Monday, February 27, marks the 65th anniversary of the Winter Hill plane crash in which 35 Manx residents lost their lives on the slopes of Winter Hill, near Horwich in Lancashire.
The Rotary Club of Douglas is once again arranging for a short, informal service of remembrance to be held at Cooil y Ree Park, St John’s.
The service will be at 11am on February 27 and an open invitation is extended to all who wish to attend.
As well as remembering those who lost their lives, their families and friends, thanks will also be given to the residents of Horwich (and in particular members of the Rotary Club of Horwich) who did so much to help in the rescue of survivors and provide comfort and support to those who lost loved ones.
At the conclusion of the service, attendees are invited to have refreshments at Green’s Cafe in St John’s courtesy of the proprietor Mr Nigel Kermode.
The Winter Hill air disaster remains the UK’s worst high ground aviation accident and occurred just days after the Munich air crash involving the Manchester United football team.
Of the 42 people who took off from Ronaldsway Airport just seven were to survive the crash less than an hour later.
The plane was carrying a party of local motor traders and associated colleagues to visit the Exide battery factory in Manchester.
Particularly involved in the rescue attempts on that bleak and snowy hillside in 1958 were members of Horwich Rotary Club and every year since the crash a wreath has been laid by the club at the top of Winter Hill, a ceremony also attended by members of the Rotary Club of Douglas.
On the 50th anniversary of the crash in 2008, a memorial plaque was placed in Cooil y Ree Park in St John’s and Douglas Rotary Club arranges a short service of remembrance there annually.
In addition, members of Douglas Rotary usually travel to Horwich every year in May and lay a wreath at the top of Winter Hill in conjunction with members from Horwich Rotary Club.