WW2 plane crash memorial

Two Second World War airmen, pilot Flight Officer Harry Rice and navigator Flight Officer Aubrey Clarke of the Royal New Zealand Air Force, will be remembered on the Scottish hillside where they lost their lives.  The tribute will take place in the hills above Dunbar on Thursday, 25th April 2019 coinciding with Anzac Day, which commemorates Australians and New Zealanders who died in service.

Having taken off from RAF East Fortune just before midnight on March 25, 1945, the plane crashed into a hillside near Middle Monynut Farm – land that is now part of the Aikengall wind farm. Its operators, Community Windpower, commissioned a memorial stone and plaque in memory of the lost men, which has been approved by the War Graves Commission and the Ministry of Defence.


Blackthorn - no not the cider

Blackthorn Prunus spinosa is now distinctive with white flowers against black branches that do not yet have leaves. The plant typically suckers to form thorny thickets.

The Cherry Plum or Myrobalan Prunus cerasifera starts to flower even earlier but has some leaves on greener twigs. It is often used in hedges and a purple leaved form is common in gardens.

Later in the year Blackthorn carries purple fruit which give its alternative name of Sloe. Sloe gin is traditionally made from fruit picked in autumn after the first frost. Each berry is pricked -traditionally with a thorn from the bush- and a jar is filled half way with the berries. Gin is added along with sugar and further flavour comes from cloves or cinnamon. Blackthorn is also traditionally used for making walking sticks.

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