6 August 2010

A new member joining us recently is:

Al Cox, Winnipeg, MB, Canada "I am very glad to be adding my name to the list of fellow Movers! I enjoyed my 35 years of working with the Air Movers of the World!"

Welcome to the OBA!


From: Vic Smith, Amberley, Qld
Sent: July-22-10 18:14
Subject: RE: UKMAMS OBA OBB #072310


Many thanks.  Interesting the comments about working on radio stations.  I served at Butterworth, Malaysia between 1978 and 1980 and, for a good deal of the time, worked at our radio station. 

When I started, I worked in the tape library vetting records and tapes for content.  We had to follow Radio TV Malaysia guidelines and had an enormous list of songs we could not play;  Donna Fargo's "Happiest Girl in the whole USA" springs to mind,  banned for "overtones of foreign patriotism".  The Beatles, "Yellow Submarine" and "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" were out as was Peter, Paul & Mary's "Puff the Magic Dragon".

Anyway, I went on to do Breakfast Announcer for some time, usually about two mornings a week.  Did blot the copybook a couple of times by sleeping in and not starting the station on time.  Went on (after I got married) to do a 3 hour Country Music programme on Saturdays and also did some of the News reading from time to time.  "You have been listening to Vic Smith on RAAF Radio Butterworth, the voice of the Royal Australian Air Force in Malaysia". 

Rumour had it that our listening audience was larger than the local station. 

By the way, I am now not doing the overseas task much to my disgust. Could not complete a specific task during training last week and have been told I will not be able to go. Drat.



Thanks Vic, comes a time to take matters into our own hands... I understand there's quite a few civillian movements postings available if you still have a hankering to 'play in the sandbox. '

Baby whales are born tail first

From: Steve Harpum, Riyadh  
Sent: July-22-10 18:41
Cc: Mike Stepney, La Nucia, Spain
Subject: Re: UKMAMS OBA OBB #070910

Dear Tony,

Thanks very much for the newsletter - another most enjoyable read.  

I put your comment to Mike into the Google translator and you are right, he and I do appear to disagree, but I am more than willing to concede the point to the Silver Fox!  I met Sqn Ldr Mike Stepney Jnr out in Afghanistan - didn't half make me feel old.




From: Mike Stepney, La Nucia  
Sent: July-23-10 5:53
To: Steve Harpum, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Subject: RE: UKMAMS OBA OBB #070910

Hi Steve,

Good to hear from you…., and hope you are well and enjoying your current posting…, though I suspect that even Saudi, whilst being much easier than Afghanistan…,  is still a long way from home – that is unless you have managed to wangle an accompanied???  Mike [Sqn Ldr Mike Stepney Jr.] has bumped into a number of the ex-Lyneham crew at various locations during the past few years– Dave Lister-Powell…, Andy Gell…. Paul Jones and others who’s names are (like many other memories)..,  locked in that little compartment at the back of the brain with a ‘do not disturb’ notice on the door.   

Mike is heading back to Afghanistan next month for another tour – six months…, so we are all hoping that he completes this one without incident.  Mike and family are visiting us (arriving 5th Aug) their annual hols with us in Spain – a chance to ‘chill-out’ after his Shrivenham course…, and have a relaxing  three weeks before heading East. He can spend some of his promotion salary buying his dad a pint or two!!!

For myself…, I am still gainfully employed (though you could argue about the ‘gainfully’ part)…, and I am starting to hand-over some of my ‘fire-fighting’ tasks to others of a lesser seniority…,(age that is)…,  I am getting a bit too old now for jumping on an aircraft at a moments notice to go to Bangkok, Russian Fed, India, China, the US or the like…, to sort out some Project Managers problems before the customer pulls the plug on a multi-Million $ project;  we have 300+ PMs on the books at the moment and things can get quite exciting at times.  Though I have to say in the main it has been great fun over the past 15 years, and with many more successes than failures…, it has been a rewarding second career.   Would I do it again?  If I was 20 years younger…., without doubt I would. 

Regarding the photo B1…., your magnanimous gesture of conceding to my identification of Gordon Dixon is most generous…., if additional respondents identify the photo as not GD then that’s one I owe you.

Well…, its Friday…, time to wind down…, get my bags packed for my next round of visits next week …, it’s the end of the month and this month its UK (Farnborough).., Garches (Paris St Cloud)…, Barneveld (Amsterdam) and Milan…, then back to Spain on Friday 30th and a couple of weeks vacation.

Take care…,  drop an ‘E’ whenever…, its always good to catch-up…,  
Con un cordial saludo


From: Richard Castle, Sutton-upon-Derwent
Sent: July-26-10 6:15
Subject: RE: UKMAMS OBA OBB #072310

Hello, Tony,

You ask for the whereabouts of John Boyd. He is living near Riddings in Derbyshire. He is well and works part-time in the local B&Q store. I hear from him regularly every Christmas.

Re the mystery photos and Steve Harpum’s annotations –

Definitely the late Terry Titterington
(not Paddy Gallagher)
Definitely not Richard Bond!

Great newsletters – keep them coming!

Kind regards

Richard Castle

Thanks Richard - the information about John Boyd has been passed onto Brian Kent

From: John Morgan, Carterton
Sent: July-23-10 11:04
Subject: RAF Mystery Photo 070910

Hi Tony

Great website, keep up the good work mate!

The photo A5 is of my old mucker Terry Titterington, most definitely.


John Morgan

Thanks to all for providing some of the answers

World's largest per capita consumer of turkey: Israel

From: Dave, New Brunswick
Sent: July-23-10 13:48
Subject: CAF Mystery Photo

Hi Tony,

The CAF Mystery Photo #072310 is of Sgt Karen Cummings (now Warrant Officer) and Sgt Sally Abeling (Ret'd).

I believe this was done for one of the cancer charities.



From: Steve Richardson, Trenton, ON
Sent: July-23-10 17:42
Subject: CAF Mystery Photo 072310


The lady on the left getting her haircut is now WO Karen Cummings. The other lady on the right is Sgt.Sally Abelling. The hair was chopped off on
the 50th anniversary of 2 Air Movements Squadron, Trenton. Sally retired about the same year as me in 2005. Also, Karen is still serving at CFLAWC

Take care,

Steve Richardson


Thanks to Dave and Steve for getting the right answer. The girls both raised $748 for the United Way campaign by agreeing to shave their heads.


Airborne Forces celebrate 70th anniversary

Friends and family of serving and past members of the Army's Airborne Forces celebrated its 70th anniversary at Merville Barracks in Colchester on Saturday 24 July 2010.

The open day featured most elements of 16 Air Assault Brigade including The Band of The Parachute Regiment and the Pipes and Drums of The Royal Irish Regiment, a beating retreat ceremony, and flypasts by an Apache and a Second World War Spitfire.

There was also a parachute display by The Parachute Regiment's freefall team, 'The Red Devils'. Dignitaries were also able to enjoy a cocktail party in the Officers' Mess.

The traditional birthday of the Airborne Forces is recognised as 22 June 1940, the day on which Sir Winston Churchill signed the memorandum calling for a force of 5,000 paratroopers. Today, the Colchester-based 16 Air Assault Brigade is the modern embodiment of the original Airborne Forces, with two battalions of paratroopers as well as airborne engineer, signal, medical, logistic and artillery units.

The brigade is also composed of three helicopter regiments and has particularly close ties to the Royal Air Force. This special relationship was signified by a dedication ceremony of the 'gate guardian' to Merville Barracks, a Second World War DC-3 Dakota.

The Commander of 16 Air Assault Brigade, Brigadier James Chiswell, said: "Today's 7,000 soldiers of 16 Air Assault Brigade are the direct descendants of Churchill's vision - an airborne capability which goes well beyond paratroops and includes air assault forces deliverable by helicopter or aircraft and supported by the formidable Apache attack helicopter."

He also said that as well as celebrating the anniversary, the day provided an: "Airborne get together before the brigade deploys to Afghanistan for the fourth time. It is an opportunity to celebrate in a genuine family atmosphere and wish luck to those who are deploying."

Captain Antony Feltham-White, Chaplain to 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment, leads a dedication ceremony of the Dakota, the 'gate guardian' to Merville Barracks

Q. Why are canned herring called sardines? A. The canning process was developed in Sardinia

From: Charles Cormack, Lyneham Village
Sent: July-24-10 7:06
Subject: RAF Mystery Photo 072310

This must have been taken at Abingdon 1967/68, names I can remember:

Back row l to r
N/K, Eddie Mottram, John Cockayne?, Taff Pates, Geordie Readman, N/K

Front Row
Graham Gibson, N/K, Bill Shaw, George Fawcett (Clerk), Ron Corrie?

I recognise the other faces but can't put a name to them after 43 years


Thanks Chas - Geordie Readman sent in the original, but, like the majority of us, couldn't put a name to a familiar face. I see Charles "Rocky" Knowles front row second from left, and front row far right looks like Brian Hinton. Left click on the picture for full size and backspace to return.

From: Malcolm Porter, Upton-upon-Severn  
Sent: July-22-10 15:44
Subject: Shorts Belfast

Just heard from Oz that Heavylift's Bank has put the following up for sale

4 x Rolls Royce Tyne 515 engines ex the Guppy complete with A frames - the Lot $150,000 (Oz dollars). Seems that MTM Germany is sniffing as they adapt them for maritime use

1 x Shorts Belfast $875,000 it’s on the RPC register of course but has not flown in a while - a group of African gentlemen are kicking the tires and counting the engines on the aircraft - more from my man on the spot as I get it.

With ref to your Mystery picture of Arsenal FC (women's team) I seem to think that to the right of the goalkeeper is Taff Challingsworth. I have a picture of him in a similar pose when we appeared together for the Air Movs team at Changi way back in the dark ages.


Thanks for the updates Malcolm.


From: Rip Kirby, Paradiski
Sent: July-25-10 10:18
Subject: Re: UKMAMS OBA OBB #072310

Hello Tony,

Cheers for the latest OBA newsletter. As ever - great stuff, full marks for putting it all together and unearthing the Rompers Green episodes (some fond memories there).

Particularly enjoyed the Kai Tak video - have been there occasionally but hadn't realised just how epic the approach and landings were!

Am still in the French Alps, enjoying life as a professional ski bum, though the winter snows seem very distant just now - currently it's regularly 30ºC and all mountain biking, trekking, or white water rafting.

Cheers and regards to all,

Rip Kirby

Good hearing from you again Rip - tough life over there huh?

Myrrh is a resin from the dindin tree

From: Gerry Davis, Bedminster
Sent: July-25-10 13:13
Subject: Ah, those memories

Hi Tony,

I wondered if anyone would be interested in hearing a few stories of memorable incidents I witnessed whilst visiting several Middle Eastern airfields.

I must stress that these are my version of events, and I am aware that an official explanation may differ from my interpretation of “What I saw”!

During my NEAF MAMS days we used to go on many “Diplomatic Mail” trips.  I was amazed, being a green young airman, what was classified as “Diplomatic Mail”.  Well, yes, there were lots of mailbags, all properly sealed, in whitish bags, appropriately marked,  together with other items, some large and some small.

These trips included the airfields of Tehran, Beirut, Amman, and Ankara. There are stories for each one, but some may have to wait for another day.  Various aircraft were used, depending, I presume on either what was available or the type of load. These included, Beverly’s Hastings and Argosy’s.

Tehran was a frequent destination. This one time we were exchanging an embassy Rolls Royce. The aircraft was a Beverly. After loading at Akrotiri, we settled down in the Beverly’s “boom“ for the flight. I noticed an additional crewmember, well I thought he was crew, he had a flying suit on.  He must have been seated in the crew area for the flight, as I didn’t see him again until we landed.  An embassy chauffer, brought the other Rolls to the aircraft, waited till we offloaded the one we had on board and then insisted that he drive the returning Roller onto the aircraft himself. There were other embassy staff there as well.

Us Movement’s coolies were instructed to get on with the chaining down so that we could get airborne quickly. I happened to glance at this other crewmember and the chauffer, who were frantically changing clothes!  The one that had driven the car on disappeared into the cockpit area. The now smartly-dressed other chap, walked off the airplane, got in the Rolls Royce with other embassy staff and off they went.

Each time we landed at Tehran we were met by the local BOAC representative, who acted as our agent and he was quite a character. He was always after whisky, which we traded with him.  Well it only cost 50 pence (ten bob) at the time in Cyprus, and we could make a profit of a pound on the transaction. He met all the RAF aircraft, arranging the turnaround requirements, i.e. fuel, transport, and accommodation, as required, etc. It was noticeable that on this occasion, embassy officials together with the aircrew kept him busy, but as soon as the Roller disappeared, as usual he held things up until he got what he wanted. He threatened us on more than one occasion that we could only trade with him, or there would be trouble with his cousins in the Customs department.

I remember sometime later, during a big exercise held at Tehran. A Canberra crew may have suggested to him to “ Pass water and go” which resulted in them being done for illegally importing crates of whisky. They were Courts marshalled at Akrotiri some time later. On another trip to Tehran this BOAC chappy told us that they would not deal with him, so he shopped them.

Good here innit.


Always a pleasure hearing from you Gerry!


New Commander Appointed for 2 Air Movements Squadron
Maj. Aaron Spott has nothing but good memories of the two years he spent as commanding officer of CFB Trenton's 2 Air Movements Squadron (2 AMS).

Friday morning, 30 July, he relinquished command of one of the busiest squadrons at the Trenton air base to Maj. Ken Mills during a change of command ceremony on the tarmac near the squadron's passenger terminal.

"I would like to thank everyone at the 2 AMS for welcoming me as commanding officer two years ago and for working so hard during these busy times for CFB Trenton," said Spott, a die-hard fan of both the Montreal Canadiens and the Saskatchewan Roughriders. "I am honoured and extremely proud of all the work and missions we've accomplished. All at 2 AMS worked day in and day out to support Operation Hestia in Haiti, flying up to 3.5 million pounds of material, and we sustained our air capabilities in Afghanistan."

Outgoing 2 AMS commanding officer Maj. Aaron
Spott, leaves the ceremony aboard a special seat.

Spott was born and raised in Naican, Sask. He enrolled in the Canadian Forces under the Regular Officer Training Program in 1991 and attended both the Royal Roads Military College and the Royal Military College before graduating in 1995. Two years later, he was posted to 14 Wing Greenwood. From 1997-99, Spott served as the Mobile Support Equipment Officer, Wing's Operation's A3 Logistic Officer and the Wing Traffic Officer. The major also deployed to Port-au-Prince in Haiti on Op Constable as the Canadian Contingent Logistics Group Transport Platoon commander and contingent movement officer. He was promoted to captain in 1998. On July 13, 2007, Spott took command of 2 AMS.

8 Wing's commanding officer Col. Dave Cochrane, who presided over the ceremony, recognized Spott's dedication as leader of the transport squadron. "Thank you Maj. Spott for a remarkable two years at the head of 2 AMS," said Cochrane. "All the best for your studies in Toronto. Thanks to all the men and women at 2 AMS who have been quite challenged operationally over this last year with our missions in Haiti and Afghanistan. I would like to welcome Major Ken Mills as the new leader of 2 AMS. You (Mills) can count on a healthy and successful squadron at 2 AMS."

New CO of 2 AMS - Major Ken Mills

Mills began his military career in 1990 as a reservist with 734 Communications Squadron in Regina, Sask. He joined the Regular Forces in 1991 and completed basic training in Cornwallis, NS. Upon completion of his training in 1992, he was posted to 733 Communications Squadron in Winnipeg where he was employed as a Teletype Operator and later as a network administrator. As a corporal, Mills was accepted to the University of Training Plan for Non-Commissioned Members (UTPNCM) and completed a Bachelors of Art degree at University of Manitoba in 2000. In 2004, Mills was posted to 1 AMS in Winnipeg as a Mobile Air Movements officer where he was involved in various operations and exercises, including on Op Boxtop. He deployed to Camp Mirage for six months in 2005 as OIC MAMS during the Op Athena/Archer transition. Mills and his wife Kristin have two daughters.

"Men and women of 2 AMS thank you for welcoming me as your new commanding officer," said Mills. "Thank you Col. Cochrane for your support and confidence by appointing me as commander of such a great squadron. I wish all the best to Maj. Spott and his family and thank you for leading 2 AMS with such professionalism and dedication over the last two years. I look forward to serving 2 AMS and CFB Trenton."

2 Air Movements Squadron was originally formed in April 1951 at RCAF Station Lachine at Dorval Airport in Quebec. Its role was the efficient and economical handling of passengers, freight and mail, as well as providing air traffic assistants (later called loadmasters) for support to 426 Squadron. Today, as the sole remaining 2 AMS, the unit is also the country's largest employer of traffic technicians and Air Movements officers. The squadron's 205 Regular Force, Reserve Force and Public Service personnel process more than 50 million pounds of freight and 75,000 passengers annually in support of Canadian Forces operations. It remains the primary generator for Loadmaster candidates selected for flying duties.


1 in 10 hospital patients will contract a disease or infection while in the hospital

From: Peter Clayton, Wroughton
Sent: July-25-10 15:43
Subject: Re: UKMAMS OBA OBB #072310

Hi Tony,

Great newsletter once again, thanks.  I really enjoyed the video about the Kai-Tak landings, it brought back a few memories.

I used to live in the Sunderland Road flats, just below the 'Checker Board' where the inbound aircarft would do their last turn onto finals.  Great for aircraft spotting but a bit hairy in bad weather as they would keep going and then hang a tight right turn to line up with the runway.  I recall being in bed one day when a Cathay Pacific 747 came in just above the flats and turned up the gas for a very tight turn, I thought he was coming through the window.  I felt quite lucky being on the ground floor but those on the top floor could always order last minute duty free from the trolley!!

We often went down to Stinkies Market virtually on the end of the runway.  There was a picture in one of the newspapers back in UK of a jet going overhead and apparently everyone said it was a fake photo, not believing that they could be so low over a built up area!  The noise was quite something in the market, how anyone could live there was hard to imagine but they did for years and years, but not now with the new airport.

I have just been sailing up in the Outer Hebrides, great stuff but some nasty storms had us hiding away for a day or so.  I landed on the beach at Barra in a Twin Otter and left from Stornoway about 9 days later in a slighter bigger aircraft.  Did you know that the people of Lewis & Harris raised funding to purchase a Spitfire in 1940 and the RAF were to name one of their Tucano training aircraft 'Lewis & Harris Fighter' to commemorate this. I did a flight up to Stornoway many years ago with UKMAMS and also Benbecula, I was not to know then that I would return like I did, all of the Islands have a lot to offer if you like wild life and remote areas.




RAF Improves Brize Norton Troop Terminal

Flight Lieutenant Kev Devlin, left, and Station
CO Group Captain Dom Stamp with new seating
Troops leaving the country to fight in Afghanistan can play on games consoles while waiting for their flight
RAF Brize Norton is the gateway to operations, being the principal airbase for transporting troops. And it has now finished £186,000 worth of improvements to its passenger terminal. The terminal sees 15,000 people take off or return every month – about 500 a day.

Over the past two years, the base has introduced eight Xboxes, for which waiting passengers can borrow a selection of 25 games; 12 computers with free internet access; and plush new sofas, which replace the old airport-style chairs. Favourite home comforts used by soldiers before departing for operations and training in Afghanistan, the Falkland Islands or Cyprus include a table football game and a library from which passengers can borrow books – which are brought back when they return.

Brize station commander, Group Captain Dom Stamp, said: “We are doing everything we can to help them at every stage – just to make their life more pleasant on the way out or on their way back.”

Passengers flying from Brize – of whom 85 per cent are soldiers – spend about three hours waiting for a flight, which the station aims to make as enjoyable as possible. Other users are civilian contractors or people visiting personnel in the Falklands.

Flight Lieutenant Kev Devlin, who runs the terminal, said: “What we are trying to do is provide a stress-free area as a buffer from leaving home to getting to the airport. It’s a time when they need to be having time to themselves. They get a couple of hours to get over the impact that they have just left their families, so we want to make it as stress-free as possible.”

Following feedback from a questionnaire, the base also installed three showers in the departure lounge, so that people arriving in Brize Norton before travelling elsewhere can get cleaned up and changed.

Group Capt Stamp added: “We wanted to make it a lot better for passengers, an easier experience and a more pleasurable experience.”

The Oxford Times

Odds that one of your party guests will peek into your medicine cabinet: 40%

From: Shawn Larson, Edmonton, AB
Sent: July-25-10 18:47
Cc: Chris Clarke, Burlington, ON
Subject: Headstones for R.A.A.F. members

Hello Tony,

I went to the Beechmount cemetery this morning to find the headstones for RAAF members buried there.  Unfortunately, the office was closed and I could not use any map that they might have had.  As you can see from the photos, there are literally thousands of stones in the Military Field of Honour so I could not look at each one without days available to do so. 

I did, however, take a leisurely stroll (3 hours) from the beginning (burials in 1939) to about the mid 50's.  I was able to find only one RAAF member and two RNZAF members' stones.  I have attached those pics along with a few of the cemetery itself.  I have reduced the resolution so this e-mail will be of a manageable size but the originals are available if desired (around 2 megs each).

As a matter of interest, I photographed all of the British stones that I found (remember this is not a complete list of British members buried there, just the ones that I found up to the mid 50's).  If anyone is interested, I will forward a copy to them.  Here is a list of the photos that I have:

Royal Army Service Corps:
Rawcliffe, R
Royal Artillery:
Clifford, W H
Royal Engineers:
Rylance, C D
Heaman, W H
Royal Field Artillery:
Farm, A
Johnston, J J
Storm, A
Jones, T J
Wells, G
Royal Horse Artillery:
Cartwright, A
Royal Irish Rifles:
Acheson, G
Royal Marines:
Sanders, W F
Thompson, J
Sanders, W F 2
Royal Navy:
Hadden, Harry
Royal Scots:
Davidson, D
Hadden, Harry 2
South Irish Horse:
Neazor, R
Hamilton, R J M
Welsh Guards:
Edmonds, M G
Nudd, H J
West Yorkshire Regt:
Drabble, G A
Playle, O W
British Army:
Cunningham, J H
Porter, C
Royal Air Force:
Hopkin, W B
British Imperials:
Beer, A T
Robinson, L G
Llewellyn, B

Cheers for now Tony,  I hope this has helped.

Shawn Larson

Many thanks Shawn - You did good!



ANNOUNCEMENT - Request for Material

Following a recent visit to California, former RAF 'mover' Malcolm Porter has now concluded an agreement with an American film company to produce a pilot film to be titled CARGO TRAMPS.

This is basically an extension of the book that Malcolm and his co-author Margy Bloom, are writing to record the pioneering days of Air Cargo during the period 1950-1980's.

Anyone who has ANY first hand experience of ANY aircargo operation whether it be in Air Movements, Operations, as a Loadmaster or Despatcher with any variety of undertaking from the scheduled to the not-so-legal, do please contact him.

All aircraft types (excepting Russian marques) will be covered.

An ant's sense of smell is almost as good as a dog's

Lancaster flies in to Calgary, stirring wartime memories

By modern standards, flying a Lancaster four-engine bomber built in the 1940s isn't a very comfortable ride.

No air conditioning, no heat, tight spaces and no toilet mean the only restored Lancaster in Canada that still flies is normally taken out for stints that last two to three hours at most.

For retired colonel Cliff Black, who signed up with the Royal Canadian Air Force in June 1940, that wouldn't even qualify as a milk run.

And when Black took his seven-man crew out over Nazi Germany and occupied France in his Lancaster, a toilet break was the least of his concerns.

"Seeing this here brings back a lot of memories, a lot of them not very good," said Black, 93, a flight commander who completed 30 bombing raids over Europe. "What's overwhelming to me was how young the boys were. I was 27 and they called me the old man, the average age of the crew was 22. You take a four-engine bomber like that with all the bombs on it, in the middle of the night, and spend eight hours over enemy territory with night fighters and everything else, to think these kids did it. To this day, I'm amazed that they did it."

The Mynarski Memorial Lancaster landed in Calgary Wednesday and will be on display to the public today through Sunday at the SAIT Art Smith Aero Centre at 1916 McCall Landing N.E.

The bomber was one of 7,377 Lancasters produced for the war effort, although this one was delivered to the air force in August 1945, too late to see action.

It was used in search and rescue operations and photo reconnaissance in the Maritimes after the war.

After it was restored, the Lancaster was dedicated to the memory of pilot Officer Andrew Mynarski, who was bestowed with one of three Victoria Cross medals awarded to Canadian aircrew during the war. Mynarski was an air gunner who died while trying to free a tail gunner he believed was trapped among the flames after his bomber crash-landed in France on June 12, 1944. Rear gunner G.P. Brophy was thrown clear and lived.

Mynarski served in No. 419 Squadron, which Black joined later that summer.

Black was born in Saint John, N.B., but now calls Calgary home. He often visits local schools on Remembrance Day to talk to kids about his wartime experiences and says having operational relics like the Lancaster can help bring history lessons to life.

"It's amazing, the young people today are more interested in what their grandfather did than they ever used to be," said Black.

"I'm astonished at the interest the kids have."

The Mynarski Lancaster belongs to the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum in Hamilton, Ont.

A volunteer flight crew has taken the plane for visits to Thunder Bay and Winnipeg and will fly to the Abbotsford International Air Show after four days of scheduled maintenance in Calgary following the public viewing.

"We're just delighted to have it here, it's wonderful," said Lucile Edwards, chairwoman of the board of directors for the Aero Space Museum of Calgary. "We have a Lancaster, but to see a Lancaster fully restored and flying is just incredible."

The Calgary museum worked with the Canadian Bomber Command Museum of Canada in Nanton to bring the plane here.

Only 26 Lancasters are known to survive in various states of repair and only two have been restored to airworthy condition. The second one is in the United Kingdom.

"To have flying airplanes brings it all to life," said Edwards. "It's wonderful to have static airplanes to look at, but to hear those engines roar, it sends a shiver up your spine."

The Calgary Herald

From: RR (Mic) Book, Windsor, ON
Sent: July-22-10 22:26
Subject: Trapper

Who is a trapper and who isn't?  Larry "Trapper" Hatt is/was!

But then there aren't many movers who aren't.  I met Larry when I was a young Mcpl in Ottawa.  He had time for me and many others.  Thankfully. He could get us trappers to work like no others. 3 AMU was a unique place thanks to Larry.  I'll never forget his gravelly voice or his genuine love of all of us. I never heard the man say anything bad about another person. He might get upset with someone, but never would he bring them down. That is my memory and I'll never change. He was a father figure.  We all looked up to him and we all respected him.  Trapper is a term of endearment for people that you care about and I think Larry cared about everyone he worked with.

This started out as a letter to define "trapper", but the more I write and think about it the more I am sure that "Trapper" is Larry. I can only hope that when my name comes up, someone calls me trapper. No finer tribute could I request.

RR "Mic" Book
Retired, playing golf and drinking wine

Thanks Mic

Welsh coal miners once believed that washing coal dust from their backs weakened their spines

From: Hugh Thompson, Swindon
Sent: July-25-10 16:37
Subject: Forever Young - A Song For Wootton Bassett

Hi Tony

Have a look & listen at the link below, it's a real "heart-jerker" which I'm sure our wider community would appreciate.



It surely is - thanks Hugh



This video has been especially commissioned to accompany the song for Wootton Bassett 'Forever Young' as a tribute to the people of Wootton Bassett and the surrounding area for the way they turn out in all weathers at the repatriation of our brave soldiers from Afghanistan.

Written by Alan Pettifer, the song features: Colette Cassin, vocals, The City of Bath Junior Bach Choir directed by Adrienne Hale, Mike Stainer keyboards, Alan Pettifer guitar, Peter Lamb Bass and Julian Scott Drums. Matthew Walton from Wootton Bassett Brass and Brunel Brass, is playing cornet as he does for some of the repatriations.

The 'Forever Young' CD single is available for £2.99 plus postage from: or as a download from:  It is a permanent way of remembering these sad times as well as all profits are going to 'Afghan Heroes', a charity set up to provide support for the families of those lost in conflict. This DVD, soon to be available was filmed and produced by Roger Calcut of Wiltshire Media and all the CD artwork produced by Stephen Baron of 'Pope Baron’ designers'. All artists and contributors to the CD and DVD have given their time for free and we thank them all.

Please check out our 'MySpace' page and check the blogs for some of the amazing comments we have had in the short time since we released the song:

From: Tony Gale, Gatineau, QC
To: Alan Pettifer, Bath, UK
Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2010 3:38 AM
Subject: Forever Young

Dear Alan,

I would very much like to embed your wonderful video into my upcoming web-based newsletter.  The distribution of the newsletter is limited to a few hundred veterans of the Commonwealth nations.  The majority of the retired airmen and airwomen, like myself, are on fixed incomes.

To see an example of the newsletter (always in the best of taste) please visit the latest edition at The association does not charge a fee for membership.

I very much look forward to your affirmative response.

Tony Gale
Secretary & Webmaster
UKMAMS Old Bods Association...

From: Alan Pettifer, Bath
Sent: August-05-10 4:15
Subject: Re: Forever Young

Hi Tony,

Yes, of course you have my permission to embed the Forever Young video into your website newsletter.

It looks like a great idea you have there; a marvellous way to communicate worldwide with other veterans.

By the way we can ship the CD of the song overseas, but a cheaper option is to download from CDbaby for less than one US dollar; the link follows.

Keep in touch re: your newsletter

My Very Best Wishes

Alan Pettifer


From: Gerry Davis, Bedminster
Sent: August-03-10 8:10
Subject: El Adem

Hello again Tony,

Can I revisit El Adem for a moment?

On my frequent visits there in the 1960’s, am I right in thinking that there was a group of ”stateless persons” who might have been ex-German POW’s living and working on the airfield, remaining there after the war as they did not wish to be repatriated to East Germany?

I can remember seeing a war time German VW open-top general service vehicle, similar in size to a Landrover, being driven about. You could make out where the guns were attached, and it seemed pretty much serviceable.  If my memory serves me properly, they may also have been involved in building “The Castle”  German war memorial on the hill overlooking the Tobruk Harbour.

My wife can also recall that, whilst she was nursing at the Akrotiri hospital, there were occasions when, what seemed like German patients were flown over from El Adem for treatment.

There was also a rumour that when we, the Brits, pulled out of Libya, there was a problem regarding their nationality and status together with “Where they should go.“  Or have I got it all wrong?

Someone out there in the MAMS world will surely put me right.

Interesting though, don’t you think?


Intriguing Gerry!

Do you enjoy reading this Newsletter? Why not show your appreciation by making a small donation; the link is at the bottom of the page

From: Shawn Larson, Edmonton, AB
Sent: August-03-10 11:06
Subject: Annual Golf Tournament

Greetings Tony,

Our Annual Golf Tournament is fast approaching,
3-4 Sep 2010 (Labour Day Weekend), and
I want to make sure that we have reached as
many Movers as possible. 
The .pdf Invitation & Application is attached.




New Commander-in-Chief of Air Command visits RAF personnel in Afghanistan

Air Chief Marshal Simon Bryant has met with Royal Air Force personnel during his first visit to Afghanistan as the newly-appointed Commander-in-Chief Air (CINCAIR).

Air Chief Marshal Bryant flew into Afghanistan this week accompanied by Air Vice-Marshal Mike Lloyd, acting Deputy Commander-in-Chief Personnel. 

This was a return visit to Afghanistan for ACM Bryant, but his first visit in his new role as CINCAIR, and, while the visit focused on operations, he placed a strong emphasis on personnel issues and was keen to stress how important it was for him to meet RAF personnel in Afghanistan.

ACM Bryant said, "It is important that I meet RAF personnel on operations so I understand fully the contribution that the RAF is making. I have been extremely impressed by the professionalism and commitment of our people in Afghanistan; they are providing a vital contribution in a range of roles both on the ground and in the air."

RAF personnel are involved in many aspects of operations in Afghanistan including air transport and intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance. There are also RAF Regiment force protection experts protecting the major bases and the RAF Medical Emergency Response Teams who provide life-saving care in the air.

ACM Bryant said, "My visit provides an opportunity to hear personal experiences associated with individuals' deployments, with a view to improving that experience and contributing more effectively to operations. These conversations provide me with the evidence I need to enhance the vital contribution that air power is making in Afghanistan and to keep personnel abreast of what is happening back in the UK."

ACM Bryant began his visit in Kabul, visiting RAF personnel at the international airport. He then dropped into Kandahar, spending time with personnel from 904 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW), where he met with aircrew and ground crew from the Hercules and Tornado detachments.  He also spoke with personnel from the Tactical Imagery-Intelligence Wing (TIW) and received briefings on the force protection provided by 51 Squadron RAF Regiment. ACM Bryant then took the time to call on the Commander of Kandahar Airfield, Air Commodore Gordon Moulds.

He then flew into Camp Bastion to meet with personnel from 903 EAW, the Joint Helicopter Force and Joint Force Support, before moving forward to Lashkar Gah where he finished his visit engaging with the RAF personnel embedded within the Task Force Helmand headquarters.

Sergeant Ross Pinches, from the TIW at Kandahar Airfield, said, "It was great to meet CINCAIR, he was really interested in hearing about my job in TIW and he took time to listen to our views and answer a number of questions that personnel raised about the uncertainties of the SDSR [Strategic Defence and Security Review]."

ACM Bryant was appointed as the Commander-in-Chief of Air Command on 18 June 2010.

Defence News

The Himalayan Mountains cover one-tenth of the Earth's land mass

From: Charles Collier, Devizes
Sent: August-05-10 15:25
Subject: Sandy Sandiford

Dear Tony,

The news that Sandy Sandiford has succumbed to the limiting life of dementia in his eighties. This is an all encompassing illness that saps all natural life from the individual. I know this because my father succumed to this in his early 60's.

He was a cyclist all his life and in those days they did not wear helmets. He must have fallen off his bike on many occasions during his life but there comes a time when the brain just gives up and dementia happens.

Look at the professional boxers who become punch drunk like Mohamed Ali . So I am in my 70th year, still cycling, but I always wear a helmet when doing so!

All the best to my fellow OBA's

Kind regards


You're right Charles, I believe we all have to exercise caution in exercise!


Flies are the only flying insects that have two wings. All others have four


"A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject." - Winston Churchill

That's it for this issue

Have a great weekend!