A gold ‘Caterpillar’ badge given to a Royal Air Force ace who made a ‘home run’ to Britain after taking part in the Great Escape has sold for £3,200.
Flight Lieutenant Bram van der Stok was one of only three out of 75 men who famously escaped from the notorious Stalag Luft III camp, located in what is now Żagań in Poland, to evade capture.
Of those recaptured by the Germans, 50 were summarily executed on the orders of an enraged Adolf Hitler to deter other prisoners from trying to escape.
Their courage was immortalised by Richard Attenborough and Steve McQueen in 1963 film The Great Escape.
Flt Lt van der Stok, who was Dutch, received the gold Caterpillar Club badge – the informal RAF club for airmen who had baled out of a plane over land – for parachuting from his stricken Spitfire over northern France in 1942.