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Spitfire and other wartime planes return to Kent for tribute to pilots

A spitfire waits to take to the skies in Kent Credit: ITV Meridian

A World War 2 fighter pilot will fulfill his lifelong ambition to fly a spitfire today - at the age of ninety. Neville Croucher, from Dover, flew a Hawker Hurricane in the war but never had the chance to fly a Spitfire.

Neville will be flying alongside other spitfires and war planes out of Headcorn. The planes have returned to this last remaining wartime strip known as "Hellfire Corner" where a museum will be dedicated to the courageous war-time pilots.

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Kent WW2 veteran revisits Operation Market Garden

To mark the 69th anniversary of Operation Market Garden, WW2 veteran Wally Smith from Ramsgate will be revisiting the place he fought in Normandy.

Wally will be supported by the Big Lottery Fund's Heroes Return 2 programme which has helped more than 54,000 veterans.

The veteran will be visiting the scene of one of the most audacious Allied offensives in WW2, Operation Market Garden.

It was the largest airborne operation in history and is awarding grants to veterans to return to the places they saw action.

He joined the Army in 1941 and served at Arnhem as a Lance Corporal with the 4th Battalion Dorsetshire Regiment.

Whilst there we lay wreaths at war memorial monuments, including the monument at the Arnhem bridge and at the war cemetery. Dutch school children attend and all lay flowers at the war graves, and it is very emotional.Although this may be the last year we organise a group trip, I will keep going back every year, with my son, for as long as I can.

We do it for the comrades that were left behind.”

– Wally Smith

Tribute to pilot who was shot down in dogfight

The remains of a wartime Hurricane which was shot down during a dogfight over Sussex lay buried and undiscovered for more than 50 years - until in 1996 parts of the aircraft were dug up. They've been in a museum ever since.

That was until today, when some sections of the plane were presented to the landlord of a pub in Hove - named after the pilot and located just yards away from where he lost his life.

Charlotte Wilkins takes up the story and speaks to Keith Arnold, a local historian & John Samuels - an eye witness.

Tribute to Battle of Britain pilot

WW2 hurricane
The WW2 Hurricanes that the pilot would have been flying when he crashed in Hove Credit: PA Wire

A Hove pub, named after a pilot who was killed, will today be presented pieces of a crashed WW2 Hurricane.

The Noble House is named in honour of Dennis Noble who was killed when the aircraft was hit during the Battle of Britain.

A Battle of Britain historian will present the pub with long-awaited pieces from the Hawker Hurricane after the crash site was filled in and the aircraft could not be found.

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