History Book

Update from Over WI

Our speaker last month was David Duker, author of “One Of Our Own”, a book about a St Neots’ man and Battle of Britain pilot Squadron Leader Victor Ekins, MBE, DFC.

As a child, David’s Grandad told him stories of people he had met and places he had been during the Second World War. Unsurprisingly, David developed a lifelong interest in the Battle of Britain and the WWII generation.

Around 10 years ago David set out on a quest to meet and interview some of the people who lived and served through the war years. During his research, a chance discovery of an online document mentioning Victor Ekins and St Neots, set David off on a three-and-a-half-year journey, finding the Ekins family, who gave David an extensive archive of Victor’s photographs and papers, and eventually writing and publishing Victor’s story.

Inspired by the values of duty, unity, courage, resilience and positive action that helped a generation rise to the extraordinary challenges of war, David started a company called the Tally-Ho Project which goes into schools to share these values with young people, aiming to raise their aspirations and to help them believe in a life of possibilities.

It was a fascinating talk, full of amusing anecdotes and tragic stories of young lives lost too soon.

Our next meeting will be a members-only night as we will be holding our Christmas party accompanied by the Footlight Quartet singers. We will, however, be back to normal for our January 8th meeting where our speaker will be Naomi Wallen talking about the history of ballet and we would love to welcome anyone, who may be interested in joining Over W.I. to come along and meet us.

Rachel King

Photo by Joanna Kosinska