Rayleigh and Wickford MP Mark Francois recently attended a charity fund raising dinner at Hylands House in Chelmsford, to help raise money for the campaign to redevelop the World War One Aerodrome at Stow Maries, near Maldon.
Stow Maries Aerodrome is the best preserved World War One Aerodrome in Britain and arguably in the whole of Europe. A trust has been established to seek to restore the aerodrome, including its hangers and outbuildings, to their original World War One condition, not least to help remember the courage of the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) who operated from there. During World War One, airmen from Stow Maries helped participate in the air defence of London, including against German Zeppelins and Gotha bombers.
The dinner, which was chaired by Trust Chairman Mr Peter Martin (a former leader of Essex County Council) was addressed by TV historian Dan Snow, who gave details about the aerodrome and its role in the First World War. Mr Snow is also an enthusiastic supporter of the project and encouraged those present to support it in future.
Commenting on the evening Mark Francois said:
“The Stowe Maries Aerodrome project is a wonderful example of volunteers coming together to preserve our national heritage, for future generations to enjoy. As a supporter of the project for several years I was pleased to be present at the dinner and to hear Dan Snow speak so eloquently about the role of the Royal Flying Corps in World War One. We should never forget the sacrifices that were made so that we can be free and I wish this wonderful project all possible success in the future.”