Billericay Centenary Commemorative Plaque Unveiling Saturday 24th September 2016 sponsored by Bennetts Funeral Directors
Centenary Commemorative Plaque Unveiling
Saturday 24th September 2016
On Saturday 24th September 2016 we remembered that 100 years ago a large Zeppelin was shot down over Billericay. Jane Bennett’s great great grandfather on her mother’s side Superintendent Allen Ellis was one of the first police officers on the scene, so therefore quite apt that Bennetts were happy to sponsor and install a memorial stone to commemorate this event.
Lucienne and Tina went along to represent Bennetts.
It was a beautiful day with lovely sunshine and just a small amount of wind. The Royal Air Force Cadets were in attendance, as were Air Marshall Sir Freddie Sowrey KCB CBE AFC and family. It was very exciting as it was Sir Freddie’s father who actually shot down the Zeppelin. Also various members of the Billericay Town Council and residents of Billericay.
At 11.30am we had an introduction from the Town Council Chairman Jim Devlin, followed by a poem by Revd Dan Pierce, Sir Freddie unveiled the plaque with some lovely words thanking us for the beautiful memorial stone. The last post was then played and we had a two-minute silence.
After this there was time to take some photos and have a quick chat with Sir Freddie, who was absolutely charming, and again very grateful to us for the memorial stone.
All 22 members of the L32 crew perished and they were buried at St Mary Magdalene, Great Burstead with full military honours. In 1966 they were exhumed and re-buried at the German cemetery at Cannock Chase in Staffordshire.