80th Anniversary of the Spitfire & the Battle of Britain Lace Panel
What a way to start a Friday morning, watching a legendry Supermarine Spitfire circle over Southampton Docks marking the 80th anniversary of the amazing piece of machinery above the factories it was first produced. It’s an aircraft that means so much to so many, and for me it’s the one of the most eye-watering sights to see. My father’s father worked in Southampton building the planes during the war, and awfully lived his live feeling like he never contributed properly to the fight. Every time I hear the drum of the engine, it reminds me of what a hero he was as well as everyone else that played their part in the war at home or overseas. But why share this here? It was 2 years ago on a visit to one of our workrooms that discussions of heritage lead to the unveiling of a Battle of Britain Lace Panel. This Nottingham lace panel depicts scenes of the bombing of London, the aircraft used in the battle, the badges of the Allied air forces and the floral emblems of Great Britain and the Commonwealth, inscribed ‘Never was so much owed by so many to so few’. It was manufactured by Dobsons and M. Browne and Co. Ltd. of Nottingham over 4 years between 1942 and 1946. The same company (albeit now with a different name) sew many of our custom made net and voile curtains today! This incredible panel is one of 38 originally made, with around 12 now accounted for. Originally presented to King George VI, Winston Churchill, various RAF units, Westminster Abbey, the City of London, the City of Nottingham, airmen from the Commonwealth and several others. I’ve seen two, one in our workrooms in Nottingham and one in the Solent Sky museum in Southampton.
Last year saw the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and this year we have the 80th anniversary of the Spitfire, lest we forget.
A few amateur photos of the lace and this morning’s Spitfire are on our Facebook page.