Memorial project to pay homage to war heroes at Lavenham Airfield surpasses £9000
The organisers of a campaign to build a memorial to those who served at Lavenham Airfield during the Second World War say they have been touched by the generosity of donors.
John Pawsey, chairman of The Friends of Lavenham Airfield (Fola), said a crowdfunding appeal, together with fundraising activities that included airfield walks over the summer, raised thousands of pounds in a matter of months.
The total raised now stands at £9,113, but a further £6,500 is still needed to get the memorial built in time for Lavenham’s commemoration of the 75th anniversary of VE Day in May 2020.
Mr Pawsey, on behalf of Fola, has applied for planning permission for the memorial to commemorate the USAAF 487th Bomb Group and all who served at the airfield, incorporating plaques which record the names of 233 personnel who lost their lives there.
The memorial will also include the airfield’s old-fashioned identify letters, LV.
Mr Pawsey said: “The response to the appeal has been good; the stories we’ve heard from people donating money have been very touching.
“Our architect has donated his time free of charge as he says he remembers cycling around the airfield when he was a young man and wants to give something back.”
Airfield guide John Cashmore and his colleagues do walks around the airfield each year, explaining the history of the site and how it was used during the war, when more than 3,000 people were housed on the site.
This year’s walks raised £850, including the sales of cards, badges and donations.
The next fundraiser is a talk called ‘A Wartime Christmas’. It takes place in Lavenham Village Hall on December 11 and is about how people in suffolk made the most of the festive season, despite bombing and relentless austerity measures. For tickets at £5, call 01787 248599.
To donate, go online to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/487th-