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AGMs of Club and Branch
Club Chairman Ron Aspinwall giving his report at the AGM on 8th March 2016.
Club Chairman Ron Aspinwall giving his report at the AGM on 8th March 2016. On 15th of March the Branch held its AGM. Mike Roach delivers his chairman's report.On 15th of March the Branch held its AGM. Mike Roach delivers his chairman's report.


Brew for the Few on 3 Oct. 2015
by Kirstie Gibson

The Autumn ‘Brew for the Few’ talk started by watching an excellent video record of the Heritage day on the 16th August 2015 with comprehensive  footage of the BBMF flypast by Jon Eddolls available on this website if you haven’t seen it (just scroll down).

The Portcullis Club was once again the venue for another 'Brew for the Few'. 16 members and guests came to attend and to support our Wings Appeal.The Portcullis Club was once again the venue for another 'Brew for the Few'. 16 members and guests came to attend and to support our Wings Appeal.

The talk was presented by Ken Simpson with memories of his time working with Lancasters as an instrument mechanic specialising in the blind flying panel used to help pilots and navigators fly in cloud and across larger areas of water without points of reference. Ken had started his trade training at RAF Melksham and was then based in the West Country in 1956 working at the Maritime School of Reconnaissance. The Lancasters were a pale colour to blend in with the sky and sea.

Ken Simpson talking about his time with the LancastersKen Simpson talking about his time with the Lancasters

Work involved both day and night shifts as the instruments had to be inspected at any time a plane landed. Another more physical job was moving the Lancasters using tractors so they were not facing into the sometimes strong westerly winds as the aircraft could potentially be lifted off the ground by the strength of the wind and aerodynamics of the plane.

The interested audience put a lot of questions to Ken.The interested audience put a lot of questions to Ken.

Ken remembers the limited space inside a Lancaster and having to climb over a large spar to check the instruments which also included the gunsights and bomb aiming device.

He remembers visiting Petwood Hotel in Lincolnshire which is known for being the home the RAF 617 “Dambusters” Squadron in World War Two. It had been the scene of both triumphant and disaster. Ken says he felt very close to the bomber boys in this particular location and had a drink in their honor. He recalls there being a large chunk of fir tree on display above the bar which had got caught in the undercarriage of a Lancaster when flying low over trees.

http://www.petwood.co.uk/about/history

During the war in 1944 Ken remembers being evacuated to Wales as a child and being billeted with a despatch rider which was quite exciting.

Ken had brought in some excellent pictures of Lancasters with many signatures from pilots and crew. He buys some of the picture from Aces High Aviation Gallery in Aylesbury. http://www.aces-high.com/

He had a picture signed by two bomber boy Victoria Cross recipients Bill Reid and Norman Jackson.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Reid_(VC)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norman_Cyril_Jackson

Diana, Cynthia and Evelyn helping to serve tea and coffee as well as Evelyn's homemade cakes.Diana, Cynthia and Evelyn helping to serve tea and coffee as well as Evelyn's homemade cakes.

The talk was accompanied by splendid tea and cakes made by Evelyn Klein. There was then a raffle assisted by Lotti to pick the lucky winners and prizes ranged from seasonal Octoberfest beer to chocolate bath bombs!

Up for grabs: a fine selection of raffle prizes (Spitfire model not included)Up for grabs: a fine selection of raffle prizes (Spitfire model not included)

Little Lotti enjoying a piece of 'Snow White' cake!Little Lotti enjoying a piece of 'Snow White' cake!


Service in Germany (1)

Look at our member Brian Seddon who received this certificate for services rendered to the Bundeswehr Reservists Association. Brain Brian received this on the 9th August 2015 !Brain Brian received this on the 9th August 2015 !Judging by the backdrop (a good old German brass band and the many stacked beer crates) it must have been something to do with vital food supplies.....

Peter Spitz, the Buergermeister (mayor) of Donseiders, South West Pfalz region, and Matthias Littig (in uniform) presenting Brian with a bronze badge and the above certificate.
Prost Gemuetlichkeit!Peter Spitz, the Buergermeister (mayor) of Donseiders, South West Pfalz region, and Matthias Littig (in uniform) presenting Brian with a bronze badge and the above certificate. Prost Gemuetlichkeit!

However, Brian submitted the following report how it all came about:

Since re-establishing contact with a former German work colleague in 2003 I have been invited to stay with him and his wife either for Heimatfest, early August, or Christmas Market early December.
At the various Christmas Markets the active "Verband der Reservisten der Deutschen Bundeswehr" in this village erect a huge ex Bundeswehr frame tent in the Village square containing a bar and many long seating benches.
Dressed in uniform the reservists prepare a volume of piping hot Pea soup flavoured with Ham hocks to serve along with beer to anyone wishing to celebrate and ward off the December cold.
With my own military interest I myself became involved with this group to the extent of preparing the soup to serving behind the bar, ( I managed OK using my schoolboy German,) To my great surprise this year, on Sunday evening 9th August a presentation was sprung on me when a fully uniformed reservist, Matthias Littig, awarded me a bronze badge with certificate for services rendered.

Service in Germany (2)

Another RAFA representative has set up camp in Germany. In August our pilot duck has taken over the command on this rather crowded well inside the popular beergarden of the local pub in the lovely town of Neu-Anspach. According to the regulars our pilot duck has settled in very well well well.....

Our RAFA duck on patrol Our RAFA duck on patrol

Hartmut and Evelyn brought the RAFA duck to Neu-Anspach. They always stay in Neu-Anspach, which is quite close to Frankfurt and Bad Homburg, when they are in the region to visit friends and family. Below they hand the duck to Stefan Duerre, landlord of the 'Gasthaus zur Linde'. Stefan promised to look after our pilot duck and  'keep it afloat'.

Evelyn hands the duck to StefanEvelyn hands the duck to Stefan

Stefan sets our pilot duck freeStefan sets our pilot duck free


A sign of the times by Ken Sayers

On conclusion of the Great War, The Royal Air Force formed an association called the “Comrades of the R.A.F.”. During WW2, it was felt that we should acknowledge the great support we were receiving from the Empire and Commonwealth (not forgetting our exiled Allies). Although the foregoing already had their own associations, it was felt that a new name for ours would signal a closer affinity with them; and so, in 1943, the Royal Air Forces Association was born. In 1993 and 2003, membership badges for 50 and 60 years respectively were made available.

Because my R.A.F. trade DE-MOB was deferred for 4 months I did not leave the service until 1948, and I joined our Branch as a Life Member, a class no longer available to new members. “Air Mail” readers may recall announcements in issues of 2012 that a badge for 70 years membership should be issued the following year.

As nothing had transpired by this year, I made contact with Air Mail, hoping to put a badge by in case this was a limited issue. (After all, I hope to qualify in 2018!) The reply to my enquiry was, that a survey of the ages of membership in relation to their years of membership revealed that the production and cost of this item would not make it a viable venture given the retail price required.


Caterham Recruiting Day Commemoration 12th April 2015 by Kirstie Gibson

A bright sunny, if a little breezy, day greeted us just like 100 years ago when the original parade took place on Wednesday 14th April 1915 in bright sunshine.

Photo courtesy of Mike van der VordPhoto courtesy of Mike van der VordThe day was organised by the Bourne Society to commemorate the original recruiting day parade in 1915 which was aimed to try and recruit additional young men to service in World War 1. The original parade route started in the Guards Deport at Caterham-on-the Hill and headed down Church Hill to Whyteleafe. There were recruiters from the Royal Sussex regiment in the crowds. The parade assembled in front of the fountain which included a section of the Caterham division of the British Red Cross Society wearing nurse’s uniforms. Also in the original parade were some wounded soldiers from the convalescent hospitals in Bletchingley.

One hundred years on in 2015 events started at White Knobs recreation ground with a display of World War 1 and 2 model aircraft organised by Caterham & District Model Flying Club and including participants from Croydon Airport Model Flying Club and Sevenoaks & District Model Aero Club.

The parade participants then assembled and were led off by the standard bearer Corporal James Tymon of RAF Waddington and followed by the excellent 1st Cinque Ports Corps of Pipes and Drums who set an upbeat atmosphere for the event. They were followed by World War 1 re-enactors of 10th Essex Regiment, representing a Kitchener Battalion of 1914 and included RAFA’s own Brian Seddon. Photo courtesy of Mike van der VordPhoto courtesy of Mike van der VordThen followed the massed Standards of the Surrey Division of the Royal British Legion and our own RAFA Colour Party and RAF Veterans which included Ken and Verona Bolton, Mike Roach, Kirstie Gibson and the RAFA colour bearer was Neil Bolton. Photo courtesy of Mike van der VordPhoto courtesy of Mike van der VordFollowing RAFA were the Royal Marine and Caterham sea Cadets, Caterham army cadets and members of SSAFA. Also, as 100 years ago, the Caterham and Warlingham scouts were involved in the parade. The Pipers of the London Scottish Regiment piped us past the station to the United Reformed Church for speeches and the one minutes silence.

The 2015 parade took a different route from the original down Godstone Road, the salute being taken at the same spot at the Asprey Fountain by Col. A P Guthrie TD, Deputy Lieutenant, representing the Lord Lieutenant of Surrey.

There were plenty of well-wishers who cheered us on, although 100 years ago several thousand people took part. The British Legion Poppy Appeal accompanied the marchers and there was a re-enacted army recruiting post manned by Chris Stanton outside The old Drill Hall in Godstone Road.

For more information and pictures please see the web link to the Bourne society report of the event:

http://www.bournesociety.org.uk/bournesoc/component/content/article/10-information-requests/142-caterhamrecruiting-day-1915-commemoration.html

Also many thanks for details of the original event available in the Bourne Society souvenir programme of the day.



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Cockpit                               Last updated on 3rd December 2016 / 19.30 h

Welcome to the Royal Air Forces Association (RAFA)

Kenley & Caterham Branch


Advent Afternoon at the Portcullis Club

Our last fundraising event of the year, the Advent Afternoon in aid of our Wings Appeal on Saturday, 3rd Dec 2016 at the Portcullis Club, saw 25 people in attendance. The audience enjoyed coffee and tea accompanied by Evelyn’s homemade Christmas biscuits and stollen. Following these delights Hartmut gave an illustrated review of RAFA’s 2016 events. There were actually 26 events and conferences to report about. The afternoon concluded with our very good stocked raffle. Every visitor or couple went away with one prize. Many thanks to all who attended and supported our Wings Appeal. A special Thank You is also due to those who donated the many raffle prizes.Diana and Hartmut performing the raffleDiana and Hartmut performing the raffleone lucky winnerone lucky winner


Giving Santa a Helping Hand....

Following our tradition we have been again at the Church Walk in Caterham to help Santa switching on the Christmas Lights on Saturday, 26 Nov 2016. Starting early at 10am our crew had a long day to promote our Wings Appeal and to entertain the youngsters at the 'Lucky Airbase'. As you can see from the pictures our stall attracted many visitors, amongst them some quite curious characters.


Remembrance Day 2016

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme. Thus, Remembrance Day became even more poignant. This was clearly reflected in the large attendance of the memorial services at St Luke’s Whyteleafe and Kenley Memorial.

The Kenley Air Cadets of 450 Squadron greeted the congregation in St Luke’s Churchyard and paraded before the Tribute on the airfield.The Kenley Air Cadets of 450 Squadron greeted the congregation in St Luke’s Churchyard and paraded before the Tribute on the airfield.

At 10.50 am Reverend Tim Goode remembered the fallen of both World Wars in a ceremony at the Whyteleafe War Memorial in St Luke’s churchyard. The Last Post preluded the nationwide Silence at 11.00 am. This was followed by the service in St Luke’s Church held by Rev Tim Goode and Rev Sara Goatcher. In her sermon Rev Sara Goatcher reminded  how today’s ritual of remembering by playing the Last Post followed by silence and Reveille came about. Many of the Remembrance congregation saw for the first time how St Luke’s Church shone in its new outfit after conclusion of the extensive reordering works.

After the service at St Luke’s many of the congregation made their way up to the airfield. Large crowds gathered at 1.30 pm at the Tribute to attend the commemorations performed by 450 Squadron. Croydon and Tandridge councils had sent their mayor or leader alongside representatives of local organisations and groups to pay their respects by laying a wreath. The weather provided a fitting backdrop, mostly cloudy with sunny intervals.


Sgt Pilot Fenemore Memorial Service

Sgt Pilot Stanley Fenemore was stationed at RAF Kenley with No 501 squadron, when his Hawker Hurricane was brought down at Posterngate Farm, South Godstone on 15th October 1940 at 8.15 am. A small memorial marks the spot with a bench and information notice, overlooking fields by the A22. The site has been recently cleared by members of the parish to enable it to be visited once more. This included a new oak bench which carries a memorial plaque.

On Saturday, the 29th October 2016, some 60 people gathered at the crash site to attend a service to commemorate the 76th anniversary of Sgt Pilot Fenemore’s death, amongst them members of the Fenemore family, the local MP Sam Gyimah as well as officers of RAF Brize Norton where No 501 squadron is based nowadays. The Rev. Peter O’Connell of St Nicolas Godstone led the commemorations, assisted by the standard bearer of the Royal British Legion Godstone. Following the service the congregation went to St Nicholas Church in Godstone where the log book and medals of Stanley Fenemore are held.

Our RAFA Branch was represented by a small delegation led by chairman Mike Roach.


Airmen's Memorial at St Luke's

Following our successful fundraising for Mike Roach greets visitors at the receptionMike Roach greets visitors at the receptionthe new memorial plaques to be placed inside St Luke's church a reception for donors and members was held at St Luke's church on Wednesday, 5th October. Some 30 visitors attended and were greeted with a glass of prosecco from the hessian Rhine Valley, a gift by the fundraising organiser Hartmut Klein who has his roots in HReverend Tim Goode recites the poemReverend Tim Goode recites the poemesse. In his opening words Hartmut recalled the initial meeting between St Luke's and RAFA at which Reverend Tim Goode set out his vision to reorder the chuch around a narrative about its links with Kenley Airfield and the RAF. This also meant to have the names of the fallen buried at Airmen's Corner inside the church. St Luke's as the parish of RAFA's domicile on Kenley Airfield invited RAFA to place this new Airmen's Memorial in the sanctuary. The idea was instantly embraced by RAFA and Hartmut volunteered to initiate a fundraising campaign. Following Hartmut's opening words, Mike Roach emphasised the importance of the bond between St Luke's and RAFA. Reverend Tim then explained to the audience his narrative for St Luke's and the reordering of the church in this context. He also suggested that the discussed stone-plaques should be better made of wood with gold-leaf lettering to match the interior of the church. It can be expected that the new plaques would be in place by summer 2017. The offical part of the evening was concluded by Reverend Tim with a recitation of the poem "Lie in the dark and listen" by Noel Coward and a prayer. After that the visitors had a closer look at the freshly refurbished and reordered features in the sanctuary.Hartmut Klein addressing the visitors in the newly refurbished church
Hartmut Klein addressing the visitors in the newly refurbished church


Our latest newsletter is out now.

All members should have received a copy in the post or by email by 30th September. 

A copy of the newsletter can also be downloaded as a PDF file here:

NL November 16 - Januar 17

 


Battle-of-Britain Week 2016

Here are some images to show our activities during this year's commemorative events.

Street collections in Selsdon by 66 SquadronStreet collections in Selsdon by 66 Squadron

 RAFA's BoB collectorsRAFA's BoB collectors

 

Street collections in Coulsdon by 285 SquadronStreet collections in Coulsdon by 285 Squadron

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Act of Remembrance at Airmen's CornerAct of Remembrance at Airmen's CornerMemorial Service at St Luke'sMemorial Service at St Luke's

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Wreath laid at Airmen's CornerWreath laid at Airmen's Corner

 RAFA members at Airmen's CornerRAFA members at Airmen's CornerAct of Remembrance at Airmen's CornerAct of Remembrance at Airmen's Corner

 

 

 

 

 

 

Act of Remembrance at the Kenley TributeAct of Remembrance at the Kenley Tribute

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


A Heritage Day Deluxe

The Heritage Day is getting underway at 12 noon.The Heritage Day is getting underway at 12 noon.A glorious late-summer day provided a perfect setting for the most successful Heritage Day so far on Kenley Airfield. The Kenley Airfield Friends organised this Heritage Day on the Sunday, 11th September 2016, to publicly launch the Kenley Revival Project. RAFA hosted this event on its Portcullis Field and also participated by opening the Portcullis Club to the public. The bar team had a frantic time and sold more than 1,600 pints of beer and other drinks. We also ran a stall selling merchandise and bric-a-brac in aid of our Wings Appeal and Welfare activities. Vera Harvey offered video cassettes and books to top up the welfare account. Kirstie Gibson, Mavis Harriott, Mike Roach and Carl Roche handed out many RAFA windmills to kids and sold badges, teddy bears and RAFA ducks to the discerning public.  As usual we had ourThe Pimm's tent of the Caterham Rotary ClubThe Pimm's tent of the Caterham Rotary Club ‘Lucky Airbase’ game available for the younger aviation enthusiasts. At times up to seven kids queued to direct the Harrier Jet  to the ‘Lucky Airfield’ under the skilful supervision of ‘air traffic  controller’ Hartmut Klein.  All of that proved to be so popular that we almost ran out of merchandise and the ‘Lucky Airfield’ had to be closed early because of acute shortage of prizes. However, the sweetest RAFA attraction of the day was Evelyn’s Cake stall which sold out completely by mid-afternoon. Evelyn Klein spent the day before to bake 12 cakes (incl. Black Forest Gateau). Even a last minute supply of left-over cake from the events the day before could not satisfy the demand. It is fair to say that nobody of the volunteer team complained when closing time neared and footfall eased…..

By the way, the 2 man band playing to the audience gathered in front of the Portcullis Club did a marvellous job. A very  good entertainment!

Cynthia Roach and Evelyn Klein are busy selling the cakes.Cynthia Roach and Evelyn Klein are busy selling the cakes.

Kirstie Gibson and Mavis Harriott offering our Wings Appeal merchandiseKirstie Gibson and Mavis Harriott offering our Wings Appeal merchandise

A young lady becoming a 'future pilot' by preparing to play the 'Lucky Airbase' by choosing one of the 12 named RAF stations. A young lady becoming a 'future pilot' by preparing to play the 'Lucky Airbase' by choosing one of the 12 named RAF stations. Diana Metcalfe has just bought one of the outstanding Spitfire-shaped teapot-warmers made and donated by Kirstie Gibson.Diana Metcalfe has just bought one of the outstanding Spitfire-shaped teapot-warmers made and donated by Kirstie Gibson.The crowds are coming - slowly but constantly - this picture shows the situation at 1.30pmThe crowds are coming - slowly but constantly - this picture shows the situation at 1.30pm

Mike Roach and Ken Raffield at the radio station - chilling out after a hot afternoonMike Roach and Ken Raffield at the radio station - chilling out after a hot afternoon


Old Coulsdon Grange Park Fair

Ken Raffield joining the ranks of 285 Squadron ATC once again. He originally belonged to 285 Squadron at the beginning of WW2.Ken Raffield joining the ranks of 285 Squadron ATC once again. He originally belonged to 285 Squadron at the beginning of WW2.

Mike Roach, Ken Bolton, Evelyn and Hartmut Klein manning our stall. They were later joined by Kirstie Gibson and Vera Harvey.Mike Roach, Ken Bolton, Evelyn and Hartmut Klein manning our stall. They were later joined by Kirstie Gibson and Vera Harvey.

Cancelled back in July due to the poor sodden ground conditions, this year's Grange Park Fair finally took place on the 10th September, one of the few wet days at the end of this summer. Many stalls were blown away by the strong winds and later the rain set in and spoilt much of the fun. However, many people came out braving the bad weather. Our stall still got much attention and we mananged to raise some money for our Wings Appeal. 


Kenley's Hardest Day Commemorations

This year marked the 76th anniversary of Kenley's Hardest on 18th August 2016. As it is tradition the commemoration took place on the Sunday after the day. Reverend Tim Goode from St Luke's Whyteleafe and our RAFA Branch's chairman Mike Roach led the remembrance and Mike laid a wreath in honour of the fallen servicemen and women at the Tribute on Kenley Airfield. The Branch Standard was presented by our secretary Ken Bolton. A small congregation of RAFA members and friends gathered before and around the Tribute to attend the ceremony. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


ACO Torch Relay came to Kenley Airfield

2016 is the year of the 75th Anniversary for the Air Cadet Organisation. To mark the occasion a UK-wide Torch Relay was organised that has engaged Sqn Cadets from all four corners of the country.

Coinciding with Kenley’s Hardest Day (76th Anniversary) on the 18th August, the Torch Relay came to Kenley Airfield. Our Branch was present to greet the Air Cadets on arrival. As RAFA is a sponsor of the Torch Relay, we had a free prize draw prepared. The challenge was to guess 'What is the wingspan of a Red Arrow BAE Hawk T1A?'. The correct answer is 9.4 metres. Eight Cadets guessed correctly or came very close. So it was our pleasure to present our prizes to the winners: a book about Aviation, a box filled with French biscuits, and a lot of RAFA merchandise. Apart from our prize draw, the Air Cadets had the opportunity to climb an 'artificial rock' and take part in archery. A barbecue organised by 450 Squadron solved the problem of how to feed hungry souls. Shortly after 1pm the Torch Relay left Kenley for their next station.

The torch arrives at Kenley!The torch arrives at Kenley!3 of the winners of our prize draw3 of the winners of our prize drawRock climbing on the airfield ....Rock climbing on the airfield ........ and archery!.... and archery! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


BBMF over Kenley


 

Armed Forces Day - 25.06.2016

For the third time now our Branch has marked Armed Forces Day by having a stall in Croydon North End. As on the previous occassions we were supported by our Kenley 450 Squadron ATC. For this we are very grateful because it boosts our recognition by the public and hence the donations we receive. Unfortunately the weather wasn't on our side this time. At 2pm a thunderstorm cut our presence short. Inspite of this we had a resonable result and would like to thank the public for their generous donations for our Wings Appeal and St Luke's Appeal respectively. 

Flight Lieutenant RAFVR(T) Giles Bromley, Evelyn Klein and Air Cadet Tyler Nash are ready for actionFlight Lieutenant RAFVR(T) Giles Bromley, Evelyn Klein and Air Cadet Tyler Nash are ready for action

RAFA members Evelyn Klein (left) and Les Benson are being supported by Pam Gibbs and Ann Sparshott from the RBL South Norwood and Woodside BranchRAFA members Evelyn Klein (left) and Les Benson are being supported by Pam Gibbs and Ann Sparshott from the RBL South Norwood and Woodside Branch

..

 

Diana Metcalfe and our former standard bearer Les Benson at 'Lucky Airbase' -------------------------------------------------------- Top Left: Our stall in Croydon North End  --------------------------------------------------------  Bottom Left: The thunderstorm threatens to blow our gazebo awayDiana Metcalfe and our former standard bearer Les Benson at 'Lucky Airbase' -------------------------------------------------------- Top Left: Our stall in Croydon North End -------------------------------------------------------- Bottom Left: The thunderstorm threatens to blow our gazebo away


Croydon Heritage Day

Saturday, 18th of June, saw many of our local history and heritage groups displaying their work in Croydon's North End. Amongst them the Kenley Revival Project, Croydon Airport Society and East Surrey Family History Society. As the photos below show there was a lot on....

 

Croydon Heritage Day Main StageCroydon Heritage Day Main Stage

 East Surrey Family History Society TeamEast Surrey Family History Society Team

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr Watson investigating Kenley Revival ProjectDr Watson investigating Kenley Revival Project

Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson were there tooSherlock Holmes and Dr Watson were there too

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Kenley Revival Information TeamThe Kenley Revival Information Team Kenley Revival Information StandKenley Revival Information Stand

 


Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance

Although our 'Fish n' Chips' lunch wasn't expected to cause any harm we had called the Air Ambulance before the event. Yes, we are talking about our latest lunch event on Saturday, 11th June, at the Portcullis Club in aid of our Branch Welfare.

Shaida Dorabjee with our little helpers, Florence and Lotti.Shaida Dorabjee with our little helpers, Florence and Lotti.Some 50 people gathered to enjoy another lovely dish prepared by 'The Frying Squad', i.e. Eamon's well-known F&C van. This was followed by a very informative talk about the work, operations and funding of the 'Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance'. Shaida Dorabjee, a volunteer fundraiser of the Air Ambulance charity, joined us to talk about the good work done by this extremely specialised ambulance team. We even learned about the types of helicopters currently in use and the new generation coming in soon. Shaida earned a lot of applause for her talk and the circulating collection tin came back full of donations for the charity. As usual our event closed with the much anticipated raffle. Our thanks go to all who attended and gave so generously to our Welfare fund and - of course - the Air Ambulance.


Our RAFA Pilot Duck still enjoys Neu-Anspach very much!

RAFA members Guy, Evelyn and Alison with pub landlord Stefan Duerre at the duck's nest. RAFA members Guy, Evelyn and Alison with pub landlord Stefan Duerre at the duck's nest. A group of RAFA and Bourne Society members came to Neu-Anspach on 6th May to attend the annual gathering of the twinned towns of Neu-Anspach (Germany), Sentjur (Slovenia) and Saint-Florent sur Cher (France) in order to find out if Kenley and Caterham can join the club!!! On this occassion it was a point of honour to meet and greet our RAFA duck at the local pub 'Zur Linde'. RAFA duck is well and looks forward to the summer season and a busy beergarden.

 


Headley Court Engineering

Flt Sgt Dave Barr talking to a fully packed Portcullis ClubFlt Sgt Dave Barr talking to a fully packed Portcullis ClubA crowd of more than 50 people flocked to the Portcullis Club on Saturday, 16th April, to hear about the extraordinary work done by a very specialised team at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Headley Court. Flt Sgt Dave Barr and his team gave a fascinating insight into how a world-leading service to rehabilitate injured and disabled service personnel from not only the RAF but also the Army and Royal Navy is being delivered. This even includes the manufacturing of state-of-the-art artificial limps exactly to the specific needs of the patient. This interesting talk closed with a well used Q&A session and a huge round of applause for the Headley Court team. 

The proceeds of this event, which started with a lovely fish and chips lunch and finished with a well-stocked raffle, will go to RAFA's Wings Appeal.

 

Fish n' Chips freshly from the van!Fish n' Chips freshly from the van!Flt Sgt Dave Barr and his teamFlt Sgt Dave Barr and his team