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Hi Ian,

I am looking for photos of the AEC 3000 gallon refuellers and also the AEC 55 str coaches with the Marshall's coachwork, I wonder if any members have any they can share?

Paul Mason


Can you help?

Hi Ian,

I was not an MTD, I'm afraid but I am a scale modeller with a special interest in RAF vehicles. I was in the RAF from November 1959 to October 1963. First posting, of course, was Square Bashing at Bridgnorth then in January 1960 to Yatesbury for Trade Training on Radar (Nav.Gen). In May 1960 I was posted to Stn Flt at Wittering - cushy number just looking after Chipmunks and Ansons and any visiting types. After two years at Stn Flt went to the Electronics centre and occasionally got to drive some of the MT. Nothing too grand just the odd Land Rover, Commer van, and Mini etc. In January 1963 I was posted to Laarbruch. What a surprise that was. I was totally overwhelmed by the weather. That's when we had all that snow for months on end. I was on Radio Servicing Flt and had to go to Wildenrath twice a week with Radio and Radar equipment that had to return to the UK for deeper servicing than that which we did on the Station. I drove a Morris J2 RVT besides the 3 ton Magirus Trucks we used for convoy duty on exercises. After my mother died that year and my father wanted me to help in the family business here in Jersey so I had a compassionate discharge, hence the short time I was in the RAF, unfortunately.

I have, however, kept up with the camaraderie I missed by joining the RAFA in 1964. I have been on Jersey Branch Committee since 1969, except for a couple of years in the late 70's. I became the Branch Standard Bearer in November 1987, the Adastral Newsletter Editor in December 2000, Vice Chairman of the Branch in March 2009 and a European Area Council member in May 2010. I regularly attend the Annual Conferences in Blackpool, Bournemouth and latterly in Eastbourne. I also attend the European Area Autumn Conferences, having been to Gibraltar twice, Spain twice, to Bruggen two years ago (with a quick visit to Laarbruch) and earlier this month to Cyprus, including Akrotiri.

As I said earlier I am a scale modeller and model collector. I want to convert the Corgi (1:43rd scale) Telephone Morris J2 to an RAF Morris J2 RVT and need some details which I cannot recall from 1963. I am attaching a photo of self with my RVT which shows the box modification. I can't remember if the back door was a side opening one (left or right) or if it was a roller type. Also the registration typical of the type and the markings. The Union Jack can be seen in the photo but can't remember the position of the Roundel and yellow disc if it had one. Could any of your members possibly enlighten me.

Looking forward to hearing from you in due course.

Best regards

Peter Clarke
Jersey

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Peter Clarke
with his RVT
in Germany 1963

 


Balloon Squadron Reunion

We had a successful reunion dinner in the combined Officers and Sgts Mess at the former RAF Hullavington (Buckley Barracks) on Saturday 8th October 2011. Only 21 attended but we still had a good time! Many tales and memories regaled from the late 60s through until 1995! 

Steve Colhoun

 

 

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Thanks to Dave Ascroft I now have a copy of AP3025 (Standard Technical Training Notes - M.T. Drivers) un-dated but with amendments circa 1963.

One dark winter night I might get round to photocopying it all.

Thanks Dave

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Whilst at a recent visit to the National Memorial Arboretum I took these pictures of tree plaques for 51 MT Company & 317 Supply & Transport Column.

 

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Can you help?

What wagons were used to transport Bloodhound missiles?

Ian,

I hope you don't mind me trying to pick the brains of you and your MT types but I have drawn a blank so far with quite an odd request - for an ex-RAF rigger!

I have been trying to find out some info on what wagons were used to transport Bloodhound missiles? When I was the archivist on 33 Sqn (Odiham), we had some photos of the side -fork equipped Loaders and Bedford RL's used to transport the Launchers when 33 were in Malaya in the late 1960s. However, I'm trying to model a diorama using the old Airfix kit but with the correct MT vehicles for 1960-64 and I cannot find any images of the vehicles used to tow the Missile Transportation Trailer - I don't believe Airfix's solution, a short wheelbase Landrover!!

I am led to believe that the side loader mentioned above (similar to the Blue Steel loader/transporter) was introduced at the same time as Bloodhound but in spite of my own recollections (going back to 1971) I just can't recall any of the MT vehicles from memory suitable to tow a 2 ton (and maneuver it in a confined space) missile /trailer combination - apart from the trusty David Brown tractor!

Any clues?

Kind regards,
Rod 'Otto' Ulrich
(ex E8113553)

Reply: 21/11/11

Hi Ian

I am an ex MTD, I served at RAF Hullavington 1981-1984 at that time the Landrover 1 tonne was used to pull Bloodhound because of its 3.5 v8 power.

Cheers

Alex Kerr


HELP REQUIRED

Ian,

I'm researching my Uncle Ron Beamish's wartime activities. He was an MT driver, following the troops through France, Belgium and Germany. Although I was myself in the RAF I was a radar fitter and had little contact with the MT sections so I know nothing concerning the vehicles used. I have attached some photographs which would probably interest you anyway but I was wondering if you could identify the vehicles for me.

It's not important but would I think add a little to whatever I can put together for Ron's children concerning his time in the RAF. Unfortunately he passed away in 2009 and was never asked the kind of questions we all should have asked.

As you can see the large truck has BAFO 85 on the cab, which from your website I know gives the Group, and 75 MTLRU. It would also be useful to know what the latter letters mean. If you are able to help in any way, or add anything which you think might be of interest I would be most grateful.

Charles Beamish

N.B. All images are labeled Hamburg April 1946

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CAN YOU HELP?

From: phil_sigournay@yahoo.co.uk
Date: 20th April 2011
Subject: Wedding Transport

Hello Ian,

My daughter is getting married in Bolton, Lancashire in September. Both she and her fiance are serving RAF officers. When the subject of wedding transport for the bride and groom arose, there was a feeling that something a little out of the ordinary would be fun - the groom suggested a tank or scout car...

Would any of your members know of a vehicle that would be friendly to a voluminous white wedding dress, that might be available to transport them on their wedding day? A 1940's - 1950's staff car, perhaps? The groom will be in uniform.

I suspect that this may not be a practical proposition: but I hope you don't mind me asking!

Phil Sigournay


I took the following pictures during a visit to Church Fenton. The site is mostly in disrepair now but YUAS use some of the buildings. Half of the camp (To the left of the main drag) has been sold and is now fenced off.

We had a successful reunion on 20th November 2010, if you're interested in attending the next one (Expected to be in about 2 years time (Assuming there's anything still there)), you can keep up to date by joining the RAF Church Fenton Facebook page.

Ian

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4 Hanger sign, now utilised by YUAS
in 1 hanger

Tanker Pool, The Line Offices, GRSF etc all gone

4 Hanger and MT have been removed

Tankers now stand on the old 4 hanger floor

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The site of the MT Portacabins (I can remember installing those when we moved from across the road)
The earlier MT bays...
... and MT Control
Inside the booking
out office

Hi Ian

I restore small die cast models to RAF livery and I wonder if I could find information regarding the various markings and plates attached or painted on vehicles. Items such as bridge classifications, roundels, command/group markings, trailers, etc. I have an excerpt from (I think) AMO's regarding bridge classification plates. Is it possible to find similar regs for other markings.

Harry Munro


Hughie Shafi sent this view of Scampton taken from the Medical Centre window (1982).

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Hi Ian,

I never served in the RAF but I am interested in military transport, and RAF vehicle pictures can be hard to find.

My personal interest is particularly in Land Rovers and Matadors, but all 'soft skin' vehicles interest me.

For several years, back in the early 70's, I owned an ex-RAF Austin K9 crash rescue ambulance. It was a magnificent machine which had been converted by the previous owner into a mobile caravan. I loved this vehicle and always wanted to restore it to RAF livery but unfortunately my finances did not allow it and I sold it to a dealer who I believe broke it up. So the picture of a K9 ambulance I saw on your web site brought back many happy memories!

I have attached photographs of a couple of Land Rovers, which are my copyright, which you are free to use as you wish on your site. These were used by Corgi to produce die-cast models a few years ago.

Which brings me to my second reason for searching your site. I am MD of John Ayrey Die-Casts, a wholesaler of die-cast models and kits based in Shipley, West Yorkshire. I work with several manufacturers to help produce model vehicles, but in particular we import the Base Toys range of 1:76 scale model trucks, and I am interested in producing models of the Karrier vans and lorries used by the RAF.

I notice that you have some pictures of these vehicles as; refuse truck, van, control tower, etc. at Linton-on-Ouse. Does anyone have any more info or photographs of any of these vehicles?

Thank you for your help,

Norman Hinchliffe

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Hi Ian

I have to admit firstly that I am not an ex MT driver. I was a dog-handler at RAF Scampton in the late 50s-early 60s.

I pass my time by converting old diecast model vehicles into RAF versions that were around approximately at the time I was in the RAF.

I have recently re-modeled some Matchbox Bedford Lomas Ambulance models and I would like to find out when they were first used in the RAF.

I wonder if you have any information when these were first introduced.

Also, I wonder if you have any information on the large Pantechnicon trailers that were used to transport weapons between the various SSA's and airfields. I remember riding shotgun on these things on several occasions.

I would appreciate any info. you may be able to provide me with.

Thank you.

Harry Munro


Steve Colhoun Sent in this sign he spotted on his travels around Barnstaple.

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Hi Ian,

I have discovered lately among my Father's papers a "54 MT Company drivers licence" dating from 1945. I am French born but my Father was of Yugoslav origin, he had been a Major in the Yugoslav Royal Air Force but has done some time in the RAF???? I wondered if any members can help me find more about this period of his life??

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I know also that while he was still in the Balkans (until Dec 1944) fighting the Germans in Gal Mihailovic' Royalist Underground he helped save a lot British pilots downed over Yugoslavia.

Thanks a lot in advance

Michel Jevdjenijevic
Lt-Col French Army (Reserve)


Hi Ian,

Dave Ellis and I have now done our Laarbruch trip. We flew out from Stanstead at 07.15 23 Sept 09, arrived at Flugplatz, Düsseldorf Weeze (ex RAF Laarbruch) at 08.15, clocks forward to 09.15 and away we go.

We firstly walked from the terminal past 26 Sqn rock yard, down past MTSS, past 1 Sqn Rock yard to MT. MTSS looks like its being used as storage depot of some sort, no entry. 1 Sqn now a film stunt studio? MT trade training closed, totally overgrown. MT now being used as crash test site, (that's what we used it for), carried on past WRAF block, out of bounds (thats a first), Airman's mess now a civvy canteen. The rest of the camp, ie Mally, Gym, Families Club, Snoopy's, all the centre is now a civvy fire training area. We did walk in but decided to leave when we saw the fire engine rush up to an old train beside us.

We then went down Singly Straza. Some of the blocks and the Bowl are painted cream, most of the blocks are out of bounds with foreign workers living in them. Back out on the ring road, Sgt's Mess is now a restaurant, looks like it's for the fire training officers, Officers Mess trashed, big shame, back straight, civvy canteen, boarded up.

Back to Guardroom and Cop shop, both abandoned. Into camp by Guardroom, Astra abandoned, weird, looked through the broken glass and there was popcorn everywhere. Sparkasse Bank now used for, what looks like a creche or something. Church now a Museum. SHQ being used, didn't look what for, Post Office abandoned.

Turned round and walked back past Guardroom, and out of Camp. Mass First School had lots of cars outside, something going on, all Quarters abandoned, families NAAFI boarded up, new gate? looked good. Walked to Weeze, I must admit in my 31/2 years there I never did this walk, its a shame as it was a great walk. Wow has Weeze changed, we didn't recognise it at all. Little City gone, Tower Block gone, the town now has a bypass, struggled to find the Alt Weeze but found it in the end, that was a place I never had any problem finding when we were there. Walked around the town, very sad, no car dealers, no La Mamas, very quiet place. Kev's Bar is there. Kev is an ex RAF Copper, he has had a bar there since 1979, he looks exactly the same. He does B&B and has a camp site, look him up if you fancy a weekend out there (www.Kevins-Pub.de).

Well we had the best Jäger Schnitzel I've ever had, bus back to camp, the museum was now open. We looked around and found every copy of the Laarbruch Listener, looking through 81/84 we found the write up about the MT parachute course that we did. It had a list of all the names on the photo that I forgot. It felt really great to find a reference to yourself in a Museum. Does that mean I'm an old relic. We met several old RAF chaps also visiting, and 3 of the people who run it are also English and live out there, including Kev.

Another walk round the camp and back to the Terminal, there's a viewing area on the roof, we went and had a look round up there, its really strange to see the rest of the Camp, i.e. the Q, Bomb Dump, 15, 16 and 2 Squadron HAZ's and the perimeter fences on these areas are all still the same.

Back on the plane at 20.15, clocks back to 19.15, back to Stanstead and home by 22.30

Good old Ryanair, all for a 'Tenner' return including taxes, Brilliant day out, Dave loved it, he took pictures of his old flat in Weeze where he lived and decided to go back with M his wife for a weekend.

If anyone is interested in going with us next year drop me an email or call me 07775 832545, we may think about spending the night out there at Kev's place if there is enough interest.

Good old Laarparts, Great camp, Great people, Great times.

John Claxton
Dave Ellis

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Possible Laarbruch Reunion 2010

John Claxton wants to know if anyone would be interested in a Reunion at Laarbruch next Summer. If there is enough response he will organise a day or weekend out there.

John Claxton
07775 832545


CAN YOU HELP?

The Son & Daughter of Neil Windsor, an MT Cpl who died in 1990 whilst they were still quite young, has been in contact and sadly they don't have any photos of him from his time in the RAF.

If you knew Neil and have any photos please contact me so they can be forward on to Stuart and his sister?