ISSUE No 10 AAFCE NEWSLETTER NOVEMBER 1999
Our gathering in Leamington Spa was a resounding success. As most met old friends and colleagues for the first time after 40 years there was a definite buzz in the air. In addition to the Clerical and Admin Branches, the RAF Police, Catering, Communications and MT Trades were well represented . There was also a fair Scottish contingent. A selection of photographs courtesy of Alan Lake, Ted Caton and Terry Bryant appear at the end of this Newsletter.
At a short informal meeting the following was agreed:
We continue as we are at present with no formal structure
To add the small surplus from the tie account to the General Administration Fund
We try to organise a coach trip to Fontainebleau in 2000.
Just too late for the Reunion Gordon Eardley was traced through Ted Caton’s book. Gordon was a Sergeant in the Chief of Staff’s Office from Jun 62 until Dec 64
Cliff Clarke who was Sir Basil Embry’s chauffeur is now settled with his wife Beryl in St Ives, Hunts. Cliff made the RAF his career Cliff and Beryl spend some of the year touring Europe in the Motorvan. Cliff was traced through the RAF Pension Fund.
Pete Williams arrived at AAFCE after a spell at SHAPE late in 1952 and worked in the RAF Support Unit before transferring to the HQ Org and Manpower Division. Now retired from the Service Pete lives with his wife Joy in Wiltshire. The eagle-eyed John Higgs saw Pete’s Teletext appeal on Channel 4 for apprentices with whom he enlisted. Recognising the name as an AAFCE colleague John followed it up.
We have an address for Charlie Collyer in Fontainebleau and a response from him is awaited.
It is possible that we have located Kay Finch to whom a letter of introduction has been sent.
Through the Daily Mail, Gill Whitley will try to find Peter Fryer who was Sir George Mills’ driver. A notice for him has been placed on a new Forces Link Website. There are probably not too many of our generation who surf the net but is worth a try. I know that a few more of you are out there with searches. It will be great if we can reach 100 traced by the end of the year.
Despite all our efforts to achieve delivery of the ties in time for the reunion I am sorry to advise that some show the German Flag with a white centre horizontal band (it should be red) The manufacturers have agreed to rectify the mistake at no cost to us. Will you please look at your tie and if it is faulty return it immediately to: - Mrs P Lewis, “Over Briar” Edge End, Coleford, Glos GL16 7HA with a note of your name and address. To enable me to monitor the position please complete the attached questionnaire. Apart from the error everyone agreed that we have a super tie.
A few ties remain in stock so if anyone wants one please send me a cheque for £9.00 and one will be sent by return post. Those who wore them at the reunion did so with pride.
There are no firm quotations on the table yet. Our enquiries have extended to enamel badges and brooches. More on this subject later!
It will be marvellous to revisit those haunts of our mis-spent youth. Mike Capon is scouting round for quotations from Coach Companies to take a party to Fontainebleau for 4 or 5 days next September. Only one firm quotation has been submitted.
Four-day tour (3 nights) bed and buffet breakfast based on 2 people sharing a room £165 per person. Single room supplement £40. This is based on a party of 35. For a five-day (four nights) tour the indication is £199. A visit to the Palace and a tour of Paris is included. If we can assemble a larger party the prices will reduce. Please indicate your availability for this trip on the attached questionnaire as this trip will take a lot of organising.
As so many of you have contributed to the Admin Fund it is appropriate that you see where your money is spent. Below is a report of activity during the year to 31 Oct 99.
Contributions including surplus on tie account 268.30
Photocopying and stationery 76.56 169.09 £
Balance carried forward 99.21
There were so many characters and amusing events during our days at AAFCE that I picked up on an idea from Geoffrey Callaghan that we compile a book of short stories. This will require help from you all to give us the gist of stories. We can edit them here and maybe one or two can be included in future Newsletters. Eventually a Desktop published book will be produced for circulation. So come on folks let me have your short stories ~ one page or less.
Mike Capon has obtained the attached list of RAF and NATO publications to which you can subscribe free of charge. In addition the following books are available free of charge
The RAF Briefing Book - 36 colour pages – an overview of the RAF today
The RAF 99 – 44 colour pages – the RAF’s Public relations Magazine – 11th edition
RAF Aircraft and Weapons – 56 colour pages
These titles are available by sending an addressed A4 envelope, with your list of titles to :-
RAF Promotional Items
DCC (RAF) Room 0364
MoD Main Building
London SW1A 2HB
Some of you go away for long periods. It would be helpful if when you are planning to be away for more than a fortnight that you could let me know. This will avoid circulars lying on the doormat thus depriving the next person on the list receiving them on time. Your copy will be despatched to arrive for your return.
The Editor sends his warm seasonal greetings and wishes you all a Joyful Christmas and a Very Special New Millennium.
Published by D M ROGERSON, BROOKWOOD, HUNGERFORD, BURSLEDON, SOUTHAMPTON, SO31 8DF