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Admiral Sir Brian Brown - Flying Pusser

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Admiral Sir Brian Brown - Flying Pusser

Old 6th May 2020, 11:38
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Admiral Sir Brian Brown - Flying Pusser

I hope there are no objections to me posting this here.

I had the privilege of knowing Sir Brian, who died last this week, some years after his retirement. I knew he was a former Second Sea Lord and former Supply Branch Officer. I was surprised when in one of our conversations he turned to his experience of deck landing Sea Hawks.

As we never discussed the details of his career I have had to rely on Wikipedia for the following.

In the middle of the 1950s, due to a shortage of trained aircrew, the Royal Navy selected a small number of supply branch officers for aircrew training. Brian Brown was one of these (another Andrew Richmond also achieved flag rank). In addition to training units he flew Sea Hawks with 898 Naval Air Squadron and on 898’s disbandment, he volunteered for a switch to rotary which included flying Whirlwinds with 848 NAS.

He returned to the supply branch after four years with the FAA. His aviation connections continued as he had appointments as Secretary to FOCAS and Chief Staff Officer (P&A) to FONAC. Unusually, when Commander(S) onboard HMS Tiger he occasionally flew as second pilot in 826 NAS Sea Kings due to aircrew shortage. I think that may have caused some interesting CRM dynamics.

In my (limited) experience Brian Brown was a true gentleman with a wide range of interests and causes he supported. I knowingly incurred his displeasure only once; this involved my relating a story, in his hearing, in which I used the word crab. He, correctly, expected me to have a more purple outlook.

The training of aircrew for such a short period in frontline appointments was a solution of its time, I suspect it would give today’s bean counters apoplexy when considering the limited return on training costs. I understand that in the late 60s there were also a small number of pussers who were trained as rotary aircrew – anyone on here know more?

I will shortly return to goofers before I am chased out of the crew room.
SLXOwft is offline  
Old 6th May 2020, 22:52
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Originally Posted by SLXOwft View Post
I hope there are no objections to me posting this here.

I had the privilege of knowing Sir Brian, who died last this week, some years after his retirement. I knew he was a former Second Sea Lord and former Supply Branch Officer. I was surprised when in one of our conversations he turned to his experience of deck landing Sea Hawks.

As we never discussed the details of his career I have had to rely on Wikipedia for the following.
....which is well worth a read on it own, namely https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brian_...l_Navy_officer)

Originally Posted by SLXOwft View Post
The training of aircrew for such a short period in frontline appointments was a solution of its time, I suspect it would give today’s bean counters apoplexy when considering the limited return on training costs. I understand that in the late 60s there were also a small number of pussers who were trained as rotary aircrew – anyone on here know more?

I will shortly return to goofers before I am chased out of the crew room.
More early 1960s I believe, and the names of Commodore Noel (Jimmy) James and Captain Stuart Thompson come to mind, although the former, sadly no longer with us, later transferred to the Seaman Specialisation and commanded HMS ROTHESAY as a Commander and RNAS Culdrose as a Captain.

Jack
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Old 7th May 2020, 11:46
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Thumbs up

Jack,

Thanks for the info and adding the link.
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Old 7th May 2020, 16:51
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Lengthy obit in The Times today.

Admiral Sir Brian Brown obituary

RIP



Lyneham Lad is offline  
Old 7th May 2020, 21:20
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I too knew Sir Brian and can echo the OP’s comments. What a true Gentleman, exceptionally bright and witty - he would no doubt have reached the top of the tree in whatever profession he chose. An RN man through and through.

RIP Sir, you deserve it - your last few years were a challenge to say the least.

TN.
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Old 8th May 2020, 07:39
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It sounds an interesting career diversion, when I read the title in the thread "Flying Pusser" I immediately thought of the "Pusser's Pair" Gazelle Display team which ran in the '80s and '90s.

God rest you Sir Brian.

FB
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