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Media Coverage Countdown

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010:

This is Cornwall – “A final farewell to the Penhale bomb victims as 70th anniversary marks closure”

http://www.thisiscornwall.co.uk/news/final-farewell-Penhale-bomb-victims/article-2436603-detail/article.html

A final farewell to the Penhale bomb victims as 70th anniversary marks closure

Medals were proudly worn at the event.  1007JJ03705veterans

Medals were proudly worn at the event.

A FOND farewell has been given to an event that has annually honoured fallen, veterans and currently serving military personnel.

On Saturday, in perfect summer weather, the final Perranporth Veterans’ Day took place and the 70th anniversary of the bombing of the Penhale camp was remembered.

In July 1940, 22 men from the 58th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment sent to recuperate at the camp a few weeks after surviving the German attack during the evacuation of Dunkirk were killed after a lone German plane dropped four bombs on the camp.

Relatives

Stuart Gray, the son of one of the survivors, had traced relatives of those who died and they travelled to Perranporth for the event.

Mr Gray said: “I managed to find relatives of 19 of the 22 who were killed, and 13 of the families came along.”

A veterans’ committee has organised the event for the past three years, led by Commander Ian Inskip, after it was started in the 1990s by Frank Tyrer, who served as a Spitfire mechanic at RAF Perranporth during the war. But the closure of Penhale Camp has meant that the financial support from the Army has come to an end.

Co-ordinator of the veterans’ committee, Frances White, said: “The day went like clock-work and the weather was glorious. The committee would like to thank all the sponsors and local businesses that donated money and raffle prizes to support the event, helping to ensure the day went ahead.”

The parade, which included serving personnel, newly-qualified recruits from HMS Raleigh, veterans and standards, cadets, the emergency services, civilian organisations such as the RNLI, and local schoolchildren, was led by the RNAS Culdrose Volunteer Band and the St Agnes Band to and from the Inner Green where Lady Mary Holborow, the Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall, gave an address and presented Bernie Porter, from Perranporth, with his veterans’ badge.

The parade marshal was Peter Paice and the 13 standard bearers were led by Pat Jephcote, with Bill Bishop the bugler. A service was given by the Rev Jeremy Andrew, vicar at Perranzabuloe Church. He said: “It is very important to remember those who have offered their lives in service and those who are still serving.

“It has been a very moving event.”

Lunch, prepared by the Perranporth Women’s Institute for the marchers, followed in the Memorial Hall and in the afternoon various bands, Perranporth School Cornish dancers and the Cornwall Military Vehicles Trust entertained visitors, with the Royal British Legion (RBL), ShelterBox and the RNLI having stalls on the Inner Green, with Redruth Town Band performing at a concert in the evening.

Graves

This year marks the end of the RBL Perranporth branch, and it was the final time that its standard will be on parade.

It was laid up at Perranzabuloe Church, at a service on Sunday that included the laying of wreaths at the graves of those killed in Penhale.

Once the event costs have been covered all surplus money raised will be shared between The British Legless Ex-Servicemen’s Association and the Royal British Legion.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010:

This is Cornwall – “Holywell Bay dead honoured at last parade”

http://www.thisiscornwall.co.uk/news/Holywell-Bay-dead-honoured-parade/article-2434400-detail/article.html

Holywell Bay dead honoured at last parade

Ian Inskip with his wreath from the RBL ready to be laid at the  gravesides at Perranzabuloe Church. 0107GH01503wreaths

Ian Inskip with his wreath from the RBL ready to be laid at the gravesides at Perranzabuloe Church.

SOLDIERS who died on a sunny Sunday afternoon 70 years ago, together with service people serving in danger zones today, were remembered at events in Perranporth at the weekend.

Some relatives of the 22 men who died when a German Junkers dropped bombs on Penhale Camp, at Holywell Bay, travelled from as far afield as Australia for the final Perranporth Veterans’ Day celebration.

Some families had only found out in the past few months where their loved ones had died, because in those dark and secret days of war there was the utmost secrecy and the Army command at the time would only revealed that soldiers had been killed “somewhere in England”.

The men had been at the recently constructed Penhale Camp for rest and recuperation after surviving the hell and fury of the German attack during the evacuation of Dunkirk only a few weeks before.

They were sitting out in the sun at about 3pm when a lone German Junkers dropped four high explosive bombs. Three of them detonated and an afternoon of rare pleasure was turned to tragedy.

Most of those at the camp at that time were members of the mainly Scottish 58th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment, which had been augmented by men from the North of England and Wales.

Stuart Gray, the son of one of the survivors, had contacted relatives of those who died and they travelled to Perranporth for Saturday’s parade and a wreath-laying service at Perranzabuloe Parish Church, where many of them are buried, on Sunday. “I managed to find relatives of 19 of the 22 who were killed, and 13 of the families are represented here today,” he said. His father’s regiment had started as the 9th battalion of a Territorial Regiment in Scotland and as an anti-aircraft unit they had lost 100 men at Dunkirk. “They were having some relaxation at Penhale to recover from their ordeal when the bombs dropped. Some say the Junkers was actually looking for the RAF airfield at St Eval. It all happened on the same day that Falmouth was bombed and lives were lost there.”

Mr Gray’s late father survived the war and returned to visit Penhale 20 years ago, but among the other relatives was a woman who had only found out last month where her brother died. Bill Mitchell, whose father also died in the carnage, found out where his father had been killed after his mother died 16 years ago. He has been visiting Perranporth for the ceremony for the past five years.

Mr Gray read out the names of those killed at the service on The Green at Perranporth. Organised by Commander Ian Inskip after being started in the 1990s by Frank Tyrer, who served as a Spitfire mechanic at RAF Perranporth during the war, the event is the last of its kind.

The closure of Penhale Camp has meant that the financial support from the Army has come to an end, and efforts are being concentrated on the recently introduced Armed Forces Day which takes place on the last Saturday in June.

The weekend services were conducted by the Rev Jeremy Andrew, vicar of Perranzabuloe, while those attending at the parade on The Green included the Lord Lieutenant, Lady Mary Holborrow, the High Sherriff, John Williams, and the MP for Truro and Falmouth Sarah Newton, the chairman of the parish council, Doreen Lawrence, and the co-ordinator of the veterans’ committee, Frances White.

Lady Mary said it was a time to remember the part Perranporth had played in the Second World War, when pilots from many nations flew from the airfield. “We must not forget those who fought and died for freedom then and those who are doing so today,” she said. Lady Mary also presented a veterans badge to Bernie Porter, of Perranporth, who served in the RAF with ground crew servicing Sabre jets and Hawker Hunters from 1955-60, including a period on the Dutch-German border as the first line of defence against the Russians.

The parade through the streets of Perranporth included the RNAS Culdrose Volunteer Band and the St Agnes Silver Band and representatives from many service and civilian organisations. The parade marshall was Peter Paice, there were 13 standard bearers, led by Pat Jephcote, and the bugler was Bill Bishop. A Battle of Britain Day is scheduled for Perranporth Airfield on Sunday, August 22.

Monday, 19 July 2010: BBC Cornwall – “Penhale tragedy remembered 70 years on”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/cornwall/hi/people_and_places/history/newsid_8833000/8833928.stm

Penhale remembers   A ceremony has been held to remember a group of soldiers who died when their army camp in Cornwall was bombed during the second world war. The tragedy at Penhale Camp near Perranporth 70 years ago cost the lives of 22 men, all of them having just survived the horrors of Dunkirk. The gathering in July 2010 was the last Perranporth Veterans Day. The centre of Perranporth came to a stand still as the residents and holiday makers remembered the fallen.

Perranporth Veterans Day

Relatives from all over the UK came to Perranporth

Standard bearers, cadets and veterans paraded through the seaside town. They all gathered on the Inner Green to remember those who had given their all during World War II. It was a time to remember the men who had died at Penhale Camp 70 years earlier. They had come to Perranporth to recuperate after escaping from Dunkirk. The men died when a lone German bomber struck. Stuart Gray’s father survived the Penhale bombing.

It was Stuart’s job to read out the names of the dead at the ceremony. He says: “It was quite poignant. I am glad I got through it. More than half of the casualties have been represented today by relatives all over the country. These relatives realise they are not alone in their loss. I think it’s been good all round.”

Norman Davies lost his brother George on that day. He returned to Perranporth with his son Steven. Norman says: “It was such a loss for us. We were determined to make the journey from the Wirrell on Merseyside.” It may have been the last gathering at the Perranporth Veteran’s Day, but the men who died at Penhale Camp will never be forgotten.

Sunday July 18th 2010: ITV Wales: “Soldiers Remembered” 5.41PM Sun Jul 18 2010

Soldiers killed by a lone german bomber just days after being rescued from the beaches of Dunkirk have been remembered at a ceremony in Cornwall. Amoung the 22 killed when a bomb hit the site were three from Wales. From Penhale in Cornwall Rob Osborne reports.

http://www.itv.com/wales/soldiers-remembered86879/

Saturday July 17th 2010: BBC News – Cornwall – “Final remembrance of Penhale bomb”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-guernsey-10672567

A memorial service has been held in Perranporth to remember 22 men who were killed in the 1940 bombing of Penhale Camp. The camp was a rest and recuperation centre for those who had survived Dunkirk. The memorial service has happened every year, but the 2010 event will be the last one held.

READ MORE: Last memorial for Penhale bombing   A memorial service for 22 military personnel who died when Cornwall was bombed in World War II has been held. The service marked the 70th anniversary of the Penhale bombing in which the first military personnel were killed in Cornwall. Four bombs were dropped in 1940 onto the rest and recuperation centre for soldiers who had survived Dunkirk. Relatives of those affected attended the memorial, which is the final service to be held for the incident. Commander Ian Hiskip, from the Royal British Legion, said: “The 58th Light Anti Aircraft Regiment had been accommodated in Penhale having suffered some fairly horrific experiences at Dunkirk.

William Moffatt
William Moffatt survived the bombings of Penhale Camp in which 22 men were killed

“A lone German bomber, who we believe was looking for RAF St Eval, stumbled across Penhale Camp and dropped its four bombs. “Twenty-two soldiers were killed and a number of others were seriously injured.” William Moffatt, who survived the bombings, said: “One of my colleagues, said that ‘plane is pretty close’, and as he said that ‘bang, bang, bang’ and that was it. “We all dived out to see what damage had been done, or if any of the lads had been killed, and they had. “The following weeks we all slept out on the beach and on the sand dunes because everybody got scared stiff.”

Bob Andrew, from the Cornish Aviation Society, who was 10 at the time of the bombing, said: “We didn’t know what had been done and we were rather taken a-back that somewhere had been bombed. “He [Mr Andrew’s father] was terribly upset and knew soldiers had been killed, and he went to the church and saw these coffins, he came back with tears streaming from his eyes saying ‘those poor boys, they’re all dead and in one grave’.”

Most of the 22 men who were killed in the incident were buried in Perranporth, but many of their families were unable to attend their funerals because they were based in Scotland, Wales and the north of England.

Thursday July 8th 2010:

ITV Wales has followed up on finding the cousin of Private Thomas Edward Charles Evans (K.O.R.R.) in Bargoed with a 3 1/2 minute appeal for the relatives of:
      • Signalman Arthur Tysilis Jones (Royal Corps of Signals) and
      • Gunner Johan Samuel O’Sullivan (Royal Artillary).
The clip can be viewed at:
http://www.itv.com/wales/fullprogramme/
Set the slider to 19.00. The clip lasts till 22.30.

Thursday July 8th 2010:

Oban Times

Wednesday July 7th 2010:

1. Scottish Television News

http://news.stv.tv/scotland/west-central/185827-son-of-wartime-tragedy-surviv…

2. ITV Wales (you have to sit through a short Toyota advert first!)

http://www.itv.com/wales/ww2-soldier-search63503/

3. South West TV (Cornwall)

http://www.itv.com/westcountry-west/bombing-anniversary16713/

4. Radio Scotland. (Set the clock to 1.50.00).

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/b00syq29

5. BBC Scotland Available for 24 hours only

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00t0knl/Reporting_Scotland_07_07_2010/?…

Wednesday July 7th 2010:

Aberdeen Press & Journal


Monday July 5th 2010

Liverpool Echo

Monday June 28th 2010:

UKTV Yesterday Message Board

http://uktv.co.uk/yesterday/thread/threadid/45324/

DUNKIRK SURVIVORS BOMBED AFTER SAFE RETURN – MEMORIAL SERVICE – URGENT SEARCH FOR RELATIVES

70th and last Perranporth Veterans Day Celebrations July 17th & 18th 2010 URGENT search for relatives of soldiers who survived Dunkirk to be killed in a bombing raid on Penhale Camp, Cornwall on 7th July 1940. Full details here [link] Is your relative listed? Or do you have any idea where their relatives might be now? Anything you can do to help would be much appreciated by Stuart Gray, who has been tracing remaining relatives for the last year. There are now only six soldiers whose relatives are still missing. Best wishes, Liz

Sunday May 30th 2010:

The Sunday Post


Tuesday May 25th 2010

Liverpool Echo Blog – Forces Favourites

http://blogs.liverpoolecho.co.uk/forcesfavourite/2010/05/race-against-time-for-final-me.html

Race against time for final memorial

By Laura Jones on May 25, 10 03:05 PM

THE ECHO has helped to find the family of a wartime hero in a race against time as a final memorial service looms. Today Forces’ Favourite took a phone call from 77-year-old Geoffrey Davies, the brother of one of the two Liverpool lads killed in a wartime bombing raid. Geanealogist Stuart Gray contacted us asking if we could publicise his search for the families of George Davies and Charles Henry of the 58th light anti-aircraft regiment who were killed in 1940. 58th. Stiffkey1939.300.jpg Each year the small Cornish community of Perranporth comes together to remember the 22 men who died when a German plane dropped four high-explosive bombs on the Penhale Army Camp on July 7, 1940. The final remembrance service for the Penhale Army Camp takes place on July 17 – 18. If you are a relative of raid victim Charles Henry call reporter Laura Jones on 0151 472 2376. Monday May 24th 2010 Liverpool Echo Local News

Search on for families of Merseyside men killed in 1940 bombing raid

May 24 2010 by Laura Jones, Liverpool Echo

Search on for families of Merseyside men killed in 1940 bombing raid

A GENEALOGIST today appealed for help in tracing the families of two young Merseyside men killed in a 1940 bombing raid.

Stuart Gray hopes the relatives of the two Liverpool lads, and those of nine others killed after a German WWII attack, will attend a final memorial service.

Each year the small Cornish community of Perranporth comes together to remember the 22 men who died when a German plane dropped four high-explosive bombs on the Penhale Army Camp on July 7, 1940.

This year marks the 70th anniversary – and it will also be the village’s final tribute.

Stuart Gray is desperately trying to trace the relatives of 22-year-old gunner George Charles Davies, born in Liverpool to parents Edward and Hilda Mary Davies, of Birkenhead, and 21-year-old gunner Charles Henry, of Dingle, the son of William Owen and Sarah Henry.

Both belonged to the 58th light anti-aircraft regiment which had only just returned from the horrors of Calais and Dunkirk.

They are buried in St Piran’s Church, Cornwall.

Stuart’s father was one of the lucky survivors that night.

But it was sheer coincidence that led him to Cornwall to undertake this mission.

Stuart said: “I went down to visit a friend from Oban. It was really just a stroke of fate – I didn’t make the connection, it was when I phoned my ma, she made the connection.”

When he realised he was staying just a few miles from his father’s base Stuart visited the Penhale museum and found out about the annual memorial service – which concludes this year.

Stuard said: “It is a race against time to find the relatives.

“So far I’ve found about half of the victims families using a scatter gun approach of contacting the British Legion, local papers and even radio stations in the areas where some of the folks came from.

“I’m in touch with the relatives of 11.

“And there’s still a chap from Sheffield, Bill Moffatt, who is in his 90s and boy is he fit and well.

“I believe he’s the only living survivor.”

The final remembrance service for the Penhale Army Camp takes place on July 17 – 18.

If you are a relative of raid victims George Charles Davies or Charles Henry call reporter Laura Jones on 0151 472 2376.

Saturday October 10th 2009:

South Wales Echo

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