Published on 12th September 2023

municipal offices

Cheltenham will be commemorating the 83rd anniversary of the Battle of Britain on 17 September 2023, remembering the day when RAF Fighter Command claimed victory over the German Luftwaffe in 1940.

To mark this anniversary, a short ceremony will be held at the War Memorial on Sunday 17 September at 11am. There will not be the usual church service and parade.

Road diversions will be in place for the event which will include a temporary closure of the inner Promenade from 6pm on Saturday 16 September to 1pm on Sunday 17 September. Crescent Terrace, Post Office Lane and the Promenade will have a temporary closure from 10am to 1pm on Sunday 17 September.
Traffic will be diverted through St George’s place.

In attendance will be mayor of Cheltenham Cllr Matt Babbage, RAFA President Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller, RAFA Chairman Michael Bryant, honorary freemen, aldermen, councillors, and Chaplain tbc, representatives from the Aden Veterans, Royal British Legion and local squadrons of ATC.

Cllr Matt Babbage, mayor of Cheltenham, said: “The Battle of Britain was pivotal in stopping the invasion of our country in 1940, and we commemorate this turning point in our nation’s history and remember the sacrifices of all those who fought to protect our freedom.”   

Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller, president of the Cheltenham Branch of the RAF Association, commented: “Eighty-three years ago our nation faced its darkest hour. Our pilots confronted a numerically superior and more experienced force, determined to destroy the RAF as a prelude to invasion.

“Even though much of Europe had already fallen, our pilots were courageously helped by those from 15 other countries who came to England; they were ably supported by the RAF ground crews and their efforts were directed by the people in the Sector Operations and Filter rooms; and we should not overlook the countless civilians who lived and toiled directly under the bombsights of the enemy, yet steadfastly refused to yield. Our freedom today is owed directly to their sacrifice. We will remember them.”

For press enquiries, please contact: communications, telephone 01242 264231, email [email protected].