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Win win Battle Proms tickets

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Win win We open Doors with DVD prizes

l R’n’R p4

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l R'n'R p3

Friday May 19 2017 No 1419 70p


The man from Uncle is back…and he's Loaded See centre pages of R'n'R

Rugby Union UKAF sunk by Bath try-fest

l Sport P35

Football Honington gun for glory

Showtime Typhoon mission to patrol NATO’s East European airspace

Meet team behind the RAF BBMF

l Sport P33

Fit for heroes – the Forces’ favourite newspaper

Centre pages

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P3


We are looking forward to heading out to Norway

It’s an honour to support such a great military charity

Wg Cdr Nikki Thomas OC 12 (B) Sqn and UK Detatchment Commander – p13

Veteran broadcaster Kate Adie on becoming an ambassador for SSAFA – p13

RAF BBMF Spitfire pilot Flt Lt Andy Preece – p18

After a flight, I’m always relieved not to have broken it

I am proud of the boys and the way they fought back

here with Elton John) – R’n’R p5

UKAFRL chief Damian Clayton on his charges after a tough game against Hull Reserves – p30

We keep working on it. Billy Elliott is not a project you can leave

” Director Stephen Daldry (pictured

ship shape: £2 million sim allows pilots to train in all weather and sea conditions PHOTO: BAE

Next issue on sale June 2, 2017 Royal Air Force News Room 68 Lancaster Building HQ Air Command High Wycombe Buckinghamshire HP14 4UE Email: Tel: 01494 497412 Editor: Simon Williams Sports Editor: Dan Abrahams Features Editor: Tracey Allen Sport: Tel: 01494 497563

All hands on deck for F-35 Lorraine Proudlock

A new simulator is helping RAF and Navy pilots land the F-35 Lightning ahead of doing it for real. The simulator, based at BAE Systems’ plant in Warton, Lancashire, will test pilots’ skills to the limits as they practise landing on the deck of the carrier in a range of difficult sea and weather conditions. The bespoke £2m simulator offers a 360-degree immersive experience for pilots to fly the jet to and from the carrier. It comprises a cockpit moved by an electronic motion platform and a full representation of the ship’s flying control tower where a Landing Signal Officer on board

the carrier will control aviation operations. The 360-degree view for pilots is vital as potential obstacles on an aircraft carrier are often behind the pilots as they land. Over the coming months the simulator will be used by UK and US military test pilots who have experience of flying F-35s on US carriers. The pilots will practise thousands of ski jump short take-offs and vertical landings that use both the vertical thrust from the jet engine and aerodynamic lift from the wings, allowing the aircraft to take-off and land on the carrier with increased weapon and fuel loads compared to predecessor aircraft. Peter ‘Wizzer’ Wilson, BAE

Systems’ test pilot for the STOVL variant on the F-35 programme, said the simulator trials will provide engineers with the data to begin flight trials on HMS Queen Elizabeth. He said: “The immersive experience is as near to the real thing as possible. The data will show us exactly what will happen when F-35 pilots fly to and from the Queen Elizabeth carriers. “The trials we can run through the simulator are far more extensive than what we will do in the actual flight trials. The simulator provides greater cost efficiency for the overall programme and is extremely important to the success of the first trials.” Another milestone was reached

in the Lightning II programme with the dropping of a Paveway IV bomb over the Atlantic test ranges. RAF test pilot Sqn Ldr Andy Edgell released two inert 500lb dual mode precision-guided bombs from the jet called BF-03 during a test overseen by the Integrated Test Force. The Paveway firings follow the first firing of a British-designed missile from the Lightning II off California, which also involved Sqn Ldr Edgell. The trials of the MBDA Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile – ASRAAM – were also overseen by the Pax team, which includes around 20 UK personnel, led by Cdr Toby McCann.

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P5

News In Brief

Special guests at Wings Museum

VIPS: Bomber Boys sign memorabilia for fans

World War II hero Wg Cdr John Bell and fellow ‘Bomber Boys’ have made a special appearance at the Wings Museum, Haywards Heath. DFC and Legion d’Honneur winner John, a bomb aimer with the famous Dambuster 617 and 619 squadrons, signed memorabilia for fans and spoke about what it was like in the midst of battle, at the museum’s open day. He said: “I dropped the Tallboy bomb on missions; we just got on with the job.” The bomb sank the German battleship, Tirpitz. John added: “We were hit once by flak and lost an engine, we could have turned for home but decided to press on. You did not want to let anyone down.” Also at the open day was Britain’s oldest Olympian, Sqn Ldr Bill Lucas DFC, who was a Mosquito pathfinder.

atlantic trident

Typhoon and F-35 Lightning are the perfect partnership SYNERGY: F-35 and Typhoon

CAS is the rocket man

Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier has a blast at RAF Leeming during a local science competition to build a rocket car. The event is part of a nationwide drive to get more youngsters interested in science and engineering More than 20 teams took part, designing and building rocketpowered machines capable of hitting speeds of more than 40mph.

Akrotiri visitors

Rugby stars Keith Senior and Thinus Delport visited RAF Akrotiri in their role as ambassadors for the charity Rugby for Heroes. Ex-England and Great Britain rugby league player Keith and exSouth African Springbok Thinus ran a training session for the Cyprus station’s children’s team.

RAF Typhoons and French Rafale fast jets taking part in the first major combat training exercise with USAF F-35s have come close to a perfect kill rate against simulated enemy fighters. During high-level, air-to-air attacks staged at the Langley air base in Virginia, UK and French fighters took out 69 enemy aircraft for just one loss. The trilateral Atlantic Trident is the first large-scale exercise to test the F-35’s stealth and surveillance capabilities in real-time combat sorties against ‘Red’ air. Using data collected from the Lockheed fifth-generation fighter, Typhoon and Rafale pilots were able to defeat opposing enemy aircraft and take control of the airspace. Gp Capt Paul Godfrey, who

Kill rate of 69 for one loss on NATO exercise led the exercise, said: “F35 and Typhoon are so complementary. “In the scenarios we created the F-35 was just behind the frontline. It was doing its thing, capturing the bigger picture and transmitting it to our cockpits. “Not one of those enemy aircraft crossed the line we drew in the sky and that

is absolutely to do with the synergy between Typhoon and F-35.” The F-35 Lightning, due to enter service in the UK next year, is equipped with sense fusion capability which pulls all the data collected together to create a comprehensive picture of the combat area. USAF F-35 pilot Maj Dante Burgoon, who took part in

the exercise, added: “In the last generation aircraft the pilot has to mould multiple pictures from multiple screens to get a clear idea of what is happening in the battle space. “In F-35 all the sensors are put together in one picture. It is like a map with everything on it; including every datalink, every track and every radar.” F-35 Lightning will initially be flown from RAF Marham – currently home to the RAF’s ageing Tornado fleet, which is due to be withdrawn from service in 2019. Gp Capt Godfrey (pictured inset left) added: “The F-35 is fantastic on its own but where it really earns its money is making the rest of us more survivable, more lethal and more capable through the synergy it brings. It makes all of us better.”

“As a boy, I picked up an extra paper round in Petersfield to save for flying lessons.” —Richard Pillans, Boeing UK Chief Test Pilot

“As a boy, I picked up an extra paper round in Petersfield to save for flying lessons. I managed to get my pilot’s licence before I could even drive a car. It’s freeing to get up in the air and see the world from that perspective. Even though I left the British military I still feel like I’m part of it as a civilian test pilot. The data we gather proves the Chinooks are safe before the frontline fly them. We feel good about supporting the team overseas.”



Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P7

News ferret exclusive

Bandit country Air Force fundraiser SAC Charlie Hammerton has revealed he is planning another fundraising venture with his ferret Bandit – after the UK went crazy over his recent charity stunt. Charlie and his pet raised more than £3300 for two charities in memory of his late mum Jan with a record-breaking, threeday walk along Hadrian’s Wall last month. He attracted an army of fans across Britain, Australia and the USA during the 84-mile hike. The duo have been bombarded with requests on Facebook and Twitter to take on more challenges. MT driver Charlie has revealed he is preparing to mount another escapade, this time in Holland, but is keeping the details under wraps for now. He said: “All details are super

Veterans and air chiefs from across the Commonwealth gathered at the Runnymede Memorial to honour the airmen and women who died in WWII. Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier, led the tributes laying a wreath before a Battle of Britain Memorial Spitfire performed a flypast. Sir Stephen was joined by air attachés from across the Commonwealth nation, Air Marshal Sir Roger Austin representing the RAF Association and Air ViceMarshal David Murray, representing the RAFBF.

animal magic: Bandit has become an international celebrity following Charlie’s charity crusade

secret at the moment, but I can confirm you’ll be seeing me and Bandit in Holland this September.”

operations update

Daesh bomb factory blown away by UK Typhoon strike TURKEY Al Qamishli Al Hasakan Idlib



Mosul Irbil



Dayr az Zawr Hama Homs



Palmyra Qa’im





Hit Ramadi


BAGHDAD Falluja Hilla





used in attacks in Mosul by hardline Staff Reporter SAUDI ARABIA Daesh fighters battling Iraq ground A major Daesh bomb factory forces in the west of the city – the supplying terror group fighters group’s last major stronghold in in Iraq has been obliterated in a Iraq. strike by RAF Typhoons. The UK combat jets targeted UK fast jets were part of a five buildings using high precision Coalition strike force which Paveway bombs, destroying the launched the raid on a network of complex north of Ar Rutbah. buildings being used by the group RAF Typhoons and Tornados to manufacture truck bombs. have also carried out precision The crude devices have been strikes supporting Iraqi forces


moving through narrow and densely populated streetsBasrah as they battle to drive the terrorists from the last remaining positions. Hardline Daesh fighters have resorted to using human shields and KUWAIT moved into schools and hospitals in densely populated areas to slow the Iraqi advance through the city. Tornados based at RAF Akrotiri smashed a rooftop snipers’ nest using low collateral Brimstone

missiles which can be controlled during flight to reduce the risk of injuring civilians. In a separate operation Tornados cut a road network at strategic points to stop the terror group moving truck bombs to areas already liberated by the Iraqi army. In a series of nine other strikes UK aircraft took out command centres and a Daesh headquarters. An RAF spokesman said: “The

operating environment is very challenging, given the close packed buildings, narrow streets and density of the urban population. “Our aircrew continue to deliver precision strikes. Daesh’s current tactics, including the illegal use of human shields, increases the risk to innocent life. “The RAF continues to take all steps necessary to minimise civilian casualties.”



Official fuel consumption figures in mpg (l/100km) for the Ford Focus ST-Line range: urban 33.2-67.3 (8.5-4.2), extra urban 60.1-83.1 (4.7-3.4), combined 46.3-74.3 (6.1-3.8). Official CO2 emissions 140-99g/km. The mpg figures quoted are sourced from official EU-regulated test results (EU Directive and Regulation 692/2008), are provided for comparability purposes and may not reflect your actual driving experience. *Military Saving programme available to current and ex-Service Personnel. Including veterans and retired members of the UK Armed Forces. Customer savings of 5% to 20% off the On The Road price available across the Ford range (excluding KA+, Mustang, Focus RS and selected Mondeo, Edge and Ranger models) on vehicles contracted from 1st April 2017 and 30th December 2017 and registered between 1st April 2017 and 30th June 2018. Retail customers only. This promotion cannot be used in conjunction with other manufacturer promotions or incentives. At participating Ford dealers – for terms and conditions, including the eligibility criteria, eligible models and customer savings visit:

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P9


Para-trooper Giles set for UK record bid Airman is mounting 300-mile flight across Britain to support friend battling cancer Simon Mander

PARAMOTOR MAN: FLt Lt Giles Fowler, above, an airborne selfie, below, and right, pilot’s eyeview. Inset, Clarissa Hamilton

RAF fundraiser Giles Fowler is set to launch a record-breaking bid to become the first person to paramotor non-stop across the breadth of Britain. Long range weather forecasters have given the RAF logistician an 11-day window of clear conditions next month to complete his 311mile fundraising flight. And the friend whose battle with double breast cancer inspired Flt Lt Fowler to make the attempt has written a heartfelt account of her ordeal to promote his efforts. Mother-of-three Clarissa Hamilton had just completed the Moonwalk marathon through London to promote breast cancer awareness in 2015 when she discovered she had the condition. Earlier this year, despite lifesaving surgery, she ran her first ever marathon in Brighton to raise money for the same cause. She said: “I am so fortunate to have such amazing friends around me; tears just rolled down my cheeks when I saw what a wonderful and scary venture Giles is getting himself into to support others like me. I just can’t thank him enough.” Flt Lt Fowler has finalised his route from the former RAF Brawdy on the west coast of Wales to his home town Lowestoft and estimates it could take up to eight hours to complete the 500km in one day, non-stop, with no extra refuelling.

He said: “I will be stretching existing wing technology, engine performance and my personal endurance. “I have no auto pilot, limited navigation aids and will have to hand fly the entire journey while having to carry all the fuel I will need.” He is awaiting delivery of a custom-made 25 litre fuel tank, twice the normal payload, and has flight tested a headset that will allow him to communicate with his ground support team during the attempt. And he’s even resorted to scissors and glue to cut up a 7ft air map into a handy booklet he can refer to in the air to plot his route instead of relying solely on his onboard GPS navigation system. Flt Lt Fowler

said: “Clarisse had a second chance of life thanks to the work of Cancer Research UK and others which makes me determined to raise as much money as I can to help other people survive.” Giles will be using a unique tracking system that will allow wellwishers and the media to follow his progress live online on Google maps. He hopes to raise £5000 for Cancer Research UK through his Just Giving page at fundraising/Giles-Fowler and has formed a public group for supporters under ‘Coast to Coast for Breast Cancer UK’, on Facebook. l To track Flt Lt Fowler go to: Coast2Coast. To make a donation through his Just Giving page go to: https://www.

Northolt team show pedal power A TEAM of cyclists from RAF Northolt have finished a gruelling 1299km, 10-day ride from their station to Poznan Air Base in Poland, raising more than £7500 for the RAF Benevolent Fund. The Pedal to Poland ride was part of the unit’s rigorous training and development plan and was also used to further cement Northolt’s close ties with the Polish Air Force and its veterans. Project Officer Sqn Ldr Neill Gowans, who led the team of 10

cyclists and six supporters, said: “This was the toughest physical and mental challenge I have faced in my career, and I say that as a former Marine. “Everyone taking part has learned a great deal about how to push past their limits both as individuals and as a team. “The reception we received from the Polish Air Force in particular was amazing and it was an honour to celebrate the shared links between our nations and Armed

Services. We also developed our military knowledge by stopping along the route in places like Arnhem and Berlin to learn lessons about the historic air operations that took place there.” He added: “We have learned and experienced so much that we can use in our day to day jobs and on operations.” n To donate to Pedal to Poland go to the team’s Virgin Money Giving page: http://uk.virginmoneygiving. com/team/pedal2poland.

OFF THEIR BIKES: The RAF men arrive at their final destination, Poznan Air Base, Poland

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P10


Pilgrimage to honour Cuban Joe LANC IN ACTION: A 514 Sqn Lancaster from Waterbeach, Cambridgeshire, releases its bombs on a daylight attack in July 1944 Air Historical Branch


Families gather to remember tragic WWII Lancaster crew


TRIBUTE: British Ambassador Alison Rose lays a wreath at commemoration service

Tracey Allen

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RELATIVES OF a World War II airman who died with the rest of his Lancaster crew when their aircraft crashed on the way to a raid, have travelled from the USA to Belgium to attend a special service of commemoration. A service, conducted by the Rev Wg Cdr Ashley Mitchell, was held at Heverlee War Cemetery, VlaamsBrabant in Belgium. It honoured all seven crew members of Lancaster NN775 including Sgt Herbert ‘Joe’ Thomas. Joe’s family were originally from Cuba but migrated to Jamaica. As Jamaica was under British rule in 1945, Joe was listed as a UK national. His niece, Paulette Thomas and her family, made the trip to the service from their home in America. She said: “My uncle died long before my siblings and I were born but his essence was deep rooted in our family. “It is awesome that there is a family thousands of miles across the ocean who knew him and can share with us memories and pictures of him. We honour his service and are proud to call him family.” On March 5, 1945, the 514 Sqn bomber took off from RAF Waterbeach for a raid on Gelsenkirchen, Belgium. Near Tirlemont it suddenly went into a dive from which the pilot was

unable to recover. All the crew were buried together in a collective grave in Heverlee War Cemetery. Along with Sgt Thomas, a rear gunner, the crew were: mid upper gunner Sgt Christopher Hoff from Birmingham; flight engineer Sgt Willam Marsden from Lancashire; pilot Fg Off Holman Kerr from Northern Ireland; wireless operator/air gunner FS Allan Olsen of the Royal Australian Air Force, from Queensland, FS Sidney Smith, navigator and Fg Off Frank Clarke, air bomber. They were aged between 20 and 23. The ceremony was attended by British and Australian Defence staff, 514 Sqn representatives and local dignitaries. Wreaths were laid by the 17 family members present. Also paying his respects was Jeff Temple, the nephew of Sgt Sidney Smith. Mr Temple said: “My sister Susan and I were raised with Sidney very much present, with his photograph on the mantelpiece and our mother telling us stories of him fighting extremism. “He was our hero, and gone, but not forgotten. “The commemoration has brought him to life for us, and we thank everyone involved for the opportunity to pay our respects to him, and to all the crew. “These young men are heroes to each of us, and remind us of our duty to continue the fight for tolerance.”

Alan Crawford, FPS Member

Alan contacted us with a concern about whether he might exceed his Lifetime Allowance with a pension from his post-Service employer. He had consulted a pension “guru” but then came to us for clarification of the way the figures should be viewed. Happily we were able to explain how the calculations work and reassure him that he still had sufficient headroom left not to incur a tax liability. We deal with hundreds of such enquiries from our Members, helping them through the AFPS pension maze every month. Join us and see how we can help you. Or simply become a Member for the peace of mind of knowing we’re here to help you when you need us. You’ll be in good company; we have almost 50,000 Members.

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P13

News property trends

Forces house hunters head west Staff Reporter Forces house buyers are being priced out of the market in the South East of England by the region’s rocketing property costs. The South East has the second highest military population in the UK with 37,000 Servicemen and women. However the region accounts for just 11 per cent of loans made under the MOD’s Help to Buy Scheme, launched to promote home ownership in the Military. The neighbouring South West

has a slightly higher military headcount with 38,000 – but netted more than twice as many loans under the programme. According to government figures, an average property in the South East outside London is a hefty £313,000 – £100,000 more than the South West and almost three times the cost of a property in the North East, the UK’s cheapest area. The figures are bad news for RAF personnel based at Brize Norton and Benson in upmarket Oxfordshire, and High Wycombe

in Buckinghamshire, which boasts some of the most expensive homes outside the capital. The MOD Help to Buy scheme was launched in 2014 offering loans of up to £25,000 to first time military buyers. So far Defence chiefs have handed out more than 10,000 payments at a cost of £115 million. The scheme has been a hit with RAF personnel who are more likely than members of the other Services to take up the offer, while the biggest users of the scheme are junior ranks between 25 and 29 years old.

Tornado’s arctic role

combat training

ICED T: Seven Tornado GR4s are heading for Bodø air base in the Arctic Circle to take part in NATO training

Gavin Brown Royal Air Force Tornados are set to launch an arctic combat drill from Norway’s remote Bodø air base in one of Europe’s most extreme air power exercises. Exercise Arctic Challenge involves more than 100 aircraft including seven UK Tornados and more than 1000 personnel. The jets, which have helped spearhead attacks on Daesh in Iraq and Syria in recent months, are due to leave RAF Marham in Norfolk for the north Norwegian station this week. The exercise is jointly hosted by Norway, Sweden and Finland

and involves NATO members France, the USA, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. The Swiss Air Force are also expected to take part. Wg Cdr Nikki Thomas, (pictured below), Officer Commanding 12(B) Squadron and UK Detachment Commander, said: “We’re looking forward to heading out to Norway in the coming weeks. “Arctic Challenge features realistic scenarios that allow us to train for complex, modern air operations

alongside our NATO partners and other allies. “We’ll be flying two sorties daily and will also be confronted by formations of aggressor aircraft, giving the exercise added realism. She added: “What makes this exercise unique is the cross-border air space we fly in over Norway, Sweden and Finland – it’s a oneof-a-kind training ground for increasing interoperability and our skills.” Once airborne, the Tornados will be able to spend far longer in the air thanks to an RAF Voyager aircraft, which will fly 2500-mile round trips directly from RAF Brize Norton to refuel the jets.

War reporter Adie goes into battle for injured veterans Veteran BBC war reporter Kate Adie is joining the fight for veterans’ welfare as an ambassador for military charity SSAFA. The broadcaster is the latest high profile figure to sign up for the group, joining military historian Dan Snow, Dame Vera Lynn and actor Antony Cotton (pictured). Ms Adie said her experiences as a frontline reporter in conflict zones across

the world motivated her to join the charity which supports serving and veteran members of all three services. She added: “Having frequently seen the military in action, I know how much we rely on our Servicemen and women to keep us safe and protect our freedoms at home. “It’s an honour to support a charity which does so much to support our military personnel and their families.”



Located on a beautiful 150-acre site near Dover, Kent, The Duke of York’s Royal Military School is a state boarding school for students aged 11 to 18. We welcome applications from students who want to study GCSE’s, A Levels and BTEC at this unique and iconic school with its military traditions. Graded ‘Good’ in all categories by Ofsted, the school provides excellent academic facilities and continuity of education, as well as supportive pastoral care.

‘It’s all about the students’ The Phantom of the Opera The School’s international musical production of ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ was spectacularly performed over four nights in late November. Partnering with West Point High School, Virginia in the United States, students magnificently rose to the challenge of gruelling dance, singing and acting rehearsals while working with another cast 3,500 miles away.

The School recently welcomed its new Principal, Mr Alex Foreman (pictured), who has moved from Kings School in Germany. Mr Foreman’s background with British Forces Germany, has enabled him to appreciate the benefit that military values and a military ethos can have on the learning culture of a school, and which the students from both military and nonmilitary backgrounds who study here fully embrace. Mr Foreman acknowledges ‘it’s all about the students’ and recognises that all Dukies live and breathe the School’s mantra of ‘Looking forward with Confidence, Looking back with Pride’, He said: “Every day I’m amazed by our students and feel the core military values they show for themselves and towards others is evident to anyone they meet. My mission is to continue developing


leadership capabilities throughout the school, empowering staff and students to ensure that our learning community experiences great opportunities, great teaching and great outcomes.”

Juniors enjoy sporting success in Holland Funded by Old Dukie, Paul Harrington and Law Firm Irwin Mitchell, 31 Junior Dukies from Years 7 and 8 visited Holland for a short developmental Hockey Tour in half term. They trained really hard and it is starting to pay off, as the U13 junior A team boys secured a confident win (8-1) over local competition, Harvey Grammar School.

The school made me ‘life ready’ “SEVEN years have gone by so fast, and it feels like only yesterday when I was a fresh-faced Year 7 getting lost on the way to lessons. Seven years sounds like a long time, however it has been the most amazing experience and has truly flown by. Not only has this School provided me with some brilliant learning opportunities and sporting experiences, but also a group of friends that I am happy to call my family, and memories to carry for a lifetime. Having climbed the ladder to where I am now, I am very grateful that I made the decision to not only come to this School, but to continue on my journey into Sixth Form. This Sixth Form is prestigious, with an excellent approach to learning, great opportunities to undertake responsibilities, and a huge network of support for university and life after School. Nothing has given me such a sense of pride than representing the School in netball, hockey and tennis. Going from Year 7, having never picked up a netball before, to being appointed 1st team netball captain this year. My wish for all those who are on this journey is to embrace what School life has to offer; this School has made me, and will make you, life-ready, and so my final words are: “thank you to my teachers and peers for shaping me into the independent and well-rounded person I will be when leaving through the School gates in July”. Sophie, Senior Prefect


Full an and nd week weekly kly boar boarding rding no now ow avai available ilable Located on a beauti beautiful iful 150-acr 150-acre e site in Dov Dover, ver, Kent, York’s The Duke of Y o ork’s Royal Military School is i a state boarding boar ding g school forr students aged g 11 to 18. 1

independ dent school atmospher atmosphere e aatt aan n • AAnn independent

Wee welcome applications W applications from from any student student who GCSEs our wants to study GCS SEs and A Levels at ou ur unique strong traditions. s. and iconic school with w its str ong tradition

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2016/17 fees are are just £12,495* £12,4 495* per year. year.

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P15

News News bulletin

Air show season

Greece is the word for Reds

Soccer mission reaches Syria

Arrows new recruit Flt Lt Toby Keeley carries out some last minute checks before the team fly out to Tanagra air base in Greece to hone their new display. The Arrows will be spending five weeks practising their high speed manoeuvres in the reliable Mediterranean climate before making their 2017 air show debut in June. Red 1, Sqn Ldr Dave Montenegro, said: “The location affords us the chance to fly in good weather and really get the show as polished as it needs to be.”

going global: The RAF charity team on a recent trip to Kenya

A sports based charity launched by an RAF airman is hoping to ease the plight of youngsters living in refugee camps in wartorn Syria. Wg Cdr Neil Hope’s Football Shirts to Africa and Beyond campaign joined forces with the National Police Aid Convoy to deliver sports kit to camps on the Turkish border. He said: “The Police Aid Convoys do an incredible job delivering humanitarian aid. It is a fantastic opportunity for us to work with them.” The Shawbury-based charity has also delivered sports kit to youngsters in Nepal for the first time. Since launching in 2004, the appeal has delivered to more than 50 countries worldwide.

welfare probe

Fighters in crisis won’t call for help

Injured veterans’ charity mission

Military pride stops those in danger seeking treatment Tracey Allen

Less than one per cent of serving and former military personnel would turn to a charity group if they hit hard times. That’s according to the latest survey carried out by Forces welfare organisation SSAFA. More than half of those questioned said they shroud be able to deal with problems themselves while an extra 32 per cent said it was not in their character to ask. An alarming 40 per cent said they would only consider seeking help if they were pushed to the brink and genuinely felt that their life was at risk. The probe reveals the reluctance of the UK military to face up to personal problems despite record numbers of Forces veterans battling poverty and a rise in mental health problems. More than 30 per cent would not

seek support for financial hardship, while 20 per cent said they would not ask for help if struggling from mental health issues. A further 19 per cent said they would rather deal with issues themselves than seek help from other welfare agencies. The study also revealed that nearly 40 per cent did not feel valued by society during their time in the Armed Forces. SSAFA chief Sir Andrew Gregory said: “Research has identified a concerning percentage of veterans and serving personnel who are extremely reluctant to come forward for support if they need it. “The study has confirmed our suspicions that younger, workingage veterans who the charity is supporting tend to come to us only once they have hit rock bottom.

“When we ask them why they have waited so long before seeking assistance the answer is very often that they felt too proud to ask.” Boxer and former Army Fusilier Nigel Benn, TV presenter Melanie Sykes and former Special Boat Service member, now TV danger man, Ant Middleton are among UK celebrities who have joined a

Honington’s history boys finally taste victory in Christie Cup

campaign to highlight the work military charities do. Benn, who served for four years, said: “I have seen the problems people can face when they leave the Forces and have to go it alone. You might be struggling but it is so hard to hold your hands up and ask for help, especially when you have been trained to get on with the job.”

A former RAF Gunner, now an Invictus Games champion, who lost both his legs in a Taliban bomb blast is heading a team of injured vets planning a series of fundraising challenges. Invictus Games gold medal winner Cpl Stuart Robinson and members of Team Legless will be taking on a 455-mile hand cycle, a bid to canoe across the UK and a para-triathlon this year.

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P17 n Please note letters must be a maximum of 300 words and any accompanying pictures sent as attached, hi-res jpeg files

Don’t forget XV Squadron Superfortress It was sad to read about XV Squadron being disbanded (RAF News No 1415). As a National Serviceman I was the Squadron Photographer on XV Squadron from 1951 to 1953. Your article refers to its aircraft – Blenheim, Wellington and Lancaster Bombers – and goes on to say it survived the post-war cull of surplus squadrons and was equipped with Canberras. You missed out the important period when it was equipped with the Boeing B29 Superfortress before it had the Canberras, in June/July 1953. Derek Burgis Via email

Cleared to be on pad with Thor Re: your competition to win Thor, Anatomy of a Weapon System by Geoff Goodchild. While in the RAF at Feltwell, I worked in the RIM building where some Thor missiles were housed. I was specially security cleared to go out on the pads, where the missiles were, by the USAF re: Tuddenham, Mepel etc. GJ GREEN 12 years RAF, 17 years Royal Observer Corps Telford Shropshire

Post: RAF News, Room 68, Lancaster Building, HQ Air Command, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP14 4UE Email:


We fostered 70 children and adopted two more – all during RAF service Re: your story headlined children and adopted two. Initially ‘Forces must fight for the children were younger than adoption rights’ in a recent our own and the length of time edition of RAF News. they visited was tailored to their Since reading the story, and with individual needs. We were also on great interest, I have read every call for ‘emergency’ situations. RAF News for the past year, and am Gaye and I were included at disappointed not to have read many case conferences and any reaction to the article. I do not recall any questions So to encourage would- Star or comments as to whether be foster or adoptive parents, letter a household was a military here is our story. We hope it or civilian one, but they were helps anyone who is trying to careful not to overlook any decide whether to go ahead or not. family which could provide a child Having had our four children, with a loving, stable home. All this Gaye and I realised we could was achieved while serving. help more in need. So when our Dennis Case youngest child was of school age Roermond we applied to foster and were The Netherlands accepted. From the 1960s to the RAF Bruggen/Elm St Station 80s we fostered approximately 70 1982-2015

Chance to win bottle of spirits The writer of our star letter or email of the month wins their choice of either a bottle of Spitfire Heritage Gin or Supermarine Vodka ‘built to be the best’ from www. spitfireheritagegin. com. Spitfire Heritage Distillers has followed the successful launch of its single-estate, small-batch botanical gin with artisan vodka. Also created by the world

award-winning master distiller John Walters, in Cambridgeshire, Supermarine Vodka, named after the company that created the iconic World War II Spitfire aircraft, has a smooth, creamy finish with a slight vanilla hint. It is 54% proof and is so smooth it can be enjoyed neat. Spitfire Heritage Distillers support the Spitfire Heritage Trust.

DFC: Sqn Ldr Cruickshank

Mountain Rescue still saving lives I note that in your coverage of 84 Squadron’s Centenary (RAF News edition no. 1414) the author incorrectly refers to the squadron as the ‘only operational Search and Rescue Unit after the RAF…’ The RAF Mountain Rescue Service, formed in 1943, have been Searching and Rescuing throughout the world for lost aircraft and personnel ever since – and stand ready to do so today. George D Graham, Flt Lt Via email

Awards confusion? I’ll do the honours

Thanks for Allied DVD What a lovely surprise to receive in the post a competition prize – a copy of the DVD Allied. We live at RAF Halton and we believe some of the scenes were filmed at our nearby airfield. Thank you very much indeed. ‘A grateful reader’, RAF Halton

CBE: Air Cdre Sampson heads Honours list

I was surprised, and not a little annoyed, to find that you have described the Distinguished Flying Cross as ‘the RAF’s highest honour’ (‘Low-level terror raid pilot heads Forces honours’‚ RAF News No 1418, May 5). It is not. It is not a Service-specific medal as it can be – and has been – awarded to members of any Service, ‘in recognition of exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy in the air’. Neither is it the

most senior award that a member of the Royal Air Force can receive, this is the Victoria Cross (a Level 1 award). The same article reports the award of a Distinguished Service Order (a Level 2 award) to Wg Cdr Walls, which is a higher level of award than the Distinguished Flying Cross (a Level 3 award). The article also reported that Air Cdre Sampson had been made a Commander of [the Order of] the

British Empire. As – with exception of the Victoria Cross and George Cross – honours are listed before awards, it was the Air Cdre, not Sqn Ldr Cruickshank, who ‘heads Forces honours’. This should not denigrate the courage of Sqn Ldr Cruickshank that led to the award. Wg Cdr MSA Ainsworth Officer Commanding Support Wing RAF Wittering

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P18

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P19

Feature Air show preview BBMF

Dream team of aviation world


hey are the custodians of the RAF’s World War II heritage and the high priests of the Air Show

circuit. Supersonic Typhoons and the latest addition to the UK’s air power inventory, the F-35, deliver the shock and awe that aviation fans crave. But nothing comes close to the tsunami of nostalgia evoked by the epic quartet of the Spitfire, Hurricane, Dakota and Lancaster bomber. The RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight is not just a display team, it is an airborne national anthem. Now in its 60th year, the BBMF will be celebrating the heroism and ingenuity of the RAF to millions of airshow spectators across Britain and Europe this summer.

Now in its 60th year, we meet some of the people and aircraft that make up the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight of those young men who fought gallantly, often desperately, only to lose their lives serving in the RAF.”


or Spitfire pilot Flt Lt Andy Preece (pictured below), every show is an unforgettable experience. He said: “At the top of the


ommanding the Memorial Flight is former Typhoon pilot Wg Cdr Andy Millikin. He said: “For me, the BBMF’s aircraft and the men who flew them represent the very finest characteristics of the British. “In their day the aircraft were at the leading edge of technological advancement.

Only a very cold heart could not be moved by the thought of those young men who fought gallantly, often desperately, only to lose their lives serving in the RAF

“They symbolise innovation, intelligence, grit and vision. They are also, as a happy but unintended consequence, among the most beautiful flying machines ever created.” The sacrifice and bravery of the WWII fighter and bomber crews are never far from the minds of the BBMF’s pilots. For Wg Cdr Millikin it is deeply personal, his grandfather was the captain of a Lancaster crew. He added: “Only a very cold heart could not be moved by the thought

list of jobs I never thought I would have, ‘Spitfire Display Pilot’ sits just below ‘Apollo Astronaut’. “I guess most pilots dream of flying a Spitfire. Displaying the aircraft takes the dream to another level. “It’s truly an honour and the ultimate privilege to be entrusted to

fly these wonderful machines at airshows and a multitude of other events throughout the UK. “It’s when I’ve completed the shutdown checks that I’m hit every time with the realisation that I’ve just been flying a Spitfire. “It’s partly a feeling of relief – I haven’t broken it. Ours are among the most precious and valuable aircraft on the planet and the real heroes of BBMF are those behind the scenes, the dedicated team of engineers and support staff without whom we wouldn’t be able to keep these wonderful aircraft flying.

“I also imagine how it would have felt in wartime, landing for a quick refuel, re-arm and take-off for another round, remembering that many Spitfire pilots failed to return. “Driving home afterwards, the idea of displaying a Spitfire is just as unreal as it was on the way in.”


he BBMF hangar at RAF Coningsby houses one of the world’s most valuable airworthy aviation collections – six Spitfires, two Hurricanes, a Dakota, one Lancaster and two de Havilland Chipmunk T10 training aircraft. Each has a unique history. Hurricane LF363 was built in the Hawker factory at Langley in

Berkshire in 1943. Finished as a Mk IIC, it was fitted with four 20mm cannon and a Rolls Royce XX engine. It was later delivered to 63 Sqn at Turnhouse, near Edinburgh, before heading south to join the D-Day air spotting pool, and finally reallocated to 309 (Polish) Sqn at Drem, in Scotland, in 1944. The unit’s aggressive Polish pilots were deeply disappointed to be moved so far from the D-Day action. Instead, they spent endless hours on readiness, flying patrols off Scotland’s east coast and over the Firth of Forth, and on shipping protection and air defence duties, with no sign of enemy aircraft. In October 1944, 309 Sqn received a full complement of new Mustang IIIs. It was back in business and the Hurricanes, including LF363, were taken away. After a series of post war mechanical issues it seemed destined for the scrapyard but was given a reprieve by Air Marshal Sir Stanley Vincent, who was determined to see it take


part in the famous Battle of Britain flypast in 1949. LF363 went on to become the founding aircraft of the RAF Historic Flight at its Biggin Hill inauguration in 1957. It remained on strength as the Flight evolved into the BBMF but suffered major disaster when the engine failed during a flight, forcing the pilot to crash land. It was rebuilt

between 1994 and 1998, when it flew again for the first time in seven years.


f all the iconic aircraft in the BBMF, the Lancaster B1 PA474 is perhaps the most precious, as one of just two airworthy examples still flying anywhere in the world. Bomber leader Flt Lt Tim Dunlop first saw the aircraft fly over the Derwent Dam with his father during a family outing in 1993. A Hercules and A400M training instructor, Tim joined the RAF hoping to become a frontline fast jet pilot. He is now in his ninth year with the team. He said: “I wanted to fly Tornados and remember being told

TEAM EFFORT: Engineers at work (left)

CROWD PLEASER: Vintage Hurricane (right)

FaNTASTIC Four: Spitfire, Lancaster, Hurricane (above) and Dakota (inset above)

that it was not to be but it turned out to be a lucky turn of fate. “If I had forged my career in the fast jet fleet I would never have ended up flying the Lancaster. “I vividly remember my first flight at Bournemouth Airport in 2011. It was a surreal experience, sitting in the long-coveted left seat. “I remember her yawing slightly to the left as we accelerated down the runway. The forward push on the control column needed to bring the tail up was much greater than I had expected, and then after a pull back she was flying. “The role is a huge privilege and I know I am making very special memories. “I meet some amazing veterans and it is an honour to represent them every time we take these beautiful aircraft in the air.” Interviews by Paul Eden. Photographs MoD. This article is based on extracts from Salute magazine.

WING COMMANDER ANDY MILLIKIN: Officer Commanding RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight

Flight LIEUTENANT TIM DUNLOP: ‘Huge privilege’ to be flying the majestic Avro Lancaster bomber



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Film review

Mission Control: The Unsung Heros of Apollo 13 Out now Certificate PG

Shedding light on space travel Hot on the heels of Hidden Figures, the Oscar-nominated film about the overlooked African-American women working at NASA in the 60s, comes this documentary, shedding more light on the inner workings of Mission Control and the crew behind the Apollo space missions. Granted it pulls the spotlight back to the roomful of white men, but the film is quick to explain that this was simply the case back then, that progression has been made since.

Courtenay McMillan and Ginger Kerrick are Flight Directors at NASA who are aware of the classic image that comes with the profession, 'you know, the guy with the vest and the buzzcut'. Mission Control is about those guys with buzzcuts, narrated by a number of the crew who were working there over the course of many of the Apollo missions. The film combines talking head interviews with special effects used to visualise the events described. There is also a great supply of archive material with some of those featured, throwing you back in time into the smoky room filled with people wearing headsets and horn-rimmed glasses, puffing on cigars and staring intensely into their monitors. We are given a tour of the room as it was through footage filmed for television at the time, something in line with Jackie Kennedy's tour of the White House, as we are shown the computing systems of the 'trenches' and the roles of each person. This is before we


Win The Doors DVDs Fabulous Films/Fremantle Media Enterprises Ltd

SPACE ODYSSEY: Mission success. Below left, retired NASA Flight Director Gene Kranz, played by Ed Harris in Apollo 13

Also just released on DVD is The Doors: Dance on Fire (15), an all-live video collection of concert


footage, footage, televised appearances, promotional clips and rare behind-the-scenes film. The historic music video The Doors: The Soft Parade (PG), now on DVD, features the band’s last televised appearance on PBS in 1969 in the wake of the notorious

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2(pictured below)

2 A Dog's Purpose 3 Fast & Furious 8 4 The Boss Baby 5 Beauty and the Beast 6 Sleepless 7 Their Finest 8 Mindhorn 9 Unlocked 10

see the room alive with the tension of maintaining various Apollo missions and keeping astronauts alive in the face of new problems. From the catastrophic Apollo 1 to the magnitude of Apollo 11, we experience the extreme highs and lows of the engineers responsible, whilst reliving the moment with them. They give insight as to how things went wrong and the burden


Opening up The Doors THE DOORS: Live at the Hollywood Bowl (PG), just out on DVD, focuses on the legendary band at their peak in the only complete concert ever filmed of the c ont rov e r s i a l superband. Filmed on the Fourth of July weekend in 1968, The Doors perform their most criticallyacclaimed music before a standing room only crowd. U n l i k e other Doors material, this oncethought-lost concert was captured by a four-camera crew with 16-track audio (mixed for the first time using digital technology). Songs featured include When The Music’s Over, Moonlight Drive, Horse Latitudes, Light My Fire (extended version), The Unknown Soldier and The End.


Miami concert which resulted in both Jim Morrison’s arrest and the cancellation of the entire tour. Extra material is drawn from The Doors’ private archives, including footage from the riotous 1968 tour of America and neverseen- before interviews. It presents a fascinating portrait of Jim Morrison and The Doors as artists, musicians, performers and people. We have two copies of each title (rrp £14.99 each) to win – two lucky readers have the chance to win a bundle of all three titles – just answer this question correctly: In which year was The Doors: Live at the Hollywood Bowl filmed? Email your answer, marked Doors DVDs competitions, to: c omp e t it i ons @ r af ne w s . c o. u k or post it to: RAF News, Room 68, Lancaster Building, HQ Air Command, High Wycombe, HP14 4UE to arrive by June 2.

Baahubali: The Conclusion

they would have to carry, as well as the stress and stench that permeated that room. This film provides another interesting look behind the scenes of the space missions that carries just as much drama as the glossy blockbusters made in their name. Review by Sam Cooney R'n'R Rating:



The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury WAR STORY: Javier Torres and Antoinette Brooks-Daw in rehearsal PHOTO: Justin Slee


Win tickets to the ballet NORTHERN BALLET is renowned for creating bold new work and the company is currently touring its reimagining of John Boyne’s bestselling novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. We have a pair of tickets to win to see the production at Aylesbury's Waterside Theatre next month. This is the first full-length dance adaptation of the famous story about an unlikely friendship blossoming through the disturbing events of World War II. For your chance to win two

tickets to see the ballet on June 9 at 7.30pm, simply answer the following question correctly: In the story, where do the two boys Bruno and Shmuel meet? A) B) C)

In a garden By a fence On a rooftop

Email your answer marked Northern Ballet competition to or post it to our usual competitions address to arrive by June 2.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 R'n'R 4

R'n'R Competitions

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 R'n'R 5


The Big Interview

Battle Proms UK venues

Military music at its very finest


It’s the man from Uncle

Billy Elliot The Musical Milton Keynes Theatre

SUBLIME: Spitfire displays are a big attraction of the Proms

August 12: where the lake provides a dramatic backdrop. A firm fixture in many summer diaries, you could win one of six pairs of tickets to the Battle Proms of your choice by entering our competition. For your chance to win, just send us the correct answer to this question: In which year was the first Battle Proms concert held? Email your answer, marked


Battle Proms competition, to: or to our address on page 3 of the main RAF News newspaper, to arrive by June 2. Please remember to include your full contact details, including your email address. n Don’t want to leave it to chance? To book your Battle Proms tickets go to battleproms. com, call: 01432 355416 or email: for more information.

A Judgement in Stone National tour

Sit in Judgement of Rendell A

cast: A star-studded affair from television

first how I could possibly play her. I was well out of my comfort zone.” Joan is a lively and outspoken woman, how did Grant prepare for the role? She said: “I think as an actress, I have inevitable extrovert qualities. I’m also growing old disgracefully.” The production has been on the road since January and Grant enjoys being on tour. She revealed: “It’s great moving on to a new venue each week. No chance to get bored. Lots of new places to explore and I love the company. We are family.

“Another good thing about touring is that one day it’s a new theatre, new everything and you spend the week getting used to the theatre, your digs, your dressing room; the play is a comfort, the only thing that stays relatively the same. “Occasionally we hit theatres where the set becomes bizarre because it’s been squished into some new shape. The boredom doesn’t set in because you have to concentrate so hard.” Lancel, who plays Detective Superintendent Vetch, described the play as a ‘real statement on our class system. A fascinating story, sad, shocking and real.’ He added: “It’s a whole new genre for me and the first time I have played a copper since The Bill.” The cast also features movie icon Shirley Ann Field (The Entertainer, Saturday Night and Sunday Morning) and former Blue boy band member Antony Costa. n Go to: for tour details.

ick Helm, star of BBC Three’s hit sitcom Uncle about an immature out-of-work musician who forges an unlikely alliance with his adolescent nephew, plays recovering addict and millionaire Watto in Channel 4’s new comedy Loaded. The eight-part series, written by Jon Brown (Veep, Fresh Meat), centres around the lives of young tech entrepreneurs Josh, Leon, Watto and Ewan who have just sold their start-up videogame company for hundreds of millions of pounds. Overnight the four 30-something friends are transformed from ‘people who play games’ to ‘serious players in the game’. Helm said: “My character is the guy in charge of the art department. When he becomes a millionaire his previous issues turn into other addiction issues, such as excessive impulsive spending and giving lots of money away.” Jim Howick (Broadchurch, Horrible Histories), plays Josh. He explained: “Josh is the natural leader, only because he’s kind of taken the group under his wing, they were formed on his turf, they made the game in a caravan on his driveway.

He doesn’t have any moral issues with being rich, he can be a bit of a knob

“His parents have essentially been foster parents to them all and looked after them and made them roast dinners every Monday. They’ve become part of his extended family and he sees himself as a matriarch. He’s a constant worrier, the moral compass. “He’s extremely anxious, it gets in the way of his whole life and the money exacerbates that. He’s a nice guy, he has a heart and he’s in love with a girl and there’s a kind of cat and mouse situation going on.” Jonny Sweet (Babylon) is Ewan, Samuel Anderson (Dr Who) Leon and American actress Mary McCormack (The West Wing) plays Casey, their formidable boss.


IN THE MONEY: Leon (Samuel Anderson), Josh (Jim Howick), Ewan (Jonny Sweet) and Watto (Helm)

Sweet described Ewan as ‘a kind of repressed, middle-classed, passive aggressive, loveable, unsavvy bozo.’ He added: “He finds getting wealthy very socially awkward and feels guilty about it.” Of his character, Anderson said: “Leon is like Josh’s adopted brother, they go back a while and are sort of the parents of the group. He’s cock-sure but not very confident; he’s the one that sells the game and forges the deal that turns them into millionaires. “He doesn’t have any moral issues with being rich, he can be a bit of a knob.” Helm admitted: “I was very relieved [to be cast as Watto] because people just assume that I am the character I play in Uncle and I’m not really anything like him, so I wanted to do something completely different. “I thought it was great that it was so different to my Uncle character but then I realised that Watto is actually me! In Loaded my character buys all sorted of tat and then I’d go home at night and just be confronted by a wall of Bobbleheads [collectable toys].” He added: “I’ve never had so much fun filming, but that was the thing with this job, we just

laughed every day.” What’s the first thing they’d do if they got £14 million overnight?

Howick said: “I’d probably buy a nice house somewhere in Highgate, next to Sting.” Helm said: “I’d just buy a big room for more Bobbleheads. No, I’d get plastic surgery to look like Tom Hanks in Big, that’s what I would do. In all seriousness, I’d give it all to charity.” n Loaded continues on Channel 4 on Mondays at 10pm.


NORTHERN SOUL: A scene from Billy Elliot, featuring Adam Abbou



top TV cast has been brought together for a stage production of thriller queen Ruth Rendell’s A Judgement in Stone – Andrew Lancel (Coronation Street), Deborah Grant (Not Going Out, Bergerac) and Sophie Ward (Heartbeat). The show is now on tour until December and has been described as ‘Rendell at her thrilling best’. Ward plays Eunice Parchman, who struggles to fit in. When she joins a wealthy family as their housekeeper the very reason for her awkwardness, long hidden and deeply buried, leads inexorably to a terrible tale of murder in cold blood… on Valentine’s Day. Rendell’s plot unravels a lifetime of deceit, despair and cover-ups which, when revealed, brings a shocking revelation almost as grizzly as murder itself. Grant stars as Eunice’s only friend, Joan Smith, the village postmistress, a former prostitute who Grant described as ‘a great character, a huge challenge’. She admitted: “I couldn’t see at



He’s at the Helm and he’s Loaded

MUSIC: New English Concert Orchestra

K picnic concert experts Battle Proms celebrate their 20th anniversary this summer. Since their first concert in 1997 the Battle Proms have been treating their audiences to a heady mix of classical music, carefully choreographed Spitfire and cavalry displays, dramatic cannon fire and stunning firework finales. Five of the UK’s most celebrated stately homes will play host to this year’s concert series: n Burghley House, Lincolnshire: Saturday, July 8, overlooking the grand Elizabethan property in Stamford. n Queen Elizabeth Oak Field of Hatfield House, Hertfordshire, on July 15. n World Heritage Site Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, on July 22. n Highclere Castle (the real Downton Abbey), Hampshire, on August 5. n Ragley Hall, Warwickshire, on


Edited by Tracey Allen

Last chance to see Billy Elliot

he multi-award-winning the story and a community that smash hit Billy Elliot The had been through the same thing Musical is at Milton Keynes Theatre themselves should see it first.” from May 30 to June 17 and it’ll be That initial tour did not work the last chance to see the show in out for various logistical reasons the UK. and so the West End beckoned. Set in a northern mining town, The show later toured in the against the background of the north – and was a great success. 1984-85 miners’ strike, Billy’s Daldry said: “The audiences we journey takes him out of the boxing have played to in Sunderland have ring and into a ballet class where been incredible. In Bradford, lots he discovers a passion for dance of people came to see it. We have that inspires his family and whole been playing to audiences that community and changes his life understand the story.” forever. The critically-acclaimed show has now been seen by nearly 11 million people across five continents and is the recipient of more than 80 awards internationally. It was brought to life by the creative team behind the film (starring Jamie Bell and Julie Walters); writer Lee Hall (book and lyrics), director Stephen CREATIVES: Stephen Daldry, Elton and Lee Hall Daldry and choreographer Peter Darling – joined by Elton He added: “We keep working John who composed the show’s on it. Billy Elliot is not one of those score. projects you can leave. We need to It all began back in the mid- keep looking at it as it goes around 80s when Hall (probably best the world and stay involved with known for the stage hit The it by adapting it and changing it Pitmen Painters and the depending on who is in it and films of War Horse and where we are. Toast) sent Daldry a “We are always trying to keep script. the show fresh.” He said: “I have known Lee almost all my adult life and he sent me something called Dancer which We have a pair of tickets to win was set in a village near Sheffield.” to see Billy Elliot The Musical at From there, the movie of Billy Milton Keynes Theatre on May 31 Elliot was born. at 7.30pm. Music legend Elton John and his For your chance to win them, partner David Furnish thought the simply answer this question story would be perfect for a stage correctly: musical. Daldry recalled: “When we Who wrote the Billy Elliot story? first considered bringing Billy Elliot to the stage, we thought Email your answer, marked about launching it in the north Billy Elliot competition, to: of England, somewhere like or Sunderland particularly because post it to our address on page 3. that is where it was set. We always Hurry, the closing date for entries felt an audience that was close to is May 26.

Win two tickets

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 R'n'R 6

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Deaths CARTER, Frederick Edward 'Nick' died at home in Clevedon, North Somerset on April 13 aged 88. Fred joined the RAF aged 18 in August 1946 and served for 22 years leaving as a Sergeant. On retiring from his civilian job, Fred became an active member of RAFA and the Wings Appeal, serving as the Welfare Officer for a number of years. Fred's memorial service will be at 12pm on May 22 in the Salvation Army Hall, 37 Old Street, Clevedon BS21 6DA and then on to South Bristol crematorium for 1.30pm. LINES Robert AKA Plynt passed away on April 22 at his home in Chesterfield, after a short, but difficult illness. Ex Warrant Officer who trained as a technician at RAF Locking in the 1960s. He had various postings as a radar technician before working on numerous Rapier squadrons with the RAFR. He will be sadly missed by his wife Lynda and all family members as well as friends and colleagues.

PICKUP John Michael. Peacefully on April 25 at Mount Edgcumbe Hospice, John aged 65 of Roche, loving husband to Pauline, much loved dad to Di and Kate, doting grandad to Zoe, Molly and Esme, beloved brother to Janet and Sandra. Donations if desired for Cornwall Hospice Care (Mount Edgcumbe Hospice) c/o Ken Newcombe’s Funeral Home, St Austell, Cornwall PL25 3JN.

GORDON WATSON WATSON Gordon passed away aged 82 recently after a short stay in Lincoln Hospital. He was an RAF Policeman who had a surprising range of postings accompanied by his wife Mary of over 60 years who he met and married in Germany. He concluded his RAF career at Newton

on instructional duties and settled in Leasingham near Sleaford. He will not only be missed by Mary, his daughter Heather and grand and great-grandchildren but also the members of the Cranwell RAF Association and the East Midlands RAF Police Association. In both organizations he had been chairman for many years and on relinquishing the posts became their vice president. For the RAF Association he was awarded a National Presidential Certificate in January which unfortunately he was unable to receive in person. His funeral, at Grantham crematorium, was very well attended by members of both Associations.

Loved and remembered every day. Miss you so much. Marlene, Linda, Christopher and David xxxx grandchildren L,S,T,Z,O,E,E, and great-grandson Rhilea xxxxxxxx.

In Memoriam


Marsland Ken FS Supply Passed away May 22, 2008. Time slips by and life goes on But from our hearts you are never gone Your memory is our greatest treasure To have, to love, to keep forever. Never more than a thought away

Seeking Bob Bishop stationed at RAF Marham in the early 60s and was friends with the Barnes family who lived in Marham village. Later posted to Aden. Any info please contact: Anne Barnes, 2 Hillside, Marham, Kings Lynn, PE33 9JJ, call: 01760 338039.

How to use our service There is no charge for conventionally-worded birth, engagement, marriage, anniversary, death, in memoriam seeking and reunion notices. For commercial small ads contact Ten Alps: 020 7878 2319. Help us to avoid errors by typing your announcement or using block capitals. We cannot, under any circumstances, take announcements over the telephone. They can be sent by post to: RAF News, Room 68, Lancaster Building, HQ Air Command, RAF High Wycombe, Naphill, Buckinghamshire, HP14 4UE or by email to:

Important Notice The publishers of RAF News cannot accept responsibility for the quality, safe delivery or operation of any products advertised or mentioned in this publication. Reasonable precautions are taken before advertisements are accepted but such acceptance does not imply any form of approval or recommendation. Advertisements (or other inserted material) are accepted subject to the approval of the publishers and their current terms and conditions. The publishers will accept an advertisement or other inserted material only on the condition that the advertiser warrants that such advertisement does not in any way contravene the provisions of the Trade Descriptions Act. All copy is subject to the approval of the publishers, who reserve the right to refuse, amend, withdraw or otherwise deal with advertisements submitted to them at their absolute discretion and without explanation. All advertisements must comply with the British Code of Advertising Practice. Mail order advertisers are required to state in advertisements their true surname or full company name, together with an address from which the business is managed.

Use the coupon for RAF News announcements Name........................................................................................................................................................... Address....................................................................................................................................................... ..................................................................................................................................................................... ..................................................................................................................................................................... Please send to: RAF News, Room 68, Lancaster Building, HQ Air Command, RAF High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, HP14 4UE.

Storey Eddie Sgt Special Operator – 171 Squadron Bomber Command (previously of Two Ball Lonnen, Newcastle) lost on April 16-17, 1945 when his Halifax collided with a Lancaster on a bombing mission. Remembering him and all his crew and the crew of the Lancaster – we have not forgotten you and the companionship you gave us and our friends in 171 Squadron.

B assingbourn , Bircham Newton, Brampton, Cardington, Coltishall, Ely RAF Hospital, Feltwell, Halton, Henlow, High Wycombe, Honington, Markham, Medmenham, Oakington, Stradishall, Upwood, Wattisham, West Raynham, Wittering, Wyton. Memories of RC Chaplaincy to: Fr Keith Sawyer, 29 Fieldgate Road, Luton LN4 9TA, call: 01582 848459. Seeking former any members of the Gibson Club at Avon, near Fontainebleau in 1966-67 or information on what may have happened to them, in particular Jim Sabourin (Master Navigator), Sidney Smith (WO), Fred Butlin (WO), Bill Williams (Sgt), Maurice Sangan (Sgt, Caterer), Cpl Roberts, WRAF etc. Also anyone who was stationed at HQ British Forces Gulf (Bahrain) in 1967-68 at the time of the Dining In Night in the JHQ Sergeants’ Mess to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the RAF on April 1, 1917. Without having Mess Dress, the dinner was held in civilian clothing. Remember that? Also, those RAF officers and airmen who were stationed at the NATO Programming Centre, Glons, Belgium from September 1976 to May 1980, including Sqn Ldr Penman, Flt Lt B Cornwell, Wg Cdr J Low, Wg Cdr JG Kerrigan,

Hunter on the move NEWARK AIR Museum has a new exhibit – Hawker Hunter T7, XX467. It fills a gap in the museum's themed display of RAF training airframes and will help tell the story of RAF fast jet training, said a spokesman. The aircraft was transported to the museum earlier this month from Bruntingthorpe Airfield in Leicestershire. It was off-loaded on the museum’s Southfield Site and reassembled. It will be restored, repainted

and displayed in the same location. The airframe entered RAF service as XL605 with 92 Sqn and was part of the Blue Diamonds Display Team before it served with 66 Sqn and 229 OCU. A brief spell followed as G-9-214, before serving with the Saudi Air Force and Jordan Air Force. Returning to the UK it was renumbered XX467 and served with 229 OCU and 1 TWU, but was struck off charge in October 1983.

Chf Tech Bas Hayman, Sgt Hamill and other Suppliers. All details, if possible, to Mr R de St Croix, call: 01775 820877.

serving members (Service or civilian) with partners very welcome. For details please e-mail: kevin.white@intel. com.

Seeking information about the RAF Gang Shows 194446, for a research project. In particular I would like to contact any relatives of Sgt Dudley Jones. Please email: philippabrownsword@gmail. com.

237 OCU Groundcrew – the fifth Annual Reunion will take place at the Compleat Angler, 120 Prince of Wales Road, Norwich, NR1 1NS on July 1, starting at 1200. Same format as previous years. All ex-OCU members welcome. Please see: events/350102122006579/ or email: or call Si Roberts on: 07546 400085 for more details.

Reunions XV Sqn Association 102nd Anniversary Reunion will be held at RAF Wittering on May 12. Contact: secretary@ or XV Sqn Association, XV(R) Sqn, RAF Lossiemouth, Elgin, Moray, IV31 6SD for details. Boy Entrants reunion – 39th Entry B Flight 4 Sqn reunion May 19, 20, 21. National Memorial Arboretum and RAF Cosford. Please email Derek Bury: d.v.bury39@ RAF Regiment Association Somerset/Dorset Branch Spring reunion May 19-22. Warners Littlecote House, Berks. Join The Social Club. Contact Alec Hunt (Coordinator): 01793 704629 for membership form and booking form. Laarbruch Supply & Movements Squadron reunion May 26-28 at Weeze and Laarbruch for past

45th Entry 'C' Flt 3 Sqn Suppliers. Don't forget 55th re-union do at Three Counties Hotel, Hereford, July 14-15. Contact Dave Bell, Hull: 01482 377625. 85 Squadron (RAF) Reunion Association 100th Anniversary Celebration, August 1 at Trenchard Lines Upavon. All ex 85, 25 and Bloodhound Force members are cordially welcome. Contact Ian Moreland on: 01263512608, 07769666141 or email: ian.moreland@ RAFA Day – Sunday August 6, 10-5. All veterans welcome. Music by DJ, swing band. Battle of Britain Flight flypast requested. Admission free. Norfolk and Suffolk Aviaition Museum, Flixton, Bungay, Suffolk, NR35 1NZ. See website: for more information.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 R'n'R 7

R'n'R Your Announcements

You can email photos for announcements on this page. Send small jpg files (less than 1MB) to 5 Squadron Binbrook Lightnings – an all ranks informal gathering will be held at 11am on September 9 at the LPG QRA Shed, Bruntingthorpe, LE17 5QS. An evening do is also being held at the Piano Rooms, Lutterworth, LE17 4LN from 7pm. Meal, raffle, after dinner speaker and comic booked. Tickets £28. More information via FS Andy Burden, call: 07539 260019 or Mark Crowson: 07856 234888 or group Facebook site: 5 Squadron RAF Binbrook. 57TH/)OM9S. Would any of you that are left like to get together for a final hurrah? I am quite prepared to do the organising. Just email me:; phone me: 01522 778909 or even visit me: 30 High Street, North Scarle, Lincoln LN6 9EP. I would suggest a date near September 21. 99TH Entry RAF Halton Aircraft Apprentices 56th Anniversary of Attestation at The Bentley Hotel, Lincoln, September 22-24. Email: jim. or call Jim on: 01529 461662.

PN course 86 trained at RAF Halton 1975-1977 – 40-year reunion October. Know anyone who trained there during that time or friends who might know anyone from the course? Please email Ann Newby née Coleby-Roe at: or call: 07714 144522. NO 214 (FMS) Sqn Association will celebrate formation centenary of 14 Sqn RNAS/214 Sqn over weekend of October 7-8 to include Reunion dinner in Derby and memorial wreathlaying at Alrewas Arboretum. Former Sqn members/ families/friends welcome. Details at: uk or contact John Gulliver: 01983 873248 or no214fms@ THE RAF and Defence Fire Services Association reunion will be held at The Aztec Hotel Bristol on the weekend from October 13. For details contact chairman Neil Slade on: 01252 492111; email: CALLING MTD/MTSS personnel who have served at RAF High Wycombe

MT. The next reunion will be at the RAFA Club, High Wycombe at 7pm on October 14. Email: Steve Steer: stevesteer@hotmail. or call: 07891 673135. 115 Sqn 100th anniversary dinner will be held at RAF Wittering Friday, December 1. Please contact Andrew Sell on: 01780 417135 or email: uk for details.

Drumhead Ceremony TO mark the centenary of the formation of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps – and the wider contribution women have made to UK military capability over the past 100 years – the RBL is inviting all women currently serving or who have served to attend a Drumhead Ceremony at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire on July 7. Online registration: britishlegion. Closing date is midnight on May 24, although tickets will be available on a first come, first served basis. Enquiries call: 020 3053 7216.

Cover marks centenary

THE COMMONWEALTH War Graves Commission celebrates its centenary on May 21 and to mark this special anniversary British Forces Philatelic Service (BFPS) has produced a commemorative cover. The cover, pictured above, shows an image of Tyne Cot Cemetery in Belgium. It has a first class commemorative stamp that will be cancelled by a unique

BFBS special handstamp No.3203. The centrepiece of the cancellation features the Commissions Centenary logo. The covers can be ordered from the BFPS online shop ( shop). They cost £6 for the standard version and £12 for the signed limited edition version that will bear a first class poppy stamp (UK/BFPO p&p

free). You can also order the covers by post by sending a cheque (payable to BFPS CIC) to BFPS, The Old Post Office, Links Place, Elie, Fife KY9 1AX. The CWGC cares for cemeteries and memorials at 23,000 locations in 154 countries. The BFPS fundraises for Service charities through philately and is run by a small team of volunteers.


A school rich in talent and opportunity FOUNDED in 1912, Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate is a day and boarding school with 1500 pupils aged from 5 years to 18 years and from over 40 different countries. Set in 120 acres of beautiful North Yorkshire countryside, the campus has some of the most impressive study, boarding and leisure facilities in the independent school sector. 2016 saw QE celebrate its best ever ALevel results. Queen Ethelburga’s College was ranked the top day and boarding school in the North of England, according to the Daily Telegraph 2016 League Table for percentage A*/A A levels and equivalent qualifications. It scored 87% which ranked it top in the North and the second UK day and boarding school overall. The Faculty of Queen Ethelburga’s, the Collegiate’s other Sixth Form school, scored 84% with its percentage of A*/A A levels and equivalent qualifications in the Daily Telegraph table, placing it second in the North and fourth in the list of UK day and boarding schools. King’s Magna Middle School takes pupils from age 10 years to 14 years. Here the transition is made from classbased teaching to specialist teaching, so that by Years 8 and 9, all subjects will be taught by specialist teachers.

2016 saw the school’s best A-Level results By Year 11 students will choose to attend the College, which offers a more traditional academic route of learning with GCSEs and A levels, or the Faculty, which offers GCSEs and A levels but also more vocational BTEC subjects such as performing arts, fashion or sports science. For many students though, Queen

Ethelburga’s is more than a school, it is their home too, and the boarding facilities are simply exemplary. Student bedrooms and apartments are all air-conditioned and have their own en-suite facilities and for the older students, their own kitchen area. Each room has a direct dial telephone, satellite plasma television with timed gaming port and DVD player. House parents are on hand 24 hours a day to help with prep, heat up hot chocolate or to listen to career ideas. New to September 2016 are our new floodlit 3G and grassed sports pitches. We run a Cricket Academy which is being run in partnership with The Yorkshire County

Cricket Club. This runs alongside our existing sporting academies – the Rugby Academy, supported by Leeds Rugby Academy and Foundation at Leeds Carnegie and the Netball Academy run by Yorkshire Jets. There will be further development of existing programmes in football, swimming, hockey and basketball, all will have the advantage of use of the facilities in our £30m Sports Village. Queen Ethelburga’s motto is about ambition and excellence – “to be the best that I can with the gifts that I have” – it is a school rich in talent and opportunities and well deserves such a maxim.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 R'n'R 8

R'n'R Prize Crossword No. 203

Solve the crossword, then re-arrange the eight letters in yellow squares to find an RAF station.

No. 213 Fill in all the squares in the grid above so that each row, each column and each 3x3 square contains all the digits from 1 to 9.

Across 1. French legislation contains an error (4) 8. English company, rational and environmentally friendly (10) 9. Nut flake ruined part of plane (4,4) 10. A beetle, for example, beheaded by separatists (4) 12. Drawing of Royal Air Force almost flew away (6) 14. During the lap several pass by (6) 15. Commercial disaster averted, lacking energy (6) 17. State of either Ronay (6) 18. Rolls around, getting cold-shoulder (4) 19. Composition involving Hardy’s Post Office (8) 21. Clad police to deal with minor offence (10) 22. Heated battle for spymaster (4)

Solutions should be sent in a sealed envelope marked 'Su Doku' with the number in the top left-hand corner to RAF News, to arrive by June 2.

Down 2. Renewal due for Dutch air base (10) 3. Honestly, the two of us are beginners (4) 4. University teacher consumed gift (6) 5. He calculates the odds in ‘Pride And Prejudice’, that is (6) 6. Area occupied by the RAF (8) 7. Heavy has left apartment (4) 11. And 20 Down. Sorrow a codfish arouses at display (7,3,4) 13. Iron backed up by unpleasant noise (8) 16. Onslaught of waves swallow artist (6) 17. Seer’s gold lace frayed (6) 18. Irish clan reduced period of time (4) 20. See 11 Down

Prize Su Doku

Solutions should be sent in a sealed envelope marked 'Prize Crossword' with the number in the top left-hand corner to RAF News, Room 68, Lancaster Building, HQ Air Command, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP14 4UE to arrive by June 2.

We apologise for printing the incorrect solution to crossword No 200 in the previous edition of RAF News. The correct solution is below. The winner is Martyn Abbot from RAF Waddington.

Name.................................................................................................................... Address................................................................................................................ .............................................................................................................................. .............................................................................................................................. RAF station:..................................................................... Crossword No. 203

Su Doku No. 211 winner is Yvonne Norris from WestonSuper-Mare who wins a copy of The Female Few by Jacky Hyams (thehistory

Name.................................................................... .............................................................................. Address................................................................ .............................................................................. .................................................Su Doku No. 213

Solution to Su Doku No: 211

Solution to crossword No. 200 Across – 7. Oliver 8. Fitter 10. Karaoke 11. Piano 12. Iago 13. Canal 17. Charm 18. Coma 22. Union 23. Whisper 24. Button 25. Rowing. Down – 1. Cockpit 2. Air Rage 3. Demon 4. Display 5. Stray 6. Crook 9. Red Arrows 14. Chinook 15. Dolphin 16. Barrage 19. Rugby 20. Piste 21. GI Joe. RAF aircraft –Spitfire

DVD review

Outposts of Empire: RAF Malta

Small island of major importance MANY with an association with the Royal Air Force will be interested in viewing RAF Malta, the first of a collection of DVDs in the Outposts of Empire series, made by independent video producer and historian Tod Nicol. RAF Malta begins by telling viewers of the strategic importance of the tiny rock in the Mediterranean to armies and invaders for thousands of years. From the Venetians to Hitler many have recognised the military importance of controlling the sandstone-coloured island just south of Sicily and north of the African coast. The newly-formed RAF set up in Malta at Kalafrana in August 1918 with 267 (Seaplane) Sqn, equipped with F2A flying boats, and 268 (Seaplane) Sqn with Short Sunbeam 320s. By 1940 there were RAF bases all around the island – only nine miles by 17 – most notably at Luqa, Hal Far and Ta Qali. From the start of World War II to British Forces leaving in 1979, it has played a vital role in the UK’s military life.

The story of the RAF in Malta then is told by those who know it best, those airmen and women who were there – as well as through archive film footage. When Mussolini joined forces with Hitler and began bombing Malta, the RAF had only six Gladiators to protect it. They went up in threes – nicknamed Faith, Hope and Charity. Now restored, Faith can be seen at the National War Museum in St Elmo. When the Luftwaffe started attacking Malta in earnest, in December 1941, a few 261 Sqn Hurricanes had arrived on the island and took up the fight, but were vastly outnumbered by Messerschmitt 109s. The call went out for the new Spitfires, but only a handful got through the heavily-bombed Med on carriers and by March 1942 the Second Siege of Malta had begun. With few supplies getting through, the island’s people and British troops there were nearing starvation and Malta was only saved when Roosevelt loaned Churchill the USS Wasp aircraft carrier, which twice got through, carrying up to

50 Spitfires each time to join the aerial battle above Malta – leading Churchill to quip ‘Who said a Wasp couldn’t sting twice?’ For its people’s heroism and devotion, Malta and its citizens were awarded the George Cross by George VI in April 1942 – a source of pride in the island to this day. The final Luftwaffe attacks on Malta were on October 1020, 1942, before Nazi Germany conceded defeat there and turned its attentions to North Africa and El Alamein. In two and a half years Malta was subjected to 3000 air raids and near starvation. My mother, now 86, is Maltese and was a child on the island during the siege. Her family home was flattened by the bombs, luckily it was empty at the time. She has been hard of hearing for many years, a legacy, said my late father, of all the Luftwaffe’s bombs. The RAF remained on Malta and in 1949 the island joined NATO. In the Sixties it was an important Cold War base – used to keep an eye on the growing Soviet threat to the West. Malta became independent

READY FOR ACTION: Spitfires on aircraft carrier, 1942, a still from RAF Malta

in 1964 and by the early 70s the new Socialist government wanted Britain out. With NATO backing the UK clung on for a few more years, but in 1979 British Forces left the island. Malta remains popular with the Brits and ex-Forces personnel, many return for sun-kissed holidays. It still has a role in Europe,

joining the EU in 2004, and hosted the 2017 EU summit in Valletta, its historic walled capital city. The second DVD in the series, due out this summer, is RAF Habbaniya – Jewel of the Desert, to be followed by RAF Singapore. Review by Andy O'Hara R'n'R Rating:

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P21


Sensors working overtime The F-35 Lightning is set to revolutionise UK air power, says RAF Typhoon Top Gun Gp Capt Paul Godfrey who has just completed combat training alongside the world’s most advanced stealth fighter

The benefit of next generation technology is not just about stealth, it’s more about the fusion in the cockpit It is about the range of sensors around the aeroplane, data being transmitted and how it comes together to form a single picture for that pilot to see and interpret. This is so much easier in the F-35 than other aeroplanes. I flew a tour on the F-16 with the USAF. I’d look at the radar picture, I’d look at another picture and a datalink picture and I had to fuse them in my head whereas the F-35 brings everything together and also sends that picture forward. When I flew with the F-35 in Exercise Atlantic Trident this month in a Typhoon, they were transmitting stuff that they were seeing – more than we are seeing in our Typhoon with slightly older sensors, which is still state-of-the-art type stuff but they give us much more situational awareness. When we are in a war scenario with 16 aircraft on our side and 20-plus on the other side, you see exactly what’s going on. We are not getting little snapshots. You see that big picture which is an amazing capability. It’s about fusion of sensors, fusion of networks to bring together that single picture for the pilot. The F-35 and Typhoon are very complimentary. In the scenario we used the F-35s were just behind the frontline and because they had that big picture

they could see what’s going on. We had a mass of aeroplanes in front of us. They were hostile, we were trying to shoot them down, because they were trying to pass a line in the sky. We went out the front, we saw those hostile aircraft as well and we took shots on them, we then turned back. While we were turning back the F-35 was doing its thing and telling us what the picture was out there and transmitting it to our cockpit. Even though I was ‘cold’, my radar was facing in the opposite direction, I was seeing the full picture so I now knew who I needed to target when I turned my radar hot again. The E3 AWACs was out there, too, and it did a similar job but it had to sit farther away from the fight because of its size whereas the F-35 could get right in there and it has its own weapon systems so that if anyone got round us, round the Typhoons or Rafales, the F-35 could pick those guys off because they were seeing the whole picture. Not one of those enemy aeroplanes crossed that line in the sky and that is absolutely to do with this synergy between Typhoon and F-35. It was fantastic to see and yesterday was the first time I’d seen it for real. I’m really excited about integrating F-35 into the Royal Air Force.

Everyone at Langley is so positive about the results the Typhoon has had, the integration with the French Air Force and the integration with the F-22s and F-35s. In F-35s the fusion of technology has been maligned in recent years, yet that fusion is amazing and amazing to see it work so well, providing these large, battlewinning packages. I have been flying fighters now for 25 years and for me it was a great day yesterday, to be a pilot. The F-35 is fantastic on its own but where they really earn their money is making the rest of us more survivable, more lethal, more capable, and the synergy they bring to the force mix that we have... the F-35 just fits right in there and makes all of us better.

Seeing the big picture: Gp Capt Paul Godfrey

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P23


Crew View


NATO Air Policing

More than 150 RAF personnel are supporting the deployment of four Typhoons to Romania to guard the skies over the Black Sea region. Based at the Mihail Kogalniceanu airbase near Constanta the UK aircraft are on 24-hour standby to scramble and intercept any rogue aircraft closing in on NATO controlled aispace. RAF News reporter Simon Mander hit the pan at MK to talk to some of the team supporting the operation.

SAC Andrew, Admin Support

I ’ve enjoyed the deployment so far, it’s been hard work but everyone has pulled together to make things happen and there’s a great sense of camaraderie among everyone on the detachment

NATO PLEDGE: An RAF Typhoon pilot arrives at the MK air base in Romania for a four-month tour guarding skies over the Black Sea

Cpl James, Supplier

It’s interesting being part of an EAW in a country that I’ve never visited before, I want to learn more about Romania and the people we are helping and I’m looking forward to supporting the Typhoons for the duration of the operation

Cpl Roxy, Mover There’s a great team spirit among all of us who came out here together as the advance party. We didn’t really know what to expect when we landed and it’s been a challenge getting everything ready for the jets arriving

Sqn Ldr Ken, Meteorologist

Cpl Tony, Operations

The Mobile Met Unit is providing the weather picture for flying operations out here 24/7. People think it’s nice and sunny here all the time but those who arrived on Sunday were met by snow! The Mobile Met Unit is usually one of the first into any deployed operation, everyone is different because everywhere the weather is different

My role is to file the flight plans for the jets with the Romanians and to liaise with the civilian side of the airfield. The set-up out here is very different to how we’re used to operating in the UK, especially when it comes to MT and fire cover but it’s a lot better now than it was when we arrived

SAC Roger, Mechanical Transport

I’ll be refuelling the jets as required and operating the other vehicles that drive out to the aircraft such as the generators. The facilities here are really good and the food in the American DFAC is amazing

Sgt John, Physical Training Instructor

I’m running fitness training and testing on the base and off it I’ll be organising force development, adventurous training and helping with the welfare and social side of the detachment. The Americans on the base are really friendly




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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P25






Signed books are up for grabs Rosie’s hard day’s knight

SIGNED BOOKS: Which would you like to win?

A book signing by World War II veterans Ron Dearman and Gerry Abrahams was held at the Spitfire and Hurricane Memorial Museum in Kent to help fundraise to keep it open as a free attraction. We have a copy of Ron’s book Drop Zone Burma and Gerry’s book, Luck Of A Lancaster, each signed by the author, to win. Both titles are published by Pen & Sword Aviation. Ron, now 93, was an RAF Transport Command pilot who flew Dakotas with 267 Sqn in Burma. Gerry was a Lancaster

pilot with 75 (NZ) Sqn RAF and postwar flew on the Berlin airlift. For your chance to win one of these titles, just name the publisher of both books. Email your answer, marked Veterans books competition, to: competitions@ or post it to our address on p3. Please remember to state which title you would prefer to win. n Go to: for details about the Spitfire and Hurricane Memorial Museum in Manston, Kent.

This eye-catching artwork, Knight of the Skies, signed by Sqn Ldr George ‘Johnny’ Johnson – the last surviving British Dambuster – is now on display in Lincoln’s Castle Square until September 2 as part of the Lincoln Knights’ Trail. Designed and painted by artist Rosie Ablewhite, Knight of the Skies was on show at several sites with aviation connections including Lancaster Corner at Newark Air Museum. Rosie created the piece for Game Engineering of Witham St Hugh’s. The company, which supports the International Bomber Command Centre in Lincoln, is based on part of the former RAF Swinderby’s bomb store. The Lincoln Knights’ Trail

STRIKING: Knight at the museum Photo: Howard Heeley

comprises 36 sculptures and commemorates the 800th anniversary of the Battle of Lincoln.

raf northolt

New medals for burgled Ted

A World War II Spitfire engineer whose treasured medals were stolen in a burglary has been given replacement ones. A special ceremony was held at RAF Northolt, where Ted Rexter-Baker, 94, was presented with the Africa Star, the Africa Clasp, the Defence Medal and the 1935-1945 Star. S i n c e N o v e m b e r last year Ted, who kept 72 S q u a d r o n’s Spitfires flying during WWII, has been visited by Air Vice-Marshal Gary Waterfall as part of the RAF Association’s nationwide befriending scheme. The initiative pairs VISITS: AVM Gary RAF veterans with Waterfall with Ted volunteers from their Photo: Cpl Ben Tritta community. Befrienders

Veteran liney befriended by AVM is guest of honour at Northolt visit regularly to chat, keep an eye out for the veteran’s welfare, talk about life in the RAF and make sure their contribution is not forgotten. AVM Waterfall said: “It was clear to me from the start of my relationship with Ted that the loss of his medals had taken a part of him with them. It was the least I could do to help him try to get them replaced.” He added: “It was very fitting to hold the presentation ceremony at RAF

Northolt, given its historical association with Spitfires. I’m looking forward to chatting about the medals with Ted when I next visit him at home. ” Ted joined the RAF in September 1938 as a boy apprentice at RAF Halton. After graduation he was posted to RAF Sealand before moving on to become a Spitfire engineer with 84 Squadron – being posted as far as Tunisia. He served for more than 10 years and left from RAF Hornchurch, having become a Senior Technician. He now lives in north London. The RAF Association said with more than half of the UK Armed Forces’ veterans population aged 75 or over, relationship and isolation issues affect approximately 170,000 RAF veterans, with 85,000 of

expedition appeal

Chance to sail round Britain on a tall ship

The charity Turn to Starboard, set up by RAF veteran Shaun Pascoe, has launched a recruitment drive with a difference – looking for adventure-seeking veterans for a round-Britain sailing expedition on board a classic tall ship. Last summer the Spirit of Falmouth set sail on the Turn to Starboard Round Britain Challenge 2016. The crew sailed more than 2000 nautical miles anti-clockwise around the UK. Thirty-eight veterans took part, with some completing shorter sections of the route. Now the charity is seeking crew members – with or without sailing experience – to join a second

expedition, this time heading in the and Southampton. The voyage will opposite direction. include the chance to explore the A total of 21 veterans who Scottish islands under sail. have been affected by military Shaun said: “Once again the aim operations, either of the challenge is physically or to help participants mentally, are needed re-engage and for the eight-week reintegrate while voyage, setting sail raising awareness from Falmouth on of the challenges August 1. Seven of veterans can face the crew will sail for ADVENTURE: Tall ship sailing after leaving Service the complete journey life. while 14 others will complete half “Since completing last year’s the challenging route. expedition, 15 crew members have They will live, sleep and work on gone on to achieve Yachtmaster board the tall ship, donated by the status or are close to gaining the Prince’s Trust, that will stop at ports coveted qualification. Our followincluding Liverpool, Newcastle up research also found that the

experience had a positive impact on participants’ lives and many are now engaged in another form of activity or employed.” The charity has helped hundreds of military personnel suffering with physical injuries or mental trauma by providing sailing courses and family sailing trips. Shaun added: “Sailing experience is not required as guidance will be given by our highly-skilled crew in a fun, unique and supportive environment.” The deadline for applications is May 31. n For more information email: or call Ellen on: 01326 314262.

them specifically experiencing loneliness. Rory O’Connor, the charity’s director of welfare and policy, said: “Loneliness is a critical issue to the Royal Air Forces Association, and this service will ensure that more is done across the board to support our Servicemen and women. “The befriending service is an important initiative which provides invaluable welfare support for the 1.5 million-strong RAF family. If you or someone you may know could benefit from befriending, we’d encourage you to get in touch with us, as no veteran should ever feel lonely or isolated. A veteran’s service should be shared, celebrated, and never forgotten.” n Go to for more details.

Free meal out offer As part of Blackpool’s Armed Forces Week, Service personnel and veterans have the chance to dine out with a free carvery meal at the Buccaneer Family Bar, Coral Island on the seaside town’s famous Promenade, on June 22. Advance booking is essential and a £5 deposit is required, fully refunded on arrival. Proof of service is required. Seating times vary. Contact the venue for more information on: 01253 922182.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P27


Bi-plane era bomber pilot dies aged 101 Wing Commander Gerald Lane was one of the last surviving RAF pilots to fly bombers before the outbreak of the Second World War. He had joined in March 1937 on a short-service commission and trained as a pilot. In October 1937, Lane joined 166 Squadron to fly the lumbering twin-engine Handley-Page Heyford with an open cockpit and the last of the RAF’s bi-plane heavy bombers. The aircraft served for a further two years when he was posted to 51 Squadron to fly the twin-engine Whitley. His early operational sorties were to drop propaganda leaflets over Germany, a task irreverently called ‘bumph bombing’. He also carried out reconnaissance flights along the River Rhine. Following the German invasion of Norway in April 1940 he twice attacked the airfield at Fornebu near Oslo, which had been occupied by enemy forces. As the Germans launched their ‘Blitzkreig’ into the Low Countries and France on May 10, the bombing of targets in mainland Germany was finally cleared. The following day Lane attacked roads near Munchen-Gladbach and a few days later, the railway junctions in the same area.

On May 25 he attacked Dusseldorf when his aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire and the pitot head (a probe to measure the aircraft’s airspeed) was shot away. On arriving back at his airfield, he radioed the control officer that the ‘pitot head had been blown off ’. With no indication of his speed, he

made a safe landing to be met by an ambulance and a doctor enquiring about ‘the pilot whose head had been blown off ’. After giving support to the British Expeditionary Force as it withdrew from France, Lane resumed his attacks on transport infrastructure in Germany.

On the night of July 13, his Whitley was badly damaged by anti-aircraft fire over Mannheim but he managed to return and make an emergency landing at an airfield in Suffolk. At the end of July he was awarded the DFC. In December, Bomber Command started to receive the four-engine Handley-Page Halifax and Lane joined the first squadron, 35 Squadron. On March 10, 1941 the new bomber made its debut when seven attacked the docks at Le Havre. Lane and his crew were one of those detailed. The following night he took off with two other crews to bomb the Blohm and Voss U-boat yards at Hamburg, the first attack on Germany by the Halifax. An enemy night fighter intercepted Lane’s aircraft and made four attacks but the crew escaped unscathed. A few weeks later he was rested. After his bombing tour he was sent to establish a bomber training unit near Warwick where he served first as the chief ground instructor before being appointed as the chief flying instructor. During this period he took part in the first 1000 bomber raid when the target was Cologne.

In January 1943 he took command of 75 (NZ) Squadron to fly the Stirling attacking targets in occupied Europe. His time was cut short when he was sent to join the British Delegation in Washington where he was responsible for liaising with the USAAF on operational and tactical developments for the bomber force. He also became involved in staffing the proposed employment of RAF Lancasters in the bombing campaign against Japan – Tiger Force. After the war he served with an air transport group in Iraq and finally left the RAF in 1947. He became an executive with the Lancashire Aircraft Corporation converting Halifax bombers to carry supplies, including the Berlin Airlift. In 1950 he was approached by the Ministry of Defence to take up a senior post in Scotland with the Territorial and Auxiliary Forces Association. He also became involved with the Civil Defence Corps. In 1967 he became the secretary of the Highlands of Scotland Territorial and Army Volunteer Reserve Association. For his services he was appointed OBE in 1977 and he retired in 1981.

FROM THE FIRST WHISTLE TO THE LAST Wembley Stadium is home to the most important games in football, from The FA Community Shield and England’s European Qualifiers to The FA Cup Final. To find out how you can guarantee your place at this year’s biggest sport and entertainment events with Club Wembley, call 0800 783 1440

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P29


Halton AC Nathan Dones-Flint has been awarded a top training award at RAF Halton. The rookie airman was presented with the Halton Apprentice Shield after completing his Phase One training . He graduated along with more than 70 trainees from the Beckett intake who completed the intensive 10- week course. The graduation parade was inspected by Gp Capt Nick TuckerLowe, Station Commander at RAF Valley – the Royal Air Force fast jet training base. Other prize winners from the Beckett intake included: AC Joseph Docherty (The Rothschild Trophy), AC Ross Trotter (The Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund Trophy), AC Isaac Tombs (The Station Commander’s Cup) AC Joseph Quinby (The Halton Aircraft Apprentice Trophy), AC Lee Cross (The Dusty Miller Memorial Trophy), LAC Corran Pearce (The Mayor Of Aylesbury Trophy) and AC Anjan Gurung (The Lord Lieutenant Of Buckinghamshire’s Trophy).


WINNERS: The Beckett intake prize winners with Gp Capt Nick Tucker-Lowe, front, centre, OC RAF Valley, who inspected the graduation parade, inset.

PHOTOS: Christopher Yarrow


award joy

High praise

2344 (Longbenton) Squadron has received a High Sheriff of Tyne and Wear Award in recognition of the valuable services it provides to the community, for the fourth consecutive year. Collecting the honour on behalf of the Squadron were Alex Sample, 17, and Leo Allan, 14. The High Sheriff, John

Mowbray, presented the award, along with record-breaking British mountaineer Alan Hinkes, at a special ceremony held at Newcastle’s Centre for Life. Leo said: “It was a good evening and it was great to have our achievements recognised again. We do lots of fun activities,

SCALING THE HEIGHTS: Leo, Alex and climber Alan Hinkes

which are challenging sometimes, so it’s great to have people like the High Sheriff and Alan say ‘well done’ to us. We thank the High Sheriff for his award.” “There are lots of groups in the region who work to make a difference, so to be sitting alongside them was a pleasure,” added Alex.


Alex wings it A Longbenton Air Cadet is on cloud nine after earning his flying wings. After undergoing a selection day, which assessed his aptitude, knowledge and skills in a simulated environment, Alex McGowan, 17, bagged himself a prestigious flying scholarship. The Longbenton High School student went to Dundee to gain his Flying Wings with Tayside Aviation. He said: “The course was the best two weeks of my life. The instructors focused on the areas I needed to improve, which helped to increase my confidence. “However, when I flew my first sortie alone I was really nervous. The pilot told me to hold the aircraft on the taxi-way and he got out, saying ‘Good luck on your solo flight; don’t break the aeroplane, they’re expensive!’ So I closed the cockpit cover and went through my checks before taking off. “I just went for it. It was an incredible feeling from start to finish. It wasn’t as scary as I thought. It is by far the best experience I have ever had and I thank the Air Cadets for that.” Squadron Officer Commanding,

HARD-EARNED: Alex with his wings

Flight Lieutenant Gary Richardson, said: “We are all extremely proud of Alex’s achievement and he is an example to all of what can be attained through hard work, ambition and courage.” There are several scholarships available to Air Cadets each year, sponsored by the Royal Aero Club, the Air League Educational Trust, the RAF Charitable Trust, the Geoffrey de Havilland Foundation, Babcock Defence Services, the RAF Association and the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P30

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6 pages of RAF Sport starts here l Magnificent Seven help UKAFRU to HQ win P34 RUGBY LEAGUE

ON THE CHARGE: Main, Sgt Lee Queeley heads into two Hull FC reserve players the RAF man ran in a second half try, below, RAF RL head coach Sgt Garry Dunn added a wise head to the match, which saw the UKAF team produce a blistering fightback to within six points in the second half before losing 41-20 PHOTOS: SBS

Heaven and Hull

Battling UKAFRL side succumb to Hull Reserves despite impressive second half Hull Reserves 42 UKAFRL20

Daniel Abrahams Hull KCOM Stadium “I AM proud of the lads, of the way they dug deep and fought back especially in the second half. I was also hugely impressed with the pride shown towards our lads by the crowd, to give us a standing ovation at the end was truly something special.” Flt Lt Damian Clayton said following the UK Armed Forces Rugby League side’s 42-20 defeat against Hull FC Reserves. Clayton fielded a team of old and new to face what on paper seemed a tough battle as the curtain-raiser for the Hull versus Warrington Super League clash at the KCOM Stadium, Hull and so it proved after the opening exchanges saw

the Service side 6-0 down after five minutes as Adlard went over for a converted try. Old hand Fg Off Chris Gordon then left the field injured and despite hunting in packs with good defending from LETME James Parry, Cpl Steve Wicks and LAET Ben Taylor, they were forced to kick after teach set, with the hosts running in a second unconverted try after 15 minutes from Lee, but having gone 14-0 down (Westerman) team captain Taylor made a burst for the line, and after being held up so close to glory. The ball was recycled well to the ever eager SAC Adam Flintham who produced a brilliant angled run and as the hosts kept away SAC Liam Bradley collected with aplomb and dived over for a cracking opening by UKAFRL, which was converted by AB Ryan Matthews. On the half-hour a huddle of Service players nearly took down one of the uprights bundling in to

halt a Hull try, but Gilbey got over for a converted try and a 20-6 score line. Still keeping their fighting spirit Sgt Si Wray then went close in the corner, but he spilt the ball

at the vital moment. Having gone into the break buoyed by their late half chance the visitors were hit by another Lee converted try, but a moment of audacious play got the

Service men back in the game as a clever Flintham cross field kick was caught and touched down by Wray in the corner, but Matthews failed to convert. Continued page 31:

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Sport RuGBY LeagUE


STICK TO IT: Above, Fowles during her clash with Hildreth in a tough series of National matches in V2

Pippa proves her V2 worth

chest right: Above, UKAFRL players pose with their new kit, trialled at the recent clash with Hull FC Reserves, below, coach Flt Lt Clayton with L-R, Cpl Steve Wicks, AB Ryan Matthews and SAC Liam Flintham PHOTO: SBS

Keep your shirt on

New tops show sport’s strides forward IF THE new shirts and sponsors for the UKAFRL team are anything to go by, the future looks very bright. With the post of president of the RFL being held by Air Cdre Dean Andrew, the sport’s links with the military went a step further with the release of the Tri-Service team’s new look jerseys made by Steeden sports shirts. They are the first purchasable in club shops and online at: The main sponsor Kingstone Press is the same as worn on the national team’s shirts, with Nutrition X and the Royal British Legion completing the shirts’ logos. Flt Lt Damian Clayton, head

trialed for the squad in March being selected to play at the 2017 Yorkshire Cup later in the year, made his presence felt at the Kehoe event playing face-off and midfield and scoring against Scotland Blue. The event was finally won by North West for the third consecutive year with Rowland’s Yorkshire team finishing third after beating Wales Dragons in the third place play-off.

Josh the ticket SERVICE lacrosse star coach, said: “To have sponsors of the level of Kingstone Press, who sponsor the elite England team, is exactly the level of partners we

aspire to. This is the elite level of military rugby league and it’s only right to be involved with the elite of our game and in industry.”

Hull of a game for Tri-Service stars Continued from p30: Within minutes Wray was at it again as he touched down in the corner, but Matthews could not find the target for a 26-14 score. RAF man Sgt Lee Queeley then stretches out furthest to touch down and this time the kick was good for a 26-20. From here the hosts stretched their legs again running in through Westerman, converted, and a Scott brace with Rawsthorne converted once for the final score. Clayton added: “I felt we were overawed at the start, but we stopped the tide and ran in a great try and that helped us get a grip on the game. The way the lads came back in the second half was a great sign, they battled hard against extremely good opposition.” The team now prepare to play

ODIHAM PHOTOGRAPHER SAC Pippa Fowles battled out a series of blood and thunder clashes at the recent V2 National Finals. Fowles was representing the Service in the Masters class of the sport, formally known as rock-it-ball and sometimes called VX, and could not have asked for a harder draw up against Matty Horsfield in Group Two before facing European Champion Tom Hildreth. A tough opening encounter saw the RAF girl lose 120 – 101, while a great start from the experienced Hildreth threatened to blow the RAF star off the court, but she held firm and finally succumbed to closely fought 10-pint game, losing 96 - 86. Third up was Will Charters-Reid, who proved to be the tournament’s surprise package, having lost the third clash she then narrowly missed out against Lt Dan Young 90 – 85. So it was down to the ranking matches, where she produced a hardfought one-point win 69-68 over Jess Leech to gain ninth place in the National rankings. Her coach Paul Hildreth said: “I am delighted that Pip was able to compete and I’m very proud of her. She is a truly excellent player, very competitive with great skills. We have V2 players now in all branches of the Armed Forces and we would love to get them together to compete for a three-Services championship. That would really be worth seeing.”

England Students at Stanningley, Leeds on May 17, before their final game as a Super League curtain-

raiser at Leeds Rhinos’ Headingley Ground on June 2. Follow UKAFRL on Twitter at UKArmedforcesRL.

Josh Rowland was on show at the recent Nick Kehoe International event, formerly known as the British National Championships. Held at Wilmslow Lacrosse Club the event featured 10 teams from Yorkshire, the North West, South of England, Scotland, Wales and Eire. RAF man Rowland, having

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Hall Kiwi cool

World points for former Serviceman

CORNER SPOT: Above, Hall takes a corner with co-driver Rhys Gardner during the rally in New Zealand GEOFF RIDDER

Staff Reporter Air Command BRITISH CO-DRIVER SAC(Ret’d) Phil Hall was rewarded for making the long trip to New Zealand by finishing sixth overall at the International Rally of Whangarei. MSA Academy co-driver Hall, 28, guided New Zealand Rally Championship contender Rhys Gardner, in his potent Mazda 2 AP4, to sixth overall having been drafted in to the role at the last minute. After finishing third in the opening round of the series, Gardner had high hopes of another solid finish with Hall alongside. The former RAF man said: “It’s been an amazing experience from start to finish and to come out here and challenge in the top 10 of an Asia Pacific round is a real honour.” The high profile rally also formed the opening round of the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship, which meant Hall would enjoy his first taste of the series. His previous


experience came from the WRC qualifier, Rally Australia, in a Fiesta alongside Aussie Rhys Pinter. Hall added: “Everything being a little last minute it all fell into place when it mattered and Rhys and I gelled really well. The pace out front was mega, but the Mazda AP4 is the NZ equivalent to our R5 cars so it’s still an intense ride.” The rally opened with two stages around the Pohe Island, before a further eight stages on the Saturday which took crews onto the more familiar mountainous gravel rounds as seen on the World Rally Championship events of years gone by. The newly-formed duo ended the second leg of the event in a confidence-boosting seventh. Shorter final day would offer a limited opportunity to progress, but every effort was made to maintain their position and Hall’s finish meant he achieved his goal of bagging a decent NZ Rally Championship points haul for Gardner, taking fourth spot in the series. 

Double Dutch joy for footballers A DOUBLE-HEADER of UKAF football clashes produced two emphatic wins for the men’s and women’s teams in the President Cup at Cosford on the Royal Netherlandßs Air Force opponents. The men’s team sealed a thumping 4-0 win, having led through SAC Lawrence after great work from SAC Gardner, which SAC Smith headed onto the bar, before Lawrence headed home just before the break. Discarding the usual ‘total football’ approach synonymous with Dutch teams, continual long balls were easily soaked up by a confident UK team, with SAC McGowan going close on 59 minutes, before Cpl Campbell slotted in on 70. SAC Hall extended the score from the slot after 80 minutes, SAC Williams made it four in the last minute. The ladies team avenged their defeat last time out to produce a 3-2 win, and they did so in battling style after conceding in the 14th minute. A good chance went begging on the half-hour, with Cpl Stewart levelling after 38 minutes with a sweet header, before going ahead through an own-goal just before the break. It was no more than the UK team deserved, but the Dutch drew level after 52 minutes, before BOPT Bavister fired back for 3-2 with 15 minutes to go. Coach Sgt Paddy O’Brien said: “It’s now important we build on this momentum and continue to test ourselves against the best.”

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w . .uk Follow us Follow RAFCentralFund RAFC entralFund Th he RAF RAF SSports ports Lottery Lott o ery operates operrates as a society society lottery lottery within the Royal Royaal Air Air FForce oorce CCentral entrraal FFund und and is lic ensed and rregulated egulated bbyy the GGambling ambling Commission Commission ( (www.gam mblingccommission.go o The licensed under the lic ence numbers 000-0055199-N-305452-010 and 000-0051 199-R-322422-002. licence 000-005199-R-322422-002. The Ro The Royal yal AAirir FForce orrce CCentral entral FFund und is a ccompany oompany rregistered egistter ered e in EEngland ngland and W Wales ales 8555984, CCharity harity rregistered egistteered in EEngland ngland and W Wales ales a 1152560, CCharity harity rregistered eegistered in SScotland cotland o SC044299. Regist ered Office Officce Ro yaal AAirir FForce or orce CCentral entrral FFund und | Hurric caane BBuilding uilding | HQ HQ Air Air CCommand ommand | RRAF AF High W ycoombe | BBucks ucks | HP14 4UE | 01494 496458 PPrincipal rincipal Office Officcee RRm m 1.15 CClare larre CCharity harity CCentre entrre | SSaunderton aunderton | BBucks ucks | HP14 4BF| 01494 569068 Registered Royal Hurricane Wycombe

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Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P33


…and now you’re Gunner believe us football

Honington win the RAF Cup for the first time in their history

heads you lose: Waddington (in red) defend an aerial Honington onslaught

SAC Steven Howe Thame HAVING STORMED to a 4-0 win in the RAF Cup semi-final, sinking Cosford, Honington continued their goal rampage as they beat Waddington 3-1 to win the Keith Christie Trophy. The goal rush started after seven minutes at an overcast FC Thame ground, as the Waddington defence was split by a precise pass which was poked in by Cpl Michael Campbell from six-yards.

RAF Honington  RAF Waddington

CAMPBELL MEETS BALL: Honington Man of the Match Cpl Michael Campbell on the attack again

3 1

A blistering opening start saw Honington continue to press, with Waddington only really getting joy from set pieces, with Campbell going close once again minutes later but his effort flashed narrowly wide. In the 20th minute good control and an equally impressive turn from Waddington’s SAC Mike Ellerington saw the forward in

the Honington box, where he was clearly pushed in the back. SAC Danny Dixon kept his cool to slam home from the spot, despite keeper Cpl Danny Hayes getting both gloves on the ball. Stung, but not down, Honington saw an effort end up just wide and after winning a 24th-minute freekick Campbell pushed a simple pass to Cpl Michael Atkinson who, having dodged the defending wall, found Cpl Michael Goddard with a pass to the far post to slot home. Waddington then produced

some great defending to prevent the leaders finding the net again, maintaining the scoreline until the break. The second half got off to a flying start with Waddington wasting no time in trying to reconcile the onegoal deficit. Cpl James Greenhalgh found Cpl Chris Hamilton, who set up a bursting assault on the Honington goal, but the chance was cleared. Honington did not take long to counter and began several assaults on the Waddington goal. Heavy

PHOTOS: Steve lympany

rain just after the hour-mark turned the intense battle on the pitch into a gritty affair, with control proving difficult. SAC Dan Carter produced a good save, before a 78th-minute Honington break saw Cpl Campbell squeeze the ball past the onrushing keeper for the winner. Man of the Match Campbell nearly ended the perfect day in perfect style soon after, but his bicycle kick whizzed narrowly wide. It was the first time in the Cup’s history the Gunners have won it.

Goal-hungry Benson take the Plate

THRILLER: SAC Ryan Frazer muscles in on goal for RAF Leeming PHOTO: Steve Lympany

HAVING LED the goal-scoring table during their run to the RAF Plate final, Benson added another three goals as they stopped Leeming in a five-goal thriller at FC Thame’s ground. A tentative start saw SAC Jordan Smith the only bright spark, looking dangerous for Leeming, and he took his first real chance with style, shooting across the keeper into the far right-hand corner after nine minutes. Hotshots Benson were still to come to the boil and took until the 18th minute to level, when the coolheaded SAC Kirk Watson slotted Cpl Alex Smallshaw’s lofted pass

RAF Benson  RAF Leeming

3 2

under onrushing Leeming keeper Jordan Aspinall. A beautiful through ball and an equally well-timed run from SAC Smith saw Leeming regain the lead in the 34th minute, as the forward collected SAC Frazer’s pass and slid the ball into the bottom corner of the net. The repeat strike should have dented Benson’s charge, but it did the opposite, and they mounted a series of attacks that Leeming did well to repel until the break. Leeming looked fresh after the

restart but the wave of Benson attacks was soon resumed, with Watson back on the hunt again causing problems for the defending team and on 51 minutes he poked home to level things. Heavy rain after the hour mark altered the game, with SAC Sam Mason belying the bad conditions to swing a good ball into the Leeming box. Cpl Jack Walsh, who was voted Man of the Match, rose high on 68 minutes to head home what would prove to be the eventual winner. From here on in Benson simply knocked the ball around well and maintained control of the match until the final whistle.

Royal Air Force News Friday, May 19, 2017 P34

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Sport superbike

JAKE DIXON: Mixed fortunes at Oulton

Dixon in the top 10

RAF REGULAR & Reserve rider Jake Dixon secured a top-10 finish in the first race in round three of the MCE British Superbike Championship at Oulton Park. In the third row for the second race, he lost the front end trying to advance but was not injured.

rugby union

Officials make sure big day goes without hitch THEY MAY have been sporting yellow rather than light blue, but the Service’s referees and ref assistants made sure the wheels of the weekend of Army v Navy rugby union went smoothly. A team of 15 RAF officials covered the four matches of the day, with two – FS Andy Watson and Gp Capt Mike Priestley – assisting in the main event in front of a crowd of 80,000 at Twickenham Stadium. A full-house of Air Force officials oversaw the women’s game at the Army’s Kneller Hall, a stone’s throw from Twickers, with Flt Lt Jon Priestley refereeing, assisted by FS Andy Davies, Flt Lt Darrell Sinclair, FS Andy Halliwell and SAC(T) Grant Stephen. Flt Lt Priestley said: “The involvement of the Referees Society on Army v Navy day is

mellow yellow: RAF officials kept cool heads on the day

always a great way to finish the season and really showcases the high quality of our referees, really complementing our equally high-quality

rugby union

coaches and players. Across four matches on the day we provided so many officials, who all performed excellently in front of some of the biggest crowds at an amateur fixture anywhere in the world. “It is all the more impressive those involved have reached that level of performance whilst fitting in their officiating around their primary roles in the Service.” The main UKAFRU game (see page 33 for full report) which kicked off the day featured Flt Lt Phil Ware and Sqn Ldr Ken Brockless, while the Army Masters versus Navy Mariners clash at Kneller Hall featured another full-house with Flt Lt Nick Marshall referee, ably supported by Flt Lt Scott Galbraith, Flt Lt Fraser Tod, Wg Cdr Fraser Gray and Sqn Ldr John Barlow.

RAF U23s out in Force

RAF team: (l-r) Sqn Ldr Ellen Slungaard, SAC Josh Williams, SAC Kai Stevens, SAC Harry Challenor, SAC Nick Slaney, SAC Jack Haywood-Thompson, Fg Off Jake Lovett, Fg Off James West and Sqn Ldr Helen Bartels

Light-blues help UKAF team to historic victory DESPITE THE dream of InterService’s glory at Twickenham not on the cards for the men’s senior team, nine stars of the U23s game were present at the curtainraiser to help force a historic 37-30 victory for the UKAF over Oxbridge. Having lost last year’s clash 36-30, the UK Armed Forces team were seeking revenge and those from a light-blue background were happy to lend some RAF representation to the biggest day in the Service Rugby Union calendar. In the starting line-up were back rows Fg Off Jake Lovett, SAC Kieran Forbes and SAC Josh Williams; prop SAC Harry Challenor; second row SAC Jack Haywood-Thompson; fly-half Fg Off James West and winger SAC Nick Slaney. Hooker SAC Kai Stevens and scrum half SAC Ross McDougall were on the bench – making it the largest number of RAF

UKAF U23s 37 Oxbridge30 representatives in the squad for many a long year. Challenor was playing in his third and final UKAFRU fixture, with the others making their debuts, and the old head made it a day to remember after seeing his side kick three early penalties. Running in the first try in an eight-try thriller, the UKAFRU side relinquished the lead only once, with the only real scare being SAC Josh Williams being carried from the field in the first-half, following an injury. The Service also had representation in the team’s backroom staff with Sgt Justin Coleman acting as forwards coach, Gp Capt Clive Monkley and Sqn Ldr Helen Bartels team doctors, with Sqn Ldr Ellen Slungaard as physiotherapist, and Sqn Ldr Katie Sharman honorary secretary.



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Sport Hull test perfect for UKAFRL stars in WC prep

Honington storm to Cup glory after goal bonanza

RAF team help fire UKAFRU revenge mission

l Sport P30

l Sport P33

l Sport P34


REMEMBRANCE GAME: But it was one to forget for the lads of the UKAF team, who were on the end of a hiding. Here Fg Off Matt Tibbatts hands off a Bath player


Tries on tap for Bath

Floodgates open as stars of Academy sink Forces team with 12-run-in blitz THERE were high hopes of a successful sortie to the Recreation Ground as the UK Armed Forces Rugby Union team took on Bath United’s academy side in the West Country. But it soon became apparent that was not going to happen, as the Servicemen found themselves on the wrong end of a 12-try thumping by the Premiership outfit’s rising stars. There was good RAF representation for UKAFRU, with eight players in the squad and the coaching team including backline specialist Flt Lt Tom Rock. The airmen who made the trip were: SAC Brad Cook, SAC Harry Challinor, Cpl Dave Manning, SAC Daz Oliver, Fg Off Rob Bell, Fg Off

BATH UNITED academy 76 UKAFRU0 Matt Tibbatts, Sgt Lee Queeley and stalwart Flt Lt Rory Wood (a late replacement for Flt Lt Lloyd Owen). But the UKAF soon found themselves on the back foot as Bath snatched their first try from close range on three minutes. Just two minutes later a run from the halfway line, followed by a conversion, made it 12-0 to Bath. Two more tries were quickly added by lively United winger Darren Atkins. Another winger was next on the scoresheet, as Bath’s Levi Davis got try number five, and a shellshocked UKAF found themselves 31-0 down

pride and passion: But there was no way through a solid blue wall at the Recreation Ground for the men from the UK Armed Forces

– and it wasn’t even half-time yet. With three more added before the break, the Servicemen went in 48-0 behind, but with their heads held high. The UK Armed Forces rallied

after the restart, putting Bath under pressure for periods of the secondhalf. However, they were unable to break through the United defence. And it was soon business as usual for Bath, with Atkins claiming his

hat-trick, making the score 55-0. Three more tries followed before the blessed relief of the final whistle, with 76-0 on the scoreboard. UKAF battled until the end, but were always second best.



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RAF News 19 May 2017