Sue Holderness backs competition commemorating the Battle of Britain

Sue Holderness in a Tiger Moth

The RAF Benevolent Fund has launched a new competition inviting the public to write a script telling a fictional story based on the Battle of Britain, in which Royal Air Force pilots bravely fought in the skies above Britain to defend our shores from Nazi invasion.

A judging panel will decide on the winning script, which will then be dramatised, recorded and produced as an audio drama. This will be released as a bonus episode of the second series of the Fund’s All Stations podcast on Battle of Britain Day (15 September).

The second series of All Stations will commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, the RAF’s most well-known operation. Churchill’s famous 1940 speech expressed just how much was owed ‘by so many to so few’, and the series will come as a fitting opportunity to commit to the airwaves the heroes who fought for our freedoms all those years ago.

Sue Holderness, actress, RAF Benevolent Fund supporter and host of the All Stations podcast, said:

“I am immensely proud of my links to the RAF with my father and his two elder brothers flying throughout the Second World War. One of my uncles flew in the Battle of Britain, which is why I wanted to be involved in this project to commemorate their bravery and pay tribute to their sacrifice.”

The All Stations podcast was launched last year, with series one focusing on the theme of Overcoming Adversity. It featured guests such as Jacqui Thompson, whose husband Gary was killed in Afghanistan while serving with the RAF Regiment; former RAF serviceman Bob Greig who was left paralysed after a parachute accident; and Second World War veteran George Dunn.

The script competition aims to engage younger audiences, as previous research carried out by the Fund revealed that 40% of 18-24-year-olds did not know what the Battle of Britain was and only 51% knew who ‘The Few’ were. In fact, 10% of respondents thought the Battle of Britain took place in 2014 and a further 10% thought it was the name given to a Viking attack.

Sue added:

“I feel it is vitally important the next generation learn about all that was done to fight for the liberties they enjoy today. As an actress I am excited by the idea of challenging young people to bring this period of history to life through script writing. I look forward to hearing the finished production!”

Battle of Britain pilot John Hemingway has given his backing to the competition. He said: “The story of the Battle of Britain is one which should never be forgotten and I am pleased to hear the efforts of my fallen comrades will be remembered in this way.”

Submissions should be 10-25 minutes long in performance length and the deadline for the competition is 31 May.

Learn more about the competition and how to enter.

See also: Military charities

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