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The installation of the new Propeller Blade memorial, protective granite bollards and updated bronze plaque occurred at the crash site from the 30th August - 2nd September 2013.

Peter Forrester examines the propeller blade for the first time in the Halkjær's work shed in Stadil. Else Halkjær (left) and Grete Møllerhøj (right) look on.

Everyone is fascinated by the notches that have been obviously cut into the blade.

From left: Peter Forrester, Erling Halkjær (Else Halkjær behind) and Grete Møllerhøj.

Erling Halkjær examines the notches.
A close up of one of the notches showing cut marks.
The propeller blade is approximately 1.8 metres tall & weighs around 50 kg.
At the crash site the exact position is remeasured and selected before the installation of the granite pillar can begin.
A 300 x 300 x 600 hole is carefully dug.

An amazing find in the hole, the remains of an old "Haig Fund" wreath poppy.

 

While cautiously digging the 600mm deep hole at the crash site to place the granite mounting pillar a small piece of green and black plastic with the remains of material attached was dug up.  Written on the black plastic is Haig Fund, after some research we found this to be the company that made poppy wreathes after WW1. We emailed the company in England (now changed name) and asked if they could help in identifying the remains, they came back to us quite promptly and with some considerable interest as to where we had found it.
The company confirmed that it was “remnants of a hessian wrapped poppy wreath made between 1945 and 1955”,   during this date range there are only two occasions that a wreath of this type could have been placed at the crash site: the first was around June 3rd 1947 by the 18 Section Missing Research & Enquiry Unit (MREU) after they completed their investigations and recovery attempt and left the site. The second possibility was at the May 5th 1950 memorial stone unveiling; we have examined photos from that unveiling and while flowers were placed at the memorial there was no poppy wreath placed.

So the poppy appears to have been laid at the site in 1947 by the recovery team, in the hole we were digging to place the granite pillar and bronze plaque describing the blade provenance and recovery attempt of 1947, just one of those amazing moments in time, what are the chances! Or, perhaps it was simply confirmation that the propeller blade memorial was being placed in exactly the correct spot at the site! 

A crane gently lifts the massive granite pillar into position.

The three additional protective granite bollards have already been maneuvered into position.

Slowly guiding the half tonne mounting pillar into the hole
The new propeller blade memorial is finally in place, after nearly 2 1/2 years of designing, planning and hard work.
Peter Forrester covering the new memorial - until the unveiling day.
Close up of the tip of the blade, the original paint has been preserved under specialised protective clear coatings.
Close up of damage to the edge of the propeller blade.
Close up of damage to the edge of the propeller blade.
Close up of the edge of the propeller blade.
Close up of the propeller blade.
Close up of damage to the base of the propeller blade where it has been torn from the yoke/hub.
Close up of damage to the base of the propeller blade where it has been torn from the yoke/hub.

 

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