NB THE DATE FOR THE REUNION IS 19
I tried to arrange it for 12
but that was not suitable for the church.
Sorry for any inconvenience caused
As expected, another cold day in November for the reunion but we still had a good attendance. Some people prefer to attend their local service, especially if they live far afield. One or two of our veterans were not well enough to attend and others cried off expecting it to be very cold. The squadron members, loyal as usual, were there even though they attended a service at Selby beforehand. It is often difficult for them coping with duties overseas and several Remembrance Day services throughout their district but we can always count on them to come to Pollington, looking smart as usual. As for the ATC squadron, they hurried from a previous parade in Goole and managed to be with us in time to do the usual duties. They were also smartly turned out.
The service at church was taken by Rev. Peter Warren who, I gather, complimented the congregation on the singing. Stripes all round!
Lessons were read by S/L SD. Bower. L Commander Mission Crew and Training and Alan Davies and the books were paraded by members of the RAF. Claire Bramley played the Last Post and Veteran Bob Wareing laid the wreath.
On leaving the church, the ATC formed a Guard of Honour as everyone made their way to the Memorial Garden. Once there, the ATC took up positions ready to lower the flags at the appropriate time and also to be on hand with the plaques.
Rev.Warren dedicated the Memorial Stone and the flags were lowered to half mast. A number of wreaths were laid including one from the serving squadron by S/L Bower, Derek Oliver on behalf of the Association, John Rose for 51 sqn Snaith, RAF for 150 sqn Snaith in the absence of any 150 vets,, Michael Hesp for the Garden Committee, Tim Skate for the Villagers, Mrs. Reynolds for Doncaster RAF, representatives of the E. Riding C.C. Mia Biddle and Jacob Nicholson, children of Pollington/Balne Primary School and Luke and Amy Williamson and Zoe Megson from Snaith Primary School. A number of wreaths were laid around the garden by relatives and friends and Gp Capt Paton (retired) and Wing Commander Crosby helped out with the absentees. The garden looked a picture of colour. Crosses were laid at the base of each flagpole by Wm. Ball for the Australians, Douglas Callum for the UK, Tony Fallows for the Canadians and Bob Pickford for the New Zealanders.
The flags were raised to full mast and Reveille played, again by Claire Bramley.
Just one plaque for inclusion this time and that was for Sgt Ken Davies who passed away recently. The plaque was placed by his nephew Stephen Bridges.
The standard was paraded and people were moving around the garden looking at all the wreaths.
Everyone made their way to the Village Hall looking forward to a hot drink and a feast which the ladies had been preparing all morning. Again, the ATC formed a Guard of Honour before taking up their usual positions with trays of refreshments.
Sadly we have to report another of our veterans has passed away. Eddie Hilton had a car accident a little while ago and never seemed to recover properly. He had two heart attacks/strokes and passed away soon afterwards in hospital. I sent as card on your behalf to his family. Eddie was always a keen supporter of our cause and a regular attendee at the reunions. He will be sadly missed.
Eddie’s Own Epitaph
Yet, if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve
For if the darkness and corruption leave
Some vestige of the thoughts that I once had
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.
Tom Bayfield DFC
We also have to report the death of Tom Bayfield who was Gunnery Leader in 51 sqn. Tom has been in a nursing home for a few years along with his wife Connie. I have been sending newsletters to him but was not aware of his passing. Tom was always very interested in the things going on at Pollington and was a regular attendee until he became ill.
Another veteran passed away on 11
/November 2012. Fred Heathfield, a Pilot and POW was in regular touch with the Belgian boys but unfortunately did not correspond with us so we were unaware of his passing. Alan had a nice letter from him when he sent Fred a medal. He had a very interesting war and his granddaughter is writing a book on it, I believe.
Harold Hanlon used to live in Pollington and was a great friend of Peter Hinchliffe. Harold was a regular attendee at the reunions until he went to live nearer to his family and then he was not well enough to join us. Sadly his daughter called to say he had passed away peacefully early on 15
February 2013. We will miss him.
MACR Dave Cocker
We are also sad to report the death of MACR Dave Cocker of the serving 51 squadron who passed away in January after a short illness. His family, supported by the squadron hope to place a plaque in the garden later in the year. Dave has attended
some of the reunions at Pollington. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.
Can anyone tell us about the families of the following:-
Mike Chamberlain, son of Fl/Lt D. Chamberlain, Navigator is trying to contact members of 51 sqn who served at Snaith - or their families.
If anyone can help, please contact Renee. or email firstname.lastname@example.org
a, whose HQ is based at Cowick Hall has decided to allow a group of their workers to spend time during working hours to help local community groups. We, PAMG had the benefit of their help at the garden when they arranged to come and paint the fence/benches etc and also to supply the paint, free. We are very grateful to them and to Croda for their kindness and generosity.
King John ruled the country from Cowick Hall for 6 months during his reign.
Alan, our Chairman/Treasurer would like to bring you up to date with a few words about the plaque project which is nearing completion and this is what he says.
Plaques and Plinths
Our maintenance/renewal programme continues with increasing effectiveness.
We find the wooden plinths, invariably hardwood and stand up well over the years, no doubt a combination of sandy soil, the plastic tubes they stand in and refreshing coats of preservative serves them well.
The gold/black plates are now very much in the minority as they are replaced by the silver/black material which is much more stable for plates of a larger size.
Mick Hesp`s discovery of a method to `refresh` certain silver/black plates is now applied to `recover` some of the older ones.
Donations to funds
We were extremely fortunate in 2012 and the Committee wishes to thank all our friends and supporters for their generosity large and small.
New Visitors Book plinth and Airfield Map plate
A magnificent feature now stands in the Garden thanks to Mick Hesp`s design and masterly handling of the materials which were not cheap.
A large stainless steel plate engraved with the Squadron Crests for 51 and 150 Squadrons together with all the detail of the wartime airfield: Runways; Perimeter tracks; Dispersal Pans; Hangers and all the Administrative buildings tops the feature.
This informative plate rests on a slab of polished black granite which matches the Memorial Stone and below this capping slab is the square stone plinth which houses the Visitors book.
A superb feature which fits with the themes the Committee strive to bring to the Gardens appearance - quietly Impressive and Informative.
Thank you Alan.
News of 2357 Squadron ATC.
Flight Lieutenant Adrian Owen has once again taken up the reins at Goole and we look forward to the squadron continuing to be part of our ‘family’ at Pollington. We could not manage without their help and the veterans are always pleased to see them
taking over where they left off. The serving squadron are pleased to help them in any way possible.
We had a very nice surprise from our friends in Australia. Mr. Snowdon, MP and his assistant, Vince Jeisman sent me a parcel of books, stamps, calendars etc. etc. The books will be on display at the reunion on Isabel’s table. They are always so generous and helpful. Vince and I often have a joke about cricket – especially if we win!!! He now tells me that we are rivals in Darts so I shall have to brush up on darts! Many thanks to both of them.
Renee also had letters from Geoff Flack who was a pilot in 51 sqn flying out of Snaith. He likes to be kept in the loop and passes information on to friends. Hi Geoff. I once told him that as a little girl – many moons ago – I used to wave to the bombers as they were taking off for their bombing missions. At the time I thought they would be waving to me but now understand that was not the case – they were far too busy ! He often refers to it. Geoff has not been well recently but we hope he will soon be back on track. I try to send him regular emails and if anyone wants to contact him, let me know and I will give you his email although he is not always able to respond.
A local gentleman very kindly donated a generous sum of money for the funds and he often takes friends to look at the garden as he is very impressed with what takes place there. We would like to thank him for his generosity and assure him the money will be put to good use.
Thank you to all our supporters who kindly send stamps. They are all much appreciated and you can be sure they will be put to good use.
The serving 51 sqn kindly send out the newsletters which go by post. A number of names have been deleted as we do not have any feedback from them and indeed, are not aware they still want copies. Should anyone wish to be reinstated on that list, please inform Renee and she will put the names on again. ~We are trying to keep cost of postage down which these days is a costly item.
We have applied for a flypast by the Lancaster but are still awaiting a reply . Fingers crossed.
We also have been offered a display of remote controlled aircraft – Lancaster, Halifax and Wellington with 8 foot wing spans. We tried to fix up a landing strip! The only possible suitable spot is the car park behind the memorial which belongs to Kelkay. Mr. Harker kindly offers us the use as a car park but we will need to see if it is suitable before I ask permission for a/c.
At the latest count, it is thought that the car park will not be long enough but if not, then the Halifax, Wellington and Lancaster will be on show on stands. Watch this space.
It is hoped that the Red Goose beer will be on sale at the Brewers’ Arms so bear that in mind on the day. Many photographs are also on show there and thanks to the printer in Snaith, Andrew Newton.
Alun Emlyn Jones wants to know if anyone has heard about a new clasp which has been in the news. Apparently veterans who were awarded medals for France and Germany are now eligible for a new clasp and with help of Sandy Colley I have downloaded the application form if anyone wishes to have one. By the time you receive this you will probably know all about it. Next of kin are entitled to apply. Sorry but there is, again, no clasp for ground crews.
Also I understand that the Heroes Return is to be a available again but as yet, details are sparse so keep an eye on the media. You can contact Heroes Return helpline on 0845 00 00 121. It is possible if you do not wish to go abroad, you can visit the new memorial in London. Another person is allowed to accompany you as a carer.
All the news for now
See you in May.
Regards from us all at PAMGC
POLLINGTON AIRFILD MEMORIAL GARDEN
Mrs. P, SKATE,
16, OAKWOOD PARK
TEL 01405 869576 E MAIL email@example.com
The next reunion will take place on Sunday 19
The order of events will be as follows:-
1045 hrs Service at Pollington Church
Seats to be taken by 1035 please.
1200 hrs Short service at the airfield
Dedication of plaques and wreath laying
1330 hrs Buffet Lunch at the Village Hall.
Tear off and return please…………………………………………………………
I require………………….lunches at £5 per head Veterans £2.50 (veterans of 51 and 150 sqns only)
Names of Visitors……………………………………………………………………….
Please return to Mrs. P. Skate at the above address not later than Monday 6
May 2013 please. Remember we are usually short of room so don’t be late!
PLEASE KEEP GROUPS TO NO MORE THAN 4 PEOPLE
IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT YOU ORDER A LUNCH IF YOU REQUIRE ONE
PLEASE MAKE CHEQUES OUT TO PAMGC AND NOT TO INDIVIDUALS.