Poignant memorial appeal launched

The memorial in Bicker ANL-140321-123731001
The memorial in Bicker ANL-140321-123731001
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An appeal has been launched to locate relatives of the brave crew of a Lancaster bomber which perished during the war when it crashed at Bicker.

A memorial marks the spot on farmland where Lancaster ND820 ploughed into the ground on April 10, 1944.

The crew of the Pathfinders 635 Squadron had been on a training flight from RAF Downham Market in Norfolk.

The bodies of six of the crew – Flight Sergeants DJ Farrant, JB Bannan and AIG Hunter, Sergeants RHF Malthouse and JW Nixon and Warrant Officer RT Lord – were never recovered and their names are commemorated on the Runnymead Memorial to the Missing.

The seventh man, Flying Officer TF Wilson, was buried in Stonefall Cemetery in Harrogate.

Boston mayor Paul Kenny wants to trace as many of the crew’s relatives as possible so they can be invited to attend a memorial service on Saturday, April 5, to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the crash.

He said: “We know of only one of the families intending to be there. It would be really good if more of the crew’s families could be represented.

“It is sadly poignant to attend the memorial site and realise that six of the crew are still out there in the fields.”

In 2009 the widow of F/Sgt Bannan, together with three generations of her family, attended a memorial service at the site.

Relatives of the crew, or anyone who has information, can contact the memorial organiser, Stanley Naylor, phone 01205 722594 or email stannayk37@talktalk.net