This is the final photo essay of my visit to Runnymede, where the Magna Carta was signed. Up above the meadow is Cooper’s Hill and this is where the Airforce memorial is placed.
The passageways have these plaques on the left hand side which have the names inscribed on them. By year, by type of Air Force and by Rank. On the top are the crests of the various Air Forces who fought on the side of the UK.
The centre of the memorial.
This poem has been engraved on the north facing window.
The first rays of the dawning sun
Shall touch its pillars,
And as the day advances
And the light grows stronger,
You shall read the names
Engraved on the stone of those who sailed on the angry sky
And saw harbour no more.
No gravestone in yew-dark churchyard
Shall mark their resting place;
Their bones lie in the forgotten corners of earth and sea.
But, that we may not lose their memory
With fading years, their monuments stand here,
Here, where the trees troop down to Runnymede .
Meadow of Magna Carta, field of freedom,
Never saw you so fitting a memorial,
Proof that the principals established here
Are still dear to the hearts of men.
Here now they stand, contrasted and alike,
The field of freedom's birth, and the memorial
To freedom's winning.
And, as evening comes,
And mists, like quiet ghosts, rise from the river bed,
And climb the hill to wander through the cloisters,
We shall not forget them. Above the mist
We shall see the memorial still, and over it
The crown and single star. And we shall pray
As the mists rise up and the air grows dark
That we may wear
As brave a heart as they.
I climb up to the roof and see a breathtaking view of the back.
Did a double take when i saw this. Noor Inayat Khan, George Cross is such a wonderful Indian lady. She said this: "I wish some Indians would win high military distinction in this war. If one or two could do something in the Allied service which was very brave and which everybody admired it would help to make a bridge between the English people and the Indians.
She was betrayed and was executed at Dachau Concentration Camp. What a brave lady.
And then I walk down the hill, thinking about all those pilots who died in the WW2. Brave men, wonderful memorial. This definitely talked to me much more than the Magna Carta Runnymede meadow. Lovely place indeed.