02 November 2001


New members joining us are:

Dave Salmon from Springfield, Oregon, USA

Ian Almond from Doncaster, UK

Welcome to the OBA!

From: Jack Riley, Hervey Bay, Australia
To: John Cooper
Subject: Gan
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 11:24:54 +1000

Dear John

Hi! Read, with great interest, the events surrounding the crash off Gan ["Splashdown on the Equator" Articles page]. If you're into long shots you might try David Balmford who was a Shack pilot at this time with 205. I do not have his address but I know that Captain Ron Roberts, R Sigs, who was with us in Changi at the time, does.

Ron can be contacted through his wife's email address which is

All the best


[Ed: Thanks Jack, I know John will appreciate any lead he can get his hands on. Let's hope it pans out for him.]

From: Phil Clarke, Vienna, Austria
Subject: Mystery People
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 17:02:36 +0200

Hi Tony,

Overnight on Mon/Tues we had a B777 land at Muscat after an in flight engine shutdown. Aircraft AOG - and I had to get a GE90 Engine - the largest (dimension wise) civil aero engine in the world, the men, and all the kit and caboodle that goes with an engine change, to Muscat toot sweet.

Chartered an Antanov 124, the largest civil freighter available, and the only aircraft capable of carrying a GE90. Arrived here in Vienna at 1830Z last night. What a ship - 6 flight deck crew plus a spare pilot, ground engineers and a team of mechanics/ loaders - about 6, all the crew Ukrainian.

But these guys also carry a Flight Manager - often Brit - and this was no exception. This one was an ex AQM morphed into an ALM - who knew and had worked with lots of Gale and Dunphy characters, and obviously with me on Muharraq turnarounds. But on it goes - he started life as a Clk Sec, and guess what - 50th Entry, H Flight, 2 Squadron, where his best mate was John Billingsley of C Flight, 3 Squadron - and on and on - did his loadie training with Bernie Connelly, also of the aforementioned 3 Squadron.

As the story unfolded, my Lauda workmates, and the Ukrainian crew were as amazed as he and I.

Didn't have long to chat, but the aircraft will be back in Vienna in the next 36 hours, and he'll be leaving it and paxing back to UK, so hopefully will have a few hours for a beer, and old men's ramblings.

His other posting as a Clk Sec included Finningley (after Hereford), Steamer Point straight to Muharraq after Aden withdrawal, and I think Topcliff was mentioned.

As a loadie he was on C130 and Andovers. Took the voluntary money and ran in mid 90s. In Angola for a year, then Air Foyle Flight Manager - but now as a freelance.

WHO IS HE??????

Magnificent Lauda Air Crew Cap to the 1st correct name out of the bag.

The job: It was great fun being involved in the loading, but ba gum these civvies are slow. On chocks 2040, off chocks 2334 (local time: Z+2). Only a 13.5 tonne load comprising of 10 bits. I know any UKMAMS team could shave an hour off that, whilst D Shift Muharraq '66 - '67 would have cut the ground time in half during pub hours.

Cheers and Aye


[Ed: It's a really small world Phil. I can vaguely remember the chap you refer to, but I guess I don't get the hat as I cannot put a name to him. It's probably just as well, as with winter coming on that Lauda aircrew is going to need his hat! Please give him my regards when you next see him]


From: Bobby Atcheson, London, UK
Subject: FW: Know your place...
Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2001 09:29:31 +0100

A journalist had done a story on gender roles in Kuwait several years before the Gulf War, and she noted then that women customarily walked about 10 feet behind their husbands.

She returned to Kuwait recently and observed that the men now walked several yards behind their wives.

She approached one of the women for an explanation. "This is marvellous," said the journalist. "What enabled women here to achieve this reversal of roles?"

Replied the Kuwaiti woman: "Land mines"

[Ed: Thanks Bobby - it's very sad, but I understand that it is actually happening]


From: Arfur English, Crab Air
Subject: New Tel No:
Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2001 13:57:49 +0100

Hi Tony,

Can you please amend my telephone number on member's details? New no. is 07810 134756

Al other details remain as per..

Rgds Arfur @ Crab Air

ps.. I'm using the library Internet for access so please reply to

Arf in wet/windy Aldergrove.

[Ed: Got you covered Arfur]


From: Brian Spademan
Subject: Change email address
Date: Fri, 26 Oct 2001 09:52:07 +0100

Please note my new email as from 29/10/01 will be

Thanks for a great read.

Brian Spademan

[Ed: Thanks Brian - it's been changed]


[Ed: The following was received in the Guestbook]

Date: Friday 10/26/2001 1:47:29pm
Name: Andrew Davies
City/Country: Cheshire England
Comments: I am the son of an ex RAF member who served at RAF Akrotiri from 1958-1960. His name is Ken Davies and I would be grateful if anyone who served with him would contact me at the email address above. I want to surprise him!

Thank you

Andrew Davies

[Ed: Anybody?]


From: Martin Liggett, Swindon, UK
Subject: No subject
Date: Sat, 27 Oct 2001 17:47:47 +0100


My second e-mail, and I promise I won't wind anybody up this time !!!! (I must admit I did deliberately set the fox in the chicken coop, hoping for a lot of flying feathers.), could you please place following in next newsletter.

A friend of mine is looking for an ex-mover or a very shortly to retire mover (available asap) to train as a loadmaster on DC-8 cargo aircraft (move over VC10 as this is definitely the Queen of the skies - payload 40 metric tonnes) wage is circa £19k, and involves on average between 15-21 days away per month, crews are a great bunch, anybody interested give me a call asap on 01793-871734, or e-mail.

On a personal note, my apologies for my wind up letter, you really do a great service and keep us old boys in touch. I appreciate it can be difficult without individual inputs, but keep up the good work.

p.s. I have dug my escape tunnel from the Iceland depot and start work next week at the Safeway depot in Swindon as a shift manager (more money less stress) despite the lure of flying on the Diesel 8 again.

Thanks again Tony for your efforts.

Rgds, Martin

[Ed: Thanks Martin - Good luck on your move, I know it's not easy to make a major change. I heard a quote just recently, I don't know who said it, but, "Change is inevitable - Growth is optional." I trust you'll get some bites on that job in the offing for the DC-8 Loadmaster trainee - I'll copy it over to the OBAtunities page]


From: Scott Innes, Worcester, UK
Subject: Mystery Photograph Suggestions
Date: Thu, 01 Nov 2001 09:25:05 +0000

Haven't the foggiest!

Christmas Island?

Anyway looks nice - last one to the beach gets the beers in!!


[Ed: Sorry Scottie - it's not the kind of place to really relax in..... although the beer sounds good!]


From: Bobby Atcheson, London, UK
Subject: Mystery Photograph Suggestions
Date: Wed, 31 Oct 2001 17:16:43 -0000

Air Movements Khormaksar?

[Ed: You're right Bobby - I believe the picture was taken in the early 1960's]


New on the site this week: Dave Eggleton wrote about a period of 10 years on UKMAMS ("10 Years Without Regrets" on the Articles page), which encompasses the early days and the transition from Abingdon to Lyneham. It was originally published in Jerry Porter's book "UKMAMS, Moving in Mysterious Ways" so you know there's a lot of tongue-in-cheek humour in there.


We haven't heard from Karl Hibbert over there in the Philippines for quite some time. I trust Karl that you've finished building your house and have settled in - we need pictures!

I'm thinking quite often about Bill Nangle in Victoria BC who hopefully is recovering from his heart attack.

Ian Stacey in Chicago - recovering nicely? Do you remember Roger Blow? He lives quite close to you across the State line in Indiana - I did send him an e-mail recently but didn't hear back yet.

I'm also thinking of all the chaps up to their eyes in the Middle East - it can't be easy, and it looks like it's going to be a long struggle.


Well, that's it for this week. Let's hope the correspondence will pick up somewhat... ?

Have a great weekend

Best regards