The Boston branch of the Royal British Legion has welcomed plans for a new sculpture set to rival the Angel of the North and honour the 55,000 Bomber Command airmen lost during the Second World War.
Councillors last week backed plans for an iconic Lancaster Bomber sculpture next to the ‘gateway’ of the A46 into Lincoln which will welcome visitors to Lincolnshire.
Members of the North Kesteven District Council planning sub-committee gave the green light for the plans which would see proposals for the full-size art installation on land at Brills Farm just off the A46 in Norton Disney.
The vision for Lincolnshire’s answer to the Angel of the North was revealed in November 2017, with The Bomber County Gateway Trust hoping to bring the project to fruition this year – the 100th anniversary of the RAF.
The 26 metre long sculpture will be mounted on a steel frame to give the impression that it is in flight.
President of Boston and District RBL Don Ransome said following the news:“What a great idea .
“This sculpture would be a fantastic addition for the area, known as ‘bomber county’ due to the number of airfields based there during World War Two.
“The organisers are to be congratulated and Boston and District RBL hope their fundraising push to get the £100,000 needed to pay for the sculpture, is a success.
“The sculpture honours the 55,000 brave Bomber Command airmen lost during the war.
“Well done to all those involved in this idea”.
The local area is home to a number of crash sites and one of the owners of Brills Farm has a direct descendant who was pivotal in establishing the RAF.
Sophie White, co-owner of the application site, is the great-great-granddaughter of Frank Hedges Butler who formed the Aero Club in 1901 with Charles Rolls of Rolls Royce fame.
The Aero Club became the Royal Aero Club in 1910, which led to the formation of the Royal Flying Corps in 1912, which became the Royal Air Force in April 1918.
Neighbours have been almost universally supportive of the sculpture, with 57 writing to the council to back the plans.
Ken Sadler, trustee of the Bomber County Gateway Trust and agent for the application, said he was delighted with the result.
“I’m very pleased but not entirely surprised considering the amount of support we have had.
“The location of it is unique, it’s on the county border, and Lincolnshire is known for being flat and it will be a very welcome symbol for people who enter the county.”
Mr Sadler said the trust needs to raise £100,000 funding and has reached around £30,000 so far.
“We need to get people to dig a little deeper, but we have got a willing team of engineers and constructors on standby ready to build it,” he said.
The trust has said it will look at providing a viewing area for the sculpture on Newark Road once it is complete.