12 April 2002


New members joining us this week are:

Garth Hammond from Beaumont, Alberta, Canada

Bill Kearney from Kempsford, UK

Welcome to the OBA!


From:     Jack Riley, Urangan, Qld.,
Date:      10 April 2002 21:44
Subject:  Reminder

To all members
Now that All Fool's Day is safely behind us could I please remind you to Pop a Pound in the Post....or a once- off means of helping to defray the costs of keeping our website on the air -TODAY !!

Post to Charles Cormack
            9 Lineacre Close
            Grange Park
            SWINDON, UK
            SW5 6DA
Many thanks



From:     Keith Parker, Thumrait,
Date:      09 April 2002 06:09
Subject:  Change of e-mail address


I'm just back off leave and catching up with the weekly news.  Now that we are on a "War Footing" (my arse !!!!!), our e-mail is changing to a service sponsored account.  Could I therefore ask you to change my address to

The OBA just gets better and better, well done, please keep up the good work.

Regards Keith Parker

[Ed:  Thanks Keith - I've made the changes.]


From:      Keith Parker, Thumrait,
To:          Phil Clarke, Vienna, Austria
Date:       09 April 2002 11:15
Subject:   Hello!

I read your e-mails in the Old Boys Briefs with interest and didn't realise until you mentioned Howie Bumford that you could be the same "Nobby" Clark I did my Movements Course with in '65 and then went to Bahrain shortly afterwards?

Wasn't it your good self that starred on the cinema stage during Christmas 66/67?  If it is you then we must get together for a
good old chat.

Cheers for now
Keith Parker


From:     Phil Clarke, Vienna,
To:         Keith Parker, Thumrait, Oman
Date:     09 April 2002 09:52
Subject:  Hello from Vienna!

Dear Keith,
I deny everything on the grounds of mistaken identity, and temporary insanity caused by a bad can of Anchor - anyway the Astra was closed on Christmas Day, and if it was open, I would have been in the Billet Bar, and if I wasn't in the Billet Bar I certainly wouldn't be singing Mary Poppins songs anywhere near a closed cinema, let alone on the stage, which of course I wasn't on - and there was no-one in there anyway – so there!!
So thanks Keith mate - 36 years forgetting a misspent youth, and in a nano second of E technology it all comes roaring back.  If I was still in the Royal Oman Police I'd be sending the lads down to Thumrait to sort things out.
How the hell have you been - sorry to say I can't picture you - stick your profile and a piccie on the site so we can all see how kindly time has treated you.
Did a few years with the Police Air Wing at Seeb, had a great time.  Went for a weeks break to the Holiday Inn at Salalah, and drove up to Thumrait. Still a little unsettled then so I was well tooled up with a 5.56 FN Police Issue rifle (with a few more than 5 rounds).  It was during the monsoon season, great weather, for all the world like Scotland with camels, until we got to the Thumrait plain; were I was reacquainted with some ex mob Airworkies.  Another day misspent!
Now for a general interest item Tony,
For those who don't know, shortly after my demob from Lyneham, a nice young lady from Wroughton got me into some serious trouble.  The resultant fruit of my loins, Jonathan, is getting married on 20th July, and bless them, they've invited the illegitimate father.  So for a few days either side I will be resident in Swindon and it's environs.  Love to meet up with as many as possible, and perhaps misspend a day at Lyneham (if President Blair hasn't closed it down by then).  Looking forward to your suggestions, and will let the site know when my travel and hotel plans are finalised.
Best to All - and thanks again Keith - my Austrian work mates were wondering why I was sat at my desk, staring at an e mail, and BLUSHING!!!!!!
[Ed:  Ah the fruits of our temptations - I certainly know that feeling!]


From:      Steve Nicholson, Budapest,
Date        19 March 2002 10:19
Subject:   Humour


Perhaps you will have heard of the "Darwin awards" - this one has a topical feel so I thought you may enjoy it.

The Arizona Highway Patrol came upon a pile of smouldering metal embedded into the side of a cliff rising above the road, at the apex of a curve. The wreckage resembled the site of an airplane crash, but it was a car. The type of car was unidentifiable at the scene. The lab finally ascertained what it was, and what had happened. It seems that a gentlemen had somehow acquired a JATO unit , which as we all know is designed give heavy military transport planes a viagra like "push" for STOF's. He had driven his Chevy Impala out into the desert and found a long and straight stretch of road. Once there, he attached the JATO unit to his car, jumped in, got up some speed and fired-up the JATO! 

The facts as best as could be determined are that the operator of the 1967 Impala hit the JATO ignition at a distance of approximately 3.0 miles from the crash site. This was established by the prominent scorched and melted asphalt at that location. The JATO, if operating properly, would have reached maximum thrust within 5 seconds, causing the Chevy to reach speeds well in excess of 350 mph and continuing at full power for an additional 20-25 seconds. The driver (and soon to be pilot), most likely would have experienced 6G-forces (an experience usually reserved for the occupants of more robust machinery), causing him to become operationally insignificant for the remainder of the event. However, the automobile remained on the straight highway for about 2.5 miles (15-20 seconds) before the driver applied, and then completely melted the brakes, blowing the tyres and leaving skid marks on the road surface (amongst other places no doubt), then becoming airborne for an additional 1.4 miles and impacting the cliff face at a height of 125 feet leaving a blackened crater 3 feet deep in the rock. 

Most of the driver's remains were not recoverable; however, small fragments of bone, teeth and hair were extracted from the crater and fingernail and bone shards were removed from a piece of debris believed to be a portion of the steering wheel. It has been calculated that this stalwart individual attained a ground speed of approximately 420 mph.

Happy Easter 

Steve Nic.

[Ed:  Thanks Steve - I am relaying it a little late, but better late than never.]


From:     Phil Clarke, Vienna,
To:         Bill Kearney, Kempsford, UK
Date:      09 April 2002 10:51
Subject:  Keep ‘em coming

Hi Bill,

Happy to see another 50th guy in the OBA.

Have you heard about the upcoming re-union being organised by John Philps, Phil Todd and Bob Chadwick?  Will forward you the e mail.  Get a profile written and posted.

Cheers mate

Philip M. Clarke
Lauda Air


From:      Keith Parker, Thumrait,
To:          Phil Clarke, Vienna, Austria
Date:       10 April 2002 05:58
Subject:   Re:  Hello from Vienna!


Many thanks for your reply, my how the years roll on.

Glad to hear that you are well, it's a small world isn't it?  I almost joined the ROP a few years back after a short spell with the Wiltshire Constabulary, but I saw the light and went back to being a mover and have been here nearly nine years now.

Will get some of the old digi-photos just as soon as we have the camera figured out, meanwhile just to refresh your memory I was the twerp in the middle of the night you found outside my tyneham being extremely ill.  Being a good boy scout you shot off to sick quarters to get help only to be told to tell  the silly sod not to get so pissed. My story is that I had taken medication with alcohol and I'm sticking to it!

Anyway keep in touch, it's a shame I won't be in England the same time as you as I still live in Wiltshire when I'm there.

All the best mate
Keith Parker


From:      Keith Parker, Thumrait,
Date:       11 April 2002 08:35
Subject:   Sad Times

Hi Tony,

Just back off leave and am ploughing through my personal e-mail. It's great to catch up on all the old news and you can imagine how I felt when in a week when I find on the OBA one old buddie (Phil Clark) who I haven't seen or heard of for 35 years.

I then get the awful news about Ian Thompson. This is what the OBA is all about, keeping us all in touch. I was unable to get to the funeral, but I would like to say the following:

Ian was a great colleague and mate, who was always there when you needed him, knowledgeable, friendly, and extremely funny and although we never lived in each others pockets or would see each other for months or years at a time, whenever we did meet in Swindon it was like only yesterday that we had last met.

Anyway Ian, I hope that you have your white overalls and red arm band with you on your big posting in the sky because I'm sure you would have been by the steps when the Queen Mum arrived.

Sad times indeed but nevertheless happy memories

Thanks Tony

[Ed:  Thanks Keith - sentiments which I'm sure we all share.]


From:     Chris Clarke, Burlington, ON,
Date:      12 April 2002 03:56
Subject:  RE: Old Boys Briefs 040502

Hiya Tony and the rest of the troops!

I read Ian Envis's letter re Oggies with great interest. I totally agree with him and the whole sentiment he expresses.

4624 Sqn (apart from not wanting me when I lived in Manchester as they said I lived too far away.......yea!) are an organisation I have nothing but regard for. I too dealt with well meaning Stackers who were drafted in for Op Corporate after the 1 or 2 week 'Loading and Lashing' course, and the Oggies are way better than that at their worst.

I think regular Movers get used to the extremely high level of professionalism that exists in the trade and look down their noses a little at the less than experienced Oggies. A bit like Lyneham movers who look down their noses at people who haven't worked on Hercs, etc. You all know what I mean.

4624 Sqn have done, and still do, a really good job. I think they are as professional (probably more so) than the TA elements in the Army, (I know, I was TA RLC after being snubbed by hard feelings!) and they are way better than having to do all the work yourself!

Ok, they are not as good as a 1 year SAC regular, but they are better than having 47AD doing the loads, or any other Pongo incursions into the movements world.

So those who slag off the Oggies, take a pill as we say in Canada!

And as for that FS Winch Weight whining about blunties....notice to UKMAMS det Kabul, his bags go to Mount Pleasant when he goes home. Only ex-Cpls are allowed to winge that much. What a total wonker! Well, that's aircrew for you, about time we had a war of attrition and thinned out the aircrew ranks a bit.

Keep up the good work Oggies!


Pig Clarke (heavily armed and knows how to use it)

Burlington, Ontario

God’s own Dominion of Canada

[Ed:  Thanks Pig - I was wondering where you were while all this ranting was going on!]


From:     George Lynes, Liverpool,
Date:      11 April 2002 16:36
Subject:  Report / Article re Blunties


I always cringe when I read articles referring to the degradation of teamwork and team spirit in the Royal Air force.

With reference to the article by the CH-47 Chinook FS crewman, this is typical of an individual who cannot relate to, or accept that the world does not revolve around his/her profession/trade and does not appreciate what value they get from other parts of the organisation they are part of.

I always recall two events at times like this. The first is a front page report in The Daily Telegraph newspaper on the rescue of many individuals whose boats sank during The Faslane Ocean Race some years ago, and who were consequently rescued by Royal Navy and Royal Air Force SAR helicopters. The report includes two photographs, one depicting the four Royal Air Force helicopter crewmen involved in the rescue flights; the other photograph depicting the 20 plus members of the Royal Navy TEAM of crewmen and various trade SUPPORT personnel involved in the rescue OPERATION.

The second thing that springs to mind is that, just as in the case of one’s parents, you will miss your support personnel when they are gone for ever. Treasure and value them.

Here endeth the lesson. God bless Liverpool and all Movers, we need all the help we can get.


[Ed:  As always, it's a real pleasure hearing from you George - Thanks!]


New on the site this week? - a new Mystery Photograph is up for guesses - I withdrew the old one as I didn't get one suggestion (in other words it will remain a mystery!).


Well, that's it for this week.

Have a great weekend

Best regards