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Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

RAF Battle of Britain Pilots Signatures for Auction at Bonhams Oxford

Churchill Told Doublas Bader Not to Lose this Book

A small leather-bound book that powerfully evokes ‘The Few’ of WWII Battle of Britain, listing 107 signatures of RAF flying officers, goes on sale at Bonhams Militaria Sale in Oxford on August 2nd.

Collected by Norman Phillips, a mess steward at RAF Marklesham Heath in 1941, the little book’s leather cover was apparently cut from a mess chair by Group Captain Douglas Bader CBE, DSO & Bar,DFC, whose remarkable story – flying again after losing both his legs – was the basis of the film ‘Reach for the Sky’.

This unique item is estimated to sell for £6,000 to £8,000. Winston Churchill, in a conversation with Douglas Bader, referred to the book as “not a book of names, but a book of heroes. God forbid it should ever be lost.” The book contains the signatures of the following, as well as many others. Squadron Leader D. R. S. Bader D.S.O., D.F.C. and bar, C.O. 242 Squadron. Squadron Leader R.R. Stanford-Tuck D.S.O., D.S.C. and bar, C. O. 257 Squadron. Wing Commander A.D. Farquhar D.F.C., 257 Squadron. Squadron Leader A.W.A. Bayne D.F.C. 17 Squadron.

There are also signatures from American Volunteers, 71 American Eagle Squadron, and other Canadian, Australian, Polish, and Czech pilots, many of whom did not survive the War

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