Posted on Friday 18th August 2017
Today (Friday 18th August) The Mayor of Bournemouth Cllr Lawrence Williams, Dr Emma Egging, Dawn Egging and Squadron Leader Ben Plank tied red ribbons around the newly-relocated Jon Egging Memorial sculpture, in memory of the fallen pilot.
The sculpture has been relocated at the top of the East Cliff ZigZag, following a cliff slip in spring 2016. New information boards have been installed, tell the story of the sculpture and providing details of the work of the Jon Egging Trust, set up in Flt Lt Egging’s name after his death.
Mayor of Bournemouth, Cllr Lawrence Williams said: “All of Bournemouth was devastated that day in 2011 when Jon lost his life. This sculpture now is a lasting and loved tribute to his memory. I hope the new information boards will motivate many to pause awhile and consider a donation to help the Trust’s good work.
“Today we see the sculpture in place at its new location, sitting atop a specially-designed cairn.
I know that Jon’s personal motto was “if you reach high enough, there are always blue skies”. Well, I hope that, in the absence of blue skies on any given day - we’re in Britain, after all! - this stunning memorial and beautiful setting will inspire and bring peace to all those who visit.”
Dr Emma Egging, CEO of the Jon Egging Trust and Jon Egging’s widow said: “The Memorial Sculpture has become such a recognisable gateway to the beach from the East Cliff, and a positive emblem representing who Jon was, and I am so glad this can continue in its new home. Jon was passionate about unlocking young people’s full potential, and the charity created in his name gives young people the skills and confidence they need to be the best they can be”
She continued, “Inspiration is at the heart of everything the Jon Egging Trust does, and Jon was a hugely inspirational person who helped others to understand that if you reached high enough there were always blue skies. I was adamant that everything that Jon stood for should continue, and so with the help of our partners and 500 inspirational volunteers, the Jon Egging Trust provides support and mentorship to young people facing challenges in their lives. I’m immensely proud, and know Jon would be too, of the fact that in 2012 we started by helping 8 young people in Lincolnshire, and since then we have supported 10,000, and expanded into 15 counties. To do this we rely mainly on donations, and we are so grateful for the tremendous support that we have received from the people of Bournemouth in the past six years.”
Dawn Egging, Jon’s mother said: “What's wonderful is that, to me, there are two memorials – the one on the cliff top here in Bournemouth, and the Trust itself - an enduring and positive testimonial to Jon's dreams and aspirations. I only wish Jon could be here to see what has been realised in his name - he would be so proud.”
Dawn added, “I remember well one evening in my kitchen – not long before Jon’s crash and after he had been to speak to his old Air Training Corps in our local town, he talked to me about how much he had loved meeting and speaking to the youngsters and how he felt there was so much more he could do to share his own experiences and aspirations to help young people achieve. To witness this being taken forward so successfully with the Charity means so much to me. In a similar way, to see Jon’s memorial in its new position up on the cliff top here in Bournemouth where people have been so overwhelmingly kind and supportive means a great deal. I will always be grateful for the support we have here.”
In the South West the Trust’s Blue Skies programme is run in conjunction with personnel from QinetiQ, MOD Boscombe Down, The Empire Test Pilots’ School, Southampton University Air Squadron, Defence Infrastructure Organisation, Wessex Archaeology, Farrow and Ball, The National Trust, Winchester University, the Tank Museum and Cobham Aviation Services.