We were recently invited to the Battle of Britain Memorial at Capel-Le-Ferne, near Folkestone. It’s a beautifully situated memorial dedicated to the fighter pilots & bomber crews who fought in the Battle of Britain in 1940, and became known as ‘The Few’ after Churchill’s famous speech (the one where he said “Never was so much owed by so many to so few”).
The outdoor areas are free to visit (only a fee for parking if you come by car) and includes the main memorial monument as well as full-size replicas of a Hurricane & a Spitfire, sculptures of BOB the squadron dog and of a plane hitting the ground, and also a memorial wall with the names of all who flew in the battle.
The main building at the memorial is called ‘The Wing’, and from above, its shape mimics the outline of the wings of a Spitfire. It houses a cafeteria with amazing views, a well-stocked gift shop, and an interactive exhibition called the ‘Scramble Experience’.
I haven’t got any photos from inside the Scramble Experience, but there’s a video online about what you can expect when visiting the memorial, which gives you a good idea of what to expect. Being able to see in advance what to expect when visiting a place can be particularly helpful for autistic people, so I think it’s brilliant that they’ve made such an informative video:
The Scramble Experience is the only part of the memorial for which there is an entrance fee, and during the half term holiday this week (Mon 30 May – Sun 5 June) there’s a special offer of going two for the price of one!
All parts of the memorial are accessible for wheelchair users (minus getting into the mock-up Hurricane cockpit inside the Scramble Experience). If I could wish for something, from a disability perspective, it would be a proper ‘Changing Places’ toilet, rather than the standard accessible toilet which is available now. We don’t need one ourselves, but I know many who do. Currently, the nearest Changing Places is at Folkestone Sport Centre.
From an educational perspective, the Battle of Britain memorial is of course a great place for learning more about WWII and the Battle of Britain. On top of that, the location is stunning, with views across the channel to France, and there are public footpaths for wandering along cliff tops if you wish to explore the area further.
If you’re local to the area, have you been yet? Or, if you’re not from around here, is there anywhere near you where you can immerse yourself in WWII history?
More information about the Battle of Britain Memorial can be found on their website: https://www.battleofbritainmemorial.org/
As always, thanks so much for reading! x
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