A winning designer has been chosen for a wartime aircraft memorial project

National spitfire memorial
National spitfire memorial

Southampton has commission architect Nick Hancock’s design for a national wartime aircraft memorial. He was picked from a shortlist of seven by the Spitfire Tribute Foundation who are organising the memorial.

Mr Hancock, a 36-year-old North London based architect was “over the moon” when his concept of a polished steel Spitfire swooping out of the coastline was chosen. The contest was created to find a suitable tribute to the Spitfire in Southampton where the plane was first built.

Mr Hancock commented: “The challenge was to come up with a design that embodied the movement and flight of what is an incredibly beautiful aircraft. It needed to feel as free as possible.”

Sited on the coastal edge at the city’s Trafalgar dock, the design envisages a structure 131 feet tall – twice the height of the Angel of the North.

Readers of The Sunday Telegraph (which sponsored the development) have contributed nearly £10,000 towards the project. Organisers will run a campaign for sponsorship to completely fund the monument, which is expected to cost £2 million.

John Hannides, a Southampton councillor and chairman of the Spitfire Tribute Foundation, said: “With the design in place, we will now be able to target corporate and grant-making bodies and trusts. The Spitfire evokes much more than just the Second World War. It’s about courage, innovation, hope and freedom. These are things as relevant today, and for future generations, as they were in the past.”

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