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Robin Gibb besides the RAF crest

HE conquered the world as a pop star and is winning his fight against cancer but Robin Gibb’s “proudest” achievement will honour 55,000 men he never met.

The Bee Gees legend was filled with emotion as he paid his first visit to Britain’s new Bomber Command Memorial.

The epic structure, still under scaffolding, will stand sentinel in London’s Green Park near Hyde Park Corner, a behemoth sculpture of pillars and statues which will forever remind the nation of the sacrifices made by the RAF’s brave bomber crews during the Second World War.

It is a project that he, Dooleys singer Jim Dooley and RAF veterans have championed over the past three years, raising £6million for its construction and perpetual upkeep.

Express readers donated £500,000 to the memorial, a sum matched by Sunday Express owner Richard Desmond. Other large contributions came from entrepreneurs Lord Ashcroft and John Caudwell, while tens of thousands of members of the public donated to the cause in smaller but vital ways.
  On Thursday Robin, 62, scrambled up ladders to take a full tour of the 50ft structure, where master craftsmen are still working to hand carve the immense spans of Portland Stone. In the distance behind him the blue RAF standard could be seen fittingly fluttering from the Royal Air Force Club in Piccadilly.
Daring night-time raids cost the lives of 55,573 airmen of Bomber Command. It was when the Bee Gee came face to face with the 10ft crest emblazoned with the words “Bomber Command Royal Air Force” and the RAF emblem, that the real significance of the achievement hit home.
“This is honestly the proudest thing I’ve ever done,” said Robin, who looks markedly better since the dark days of his fight against colon cancer. “It was so important to finally see that the brave airmen who risked their lives every night to fly bombing raids over Germany and shorten the war were finally honoured, and now it is happening. This memorial is bigger than even the Wellington Memorial and will still be here long after we are gone. It will last for ever.


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