Oxford

Spitfire Woman Molly Rose remembered at service

Molly Rose in 1942
Image caption Molly Rose delivered 486 aircraft during World War Two

The life of one of World War Two's Spitfire Women has been remembered at a thanksgiving service.

Molly Rose delivered 486 aircraft, including 273 Spitfires, after joining the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) in 1942.

About 170 women were part of the ATA, which flew aircraft from factories to the RAF.

Ms Rose died last month while on vacation in Scotland, aged 95. Her service was held in Bampton.

She was born in Cambridge in 1920 and learned to fly at 17 having left school and joined her family's motoring business based at an airfield.

Her son Graham Rose said: "Very often they would be getting into a particular aircraft for the first time.

"She did love it, there is no doubt, and she did it very well, she only crash-landed once.

"There was engine failure, she was up in Shropshire... went into a bit of a spin... and there was some poor farmer who was ploughing the field who got a mighty shock."

Image caption Ms Rose settled in Oxford with her husband Bernard after the war

On a visit to RAF Brize Norton in 2013, Ms Rose said: "It was much more interesting in my day because one was entirely in control of the airplane.

"They do not really fly it these days - it's all computers."

Mr Rose said his mother did not talk about the work until Giles Wittell wrote the book Spitfire Women, but later she appeared on a number of programmes about it and was a guest judge in The Great British Menu in 2014.

After the war she settled in Oxford with her husband Bernard and became a magistrate.

She was appointed deputy lieutenant for Oxfordshire in 1983 and was awarded an OBE for services to Oxfordshire in 1990.

Mr Rose said the service at St Mary's Church was a "celebration".

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