The late Dan Humphries was the curator and driving force behind a Pigeons at War Exhibition in Cornwall, which proved extremely popular with many visitors seeking it out when holidaying in the area. After Dan’s death the artefacts and displays he so painstakingly assembled were briefly relocated in Cornwall before being moved to Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire.
At this time (2002) Colin Hill was Secretary of his local flying club and was approached by the Park to reconstruct the exhibition. When he arrived the whole caboodle was stacked in the centre of the room and as Colin began his task he was assured it would be for a couple of months max. The exhibition opened to the public in March 2003 and now – some 14 years later – Colin is still at the helm.
His labour of love has seen him meet and greet visitors from far and wide, even rubbing shoulders with a Prince of the realm. Colin has been instrumental in expanding the exhibition, has never refused a media request, even if some have been in the middle of the night, and his role in furthering the public’s awareness of the role the humble pigeon played in times of conflict is invaluable.
On Monday 31st July the RPRA General Manager, Ian Evans, visited Colin on his home turf at Bletchley Park and found the experience both enjoyable and enlightening. Also on hand to add his thanks and congratulations was Ian Standon, the CEO of Bletchley Park. Colin was awarded a certificate and engraved medallion as a token of appreciation from the RPRA.
A very proud Colin might in all modesty describe his efforts on behalf of the nation’s pigeon fanciers as a labour of love, but now it has been appropriately recognised as nearly a decade and a half of dedication. Also present were Colin’s wife Marie and club members John Cobley, Jonathan Lee, Paul Moody and Gerald Yeomans.