SO many people turned out to cheer the D-Day flypast over Redditch last Sunday that the pilot rang local organiser Philip Jarvis to thank him for the reception he got.
“He said he was absolutely astounded by the hundreds of people in Redditch looking to the sky and waving to him,” said Philip, a local historian who had arranged the flypast as part of the celebrations marking the 75th anniversary of the D-Day Landings at St Philip’s Church in Webheath.
Those in attendance at the church included borough Mayor Councillor Roger Bennett.
“There was about 300 people around the church which was fantastic in itself, but the pilot did a loop round and there were people in their back gardens and in the the streets all waving,” said Philip.
A Hawker Hurricane had been expected but in the end it was an iconic Supermarine Spitfire, part of the world famous Battle of Britain Flight, which flew over Redditch, having taken off from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire, heading west to north Worcestershire before swinging south to do another flypast over Reading before returning to base.
“The pilot rang me at about 4.15pm and said he was back home in his sitting room which was amazing to me as it wasn’t that long since he’d flown over Redditch,” said Philip.
Hundreds of people also took the time to look at the D-Day exhibition which was also acting as a fundraiser to help fit out the new church annex at St Philip’s.