I have just had a visit to Bruggen, Wildenrath & Laarbruch.
1. Bruggen hasn't changed much apart from the uniforms and name. (Javalin Barracks, Elmpt station).
2. Wildenrath has been totally re-built, even the roads. The only bit I could recognise was the
3. Laarbruch is now Dusseldorf Niederrhein Airport. All the buildings are intact, but empty and overgrown.
The only two area that are in use are the Sgts Mess & ATC. There is a superb website with loads of photo's & Info
and Bill, I am not an MT Driver or Mech but had the good fortune to be sent to work in the the
M.T. Section at RAF North Luffenham in December of 1959 (Handed over to the Army in 1997), and served there in
M.T. Control as M.T. Clerk for the best part of 2 Years. I was sent straight from RAF Hereford Boy's Service, still only 17 Yrs of age and officially still with the Rank of "Boy Entrant" as I was not old enough to put up my
S.A.C. Props. The Men of the MT Section took me under their wing, and I can, without reservation, say that that was probably the Happiest time of My 15 Year RAF Career.
The M.T. Section had a complement of 64 Drivers, and as far as I recall, close on 260 vehicles. (The State Board went up to 320 and there weren't all that many gaps) We operated anything from a Staff Car to Nitrogen and Liquid Oxygen Transports, to service the Thor Missiles at North Luffenham, and
satellite units at Folkingham, Harrington, Polebrook, and Melton Mowbray. We Also parented 151 Wing which had Bloodhounds at Woolfox Lodge and another site.
I think we had pretty well everything the RAF could class as Mechanical Transport. The MTO was a Flt. Lt. Spencer, There was an assistant MTO a Pilot Officer straight out of Cadet Training, who's name escapes me at present.
The WO Was W.O. i/c was Sandell. Then Flt Sgt. Kilbride. Corporal "Hughie" Green at the
Control Desk. and a Sergeant Rodgers a Scot. There was a Chf.Tech. Bown (rept BOWN) who was, I believe an MT Fitter but seemed to spend most of his time down at M.T. Control. I could probably reel off quite a list of names as I used to do the payroll each week, but will spare you that - unless any of your readers happens to be interested in my little anecdote and would like to know names of the Staff during Dec 1959 - Oct 1961.
As you are probably well aware, promotion in those days was so slow, and LAC's aged 40 and Corporals aged 50, were "the norm" - so many of them were old enough to be my Father, and did treat me like a son.
I went all over the UK in M.T. Vehicles - as in those days, on the large vehicles you had to have a "second man" and being as I was just a Clerk (Who was efficient, and eager enough to get all his work done quickly) I was allowed to fill this role, and did very well out of it too - claiming 1771 allowance each week, and getting 7gns. (Seven Pounds 7and Shillings) - exactly the same as I got in pay!! When I wasn't out "On the Road" I did Fire Piquet for the Drivers who didn't want to do it at 2 quid a time, the MTO and SWO turned a blind eye as the MTO was always short of Drivers, and was well in with the SWO, and I did very nicely out of that too!!
Well, I won't risk boring you with any more, but, I am here - and if you want to see the M.T. Section as perhaps some of you Knights of the Road never saw it, just send me a e-mail.
pictures be of interest to viewers of your site? Bob's Bar
you would expect was the regular venue for drinking and
Belize MT Domestic Block
Ian and Bill
While in WH Smith recently, having a free read of the magazines, I found
an article on RAF MT.
The article appears in 'Diecast Collector', November 2003, Issue 73, p26
and is titled 'RAF Collection'.
Attachment shows part of the article.
You may think this could be of interest to others on the Web Site,
however, be warned, price of magazine in shops is £3.30.
My name is Chris (Freddy) Trueman and spent a few years doing the fuel pumps at North Luffenham. Also spent a lot of time with the Bowser drivers at Bruggen and TTF drivers at Gutersloh (Deployment stories needed)
Made friend with shed loads of slammers and brings back a lot of good memories.
Daz Crawford is on TV a lot these days, even getting himself on Gladiators as Diesel, good to see him doing well.
Chris Mortimer who followed me to Bruggen & Gutersloh.
Another Skinny Geordie (used to yell "Yah Caint") with a tash, went out with Jacky Durrant for a while.
Come on guys, I need names and faces, help me out.
10 out of 10 for an absolutely "dog's bollox" website! Have so far escaped the recent call up, but was having a beer in the Eagle (now the 'Ye Olde Aviator...sad or what?) in sunny Carterton this last weekend with an old comrade less fortunate and jungle telegraph says there is another phase coming; suggest we form an escape
I am quite often in Selby with work - let me know your local's name and I will stand you both a pint..... I can't help but think that this is like some 'secret society' akin to the freemasons - only without the benefits.... keep the faith Andy Fryer
Hi Bill & Ian,
got back from a course at St Athan, whilst I was there I thought I'd
have a drive over to the old driving school for a bit of reminiscing.
The whole lot has been levelled, the fuel pumps are there and that's
it, just concrete squares with the paint marks on them. Later
someone told me that it was only done last week so I went back over to
try and find the old sign for our t-bar, even that had been skipped.
It was a sad day for all those with fond memories of the place.
Even back in the
fifties the MTO thought that a large sign would encourage drivers to
carry out their daily inspections. Did you honestly meet anyone who
carried out this task? I certainly didn't - I used to kick the tyre's
occasionally and make sure the manually operated semaphore indicators
worked! Perhaps the drivers are more professional today - or are they?
Just though you
would like a couple of additions to your site. North Luffenham in
better days before the Army got their greasy mitts on it. Us Luffenham
Loonies remember the good old days, stopping at nothing to get a "rate 1".
The MT section
always busy, spooky on nights (watch out for Fred the ghost!)
club, always a laugh and a crap pint. We burnt it out in the end....by
WRAF driver took her staff car into MTSS and on the 656 she wrote,
'The seven hundred ten is missing from the engine'. All the mechs
looked at her and a Cpl fitter said, " What the F*** is a seven
hundred ten?" She replied, "You know, the little piece in the middle
of the engine, I have lost it and need a new one". She said she
didn't know what it was, but this piece had always been there. The
corporal fitter gave her a piece of paper and a pen and asked her to
draw what the piece looked like. She drew a circle and in the middle of
it wrote 710. He took her over to another car that had its bonnet up and
asked, "Is there a seven hundred ten on this car?" She pointed and
said, "Of course, it's