Spitfire flypast will cap Banbury Battle of Britain event

The Battle of Britain parade last year
The Battle of Britain parade last year

Banbury will commemorate one of the critical campaigns of the Second World War on Sunday as the town remembers the Battle of Britain.

The extraordinary encounter was fought over southern England in the summer and autumn of 1940 and the RAF’s defeat of the Luftwaffe was a major factor in preventing Hitler from invading England.

A flypast by a Spitfire fighter plane will recall the heroic defence of the country when it makes three low-level flights over Horsefair at 11.30am.

Battle of Britain Day in Banbury is organised by Banbury Town Council and will begin at 11am.

A military and civic parade will line up in Broad Street before marching up High Street, round the Cross to Horsefair for the flypast and then into St Mary’s Church for a memorial service at 11.40am.

The parade will march back down High Street for the salute, leaving Horsefair at 12.45pm.

Banbury played an important role in the war.

The town’s former aluminium factory was important in the manufacture of aircraft for the RAF, including Spitfires and Lancaster bombers.

To protect the plant from air raids, the real factory was camouflaged and a fake factory was built three miles north of Banbury to mislead German bombers.

The fake factory was known as the ‘dummy ally.’

The town was also at the centre of a number of wartime airfields including RAF Heyford, Barford St John, Shenington, Hinton-in-the-Hedges, Enstone, Greatworth, Finmere, Turweston, Silverstone, Chipping Warden, Croughton and Gaydon.