The Wings Museum is proud to be in official affiliation with Haywards Heath Branch 0524, working together for the mutual benefit of the Wings Museum and Haywards Heath (Mid Sussex) Branch of the Royal Air Forces Association.

A RAFA First!

On Saturday 25th September 2010, Haywards Heath (Mid Sussex 0524) Branch of The Royal Air Forces Association held an Affiliation Ceremony with the Wings Museum at Balcombe in West Sussex.

The event was held at the Museum to mark the 70th Anniversary of The Battle of Britain and to promote the aims of both RAFA and the ongoing work of the Wings Museum in remembering those from all nations, many of whom paid the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country.

The ceremony was attended by Air Commodore Allan Vaughan (Vice Chairman Royal Air Forces Association), Mr. Gordon Tregear DL (Vice Lord Lieutenant West Sussex), Group Captain (Rev) Gordon Craig Assistant Chaplain-in-Chief (Training) and Principal Chaplain Church of Scotland (RAF).

Also attending were a large number of WWII Veterans from Bomber and Fighter Commands, and a colour party from 2529 Squadron Burgess Hill ATC who formed a guard of honour at the entrance to the museum to welcome guests and veterans.

After a short welcome by Mrs Gawan (RAFA branch secretary), Shirley then handed over to Padre Gordon Craig for the opening prayer and to give the RAFA Dedication to the Wings Museum.

Air Commodore Allan Vaughan then presented the Certificate of Affiliation to Aviation Museum curators, Daniel and Kevin Hunt, praising them for the setting up of the museum, and the way that the displays had been presented. He went on to say that 0524 branch had achieved a RAFA first with the affiliation, and hoped it would be a pattern for other branches and museums to follow in the future.

Padre Gordon Craig then gave a dedication of a Royal Air Force flag presented to the Museum by the Commanding Officer of RAF Odiham.

Mr. Gordon Tregear DL then spoke on behalf of the Lord Lieutenant of West Sussex, representative of The Queen, and praised the museum and its curators in the way it was set out, and for 0524 branch in making the affiliation a resounding success.

Lastly, a vote of thanks was given by Bunny Mason, President of Ditchling branch of The British Legion, after which there followed a tour of the museum by the curators and veterans of Bomber and Fighter Commands signed a section of a Lancaster rudder and a Hurricane wing tip.

A few photos recording the special day…

Colour party from 2529 Squadron Burgess Hill ATC
Padre Gordon Craig gives the dedication of the Wings Museum Royal Air Force flag.
Air Commodore Allan Vaughan presents the Certificate of Affiliation to Aviation Museum curators Daniel and Kevin Hunt, the Wings Museum RAF Ensign in the background.
Officials and WW2 Royal Air Force veterans gather for a press photo.

RAFA Needs you!

Were you in the Royal Air Force? Are you interested in the aims of the Royal Air Force? Would you like to meet new like-minded friends?

If the answer is yes to any of the above, then why not join your local branch of the Royal Air Forces Association. Mid Sussex Branch – Haywards Heath meet monthly alternating between Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath. We run coach outings, arrange speakers and have many other event going on.

If you would like to find out more please contact Hon. Secretary, Fiona on: 01444 417635

Royal Air Forces Association: