York author Matthew Wignall has produced his drama A Gingerbread Man in the RAF with support from the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund as part of a series celebrating the inspiring stories of bravery and courage during the Battle of Britain.
A Gingerbread Man in the RAF brings to life the human story behind one of the most well-known battles of the Second World War, the Battle of Britain. The audio drama was released on 15 September, Battle of Britain Day, to mark the 80th anniversary of the Battle and features Sex Education star Alistair Petrie and Emmerdale actor Mark Moraghan. The drama tells the story of Gallimore, played by Moraghan and Charters, played by Petrie as they take to the skies during the summer of 1940.
Matthew, who works in York as a support worker for adults with learning disabilities, autism and mental health needs, won a national competition to have his episode produced. He said of the project:
I feel very flattered and very honoured to have my play chosen. What I wanted to do with my play is explore how the past is always with us and not only shapes the world we live in but can also influence and inspire us to confront and overcome our own struggles and challenges.
I also wanted to pay tribute to the fact that, if it weren’t for the actions and sacrifices made during those few months in 1940, our lives would be very different. We owe that generation so much. Past events have a huge influence on all our lives, and perhaps none greater than the Battle of Britain which was a true turning point of the Second World War. Freedom should never be taken for granted and, if it weren’t for a remarkable generation coming together from all walks of life and different nationalities, we could have lost it forever.
You can hear A Gingerbread Man in the RAF on the RAF Benevolent Fund website.