Few partnerships between our business and the Royal Air Force are as enduring as our partnership with 41 Test and Evaluation Squadron.
This squadron is dedicated to ensuring Typhoon remains a world-leading multi-role combat aircraft and sees RAF personnel working alongside our people to deliver its capability.
Today, this partnership sees us working alongside 41 Squadron personnel on Project Centurion, which will ensure Typhoon is equipped to replace the Tornado GR4 when it retires in 2019.
The squadron's connections to both Typhoon and Tornado go back to 2006 when it operated the Tornado F3 and GR4, before becoming a Typhoon squadron in 2013.
The squadron served with distinction in the Second World War, operating the Supermarine Spitfire built by our predecessor companies.
One of its pilots, Flt Lt Eric Lock, was the most successful RAF pilot during the Battle of Britain.
Many of you will know that we requested places on this year’s Annual Remembrance Day marchpast at the Cenotaph. We were allocated a total of 15 places and, to date, we’ve got 7 people requesting places. We will be confirming these places with the Royal British Legion in the next few weeks and instructions for the whole day will then be sent by the Legion directly to your email account.
If you have any ex-41 Squadron colleagues who you think may be interested in the remaining places, then please do not hesitate to make contact with them.
Wing Commander Tom Neil DFC*, AFC, one of the last of the Few and a regular visitor to the Battle of Britain Memorial in recent years, has died.
Wg Cdr Neil, who died on Wednesday evening (11 July), just three days before his 98th birthday, flew Hurricanes with No 249 Squadron throughout the Battle of Britain.
A pre-war member of the RAFVR, he is credited with having destroyed more than 17 enemy aircraft, most of them during the Battle. He went on to see further action in Malta, where he commanded No 41 Squadron.
Wg Cdr Neil returned to the UK to fly Spitfires over the Channel and elsewhere during 1943. Attached to the American 9th Air Force in 1944, he took part in the invasion of Normandy and remained with the USAAF until the Allies reached the German border. He later saw action in Burma.
After the war, Wing Cdr Neil spent four years as a service test pilot. He has flown more than 100 types of aircraft.
Wg Cdr Neil leaves three married sons, Terence, Patrick and Ian. His wife Eileen died in 2014.
A private cremation is expected to be followed by a later memorial service for Wing Cdr Neil and his late wife.
A memorial service remembering the 35th Anniversary of the bus crash, in the Black Forest, that claimed the lives of 6 people . Organised by the Spirit of Coltishall Association and well supported by 41(R) TES, the effort that goes into these services is greatly appreciated by the families and friends. The earlier photos are in Scottow Cemetery with the later ones being in a memorial garden near the school at RAF Coltishall, six new cherry trees have been planted and it is looking very good thanks to the SOCA members.
I would like to extend an invitation from the Spirit of Coltishall Association to those members of our Association who would be interested in attending this year’s Spirit of Coltishall Memorial Service.
There was an overwhelming amount of support amongst the 41 Sqn Association for repairing the 41 Sqn memorial last year and the lasting memorial that has been re-dedicated will again be central to the Memorial Service.
This year, the event will be on Monday 21st May 2018 from 10:45 am - 12:30 pm with the 41 Sqn Standard on parade.
Sir Chris Harper KBE
No 41 Squadron Association
Order of Service to follow.
The following Blog entry was made possible through Graham Limb, who supplied the text and pictures.
This is a tribute to all of the men who served with 6041 Servicing Echelon, who supported 41 Squadron when they moved from England to Belgium in December 1944, moving through Holland into Germany and finally to Denmark after the end of the Second World War in May 1945.
These were the supporting ground crew who endured the very cold winter of 1944/45 and attacks by the Luftwaffe to keep the Spitfires XIVs of 41 Squadron serviceable and ready for action. They were the engine fitters, armourers, air frame fitters etc who had to be mobile and ready to move on to the next airfield with all of their equipment as the Allied advance progressed.
The servicing echelons were set up to support the squadrons of the 2nd Tactical Air Force for their role after D-Day. Initially they were to be set up to be available to be attached to any squadron, but generally they supported their own particular squadron, which was included in their name i.e. 6041 SE supported 41 Squadron.
My father was posted to 6041SE on October 1944 and stayed with this unit until the end of the war. Previously, after being ‘called up’ in 1940 and undergoing training, he served as an Aircraftman engine fitter with 233 and 235 squadrons of Coastal Command working on Avro Ansons, Lockheed Hudsons and Beaufighters.
In early 1944 he was moved to 3043 Servicing Echelon at Hurn and worked on Hawker Typhoons up to and beyond D-Day in June 1944. When the Typhoons were particularly seriously affected by the intake of the abrasive Normandy dust, he was involved in the urgent fitting of emergency dust filters & Sabre engine replacement to keep the Typhoons flying to support the invasion progress.
In August 1944 he was moved to Detling, which was one of the airfields from where the many V1 ‘Doodlebug’ rockets being sent across from the Continent were being challenged by Spitfires and Hawker Tempests. On returning to Hurn in mid October 1944 he was soon transferred again to join 6041SE with 41 Squadron.
Their journey took them to B.56 Evere Belgium; B.64 Diest/Schaffen, Belgium; Y.32 Ophoven, Belgium; B.80 Volkel, Holland; B.78 Eindhoven, Holland; B.106 Twente, Holland; B.118 Celle Germany; B.160 Kastrup, Denmark; B.172 Husum, Germany and B.158 Lubeck, Germany.
Here are some photos of 6041SE from my father’s collection.
If anyone can identify anyone in any of these photos I would be very interested to hear from them.
My father was very proud to have served in the RAF and this remained with him all his life. He was also very proud to have looked after Wing Commander ‘Johnnie’ Johnson’s spitfire for part of his time with 6041SE.
Our sister Association in New Zealand has a rather large artefact undergoing restoration at Aerospace Bristol, Filton.
Reposted from Aerospace Bristol: http://aerospacebristol.org/freighter
Aerospace Bristol has returned one of the last remaining Bristol Type 170 Freighters home to Bristol from New Zealand in January 2018.
Designed and built by the Bristol Aeroplane Company, a total of 214 Freighters, and its passenger variant the Wayfarer, were built and used by airlines and air forces across the world. Sadly, only 11 complete Freighters survive in the world today, and this is the only one to be located in Europe.
Posted on behalf of David Walker.
If you have any quieries please dont hesititate to email me at:
Payments via paypal available by using email address firstname.lastname@example.org and include reference to the Raffle.
David hopes to raise enough money to donate the original oil paining of "100 Years of Seek and Destroy" to 41 Squadron.
The following pictures and war record were provided by Peter Lee about his cousin, Flight Sergeant Teddy Watts.
WATTS, Edward George Hullet ‘Teddy’, 1051882, RAFVR;
b London, 11 Feb 19;
ed Holborn GS;
joined RAFVR, 29 Jul 40; 9 EFTS, Ansty, 1940; Crse 28, 9 SFTS (Master & Hurr), Hullavington, 1940-16 Apr 41;
plt badge & Sgt Plt, 16 Apr 41;
Crse 20, 57 OTU (Spit), Hwdn, 23 Apr-9 Jun 41;
RF/WUL in Spit Ia, K9942, Hwdn, 16 May 41;
501 Sqn (Spit II), Chilbolton, 19 Jun 41;
145 Sqn (Spit II), Merston, 10 Jul 41;
485 (NZ) Sqn (Spit Vb), Redhill, 1 Sep 41;
41 Sqn, 3 Dec 41-12 Apr 42;
7 days leave, 22 Dec 41;
7 days leave, 22 Jan 42;
Flt Sgt, ca Apr 42;
SD/KIA in Spit Vb, W3450, in combat w FW190s during Circus 122 to Hazebrouck Marshalling Yards, 12 Apr 42, aged 22;
s of Edward A. & Beatrice Watts, & husb of Margaret Watts of Stockwell, London;
bur Plot 2, Row 3, Grave 5, Dunkirk Town Cem Nord, F.
Many of us will be aware that on Sunday 1 April the Royal Air Force launched RAF100, a national campaign to mark its 100th year.
The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier gave lectures in London and Edinburgh to launch the campaign, and there have been some great interviews and programmes on the BBC over the last week, including with our customers at RAF Stations throughout the UK.
Reflecting on its proud record of serving the nation, the RAF100 campaign focuses on 3 themes which will: COMMEMORATE the service and sacrifice of those who have gone before; CELEBRATE its service men and women who continue to aid and protect people around the world; and INSPIRE the next generation, helping them to fulfil their potential and their future aspirations.
Leonardo is proud to be an official partner of the Royal Air Force for RAF100. We have a strong heritage over the past 100 years of helping the RAF maintain operational advantage through innovation in the design, development and production of airborne capability. Many people working within our business have either joined us following a career with the Royal Air Force, or they continue to serve as Reserves or active members of their local Air Cadet Squadrons.
Centenary events, activities and initiatives will run nationwide from April to the end of September 2018. The enduring intent of the initiative, to inspire young people towards careers in aerospace and engineering, will run well into next year and beyond. This is obviously something that our business is already very active in supporting. We look forward to celebrating this very significant milestone with direct participation in initiatives and events throughout 2018, including:
RAF100 Parade and Fly Past – London – 10 July
100 aircraft, representing the RAF’s history, will fly over Buckingham Palace and thousands of servicemen and women will take part in a parade through London.
RAF100 Augmented Reality Flypast App
From May, an app will become available enabling people to 'collect' aircraft and build their own flypast. More information to follow….
More information on RAF100 can be found on RAF100 the Royal Air Force website: https://www.raf.mod.uk/raf100/
Please find below just a few of the projects through which we have supported the RAF over the years:
Updates and news direct from the Committee