legion, led the parade, and the service was conducted by the Reverend Michelle Ward, Vicar of Broadway and Wickhamford. Councillor Jennie Johnson, chairman of the Evesham Branch of the Royal Air Force Association welcomed all those present.

100 year old former RAF mechanic Jeff Brereton, and President of the Evesham Branch of the British Royal Air Force Association, recited the RAFA dedication and placed a wreath on the War Memorial, following with the Exhortation, and Dedication. A second wreath on behalf of the Royal Observers Corps, was laid by their National Secretary, Jenny Morris, who had travelled up from Bristol to attend the ceremony. The last post was played on trumpet by Sue Sollis B.E.M., Adam Willett, carried the standard on behalf of the Evesham Branch of the Royal British Legion. Annetta Gorton, owner of Broadway Tower, also attended. It was Annetta and the late Brian Kedward who were instrumental in installing the memorial stone to the airmen who died.