Armistice Day - Pilots of the Caribbean & Flying For Britain
When forces join together we break new ground and take-off to higher heights. Ex-military, City Government personnel, actors, historians and other special guests where amongst the audience standing on the 17th floor of City Hall Westminster watching over the magnificent views of the grounds of Buckingham Palace where the traditional celebrations of Armistice Day took place observing the two minute silence at 11am on 11/11/2022. Following the procedure witnessed from the window view The Pilots of the Caribbean event with Flying For Britain Film Premiere began.
Cllr Ellie Ormsby read The Last Post, which was played on trumpet by Roy Bilham whilst ex RAF Warrant Officer Donald Campbell and Ronald Lisa-Carew lowered the standard, before the two minute silence in-house. Peter Devitt, RAF Museum Curator delivered an in-depth seminar on the contributions of the Pilots and Airmen from the Caribbean and Africa in the Great War and WW2 to present day pilots and aviators who have served and continue to serve. Why is this breaking new ground? These stories were unheard of because they were hidden, thus these educational events are game changers and highly appreciated by the audience, where comments of being moved and emotional were expressed from the in-house audience and comments were being shared through the livestream viewers in England and abroad.
Flying For Britain: Johnny Smythe RAF Navigator and The Windrush Story film was premiered to celebrate and commemorate the lives of people from British Commonwealth countries who had served and had helped to change the face of modern Britain fighting for equity. Baron Baker played by Abdoulah M Jones was a key player in fighting against racism post world war two. Actor Abdoulah Jones and other actors in the audience were delighted by their joint efforts collaborating in great spirit to create a "masterpiece". The short educational film aims to inspire and teach the future generations of children and young people stories that haven't been shared. It was a special day for the star actor Kehziah Toussaint who felt honoured to play the son of Pilot/Navigator Johnny Smythe, Eddy Smythe and to get to meet him in person. He says it was an added bonus to meet Retired RAF Officer Donald Campbell. Eddy Smythe the narrator in the film felt that the day went very well and was very emotional.
So who where the forces that joined together to put this event on and change history ensuring that inclusion, representation and respect is remarked. It was Loy Phillips, Officer at Westminster City Council and her team The Windrush Taskforce who have worked tirelessly on this event and other inspiring functions throughout the year celebrating Unsung Heroes of the Windrush Generation through exhibitions and library events.
The lessons and take aways of this event are immense, but what is clear is that joining together for the good for all, for freedom and equality cannot be surmounted. Legacies like these are to be remembered!
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