Fundraiser for stained glass window in memory of Purbeck WW2 RAF pilots

TWO veterans of the Second World War are giving a talk to raise money for a commemorative stained glass window

It will fund an installation at Holy Trinity Church, Warmwell, in memory of personnel from RAF Warmwell, who served at the air station.

The talk, Flying High, Flying Low – the Mosquito in War, at the Dorford Centre, Dorchester, will be given by Flt Lt Colin Bell DFC, 103, a Mosquito pilot in Bomber Command, and Flt Lt Desmond Curtis DFC, 99, a Mosquito navigator in Coastal Command.

RAF Warmwell was developed on land north of Warmwell, just before the war in 1937, in what later became the village of Crossways.

During the Battle of Britain, it was the base for Spitfire and Hurricane Fighter squadrons, which protected a sector of the south coast that included the important port of Portland.

Later in the war it was also the base for a wing of USAAF P-38 fighters.

The site was closed in 1946, and few visible signs of the airfield are left now, with the old runways and hangars largely built over or pulled down with the expansion of Crossways.

The memorial window in the church, the garrison church for the base, has been planned to commemorate the personnel and the air station.

Warmwell churchyard has the graves, now maintained by the War Graves Commission, of 24 air and groundcrew killed while serving at RAF Warmwell.

The design for the window, on display in the church, has been awarded to Andrew Johnson, a stained glass window expert from Exeter who has undertaken a number of prestigious religious and secular commissions.

The estimated cost is £22,000 and so far, the village, with an adult population of about 100, has raised around £12,500 from talks and donations from individuals and charities.

A series of talks and fundraising events are planned for the summer, with the installation to be completed in time for Armistice Day in November 2024.

For more information, contact David Walsh on 07770 343441 or at, or Gerry Gerrard on 01305 852320 or at

Tickets for the talk on Wednesday, May 15, at 6.30pm, have sold out, but anyone interested can add their name to a waiting list, if any become available, by contacting Gerry Gerrard.

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