August 19, 2014

Ceremony of Dedication - Kronfeld Orchard

You will be aware that Squadron Leader Robert Kronfeld AFC, the greatest gliding pioneer, was killed on 12th February in 1948 having been towed off from Lasham behind a Halifax four engined bomber, flying the General aircraft experimental tailless two seat glider GA56 Mark.   The glider developed an inverted spin and although his flight test observer was able to bail out, Kronfeld did not and was killed a few miles from Lasham at Lower Froyle.  

His son William (Bill) himself a long time flying member of Lasham sadly died recently and in his will bequeathed a sum of money which the Trustees of the  Lasham Trust have spent on twenty Apple, Pear and Plum trees , planted them in front of the clubhouse and we have created the “The Kronfeld Memorial Orchard”.   There is a memorial to the great man in Austria, the place of his birth, there are three in Germany where he did his pioneering flights but none in the UK where his contribution as an aviation inventor, test pilot and Farnborough boffin is itself well documented. Until now when we have put it right!   On Saturday afternoon, the 23rd August at 3.30 pm which happens to be the last Saturday day of the British Junior’s Championships, Bill’s widow Helen, her son Simon like his father himself a Lasham Gold C pilot will officially dedicate the Orchard to the memory of Robert Kronfeld and his son.   We will ask Helen to pick an apple, the first for many years to come.  We do hope that she will be well supported by Lasham members and friends.

The Royal Air Force Association are sending an honour guard with colours and requests that medals are worn.