Chelsea FC's deal with museum will showcase Jewish ‘hidden heroes’ of RAF

Extension of Roman Abramovich-sponsored partnership will support exhibition on the role of Jewish RAF personnel


A three-year extension of the partnership between Chelsea Football Club’s foundation and the RAF Museum will support the expansion of its Jewish “Hidden Heroes” project.

The plan is for a new Bomber Command exhibition at both the museum’s London and Cosford sites in 2023 with displays raising awareness of the role of Jewish RAF personnel during the Second World War.

The London exhibition is already home to an iconic Avro Lancaster bomber which was “adopted” in 2020 by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich — who sponsors the partnership — and the foundation to commemorate the Jews of Bomber Command. This year, the museum is celebrating the 80th anniversary of the Avro Lancaster’s first test flight.

In addition, an outreach programme in schools will share “the positive narrative of Jews fighting for their country and the survival of their race”.

Expressing “delight” at the continuation of the partnership, Chelsea FC chairman Bruce Buck said it reflected the club’s commitment “to tackling antisemitism through education. The Jewish ‘Hidden Heroes’ tells important stories about the bravery of Jewish RAF personnel during the conflict.”

Museum CEO Maggie Appleton said that “more than ever, we need to challenge prejudice in all its ugly forms. And more than ever, we need to educate young minds as to the experiences of previous generations — those who suffered as well as those who fought back.

“I am incredibly proud of our partnership with the Chelsea Foundation and the Jewish ‘Hidden Heroes’ project and hope that it goes some way to challenging the rise of antisemitism and wider racism. These are inspiring stories of courage and human spirit which will endure and resonate.”

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