East Moor airfield memorial

September 2010

East Moor memorial – detail

At Aldborough, near Boroughbridge, a memorial on the village green remembers a 1944 crash at nearby Studforth Hill. The crew, of 432 squadron, were based at East Moor airfield, here at Sutton-on-the-Forest, north of York – one of several local airfields used by Canadian forces – Tholthorpe was another.

In 1990 a memorial was erected at the end of the main village street. The inscription reads ‘This memorial is dedicated to all who served at East Moor in World War II, many of whom gave their lives, and in gratitude to the people of Yorkshire who welcomed them.’

East Moor memorial East Moor Memorial, Sutton-on-the-Forest

See also: Former airfield: East Moor, Sutton on the Forest

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4 comments

  1. Hi I stumbled across your blog whilst researching my 10 yr old sons homework!! My grandfather owned the farm at the end of the runway at East Moor and im searching for info as my son is doing a project on ww2 this term.
    We now live on the south coast but still have family nearby.
    Is this memorial in Sutton on the Forest?
    My grandfather used to tell us stories of how the bombers were often too heavyily laiden to take off and would crash in his fields or would over shoot on their return.
    So many people were lost – we owe them so much!

  2. Sally Walker

    I searched out East Moor after happening to see a picture of a Halifax and an information card hanging on the wall of a pub (on Sept. 30, 2015) telling of the crash of an RCAF crew into a nearby farmer’s field. My Dad, Glenn Le Grice, was a Canadian navigator with Sqadrons 415 and 426. I knew he had been at East Moor, and he had told me about being in a plane immediately behind one that had caught fire upon take-off in such an incident. In fact, I have a painting of the event hanging in my hall in Goderich, Ontario, Canada. The next morning, my husband, two friends and I spent about an hour walking around the remains of one of the old runways and found bits of very old aviation wire, some wild poppies, and a piece of machinery that the men thought might have had something to do with propping the wings of the planes up. I was totally and I must say profoundly moved by my visit. It brought me to tears as I felt so close to my Dad who passed away in 2006 at age 92. I finally felt that I had a connection to all the stories he had told me in the last part of his life. I had always been proud of him (he received a Distinguished Flying Cross), and I was aware of some very tough times he experienced when he had returned to civilian life in Canada. Today, I believe he would have been considered to have Post Traumatic Shock Syndrome, but back then it went undiagnosed and untreated. Fortunately through the strength and support of my mother and by his own strength of character, he did recover, but it took years. So, l must say standing on the field at East Moor was a very cathartic moment for me and the real highlight of our UK trip. We visited the nearby memorial and I do thank those involved in having it built.

    Call it what you will, but it really was chance/fate/serendipity that I had this experience as I certainly had not planned on trying to find East Moor.

  3. Sally Walker

    Thank you Lisa for your comment. I would imagine that my Dad may well have stayed in the service hostel in York. I know that he and another crew member bought a car and he also had a motorcycle for awhile, I believe. He definitely had visited York during the war, and did get to see quite a bit of England when he was on leave. He often spoke of the beauty of the coutryside.

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