George VI Silver Salver. Of shaped circular form and raised on three scrolled feet.
The salver features a presentation inscription for RAF Squadron Leader John Hamar Hill (1912 - 1998). In May 1940, whilst commanding 504 Squadron in Lille, he was shot down by a Me110 in his Hawker Hurricane. He bailed out only to be fired on by French peasants with shotguns. Hill was able to convince them that he was not German, but as he was about to be driven away in a French Air Force car, a British Army patrol arrived and he was arrested as a spy.
Reaching for his identity card Hill was fired on by one of the British soldiers. He rolled out of the car into a ditch and when firing had ceased he convinced the soldiers of his identity. Having seen all this the French peasants were sure that Hill was a German. They beat him savagely, rendering him unconscious.
Hill was evacuated from Lille by ambulance train. The train was attacked by Ju87 dive-bombers, resulting in the driver and fireman fleeing. Hill and another officer finally mastered the engine's controls and drove the train to Boulogne.
Evacuated from Dunkirk, Hill landed at Dover and was put on an ambulance train. When he asked the engine driver to change some French Francs, so that he could telephone his wife, he was again arrested as a fifth columnist. Fortunately a Wing Commander that he knew came along and he was released.
He was given command of 222 Squadron at Kirton-in-Lindsey in July 1940 flying Spitfires. He damaged a Me109 on 30th August, claimed a Me109 destroyed on 1st September and probably destroyed a Me110 on the 3rd.
Hallmarked for Sheffield 1938 by Emile Viner.
In excellent condition with moderate surface wear commensurate with age.
Approximate weight is 904 grams or 29 troy ounces.
Approximate dimensions are 31.5 cm diameter and 3.4 cm height.