UKMAMS helping out Santa - Thirst in First!!
London, ON
19 December 2000
A special early edition this week as yours truly is heading up to Northern Québec for the holidays Tuesday morning, 19th Dec. We are planning on returning in the first week of January.
Pete Marsh sent an interesting bio...

15 December 2000

Hi There,

Thanks for inviting me to join the UKMAMS OBA. My time spent on Air Movements is very limited, but to give you some idea I will give you a brief history:

1956 - Movements School, RAF Kidbrooke, No.1 Surface Movements Course, then posted on 20th December to 86 Movements Unit, Antwerp, to work on the Docks.

1957 - Moved to Germany, working at Bremen Docks and the RTO at Bremen Hbf. I was billeted at RAF Oldenburg and then RAF Ahlhorn. During this time I returned to the Movements School for an AIR MOVEMENTS course. Some of you might remember the short podgy SAC that marched you to and
from the School. Soon after that I was promoted to Corporal.

1958 - A good move this time to the RTO at Hamburg Altona Hbf where I lived at the Hotel Stadt (Basil Hughes could have been there at the same time but I'm not good at names). All good things come to an end as I was posted to RAF Hereford for a Supplier II course, in those days it was the only way to get above the rank of corporal.

1959 - Posted to RAF Abingdon as a Supplier II Q Mov. At first I was on Air Movements, loading Beverleys and a few Avro Yorks belonging to Dan Air. Moved to a Supply job at Main Stores but managed to get few weeks detachment to a Staging Post at Orange in the south of France doing Stores and Movements.

1961 - RAF Mamfe, not many people have heard of this one. It was in the Southern Cameroons (West Africa). I was the Air Movements Section, not much to do, a few pax and mail in and out every day on a Twin Pioneer and a resupply Beverley once a month. I had extra jobs, in charge of a load of Natives in the Laundry and part time Storekeeper.
1962 - Demobbed

1964 - Rejoined, after refresher Supply course was posted to RAF Honington.

1966 - Posted to Aden, but after 5 days I was on my way to Masirah. Again it was a mixture of Stores and Movements, three flights a week by Argosy from Khormaksar and a weekly run by Beverley from Bahrain. My Movements duties then came to an end until:

1970 - Promoted to Sergeant and posted to Air Cargo Allocation Centre (ACAC) at RAF Upavon.

1971 - Supply work once again, with tours in Cyprus and Germany.

1980 - Retired after a total of 22 Years.

Now a big THANK YOU to UKMAMS - a couple of months before my tour in Cyprus came to an end I was trying to get my car back to UK. I heard on the grapevine that 6 Hercs were coming into Nicosia so I drove up there from Famagusta and you kindly took my VW Beetle to Lyneham. A couple of weeks later when the Turks invaded Cyprus, my family were flown the short distance by Herc from an Army airstrip at Dhekelia to Akrotiri and then a VC10 to Brize. Thanks again.

Best Wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

Pete Marsh
Ian Stacey answered the call for material on Khormaksar:

Chicago Illinois
15 Decmember 2000

Hi Tony,

I notice that you were building up some stuff over Aden etc. I was stationed there in 1963 and have dozens of photos in the basement from thereabouts and some up country photos from Beihan, Salalah and the Themeir (spelling?) Pass. The problem is that they are all colour transparencies - could you use any of these?

If you can I think the best idea would be for me to send you a bunch and let you select what you can use.

In those days, at the very mature age of 19, I was Equipment Officer on 5004 Airfield Construction Squadron at Khormaksar - I also did a short spell at MEAF HQ at Steamer Point. As Equipment Officer on 5004 I had not the hell of an idea what I was doing but had this great Sergeant who worked for me (Evans I think his name was). Every morning he would give me a pile of forms, each one with a red X on it. My job was to sign each form by the red X. That was it! I didn't know what I was signing but somehow or other things got done!!! What would the Air Force have done without Sergeants!!

I also did a couple of stints out in Africa on the Oil Lift and have some photos from those if you are interested - also only colour transparencies.

Ian Stacey

I responded to Ian in the affirmative - Many thanks from all of us!
From: John McGrath, Thornton Cleveleys, UK

Happy Christmas to you all!   I hope the weather in Canada is a bit drier than here in Lancashire. Give my love to Rudolph and the boys.

From: Norrie Radcliffe, Isle of Man, UK

Yuletide Greetings to all those UKMAMS Old Boys who might remember me.

Had a message recently from George Lynes who is now studying for a degree in transport at Liverpool University, also spoke with Gerry Keyworth in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia, will persuade him to sign up when I see him in January. Don Hunter has now moved from Hong Kong to South Africa, his E Mail address is always was a jammy sod. In the New Year I'll root around in the archives and send a few pictures to Tony, nothing incriminating.


Norrie Radcliffe.
From: David Stevens, Bangor, Wales

Hi Tony,

Through your web site I have made contact with a good friend from our days on MAMS at Abingdon circa 1963-66, in fact he contacted me. So, special Christmas Greetings and a Properous New Year to Ian Stacey in Chicago from David Stevens in Bangor.

Same special greetings to Nigel Healey, John Dunn, Mike Green and Graham Morgan if any or all are logged onto your web. I have not checked to tell the truth.

Have a great holiday yourself.

Best regards

David Stevens
From: Davey Jones, Wellington, New Zealand

Hi Tony,

Greetings from Down Under!

Doesn't time seem to fly when you're having fun!? As I type this 'short' note, memories come drifting back - a little over 4 months ago I was coming to end of my Service - having said that I'd left the PMA TG18b desk at Easter this year, so I'd had a 'short' holiday. I've watched TV news reports about the formation of the European Defence Force and recall somewhere at the back of my mind that weren't we advised that the UK forces would not be committed to such a force?

Perhaps I did leave at the right time.......

As we drift towards Christmas no longer do I think of dropping around to the Mess bar, Recip drinks and the like. Yes, I do miss the Service but, there is life afterwards. Did we leave the UK at the right time?.......looking at the floods and weather you've had recently I think so...seriously though, as many of you know upon leaving the RAF, we headed as migrants to New Zealand. To date, as we prepare for Christmas in the sun, it was the right move. We've sent around 60 Xmas cards back to the UK - I made a point of including UK MAMS Trg! (and the RAFMS for Uncle Bruce!).

The sun has just broken through afternoon clouds and temp is around 20 degrees C, and tonight Eve and I will be wrapping up the presents for our 3 children and 1 older one (18yrs), who is no longer a child. We're all looking forward to Christmas Day because our second eldest daughter, Kerrie (15yrs) is to sing the Christmas solo on national TV Channel 1 in their programme "Praise Be" - she's a member of the Wellington Cathedral Choir - naturally we're all proud of her.

Anyway, I won't go into too much detail because I promised at some point I'd write an entry for the old mag on my experiences of Drafting Movers!

Needless to say - we wish you all a safe and very happy Christmas and New Year, wherever you may be serving around the world. Remember if you're ever stuck in NZ there is a cold beer in the fridge!


Davey Jones and Family
From: "Shuggie" Shewan, Forres, Scotland

Just to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Joyous New Year and if anyone is in the Forres/Kinloss area during the holiday, just give us a shout for some Scottish hospitality.

Shuggie Shewan
MSF Kinloss
(Home 01309 691114)
From: Bill Nangle, Victoria, Canada

Hi Tony,

Well, we had winter today, it snowed here in Victoria, deep in the heart of Canada's tropical paradise, of course the rain came and washed the white stuff away within a few hours. No snow shovels allowed on the west coast :-)

Best Christmas wishes to all the MAMS Muppets out there, may your holidays be peaceful and safe, and hopefully safe at home with your families.

Best Wishes,

On Christmas day, in Northern Canada, at about 12:25 pm EST, 5:25 pm GMT, we will experience a 72% eclipse of the sun.

At that moment in time I will raise a glass and propose a toast to absent friends everywhere.

Have a Wonderful Holiday!

Best regards