Rene Mouchotte Bob Medal Presentations To Free French

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

Shoreham Airshow 2007
Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 20th September 2014

Anyone who follows my Blog will know about my passion for and dedication to the telling of the story of the Free French, and particularly Rene Mouchotte,  who fought in the Battle of Britain.

Having met his sister the day after her 101st Birthday, attending the funeral of Henry Lafont who escaped with Rene from Oran, and discovering that neither man had received their Battle of Britain Medals, this was rectified with the help of Ian Reed, Director of the Yorkshire Air Museum.

In July 2012 the families of Mouchotte and Lafont were presented with their medals by Sir Stephen Dalton - then the Chief of the Air Staff and in the presence of the CAS of the French Air Force, Jean Paul Palameros as well as the British Ambassador, Sir Peter Ricketts.

Inevitably the story circulated and of the 13 names of the Free French on the Wall of Remembrance at Capel le Ferne, the families of another nine came forward and, quite rightly, wished to obtain the medals of their loved ones.

Sir Peter Ricketts, who must be one of the most charming and welcoming Ambassadors in the world, allowed the Residence to be used again for the ceremony in which Air Chief Marshal Brecht presented the medals.  Of the 13  Free French, who took part in the Battle of Britain, only 4 survived the war! 

It was an honour and a joy to meet relatives ranging from daughters to sisters to cousins.

(For some reason I appear to have lost the facility to insert accents so my apologies)

A photo of Sir Peter and the 200 celebrates the 200 years since the erstwhile residence of Napoleon's sister Pauline Borgese, became a British 'possession'


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