Hemswell Court to host live auction to raise funds for iconic Lancaster Bomber landmark

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Hemswell Court in Lincolnshire will host a fundraising dinner and auction later this year to help towards the £150,000 still needed to bring a life-size Lancaster Bomber landmark to life on the Lincolnshire/Nottinghamshire border.

To be held on May 22, organisers are looking for guests (both corporates and individuals alike) to purchase tables at the black-tie dinner to help raise as much money as possible for what will be an iconic landmark.

Led by a group of volunteers, registered charity the Bomber County Gateway Trust was created with the aim of making the sculpture a reality. So far, the project has been made possible by corporate and public donations, but at least £150,000 is still needed to complete the landmark, dubbed ‘On Freedom’s Wings’, in 2019.

Lancaster Bomber sculpture plans

Guests can expect fizz and canapes on arrival followed by a four-course dinner.

The highlight of the night will be a live auction via online auctioneer, John Pye Auctions, with a collection of highly anticipated lots, including an original oil painting of BBMF and Canadian Lancasters on their 2014 tour by renowned artist Tim O’Brien. The painting is also signed by legendary Dambuster George “Johnny” Johnson MBE, DFM.

Johnny, who is the last surviving flying member of the 617 squadron, will be guest of honour on the night, along with a host of other veterans from Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire.

George ‘Johnny’ Johnson MBE, DFM, with a mock-up of the sculpture

The auction will also include an authentic flying jacket which commemorates The Dam Busters film, signed by Johnny Johnson, the chance to experience a flight in a Tornado F3 simulator and a wine tasting session for eight at Hemswell Court.

The design of ‘On Freedom’s Wings’, which will be taller than the Angel of the North, is a life-size representation of an Avro Lancaster Bomber which was based at RAF Swinderby. It will be erected on high ground just off the A46 at Norton Disney, visible to an estimated 34,000 motorists every day.

Measuring 26 metres long with a wingspan of 31 metres, the installation will be mounted on a frame more than 15 metres above ground level. It will appear to be in flight over the horizon, heading ‘home’ towards RAF Swinderby.

For sponsorship enquiries or to reserve a table at the event, contact Rebecca Young via [email protected]

Donations are welcome via JustGiving here.