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Battle of Britain Pilot, Tom Neil, Passes Away

Photo: Then Plt Off Tom 'Ginger' Neil, in front of Nicholson VC's aircraft during the Battle of Britain.


It is with great sadness that Britain at War magazine must announce the death of Wing Commander Tom ‘Ginger’ Neil DFC & Bar, AFC, AE, who passed away peacefully two days before his birthday, aged 97, on 11 July 2018.

At a Memorial Day at the National memorial, Capel-le-Ferne Wing Commander Tom Neil (right) chats to the late actor Sir Donald Sinden, CBE.

Neil flew Hurricanes during the Battle of Britain from 15 May 1940, and was one of the ‘few’. Taking part in 141 sorties that summer, he narrowly survived a mid-air collision with another Hurricane in November 1940.

After his exploits in the Battle of Britain, with 249 Squadron RAF, Neil later flew over Malta and North West Europe and eventually commanded 41 Squadron RAF. He shot down 14 enemy aircraft during hostilities. After a lengthy career, he retired from the RAF in 1964.

Neil with other 249 Squadron pilots.

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