Monday 18th September - Air Commodore Graham Pitchfork -
"Behind Enemy Lines - RAF Evaders"
Graham makes a welcome return with true stories of RAF and Commonwealth aircrews of WW2. He served in the RAF for 36 years, was a Director of Military Intelligence at the MoD and is the author of many books. This well illustrated presentation benefits from Graham’s usual detailed research and follows talks here on the Buccaneer, Men Behind the Medals and the Battle of Britain.
Graham’s associated book ‘Shot Down and on the Run’ has recently been republished in softback and it is hoped that copies will be available on the night.
SEPTEMBER WILL BE OUR FINAL MEETING AT THE STABLES.
PLEASE SEE THE ANNOUNCEMENT ON THE HOME PAGE
ABOUT THE NEW VENUE, THE REDUCED ATTENDANCE FEE
AND THE CHANGE TO THE REGULAR MEETING DAY EFFECTIVE FROM AND INCLUDING THE OCTOBER MEETING
Speaker details to be announced
Monday 15th May – Michael Draper –
‘Biafra – The Air War & Relief Airlift’.
Biafra between 1967 and 1970 remains one of the many forgotten African wars of the second half of the twentieth century. Michael’s well-illustrated talk was based on his personal involvement and covered particularly the air bridge of arms and food supplies to the Biafran enclave. Aircraft involved included the Constellation, DC6, Stratofreighter and Dakota as well as military Mig-17s and MFI Minicons. The talk was followed by a showing of the 45 minute award-winning documentary “Jesus Christ Airlines”
Monday 24th April - Rod Dean –
‘Flying and Displaying Vintage Jet Aircraft’
Rod made a welcome return with the fourth of his talks, this time based on his practical flying experience of jet display flying. Following his RAF and Gulf States service he continued on the display circuit until recently. His favourite type, the Hunter, featured together with the Meteor, Vampire, Venom, Canadair T33 and Sabre. As usual Rod’s lively presentation had been meticulously researched and well illustrated with many photos from his personal collection. For more information just type Rod’s name in your favourite web browser.
Monday 20th March - Jeremy Graham –
‘Westlands – Horseless Carriage to Helicopter’
Following a management career with Agusta Westland - now part of the Leonardo Group - Jeremy was well qualified to present a history of the Company and the surprisingly wide range of aircraft involved. The Company celebrated a centenary of aircraft construction at the Yeovil factory in 2015. Jeremy’s well researched and illustrated talk reviewed all the major types manufactured emphasising wartime operations, UK and other users and recent contracts on the Merlin and Wildcat.
Monday 20th February 2017 - Paul Beaver -
‘Winkle : A life at full throttle.’
Author and broadcaster Colonel Paul Beaver was a close friend of Captain Eric Brown and this informative and entertaining presentation included new stories from the colourful life of the unique test pilot and past patron of BWAG. Paul is currently writing Eric’s biography and his well illustrated talk was derived from research resulting from unrestricted access to both personal and professional records of the nation’s greatest pilot.
Included was be additional information on Eric’s later work in Germany and in the United States at Patuxent River Naval Air Station. An evening much enjoyed by a capacity audience.
This photo of Eric was taken when he spoke at a BWAG meeting.
Monday 16th January 2017 - James S Mason
‘Accident in Antarctica’
James Mason has made a study of the loss of Air New Zealand DC10 ZK-NZP which crashed into Mount Erebus in Antarctica on the 28th November 1979. James first dealt with the incident, the background and post crash investigations which led to a Royal Commission of Inquiry. The second part of the well illustrated presentation described a modern logistics flight on a USAF C17 made by the speaker and the Memorial established at Scott Base to mark the 30th anniversary of the incident.
There are further details of James's talk on the Magazine Section of this site
Monday 12th December 2016 - Christopher Balfour
“Portsmouth Airport, Isle of Wight Airways and the Aerocar – Why No More?"
This was a rare opportunity to hear first hand from the son of one of the founders of PSIOWA on a key period in local aviation history. Christopher’s talk covered the period from 1932 to 1950, including the effects of the outbreak of war.
He described the beginnings, the challenges and particularly the reasons why all three projects came an end. There was the usual time at the end for questions from the audience.
Monday 21st November 2016 - Simon Jessett -
‘From Harriers to Falcons - Military Flying in the Modern Era
Simon entered the RAF from school and prior to concluding his career as a Wing Commander flew over 2000 hours in the Harrier, including missions enforcing no-fly zones over Iraq and as a participant in the Nato bombing of Kosovo. In 2010, within months of his appointment as commander of No.4 Squadron, the scrapping of the Harrier prompted his own retirement from the service. Now Falcon 20 Captain and Head of Training at Cobham Air Services, Simon’s continuing military involvement gave the well-attended meeting further fascinating insights into the evolving role of air power in defence. A memorable evening!
Monday 17th October 2016 –
Captain Phil Nelson – ‘The Vulcan’
Completing his series on the Cold War Bombers Phil
mades a welcome return. With practical experience as a pilot on the Vulcan, Victor and Canberra he was very well qualified to deliver the presentation with his customary mix of fact and humour. Phil gave us an interesting and entertaining evening on this iconic aircraft.
Monday 19th September 2016 – Fred Hoskins
'The Malayan Emergency, 33 Squadron and the Hornet'
This was a rare opportunity to hear first hand recollections of RAF involvement in one of the UK’s many forgotten post WW2 conflicts. Fred was a DH Hornet pilot in Malaya and later commanded 103 Squadron with Whirlwind helicopters during the Borneo confrontation. The presentation included an overview of the twelve year Malayan emergency, its causes and associated air operations, with a firm focus on 33 Squadron, the Hornet, and life at RAF Butterworth.
An excellent start to our 2016/17 Prgramme.
Monday 16th May 2016 - Kim Sharman -
‘A Day in the Life of an Airline Pilot’.
This was another excellent evening following Kim’s interesting and entertaining earlier presentations on life as a Cold War RN pilot and on the impact of the Boeing 747 Jumbo Jet. A second career as a 747 Captain with Cathay Pacific and current lecturing on the cruise ship circuit provided background for a fascinating review of an airline pilot’s day interspersed with many anecdotes in Kim’s individual and professional style.
Monday 18th April 2016 - Rod Dean -
'The Hunter in Detail'
The presentation examined in remarkabledetail the design, development and operational service of various marks of the iconic Hawker Hunter. Rod was extremely well qualified to present the subject having flown the type in the RAF and later in the Gulf States and as a UK display pilot. As with his similar talk on the Spitfire last year excellent graphics, many photographs and personal recollections enhanced the story. Rod has wide experience of flying fast jets and in flying display management.