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This part of the site is dedicated to those men who took part in the Battle of Britain. A battle that took place during the summer months of 1940. The official version states that this battle took place between the months of July and the end of October 1940. Others state that this conflict did not end until early 1941. Adolf Galland commander of JG 26 during the conflict, states that the Battle of Britain drifted into 1941 were it petered out. Many agree with his view. To state that the Battle of Britain ended at the end of October is both morally and historically inaccurate. Any battle is not over until one of the protagonists has left the field. This did not occur until May 1941 when the Luftwaffe withdrew to fight on the eastern front. To state otherwise denies and betrays those who died after October. It also denies that the Italian Air Force took part in that conflict, an historical fact.

There are books and lists of many nationalities who took part in the Battle of Britain, there is no account of the men from the North East of England who took part in this conflict. Mainly they are grouped in with the rest, however, a great many of these men were never really 'known' in the first place. Battle of Britain literature in the main passes most of them over. Even worse, many of these men are just forgotten. The new 'buzz-word' of today is regeneration. Many towns and cities are looking for heroes to boost their image, to a man they overlook the Battle of Briitain heroes that have dwelt in their midst. These men, many gave their all, have received nothing in return and in many cases their name has been removed form history: a history that they made.

In the following will be found men who had a long war; a successfull flying career. Equally there are men who lasted only a very short while: their first patrol was to be their last. You will also find 'aces' those with five or more 'kills'. Also in here will be found those who faced the worst hell of all, fire, as they were trapped in a burning fighter. For many of them death may have been a luxury that avoided them as they lived a life scarred, not only physically, but mentally. Amongst these men you will also find those who, after being shot down, fought a lasting fight from behind the wire as POWs.  

Photo William Walker.

Photograph above is Sgt Marmaduke Ridley of Newcastle upon Tyne. Ridley was an ex RAF apprentice who re mustered as a pilot. Ridley served on 616 [South Yorkshire] Squadron. He was wounded in the fighting over Dunkirk and was killed in action August 26, 1940. For More click Photo.

Photograph to the right is Squdron Leader John Sample of Longhirst near Morpeth, Northumberland. He served on 607 Squadron from 1934 until june 1940. He then took command of 504 [County of Nottingham] Squadron and led it until 1941. After a period of rest, Sample took command of newly formed 137 Squadron. He was killed a month later, October 28, 1941, when he collided with another aircraft of the squadron. CLICK SAMPLE IMAGE FOR MORE PHOTOGRAPHS.

Photo Charles Sample.