Official Artist. The RAF Centenary Collection

The RAF Centenary Collection

For the centenary of the RAF in 2018, Jeremy was commissioned to sketch “the last of the few”: the surviving pilots from the Battle of Britain. Winston Churchill famously said of the aircrews who fought the Battle of Britain that “never in the history of mankind has so much been owed by so many to so few”, as their bravery and skill proved pivotal in stopping the Nazi invasion of Britain in 1940.

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By 2018, just four of “the few” survived, among them Geoffrey Wellum, bestselling author of the memoir First Light. Jeremy was honoured to meet these four men, sketching them while hearing their stories of the war. In accordance with their wishes, the men were captured in an informal style, out of their uniforms and without the pomp of ceremony – showing the humans behind this extraordinary chapter in British history.

Since Jeremy sketched them, all four remaining members of “the few” have sadly passed away.

The success of the Battle of Britain portraits led the RAF to commission sketches of the surviving veterans of Britain’s wartime bombing campaign, including Johnny Johnson, the last remaining original member of No. 617 Squadron RAF – aka “the Dambusters”.

Both sets of portraits were auctioned, raising £75,000 for the RAF Air Cadets. Click here to see more of Jeremy’s sketches and paintings from his RAF100 collection.

Follow this link to watch Jeremy talk further about this project on the BBC One Show.