Winter Hill Memorial - 2016

"‹Twenty Rotarians from Horwich and Douglas, Isle of Man, gathered at the Winter Hill transmitting mast above Horwich on 5th May, 2016.

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They were gathered to remember the 35 people who were killed on Thursday 27th February 1958 when one of the worst air disasters in the region’s history happened. 

Many lost loved ones when the Bristol 170 Wayfarer, which was ferrying passengers on a visit to Manchester from the Isle of Man, careered into the hill in atrocious weather conditions. Seven people survived.  

Revd. David Griffiths who led the memorial service, reminded Rotarians of the tragic events 58 years ago and the courageous actions of emergency services and local Horwich people, including some Rotarians, who dug through deep snow to get to the victims. The local Methodist Church became a mortuary. 

In the face of the tragedy, he said that the disaster had the good outcome of bringing together in friendship the Rotary Club of Horwich - and the Rotary Club of Douglas with the motto of ‘service above self’. 

Exchange visits are now made each year on Club Charter Nights in April and May. The Presidents of Douglas Rotary Club, Kevin Kneen and Horwich Rotary Club, Tom Mather, laid a wreath and prayers were said. 

Rotarians then walked down onto the moor where the accident happened before joining guests in the evening for Horwich Rotary Club Charter Night at Rivington Hall Barn when the speaker was John Clayton, Managing Editor of Radio Lancashire.