Abingdon Spitfire ceremony marks unsung heroines

One of the first women to pilot a Spitfire came face-to-face with a life-size replica of the iconic aircraft. Joy Lofthouse unveiled the model at Lodge Hill Garage, Abingdon, to commemorate the 166 women who were part of the Air Transport Auxiliary during the Second World War.

Garage owner Peter Jewson, 79, pictured with Mrs Lofthouse, left, and fellow former ATA member Mary Ellis, provided a 1940s style lunch, a Spitfire fly past and a live swing band as part of the event. He said: “I grew more aware that these wonderful women who flew every type of aircraft to the battle stations across the country could pass through history without permanent recognition.”