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Museum's 'bittersweet' Queen's Award for Voluntary Service

The 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum was presented with a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) – on the day of Her Majesty’s death.

As part of the Platinum Jubilee, the Dickleburgh museum, which is dedicated to soldiers and members of the US 8th Air Force that fought in the Second World War, was recognised for its extraordinary service to the community.

On Thursday morning, the Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk, Lady Dannatt, presented the trustees and volunteers at the site with their certificate signed by the Queen, with a message from the monarch read out.Museum's bittersweet Queen's award.

Museum volunteers and supporters with the QAVS award. Picture: Contributed
Museum volunteers and supporters with the QAVS award. Picture: Contributed

In attendance were volunteers and supporters of the museum, as well as representatives from RAF Mildenhall, and South Norfolk and Broadland councils.

Debra Hubbard, chairman of the museum’s trustees, said: “It is truly an honour to receive the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service and, as we accept, we remember all those who came before us as volunteers and trustees.

“To be awarded this on the day that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II passed away makes it truly special. I am so proud of all the hard work the volunteers have put into creating the museum you see today. To be recognised in this way is humbling.

“The award ceremony will always be remembered as a bittersweet occasion, with the elation of receiving such a prestigious award followed by the very sad news that the Queen had passed away.”

The trustees and volunteers said that they sent their sincere condolences to King Charles III and the Royal Family and would always take great pride in wearing their QAVS pins in honour of the Queen.

The 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum was formed in 1977, when Mike Harvey and several volunteers made enquiries about restoring the old control tower on the former site of RAF Thorpe Abbotts.

Since then, the popular museum has been a living memorial to American personnel who served at the base during the Second World War.

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