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PPRuNeUser0154
4th Sep 2022, 15:51
I purchased Mosquito Squadron thinking it was 633 Squadron. I had never seen the film.
I was always lead to believe there were only three flyable Mosquitoes at the time however this film shows four airworthy Mosquitoes.
So which aircraft was the fourth?
Feel free to post any 633 or Mossie Squadron film anecdotes.

treadigraph
4th Sep 2022, 16:05
G-ASKA, KB, KH and G-AWJV.

JV flew in Mosquito Squadron and not 633 Sqn, it's the aircraft described by Neil Williams in "Airborne" as the one he first flew. Now at London Colney.

PPRuNeUser0154
4th Sep 2022, 16:36
G-ASKA, KB, KH and G-AWJV.

JV flew in Mosquito Squadron and not 633 Sqn, it's the aircraft described by Neil Williams in "Airborne" as the one he first flew. Now at London Colney.

Interesting, thank you. Did Neil Williams fly in the films? Sad that his life was cut short and none of the aircraft are still flying in the UK.

DHfan
4th Sep 2022, 16:51
As I recall, Mosquito Squadron used some out-takes from 633 Squadron in the flying sequences.

I'm sorry you wasted your money - it was a terrible film...

PPRuNeUser0154
4th Sep 2022, 16:58
As I recall, Mosquito Squadron used some out-takes from 633 Squadron in the flying sequences.

I'm sorry you wasted your money - it was a terrible film...
50p in a charity shop so no big loss. It's okay for Sunday afternoon.

treadigraph
4th Sep 2022, 17:09
Interesting, thank you. Did Neil Williams fly in the films?

I think he did; other than Allen Wheeler, IMDB is lacking info on the flying unit for the film.

PPRuNeUser0154
4th Sep 2022, 17:37
Also noticed two Ansons at the end of the movie. Presumably these are the two now still airworthy?

treadigraph
4th Sep 2022, 18:25
Possibly but probably not, think the RAF still had a few in service in 1968.

Edit: G-VROE was an instructional airframe between 1965 and 1978 when it joined the G-Reg as G-BFIR. G-AHKX became civilised in 1946! :)

GeeRam
4th Sep 2022, 21:07
Interesting, thank you. Did Neil Williams fly in the films?

Neil flew TT.35 TA634 (now at the Mosquito Museum) during the making of Mosquito Squadron, and indeed it was Neil that flew the aircraft back to Liverpool after filming was completed, in the summer of '68 in what was to be the aircraft's final flight. He didn't fly in the making of 633 Squadron.

Fonsini
4th Sep 2022, 22:02
Which Mosquito movie had the Sikh pilot with the missing hand, I always thought he was a great character.

Sleeve Wing
4th Sep 2022, 22:07
I remember the the filming of 633 Sqn. from Inverness Dalcross Airfield. It was 1963.
I was based at Lossie at the time and they closed the LL area for a few days while the Mosquitoes were in and about the Cromarty Firth at low level.
Saw the film later and thoroughly enjoyed it.
I think it was plain that a number of outtakes from the original filming were used in the subsequent Mosquito Squadron.
I believe John Crewdson (?) was one of the pilots and may even have collected together the aircraft for the shoot.
It was the first film, 633, that featured the Sikh pilot.

GeeRam
5th Sep 2022, 08:22
I believe John Crewdson (?) was one of the pilots and may even have collected together the aircraft for the shoot.


Crewsdon was involved with the film, in the aerial production, but I don't believe he actually flew any of the Mosquito's during filming, I think he may have been one of the B-25 pilots along with Martin Cadin. The B-25 had been flown over from USA the previous year for use as camera ship on War Lover, also filmed at Bovingdon, and Crewsdon had been involved with that, having sourced the B-17's in the USA, and flew one of them over for filming.
I believe the Mossie pilots were all serving RAF from CAACU at Exeter where the Mossie's had just been retired from RAF use, and RAF CFS at Little Rissington. They included Taff Rich (who did the crash landing sequence) Flt.Lt D.J Curtis, FO C.Kirkham (who flew the final RAF Mosquito flight in 1965) and the legendary Jeff Hawke, who was still just a serving RAF pilot at the time, and left the RAF just after filming finished. He actually 'borrowed' one of the Mosquito's to fly back to Wattisham for his RAF leaving bash.....and legend has his departure afterwards was quite memorable.

pulse1
5th Sep 2022, 08:33
I believe that one of the aircraft in Mosquito Squadron was owned at the time by the City of Liverpool. The pilot gave up his day job as an airline pilot to fly it in the film. After the film was completed he came and flew our club Tiger Moth. He had a proper seat type parachute which he had been given to use in the Mosquito.

GeeRam
5th Sep 2022, 09:02
I believe that one of the aircraft in Mosquito Squadron was owned at the time by the City of Liverpool. The pilot gave up his day job as an airline pilot to fly it in the film. After the film was completed he came and flew our club Tiger Moth. He had a proper seat type parachute which he had been given to use in the Mosquito.

See my post #9 above. That was TT.35 TA634, and that was flown exclusively by Neil Williams for the duration of the filming.

chevvron
5th Sep 2022, 09:06
I was present at Bovingdon one day in 1963 during the filming of '633'; me and a mate put on our ATC Cadet uniforms ostensibly to scrounge a flight with Southern Communications Sqdn; while sitting in the lounge waiting for a flight with other ATC cadets, Donald Houston walked in!
I counted 12 Mossies there, one of them being just a fuselage on a trailer.
We missed the sequence where they deliberately wrecked one of the aircraft although we did go over the previous day to see what they had done to it; amazing that the 'bullet holes' were actually bits of stuck on plywood but you could only tell the difference from about 2 feet away!
Stood behind the camera during the shooting of the scene where Donald and Cliff Robertson were about to depart on the raid; those arc lights were hot but it was actually shot in simulated darkness.
There is a scene in '633' which was repeated in 'Mosquito Squadron' with a Mossie landing on runway 02 and as the camera panned round, you can see a line of Ansons in the distance all with their shiny white tops! At the end of the second film, there was an Anson painted in camouflage colours as well as the others.
After 633, one Mosquito remained at Bovingdon for several years, only flying out (after a hole had been drained in the tailplane to drain out the water) in late 1967; it remained in the first hangar on the left parked along with our gliders (we did several detachments at Bovingdon from Halton during this period) and on one occasion we all climbed in it.
I saw 633 on TV a few months ago; amazing what I missed; there was a freshly painted helicopter landing circle where the aircraft parked and as the camera panned round, I saw a long wheelbase Landrover parked near the hangars; neither of these existed during WW2 of course.

treadigraph
5th Sep 2022, 09:34
The B-25 in 633 Sqn was N9089Z which languished at Biggin Hill for a while before being acquired by Bill Fisher/HAPS and joining the Southend Museum. Since then she has languished at a number of other UK airfields as G-BKXW (Jeff Hawke, Aces High and Fighter Collection all owned her at one time or another) and she is now at the Wings Museum at Balcombe, hopefully gradually being restored for exhibition.

GeeRam
5th Sep 2022, 09:56
After 633, one Mosquito remained at Bovingdon for several years, only flying out (after a hole had been drained in the tailplane to drain out the water) in late 1967; it remained in the first hangar on the left parked along with our gliders (we did several detachments at Bovingdon from Halton during this period) and on one occasion we all climbed in it.


I suspect this was RS712, now owned by Kermit Weeks. After filming for 633 Squadron finished, this was bought from off of Mirisch Films by Grp.Capt H.A.Mahaddie, and it spent some time at Bovvy before being stored at Henlow and then West Malling. It was one of the airworthy Mossie's used in Mosquito Squadron back at Bovvy in 1968, and during this time it was used by Mahaddie so he could fly between filming sets on Battle of Britain which he was involved in sourcing the aircraft for. It was bought by the Strathallen Collection in 1972, where it stayed until sold off in the early 80's when bought by Weeks.

KING6024
5th Sep 2022, 10:12
The only time I saw the Mosquito fly was in 1962/3 when I just happenned to be on Watford High Street at about 1830 when a formation of 3/4 flew low level along the length of the High Street..At the time I knew nothing about the making of 633 Suadron..In the mid 1950s I often visited Bovingdon as a CCF cadet and flew several times in the Ansons and once in a Devon.

JEM60
5th Sep 2022, 11:07
Used to help a farmer friend in Little Missenden, Bucks, not far in a straight line from Bovingdon. Used to see the B.25 filming three or four Mosquitos regularly for a time. Good days!.

treadigraph
5th Sep 2022, 11:23
I suspect this was RS712, now owned by Kermit Weeks. After filming for 633 Squadron finished, this was bought from off of Mirisch Films by Grp.Capt H.A.Mahaddie, and it spent some time at Bovvy before being stored at Henlow

Another one mentioned by Neil Williams - when he flew the Hummingbird from Leavesden to Old Warden, he got as far as Henlow before another engine problem where it spent some time sharing a hangar with the Mossie...

OUAQUKGF Ops
5th Sep 2022, 12:24
Also noticed two Ansons at the end of the movie. Presumably these are the two now still airworthy?

I don't think so.
https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/900x565/screenshot_2022_09_05_at_13_15_03_raf_bovingdon_1960s_pprune _forums_5d6f563f6349146e4eccb2fd8c9560408dbb9cc7.png
TX227 became G-AWMH - Bound for Biafra but never made it - finally written off Liberia June 1969. VM329 was I suspect scrapped at Bovingdon.

WB627
5th Sep 2022, 14:07
Anson's remained in service until June 1968, at that time amongst other duties they were used to move V Force crew to the dispersed airfields. They were replaced by the Beagle Basset which was required to fly a five-man V-bomber crew, wearing full flying gear, and a ground crew member to the dispersed airfields including Malta. The RAF Spec included power operated air stairs, which I was told, compromised it's ability to carry said V Bomber crew in full kit, due to weight limitations.

https://cimg7.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/1024x691/bassett_cf0a34cb7c1c0d4892e62946e0beeac53e058512.jpg

chevvron
5th Sep 2022, 14:18
My two ATC Warrant Officers worked for Shorts at Bovingdon; they told me the stairs didn't work without giving them a kick.
And we all know the tale of the props hitting the ground under heavy braking.

OvertHawk
5th Sep 2022, 16:20
Which Mosquito movie had the Sikh pilot with the missing hand, I always thought he was a great character.

I think you're conflating two characters in 633 Sqn. There was indeed a Sikh pilot with a minor role but i'm pretty sure he had two hands. There was a British pilot with only one hand .

aw ditor
5th Sep 2022, 16:36
We were regularly beaten up' at KInloss during the making of 633Sqn.

GeeRam
5th Sep 2022, 20:46
I think you're conflating two characters in 633 Sqn. There was indeed a Sikh pilot with a minor role but i'm pretty sure he had two hands. There was a British pilot with only one hand .

Correct.
It was Flt.Lt. Scott played by John Bonney who had the hook hand.

The Flying Stool
5th Sep 2022, 22:45
I've never quite understood why people say Mosquito sqn is such a terrible film? I've seen both it and 633sqn many times and enjoy both. What is it about Mosquito sqn that makes it terrible?

chevvron
6th Sep 2022, 07:40
Best bit of flying I saw in '68 as I watched from my home in nearby Chesham was Farnborough's Shackleton MR3 which was being used as a camera ship chasing a Mossy round the skies

JEM60
6th Sep 2022, 08:09
Shack, MR3?? Never saw one fly!. Went all the way to Cape Town to a show that it was flying in. It got to the end of the runway at Ysterplatt, had a big mag drop and returned, never to be seen again [well, not by me!. I think it only flew once more!] B...ger!.

chevvron
6th Sep 2022, 09:26
Shack, MR3?? Never saw one fly!. Went all the way to Cape Town to a show that it was flying in. It got to the end of the runway at Ysterplatt, had a big mag drop and returned, never to be seen again [well, not by me!. I think it only flew once more!] B...ger!.
Frequent visitors at Bovingdon although I never seemed to see an MR2 there but I got a flight in one of those when I was at ATC Camp at Ballykelly in '63.

GeeRam
6th Sep 2022, 09:40
I've never quite understood why people say Mosquito sqn is such a terrible film? I've seen both it and 633sqn many times and enjoy both. What is it about Mosquito sqn that makes it terrible?

They are both pretty bad films and sadly typical of the budget 60's war movie genre.......its only the real Mosquito's in them that make them watchable (and Ron Goodwins musical score in 633 Sqn)......well for me.

DHfan
6th Sep 2022, 10:09
I have no problem with 633 Squadron which I first saw with my dad when it came out.

Mosquito Squadron I think is terrible but since I literally never watch it when it's on TV, which it is frequently, I'm not even sure why now.
I think it gets my back up to start with by being an obviously American writer with character names such as Quint and Wiley.
Really, for boys born in 1920s Britain?

WB627
6th Sep 2022, 12:07
I've never quite understood why people say Mosquito sqn is such a terrible film? I've seen both it and 633sqn many times and enjoy both. What is it about Mosquito sqn that makes it terrible?

The special effects were bad beyond belief :yuk: and the destruction of Mosquito airframes during the making of the film, was a crime against aviation :(

I make a point of not watching either of them for the above reasons.

Discorde
6th Sep 2022, 16:46
Here's a report on Mosquitos at Exeter (https://www.steemrok.com/airpic/mosquitos.html) from Air Pictorial Feb '63.

chevvron
7th Sep 2022, 12:46
Used to help a farmer friend in Little Missenden, Bucks, not far in a straight line from Bovingdon. Used to see the B.25 filming three or four Mosquitos regularly for a time. Good days!.
And before that, in 1961 we had 'The War Lover' flying overhead with 3 x B17s.

chevvron
7th Sep 2022, 12:48
I have no problem with 633 Squadron which I first saw with my dad when it came out.

Mosquito Squadron I think is terrible but since I literally never watch it when it's on TV, which it is frequently, I'm not even sure why now.
I think it gets my back up to start with by being an obviously American writer with character names such as Quint and Wiley.
Really, for boys born in 1920s Britain?
There were a lot of 'stock' shots in Mosquito Squadron provided by out takes from 633 Sqdn.

GeeRam
7th Sep 2022, 14:29
There were a lot of 'stock' shots in Mosquito Squadron provided by out takes from 633 Sqdn.

Which is why for Mosquito Squadron, they used the same HT-* codes on the 4 x Mossie's used for filming, so as to be able to use 633 Sqn footage.

People naturally think that Mosquito Squadron was a sequel to 633 Sqn for this and other reasons, but it wasn't really, it was just as way of keeping costs down on a budget film, so made sense to not re-invent the wheel.

Mosquito Squadron was actually the 3rd in a 5 film plan of war theme movies made in the late 60's on the back of the success of 633 Squadron.
From Wiki:
Encouraged by the worldwide success of 633 Squadron, producer Walter Mirisch proposed a series of British made films with a military theme having major American stars in the lead that would comply with the Eady Levy requirements and cost no more than US$1 million.

Attack on The Iron Coast starring Lloyd Bridges was the first of the series of John C. Champion (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_C._Champion)'s Oakmont Productions and began shooting in May 1967. The others were Submarine X-1 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Submarine_X-1), Hell Boats (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hell_Boats), Mosquito Squadron (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mosquito_Squadron), The Thousand Plane Raid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Thousand_Plane_Raid) and The Last Escape (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Escape_(1970_film)). Each of the films was approximately 90 minutes long making them suitable for half of a double feature (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_feature) and had a Hollywood star leading the cast.

treadigraph
7th Sep 2022, 14:35
Just reading Martin Caidin's Ragwings and Heavy Iron - mentions bringing the B-25 across the pond for 633 Squadron with Greg Board and flying a Me108 in the film....

Haraka
7th Sep 2022, 19:02
Just reading Martin Caidin's Ragwings and Heavy Iron - mentions bringing the B-25 across the pond for 633 Squadron with Greg Board and flying a Me108 in the film....
IIRC "Mitchells do Fly in IMC" documentary........

chevvron
7th Sep 2022, 19:11
IIRC "Mitchells do Fly in IMC" documentary........
Much later; used for the filming of 'Hanover Street' at Bovingdon in '78 or '79.

Haraka
8th Sep 2022, 06:08
Much later; used for the filming of 'Hanover Street' at Bovingdon in '78 or '79.
Thanks Chev, IIRC Jeff Hawke (RIP ) was the main player in that docu. .

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 08:14
Thanks Chev, IIRC Jeff Hawke (RIP ) was the main player in that docu. .
He was indeed... got a copy on DVD recently, better than my poor quality dodgy VHS to MP4 version... Remember seeing the B-25s lined up at Blackbushe after the filming of Hannover Street ended. Also think one of the 633 Sqn Mossies may have been there on that occasion, certainly recall seeing one in the hangar there at some point.

chevvron
8th Sep 2022, 08:19
He was indeed... got a copy on DVD recently, better than my poor quality dodgy VHS to MP4 version... Remember seeing the B-25s lined up at Blackbushe after the filming of Hannover Street ended. Also think one of the 633 Sqn Mossies may have been there on that occasion, certainly recall seeing one in the hangar there at some point.
Yes Doug Arnold acquired one of the Mossies; some people said he flew it but I doubt that because he wasn't very little; I got in one at Bovingdon and it was a tight fit for me at only 144lb at the time and I know Doug bought a Partenavia at one time and quickly got rid of it because (according to the pilot he engaged for a while) he couldn't get through the door!
I think Dougs Mossie is the one which ended up with Kermit Weeks in the USA.
As an aside, I met Doug's son at Fairoaks in about 2014 and (after mentioning his father used to own the airport) he told me he was running an aviation collection in the US.

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 08:39
Yes Doug Arnold acquired one of the Mossies; some people said he flew it but I doubt that because he wasn't very little; I got in one at Bovingdon and it was a tight fit for me at only 144lb at the time and I know Doug bought a Partenavia at one time and quickly got rid of it because (according to the pilot he engaged for a while) he couldn't get through the door!
I think Dougs Mossie is the one which ended up with Kermit Weeks in the USA.
As an aside, I met Doug's son at Fairoaks in about 2014 and (after mentioning his father used to own the airport) he told me he was running an aviation collection in the US.
Doug's Mossie is now with the USAF Museum, Kermit acquired his from Strathallan. I believe George Ellis ferried both of them across the Atlantic. Pretty sure David Arnold still has one or two of Doug's treasures squirelled away somewhere in the UK!

chevvron
8th Sep 2022, 10:43
Doug's Mossie is now with the USAF Museum, Kermit acquired his from Strathallan. I believe George Ellis ferried both of them across the Atlantic. Pretty sure David Arnold still has one or two of Doug's treasures squirelled away somewhere in the UK!
Definitely; I did hear mention of a Lincoln being re-built just before Doug died.

DH106
8th Sep 2022, 11:38
Definitely; I did hear mention of a Lincoln being re-built just before Doug died.

Could that be the same Lincoln parts of which were dumped behind a hanger at Sandtoft for quite a few years in the late 90's / early 2000's? I think there was a B-25 there dismantled as well.
I used to fly out of Sandtoft in those days.

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 12:51
Yep, the Lincoln is the Napier owned aircraft that was displayed at Southend. Doug Arnold had a cache of parts from several Lancasters and the Lincoln stored outside the WoGB hangar at Biggin for a while, then the Lincoln ended up at Sandtoft and is now in Australia - or bits of it are... Some of the Lancaster bits are with Kermit Weeks, he has at least an entire airframe (the ex Charles Church/Strathallan G-BCOH damaged at Woodford), other parts also went to Oz for the Lincoln rebuild out there.

Very sad to think what wonderful flying collections we had 30/40 years ago which have scattered...

chevvron
8th Sep 2022, 13:00
Could that be the same Lincoln parts of which were dumped behind a hanger at Sandtoft for quite a few years in the late 90's / early 2000's? I think there was a B-25 there dismantled as well.
I used to fly out of Sandtoft in those days.
Always co-incidences.
My brother was at ATC summer camp at Lindholme in 1961 only a few miles from Sandtoft and he told me there were several Lincolns dumped on the north side of that airfield.

DHfan
8th Sep 2022, 15:14
Isn't the ex-Sandtoft Lincoln rear fuselage with Kermit Weeks to replace the ex-Charles Church Lancaster fuselage that was destroyed in the Woodford (?) hangar collapse?

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 15:25
As far as I know Kermit's kit is all Lancaster though there was a plan to use part of the Lincoln before his acquisition. It's quite a plate of spaghetti!

GeeRam
8th Sep 2022, 17:03
As far as I know Kermit's kit is all Lancaster though there was a plan to use part of the Lincoln before his acquisition. It's quite a plate of spaghetti!

Correct.
After the hangar roof collapse, Charles Church acquired from a farm in Canada, the fuselage of Lancaster KB994 to use in the rebuild of KB976. Kermit Weeks acquired this along with all the non-damaged bits of KB976 as a job lot, and which is still all packed in the shipping crate, that it all arrived in in Florida some 30+ years ago.

The roof damaged mid-section of KB976's fuselage went to Australia for use in the rebuild of a Lincoln at Moorabbin. And the damaged rearmost section of KB976's fuselage is (or was) on display at Aeroventure in Doncaster.

GeeRam
8th Sep 2022, 17:27
Doug's Mossie is now with the USAF Museum, Kermit acquired his from Strathallan. I believe George Ellis ferried both of them across the Atlantic.

Correct, DA's was indeed RS709 that is now at Dayton.
I believe its the only Mosquito to have made 3 x transatlantic ferry flights, as after filming of Mosquito Sqn it was sold by Skyframe to Ed Jurist/CAF in the USA, but stayed in the UK until being flown from Luton, UK all the way to Harlingen in Texas in 1971, via the southern ferry route via the Azores. It changed hands again a few time before being bought by Doug Arnold in 1979, and it again made another ferry flight across the Atlantic back via the northern route to the UK arriving at Blackbushe in Nov 1979, via a beat up of Heathrow at the request of LHR ATC.
DA had it fully refurbed, and it flew again in 1983, before he sold it to the USAF Museum. It was George Aird that flew it back over the Atlantic for the 3rd and final time to the USAFM, not George Ellis. George Aird was a BAe TP and flew BAe' RR299 at displays, but was probably better known for being the DH TP seen banging out of this doomed Lightning near Hatfield in the early 60's....
https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune.org-vbulletin/600x705/118sqnpic205_40959bde625bc2d4295b0c2fa04789da0b66a5c4.jpg

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 17:49
It was George Aird

Brain fart! And he flew Kermit's across... George Ellis was a Shuttleworth pilot I think...

GeeRam
8th Sep 2022, 18:40
Brain fart! And he flew Kermit's across... George Ellis was a Shuttleworth pilot I think...

And Harry Ellis was the Chief Instructor on the Mosquito at CAACU at Exeter when the Mosquito's were retired in 1963, and was involved in checking out the pilots for the filming of 633 Squadron ;)

PPRuNeUser0154
8th Sep 2022, 21:24
In the 80's, 90's there was the nose of a Lincoln sporting laminar flow research kll markings and a B25 "Bedsheet Bomber" outside a hangar at North Weald.
The B25 was the film one. Was the Lincoln nose part of the Lincoln mentioned in this thread?
Bedsheet Bomber was often parked next to Dolly. Two camera B25 ships together.

POBJOY
8th Sep 2022, 21:46
And Harry Ellis was the Chief Instructor on the Mosquito at CAACU at Exeter when the Mosquito's were retired in 1963, and was involved in checking out the pilots for the filming of 633 Squadron ;)

My goodness if I had known they were still flyind Mossies at Exeter in 63 I would have hitch hiked down the A30 from Surrey in my ATC uniform and hung around for a flight.
As it was I used to go up to Northolt and fly from there. On one short flight from NH to Bovingdon we had to wait for a return trip so wandered around the airfield only to find two ex Exeter machines in a hangar having finished filming for 633 S. With the doors open and the ladders in place we skipped lunch and enjoyed another 'ground flight.'

treadigraph
8th Sep 2022, 21:56
Was the Lincoln nose part of the Lincoln mentioned in this thread?.

Yup, Aces High owned her for a bit - nose now with Flying Heritage Collection at Paine Field... not sure what the Aussies can do for a nose though they do have one there.

WB627
9th Sep 2022, 17:45
Both as a QFI in the Reserve of Instructors and after 1958 as an AEF pilot, my dad did an annual flying camp nearly every summer. Having been recommended for Mosquitos when he passed out at Cranwell, he found himself flying Dakotas. Having always wanted to fly a Mosquito, he fixed one of his annual camps at Exeter. The Mossie trip was organised with the CACU, but the weather was so bad the runway, grass at the time, was waterlogged and the Mossies were grounded. So he never got to fly one.

possel
11th Sep 2022, 14:28
Another one mentioned by Neil Williams - when he flew the Hummingbird from Leavesden to Old Warden, he got as far as Henlow before another engine problem where it spent some time sharing a hangar with the Mossie...
You mean Hatfield, not Henlow (as related in "Airborne" by Neil Williams). I was working at Hatfield at the time (73 or 74, I think) and saw him take-off for the leg to Old Warden. Henlow was mentioned in the story because he saw Henlow airfield, flew on for some minutes, looked down and saw an airfield, then realised that it was STILL Henlow!!

possel
11th Sep 2022, 14:42
Correct.
After the hangar roof collapse, Charles Church acquired from a farm in Canada, the fuselage of Lancaster KB994 to use in the rebuild of KB976. Kermit Weeks acquired this along with all the non-damaged bits of KB976 as a job lot, and which is still all packed in the shipping crate, that it all arrived in in Florida some 30+ years ago.

The roof damaged mid-section of KB976's fuselage went to Australia for use in the rebuild of a Lincoln at Moorabbin. And the damaged rearmost section of KB976's fuselage is (or was) on display at Aeroventure in Doncaster.
I visited East Kirkby recently and they have the rear fuselage of KB976 in a jig being repaired. The plan is that this winter they will fit that to NX611 (so that it remains taxiable), then repair the rear fuselage of NX611 in the same jig and swap them back again. They are doing the same sort of thing with the wings of NX664 at Le Bourget. This is all part of the plan to make NX611 airworthy with original components. Make donations at www.lincsaviation.co.uk (I have no connection with them other than I remember NX611 on the gate at Scampton...).

Jhieminga
12th Sep 2022, 08:16
Correct.
After the hangar roof collapse, Charles Church acquired from a farm in Canada, the fuselage of Lancaster KB994 to use in the rebuild of KB976. Kermit Weeks acquired this along with all the non-damaged bits of KB976 as a job lot, and which is still all packed in the shipping crate, that it all arrived in in Florida some 30+ years ago.

The roof damaged mid-section of KB976's fuselage went to Australia for use in the rebuild of a Lincoln at Moorabbin. And the damaged rearmost section of KB976's fuselage is (or was) on display at Aeroventure in Doncaster.
The Kermit Weeks Lancaster in kit form featured in a couple of videos a while ago:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tee6Bv4Z2HI
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVmw8RFgel4
They reshuffled the contents of some of the storage containers and used the opportunity to show what they've got. It's a long way from a complete Lancaster but as far as I can see, he appears to have a complete IKEA kit there.

Edit: if the Youtube videos don't want to play along, go to Kermit's YT channel here: https://www.youtube.com/c/KermitWeeks444/videos

Allan Lupton
12th Sep 2022, 10:19
I was working at Hatfield at the time (73 or 74, I think) and saw him take-off for the leg to Old Warden. Henlow was mentioned in the story because he saw Henlow airfield, flew on for some minutes, looked down and saw an airfield, then realised that it was STILL Henlow!!
To continue thread drift, that seems to fit historically: I think I remember that in the 1920s, when the Hummingbird was new, Geoffrey de Havilland was flying one home across Belgium when he was overtaken by a goods train.

DHfan
12th Sep 2022, 10:40
It was the Hummingbird that finally convinced Geoffrey de Havilland that motorcycle engines or similar were never going to be any good to power a practical light aircraft.

Off he went to Frank Halford with the idea for the Cirrus.

chevvron
12th Sep 2022, 11:08
It was the Hummingbird that finally convinced Geoffrey de Havilland that motorcycle engines or similar were never going to be any good to power a practical light aircraft.

Off he went to Frank Halford with the idea for the Cirrus.
I owned a Monnet Moni in 1986; 30 bhp 2 stroke similar to the Hummingbird (don't know what the 'RAC' HP rating was) and cruised at about 90mph so it can be done. I remember someone flying the Hummingbird at Farnbrough in (I think) 1970; I was there as a spectator 4 years before I was posted in there. It only managed a straight flight then landed at the far end of the runway!
Second thoughts, maybe that was the EE Wren I'm thinking of.

Haraka
12th Sep 2022, 11:46
I remember the E.E. Wren flown by IIRC Joan Hughes doing this.......

treadigraph
12th Sep 2022, 11:57
You mean Hatfield, not Henlow (as related in "Airborne" by Neil Williams). I was working at Hatfield at the time (73 or 74, I think) and saw him take-off for the leg to Old Warden. Henlow was mentioned in the story because he saw Henlow airfield, flew on for some minutes, looked down and saw an airfield, then realised that it was STILL Henlow!!
Time for me to re-read Airborne! :ok:

possel
16th Sep 2022, 14:43
To continue thread drift, that seems to fit historically: I think I remember that in the 1920s, when the Hummingbird was new, Geoffrey de Havilland was flying one home across Belgium when he was overtaken by a goods train.
According to Martin Sharp's biography of DH, it was Alan Cobham who was flying it at the time - he was not impressed!

BTW, in fact, I worked with you Allan when I was at Hatfield! We used to pop up to the Waggoners(?) for a sandwich/beer at lunchtime in your Marcos Mini.

Allan Lupton
16th Sep 2022, 15:21
According to Martin Sharp's biography of DH, it was Alan Cobham who was flying it at the time - he was not impressed!
i.
I stand corrected!
I could digress a bit more on the Hummingbird, but won't.

yarmouth1010
17th Sep 2022, 13:44
Getting back to the 633 Mosquito thread

During that time, Taffy Rich was one of my flying instructors at the Norfolk and Norwich Aero Club, RAF Swanton Morley.

As well as Taffy there were other instructors, and the CFI who came with a wealth of WW2 flying experience that I can discuss later.

However, Taffy could be described as a " fiery little Welshman", but he had a wealth of experience flying spitfires in the high altitude reconnaissance role during WW2.

He owned a 2 seat Spitfire and he always told me that he would take me up in it one day.

The machine was kept in a hanger at RAF Swanton Morley and I went to see it every time I was at the airfield,

Then requirements of his insurance was that any passengers had to have a PPL, and as my PPL training was a bit elongated, by the time I had achieved it, unfortunately for me Taffy had been forced to sell his spitfire, so, no back seat spitfire rides for me.

During this time the film 633 squadron was being made and the mosquitoes would occasionally arrive at Swanton.

At the time I was working at a well known department store in the center of Norwich and one afternoon the peaceful sky above Norwich was disturbed by three mossies', led by Taffy showing the city what the mossies' were all about.

It was a short lived, but remarkable display that stopped everyone in their tracks.

Yarmouth

PPRuNeUser0154
17th Sep 2022, 18:44
I remember the E.E. Wren flown by IIRC Joan Hughes doing this.......
There was a very nice display of the Wren earlier this year at Old Warden. Did several circuits of the airfield at a height of 20-30 feet or so. It was actually quite impressive for something with so little power.

OUAQUKGF Ops
17th Sep 2022, 20:06
Good story yarmouth 1010 - keep them coming !

condor17
28th Sep 2022, 09:37
Yarmouth , fully agree with AQ, UK, GF ... [ don't know OU ? ] Ops .. Keep 'em coming .
Read Taffy Rich [ a name I'd not heard in 50 yrs ] and realised S.M. connection .
As a land scout won an Air scout Nav badge ,[ course in the running Valleta at Horsham St Faith , ''NWI'' ] , top 3 got to Nav. a flt of 3 a/c from SM on a flyby of a Scout fete in NW 'Naarfick .
Was in a Rallye , me in back Naving . " Pilots , FIs , scout leaders up front... Taffy Rich ? Would have been '66-'68 ish..
Got to fly myself out of Felthorpe and Seething after '71.

Yarmouth , is that the 'Naaridge equivalent of H.A. Rods .... J.AR. Rolds ? Dad was a printer with them for 40 + yrs .

GeeRam , remember that shot in the Daily Express when it happened all those years ago .

Mossy connection , seeing Kermit Weeks a/c being prepped and air tested out of Booker , before ferrying to the US in the '80s.

rgds condor .

yarmouth1010
28th Sep 2022, 10:46
Condor 17

Yes it was Jarrolds..
I did a stint there before moving on to BY at LTN.

My job was to gather up school books that had been ordered by schools all over the eastern counties.

Once gathered books/ pens/pencils were all sent to the packing department for packaging and posting.
The packaging department was manned by 2 gents who were dispatched downstairs to be father Christmas's during the Christmas season.
These gents also did printing from memory so one may have been your father.

OU was Court Line.
Yarmouth

chevvron
28th Sep 2022, 11:23
I owned a Monnet Moni in 1986; 30 bhp 2 stroke similar to the Hummingbird (don't know what the 'RAC' HP rating was) and cruised at about 90mph so it can be done. I remember someone flying the Hummingbird at Farnbrough in (I think) 1970; I was there as a spectator 4 years before I was posted in there. It only managed a straight flight then landed at the far end of the runway!
Second thoughts, maybe that was the EE Wren I'm thinking of.
The Hummingbird was rated at 26hp so not too different from the Moni.

bean
28th Sep 2022, 12:08
Condor
OU was Autair, latterly Court Line

OUAQUKGF Ops
28th Sep 2022, 15:51
Yarmouth 1010 - Scuse the thread drift. But my first job before I joined Autair at LTN was as an assistant at Weatherhead's Bookshop in Aylesbury . They had the contract to supply all the Library and School Books for North Bucks. I used to spend one day a week delivering books to village schools all over North Bucks, in those days a beautiful unspoilt county. Weatherhead's paid for my Driving Lessons - I drove a Hillman Husky Estate.

bean
29th Sep 2022, 08:16
OUAQUKGFOPS
Just a heads up that i"ve sent you a pm on another matter. Thanks
Bean

yarmouth1010
30th Sep 2022, 11:25
OUAQUKGF Ops.
I have a distinct feeling we have met in the past;
However, returning to; the Norfolk and Norwich Aero Club, RAF Swanton Morley.
As I mentioned earlier the CFI was a local business man. His name was Peter M and he had completed two tours in bomber command, his second tour being a master bomber in the Pathfinder Force on the Lancaster and I believe Mosquitoes. He had been awarded the DFC.

Peter was involved in some of my PPL training and his name is in my log book when he signed me off to fly the MS 880B Rallye and the DH Chipmonk..
Peter also gave me some oportunites to be involved in his later operation at NWI.

The company was called BY Air and I did some aircraft cleaning and some office work in return for RHS rides wherever possible.

I have just checked my log book and on 1st Sept 1970 I was sitting in the RHS in G-AVJG a C337 en-route St, Mawgan - NWI and Peter was flying.
As we came abeam Bristol, ATC said to look down to our left and we we see one of the development Concordes downwind for Filton.
We looked down and there she was, slowly overtaking us about 1000 below, So, would you believe it, this was the one occasion when I did not have my camera with me and was not able to take some air-to-air shots with a Concorde.

Another memory of Peter was the rollicking I got when I arrived back from a local flight and having refueled and put the aircraft away I was hauled over the coals for taxing too fast. Peter said, tongue in cheek, that I had been taxing like an instructor.

Another story about Peter was, a few years later he was aware of my job in BY Ops and he called me to say that he and his wife were travelling on a BY flight to Spain on Holiday and could we meet up prior to his flight.
Unfortunately I could not meet him that day, so I asked one of the girls in the terminal if they could look after him and his wife.
They certainly did that and I received a letter a few weeks later thanking the traffic staff and the flight crew for they way they looked after them during their check in and subsequent flight.
Peter was an absolute gentleman and I feel proud to have known him.
The BY traffic girl who looked after him, also contacted me and said what a delight it had been to look after a gentleman such as Peter M.
It was all a long time ago and I am not sure if Peter is still with us. The last I knew of him was he and his wife had retired to the Isle Of Sky to run a pub.

Yarmouth

chevvron
30th Sep 2022, 11:34
OUAQUKGF Ops.
.
As we came abeam Bristol, ATC said to look down to our left and we we see one of the development Concordes downwind for Filton.
We looked down and there she was, slowly overtaking us about 1000 below, So, would you believe it, this was the one occasion when I did not have my camera with me and was not able to take some air-to-air shots with a Concorde.


I got a reasonable air to air shot on a flight out of Farnborough once. It was a Victor towing 3 x Jaguars as we slowly overtook about 2000 ft above; we were in the BAC 1-11 going out to Lands End on a trial and shortly after I got a shot of Dartmoor prison too.
NB We weren't supposed to carry cameras with us either in RAE or on flights so don't tell on me.:=

OUAQUKGF Ops
30th Sep 2022, 15:07
Yarmouth 1010 I have sent you a PM - check box top right of home page.

condor17
30th Sep 2022, 15:36
'Scuse thread drift .
Chevvron , as all 3 are retired , probably statute of limitations is expired ..

Yarmouth , That was probably the MS880B Rallye , got to FI in one 50 yrs later .
Peter M , did he have a C421 Golden Eagle op. in 1971 at NWI ?
I did cleaning / manual ammending volunteering that autumn between abandoning Eng. at uni. and starting Hamble .
Wondered if the ending was you'd married the BY 'gurl , and she's with you now ?
Dad a Lithographer at print works , Riverside . Remember staff kids parties with Santa , and in store . Not my dad !
Tongue in cheek , 'wot's the NZ story ? Bit far from Naarfick , Bor.

Bean and Quagga Ops [ 'scuse spelling ] thanks for Autair/Court link .. Did a few Court rescues to Almeria etc. in Autumn '74 with underused T1cs .
Still Christmas card in touch with a Court 'gurl , who along with about 40 others came to start the BA Shuttle in Jan '75 .
1st car a Hillman Husky/Imp Van .

Brgds guys ,
condor.
PS , trying to get a 'foto in for Yarmouth .. May take a while .
PPS , Mozzie link .. There were an awful lot of Very Big Mozzies when I were a boy in Naarfick , huge swellings when bitten !

Fonsini
9th Oct 2022, 10:06
I think you're conflating two characters in 633 Sqn. There was indeed a Sikh pilot with a minor role but i'm pretty sure he had two hands. There was a British pilot with only one hand .

I think you’re correct - ahh the fog of time.