A YEAR ago I was among those dismayed and outraged that neither Defence Secretary Des Browne nor any representative of the Government was present at the RAF service of Thanksgiving and Rededication in Westminster Abbey on Battle of Britain Sunday (War Heroes deserve more, Gazette October 5, 2007).
This year I enlisted the the aid of Stephen Pound to remind the Defence Secretary that this year's service is to be held in the Abbey on Sunday, September 21, and I am pleased to report that Derek Twigg MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Defence, has replied on behalf of Des Browne.
He has confirmed that 'Des has accepted an invitation to attend this year's service to join in with the congregation to commemorate the Battle of Britain.
'He looks forward to meeting surviving members of that great historic battle and the relatives of those who lost their lives in the defence of this nation during those dark turbulent days of 1940.'
The Battle of Britain is dated from July 7 to October 31 1940 and includes the period commonly referred to as the Blitz.
The annual service is a remainder of the time when, of all the countries of Europe we stood alone against the might of Germany.
Along with France we had gone to the aid of Poland when it was invaded by Germany on September 3, 1939.
In less than a year Germany and her allies controlled all of Europe west of Russia.
It was to be a year before Germany made the mistake of invading Russia and in December 1941, together with Italy, it declared war on the United States.