Winter Hill Memorial Service

Seven members of Isle of Man Rotary Clubs came to Horwich recently to attend a short memorial service at the Winter Hill TV Mast for the 35 passengers who were killed in 1957 when their plane crashed in the mist over Winter Hill.

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Seven members of Isle of Man Rotary Clubs came to Horwich recently to attend a short memorial service at the Winter Hill TV Mast for the 35 passengers who were killed in 1957 when their plane crashed in the mist over Winter Hill.

The party were hoping to visit the Exide Battery Factory in Manchester. Conditions must have been very similar to those 57 years ago. All that was missing were the ten foot snow drifts!

A few hardy souls made their way to the crash site where a plaque has been affixed to a gatepost.

Among the Isle of Man visitors was John Quaye who was seeing the crash site for the first time. John told how the crash featured so prominently in the life of his father whose best man, Tom Gilbertson was killed in the crash and also in the life of his grandfather who was due to travel but gave his ticket away when his wife became ill and lived for another 22 years after the event. Bob Dowty was making his seventh visit to the site. Bob was asked to join the party in 1957 but thankfully, he was unable to go due to pressure of business.

Other members of the party also lost relatives in the crash. Horwich Rotarian Jack Sanderson, then landlord of the Crofters pub helped in rescue operations 57 years ago and both rotary clubs helped grieving families as they tried to cope with their losses.

A short memorial service was conducted by Rotarian and lay preacher Irvine Delamore and a wreath was laid by a plaque at the tv station by Ted Wisedale and Mike Priest, the presidents of the Rotary Clubs of Horwich and Douglas, Isle of Man.

In the evening, the party were the guests of the Rotary Club of Horwich at their 69th Charter night at Rivington Hall Barn. During the course of the evening, Irvine Delamore and Neil Maxwell were made Paul Harris Fellows, an award rightly deserved for their outstanding contribution to Rotary's humanitarian and educational programmes - Rtn. Ted Wisedale