Second World War fallen remembered

THEY are not yet in their rightful place but the 620 names of the people of Ipswich who gave their lives in the second world war have not been forgotten.

THEY are not yet in their rightful place but the 620 names of the people of Ipswich who gave their lives in the second world war have not been forgotten.

Among all the poignant remembrance services in Suffolk, a special one was held in their honour yesterday and the plaques on which their names have been inscribed were blessed.

The service was a particularly emotional one for Clive Batten, whose two brothers were killed within weeks of one another in 1943.

Their names are now both on the plaque, but to Mr Batten of Bixley Drive it has taken far too long.

His brothers Bert and Harold were just 24 and 21-years-old when they were shot down while serving their country.

Bert was a sergeant and flight engineer of 115 squadron in the RAF when his plane was hit over Germany on October 20 1943.

Most Read

Harold was an air gunner in 161 Squadron and was involved in covert missions taking secret agents across the channel and was shot down over France on November 11 1943.

Mr Batten, 69, was just nine-years-old at the time. He said: "My mother went grey over night.

"She had received one telegram and had not recovered from the shock of that when she got another one.

"Being here today is quite emotional. Thousands and thousands of young boys got killed but it is nice to know that my brothers are remembered."

He still has the legacy of their bravery. In folders with their photos he has log books of his brothers flights, one detailing 197 hours of night flights.

Poignantly the final log on each brother's log sheet is filled in simply as 'missing'.

The service was organised by Peter Thompson, secretary of the Ipswich branch of the Royal British Legion, who has been fighting for several years to get the missing names put on the cenotaph in Christchurch Park, Ipswich.

Fundraising has been going on for several years to raise the £250,000 needed for an extension to the cenotaph to remember the bravery of those who fought and died for their country.

But as the plaques were already made up it was felt only fitting that they should be on display on Remembrance Sunday.

At the service at his Thurleston Lane home in Ipswich, Mr Thompson said: "We thought all this was going to be done a long time ago.

"My wife said that the names could not stay locked up on Remembrance Sunday."

The service was taken by Reverend Canon Henry Lunney and standard bearers from the Royal British Legion, the Suffolk Regiments Old Comrades Association and the George Cross Island also took part.

Robert Connor and Thomas Clayton from the Royal Hospital School played the bugle.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter