28/06/2012 12:50 BST | Updated 28/06/2012 14:35 BST

Bomber Command Memorial Opened By Queen In Emotional Ceremony

The Queen opened a £7m memorial to the members of Bomber Command who served and died during the Second World War on Thursday.

The Bomber Command Memorial in London's Green Park remembers the sacrifice and bravery of the 55,573 RAF crew who lost their lives in the conflict, more than the total RAF today. Bomber Command flew more than 300,000 sorties over the course of the Second World War.

Before veterans and families of those who served in Bomber Command, the Queen officially opened the stone memorial designed by architect Liam O'Connor and unveiled its 9ft bronze sculpture depicting a seven-man bomber crew returning from a mission crafted by sculptor Philip Jackson.

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The Queen unveils the £7m memorial in Green Park

The design of the roof is inspired by a Vickers Wellington aircraft and incorporates sections of aluminium recovered from a Handley Page Halifax III bomber shot down over Belgium on May 12 1944, killing eight crew.

Hymns were sung and passages read during a service at the memorial, which was opened by Air Commodore Malcolm White, the Bomber Command Association's chairman.

Following the ceremony, five RAF Typhoons staged a flypast, as the RAF's last functioning Lancaster dropped over 80,000 poppies onto Green Park.

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The Queen attends the opening ceremony, alongside her husband, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall

The Queen was joined by her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, as well as the Prince of Wales and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall.

The Duke of York, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and the Duke of Kent also attended the ceremony.