Memorial for World War Two Hudson Bomber

A Canadian Hudson Bomber aircraft used during World War Two has been neglected and left exposed to all-weathers since it was taken out of service almost 50 years ago.

Now, the North Atlantic Aviation Museum in Gander, Newfoundland, Canada, wants to build a memorial to house the Hudson Bomber.

The bomber is one of only six remaining aircraft that were used by the Royal Air Force Ferry Command in World War Two. It is also the only remaining Hudson Bomber in North America.

The museum is eager to protect the aircraft and ensure it acts as a remembrance to those who fought in her. Plus, to date, there has been no memorial given to the RAF Ferry Command.

The plane remains in good condition; however it has been vandalised with windows and access points being smashed and broken over the years. The museum is keen to use an aircraft hangar to house the bomber,which would also act as a memorial.

The Lockheed Hudson was an American built bomber made for bombing missions and coastal surveillance. It was first built just ahead of World War Two for the Royal Air Force, so it was mainly used and operated by them. After building an initial 20 aircraft, the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation went on to build hundreds more, with the bomber being used throughout the war, the CBC News reports.

The bombers were also used for transport and training crewman, as well as dropping soldiers into occupied territories. The Royal Canadian Air Force used them extensively for anti-submarine missions. For example, in 1941, a Hudson bomber attacked and damaged a German U-boat. The crew surrendered, making it a very unusual capture of an aircraft taking a naval vessel. The prisoners and their submarine were being towed until Allied navy ships arrived.

The call for the Hudson bomber memorial has come as concerns for Canada’s aviation role in World War Two is being forgotten. Many people who took part in the war have contacted the museum to say that a permanent memorial should be created, so that the war is never forgotten.

The museum has commissioned an artist for the memorial’s design, and they are now hoping to plan construction. The museum is seeking donations since they expect the project to cost more than $1.5 million.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE