Nearly 8500 Polish airmen ended up in Britain in 1940, after first fighting losing battles in Poland and then France. They called Britain ‘The Island of Last Hope’. My father remembers serving alongside the Polish and I remember him saying that they were good pilots and fighters; he said this with feeling.
After visiting raf Valley tomorrow I will be travelling to the site of the old RAF Penrhos, where many Polish servicemen were demobbed after the war. 2408 Polish airmen lost their lives fighting for freedom. The Polish Squadrons played a vital part in the Battle of Britain, showing tremendous valour and determination. Yet the peace they fought for, and won for the rest of Europe, didn’t come for their own country until half a century later. The Polish Housing Society, a charity set up in 1949, bought the old airfield and today it still runs a care home on the site. Here I hope to meet at least one Polish resident who served during the war. That would be a great privilege.