Where Are They Now?Please feel free to post contact information here if you are looking for long lost friends or trying to find out what has happened to colleagues. Obituaries and condolences can be posted here too.
Read the news in today's paper about JLR retaining Solihull and Castle Bromwich and a series of jumps led me here. My interest in aviation started in 1959 with vists to Elmdon Airport. Back then the Midland Aero Club had its clubhouse on an elevated site on the right hand side on the main access road to the old tower and terminal. The club also had a single Nissen hut behind the public viewing area and next to the two huts housing the Warwickshire Aero Club. The MAC had a fleet of tree Tiger Moths and an Auster. The Tiger Moths were seen most days doing circuits. Later, with the expansion of the airport, the club house was demolished to make way for a multi story car park. A new club house was built behind hangar No. 3 - the 'night club' referred to by one of the other respondees. At that time Henry Ducommun was secretary and main driving force behind the club. For a while I led a group which occupied the MAC Nissen hut where we found an exposed film. When printed this had photographs from a pre WW1 flying display held in the area.
I've just stumbled across this thread and there's some names here I well remember from when I was nipper; brings back some very happy memories. My old man, Harry Chance, was a member - his first solo was on Jan 30th 1954; there's a bottle of Haig in my drinks cabinet, covered in fading signatures that some here might well find very familiar. I have some great cine film taken in a Moth in the 50s - he later flew the red Twin Com G-ASSB, and before that a Cherokee 235, G-ASLV.
Dad passed away last October.
Poor Doug Mitchell, having had to put up with my dad for years, was also one of the first skippers I flew with at Eurojet. No wonder he retired! Great bloke.
Keith was the CP at the time, and I was a shiny new cojo. Several years ago I had the great pleasure of having him come and do some flying for me.
Have just been chatting with my mom (Sheila; she used to go in on Sat mornings with Mabel Clarke who was, as she put it "a little lady who owned a Rolls - she couldn't see over the wheel", to do the sandwiches/nibbles for the evening session. She has come up with some more names:
Joe Moseley - whom I remember well. David Gurnham - dentist, part-owned -SB. Still going strong.
"Wiggy" Harris Bob and Gwen Torrence Ron Burns - when he finally tied the knot (apparently he took some convincing) dad was his best man. Norman Harper - jeweller. Leon Berner. (sp?)
Was the single Commanche G-ATAE, which crashed at Bordesley Park? If so, it was owned by the Alpha Echo Group - one member of which was David Hawtin, my oldest mate's dad.
Last edited by Sepp; 19th Oct 2010 at 12:30.
Reason: Added more names
Just found this thread. I did my initial IMC rating test with Don Swan in the 172, Alpha Sierra & remember many night flights with Colin Sheath, who I believe was the other half of Birmingham Aviation, with John Basset. Also recall flying their 150 Victor Victor Echo?including into RAF Coningsby on the occassion of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight relocating from Coltishall. That test with DS was interesting to say the least. When I pre-flighted the a/c they had blanked out the whole of the windshield except a small flap for Don to make sure I was holding runway heading on take-off.................on 06 if i recall. Anyone know what happened to Colin. I later flew G"Wendy" the Arrow 4, which came from the Belgium register, checking out with Martn, and at some stage refreshed my IMC in it with Kevin. I think they "imported" the examiner for me. Happy days
Just found this thread. Happy days. Did my PPL with Executive Air in 1973 with Bill Norreys as CFI and Pat Long as Deputy CFI. Anyone know the whereabouts of John Carter, who was the instructor who sent me solo and used to fly for GKN, when they had a 125, a King Air, an Islander and a Bolkow chopper? I later did my AFI at G&B Coventry (what news of Pete and Alan?) and instructed for Martin at Birmingham Aerocentre with Malcolm Payne as CFI, together with Geoff Povey and Cliff Bluck.
What a coincidence, I just finished unpacking moving into my new house and found my old logbook, it's as crusty as the Dead Sea scolls these days.
I too did my AFI with Pete late 1981 in G-BICG, I think we laughed more than we flew, took my ride with Bill Beadle, we talked more about Indian food than the ride itself, after that I moved here to the States.
Now I'm in the UK more than home thanks to a junior schedule, after 23 years at Continental Airlines......
Does anyone remember Keith Holland who was a member of MAC gaining his PPL on Tiger Moths around 1958? Keith sparked my interest in flying and told many tales of flying the open cockpit in those days. He once showed me his pilots' license which was headed something like "License to Operate a Flying Machine" or some other such quaint terminology. He told many a tale of learning to fly under Eric Bradley. I believe Keith's father was an officer of the club during the '50s and he spoke of an annual fly-away to the Deauville Club in northern France which must have been quite a cross-country/channel trek in an open cockpit - particularly in inclement weather.
I'm trying to trace info/ relatives of John Stephen McCARTHY who died on 15/4/1951 aged 31 years in an accident at Elmsdon Airport. I understand he may have been an instructor at the Midland Aero club at the time. Would anyone know if there are any photographs of him or his crewmate, William SCHOFIELD who also died in the crash. The plane was an AUSTER, G-AHVP?!!!! Any information at all would be great, fingers crossed, thanks.
Thank you very much....any info would be greatly appreciated. We've made contact with a grandson of SCHOFIELD and he seems to think there may be photographs of his grandfather on the walls in a building which still exists at ELSDON (or Birmingham). Could this be right and if so could their be a photograph of John Stephen McCARTHY?!! Thanks,