Battle of Britain veteran, 99, attends memorial event in Capel-Le-Ferne

Battle of Britain veteran, 99, attends memorial event in Capel-Le-Ferne
Battle of Britain veteran, 99, attends memorial event in Capel-Le-Ferne
Image copyright Flora Thompson / PA
Image caption Wing Commander Paul Farnes was a guest of honour at a ceremony on Sunday

A Battle of Britain veteran has described his wartime bravery as "just another day's work" as he approaches his 100th birthday.

Wing Commander Paul Farnes of Chichester in West Sussex, was speaking at an event to mark the 25th anniversary of a memorial unveiling.

"We wouldn't be free without it," he said of the campaign that turned the tide of World War Two.

Mr Farnes was a guest of honour at the ceremony in Capel Le Ferne, Kent.

Richard Hunting, chairman of the trust which organised the clifftop event, described it as "extraordinary" to have someone like Mr Farnes there.

He appeared alongside Prince Michael of Kent, a patron of the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust.

The annual event also marks the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force.

'Just another job'

The Battle of Britain between July 10 and 31 October 1940 turned the tide of the Second World War.

Mr Farnes was one of just under 3,000 men of the RAF Fighter Command - known by Sir Winston Churchill as "the few" - who took to the skies for the campaign.

More than 500 men died and nearly 800 more did not live to see the end of the war in 1945.

There are thought to be fewer than 10 veterans still alive.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The ceremony honoured the 25th anniversary of the unveiling of the Battle of Britain memorial in Kent

Mr Farnes said: "It would be nice to see old friends but there are only a few of us left. I've been very lucky."

He is one of the few faces of the Battle of Britain - meaning it was confirmed he had shot down five enemy aircraft.

But he said: "For us it was just another job."

He felt it was important to mark the anniversaries, but added: "Many despised the Battle of Britain but it served its purpose. We wouldn't be free today without it."

Now Mr Farnes is looking forward to celebrating his 100th birthday on 16 July.

He joked: "On my birthday I'm looking forward to sitting at home, enjoying a glass of whisky and minding my own business."

Image copyright Flora Thompson / PA
Image caption Relatives laid wreaths at a wall which lists the names of the men who died

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