Three statues face west onto the Strand outside the church. By far the largest of the three is the statue of Prime Minister Gladstone (1809-1898), who is surrounded by four statues representing courage, aspiration, brotherhood and education. To the right of Gladstone is a smaller statue of Air Chief Marshal Lord Dowding, baron of Bentley Prior and Commander-in-Chief of Fighter Command. Dowding was responsible for preparing the Royal Air Force for the Battle of Britain by recognizing the importance of radar. To the left of Gladstone is one of the more controversial figures of RAF history, Sir Arthur (Bomber) Harris, Commander-in-Chief of Bomber Command from 1942 to 1945. In the fight for freedom Bomber Command lost 55,000 men and firebombed dozens of German cities.

St Clement Danes church was dedicated to the Royal Air Force in the 1950s and holds daily prayers and memorial services for members of the air forces, including the RCAF. The church also maintains a memorial book inscribed with the names of many air casualties, including KG Learn.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Clement_Danes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *