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1963 to 1966                                   After '66                               2017 & 2018


The Journey Begins

The newspaper cutting announcing those boys who had been successful 

in gaining Scholarships for the RAF Colleges at Cranwell & Henlow 

(Strangely some were never heard of again!)

A hard won letter!



Being inspected by "God" (The CAS) at our first "Passing Out Parade"


This was followed by many ordeals on the hallowed parade ground in front of the College

Ferris or something similar?

Must be "A" squadron 'cos they're in pretty ragged order!


25th May 1964


The parade that we wished had never happened

Martin Barents' funeral parade.


This was probably one of the longest marches that any cadets had ever made  Martin was buried with full military honours with his body being escorted by the whole Entry. Lead by the RAF College Band, we slow marched with arms reversed from the College to Cranwell village cemetery - a distance of over 2 miles. 

Martin gets a 12 gun salute send-off


BOAR - Germany 1964

Derek North. Pete Thompson, Dick Shuster, Les Quigley, Paul Buckland,  Colin Lovegrove, Brian Synott

settling in to their first night as "Pongos"


Left - John Liddell and Les Quigley start setting up a field kitchen

Above - It wasn't long before they had a kitchen befitting the "Ritz" - shame about the food!

Ron Forder, Sweaty Taylor and the crew of the 4 Guards Brigade Saracen APC

(Do we still have four guards brigades?)



L'Ecole de L'Air - France 1965


We lost the Rugby & the Fencing but won the Drinking - Hands Down

Randy Stubbington, Pete Squire, Brian Synnott, Les Quigley, Pete Glover

being propped up by a Fouga Magister ( It had been a heavy night the night before!)

Rugby team in action - we lost gallantly - our 15 hangovers to their nil didn't seem to count!


The good new was that L'armée de l'air took us for a ride in their neat little Fouga Magister

It was 89's first ride in a jet aircraft - they then gave us flying display the like of which we had never seen before

"Patrouille de France 1965"



March '65


ALL AT SEA - We join the Navy!


Even in 1965 the Navy were short of ships, so whilst most of us volunteered to go on submarines, frigates and other little ships - The navy decided that it would be a good idea to put us all on a little aircraft carrier - HMS Centaur - & a fine ship she was!  The Navy did us proud!

Above - Les Quigley relaxing in his bunk after a hard day at sea!

Centre - A helicopter arrives with the mail

Left - Chris Saunby having a quick smoke leaning on his Bofor


It wasn't all fun and cruising the high seas with the Royal Navy - 

We were soon back to the bull for the next passing out parade

87's passing out parade summer 1965 - 89 are in the mass ranks




Aug '65

Off to Paris- to get us into SHAPE

89 & 88 Entries pose in front of SHAPE HQ Paris (Before De Gaulle kicked us out!)


Above - Arriving in style - An RAF Transport Command Brittania

Right - Our billets? - No!  It's the palace of Versaille


Above - Dave Foulger, paul Cooper & Dave Donnelly looking for a "Spitfire"!

Below Left - Les Quigley, Brian Synott, Dick Shuster, Derek North and Keith Jackson on the pull in Paris!

Below Right - Keith Jackson & John Liddell watching....?


Operation French Dance - 1965


The only thing that most of us ever volunteered for .......

& the announcement that got biggest cheer ever heard at Cranwell ....

"Gentlemen you have been selected to escort one of these ladies to the Miss World Ball"

Could we believe our luck?




John Liddell got this message - can anyone translate it?


Did any one get any photographs?         Or you we all too busy shooting lines!

Chris Saunby certainly was, for he turned up at a Ball with Gladys....  Miss Ireland who came 2nd!!!


Still it wasn't only Chris who could pull!  These photographs have come to light

"C" & "A" Squadron Joint Womaniser Team 64 - 66

(They weren't allowed out in '63)

Quigley & Pook in action!

How come Quigley & Pook managed to pull in the women? - Charm? Good looks?-  No! They were a couple of fast talkers!


However,  Dave Harlow seems to hold the record ..... 3 ladies at once?

There's a man with style!


John Liddell was also trying to compete in the womaniser stakes since he was also spotted engaged in a few PDA's


More 89 Posers 1963-66


Air brakes! Air brakes! GO!

Dick Slogrove testing the brakes after he bought Geoff Howard's car!


We were encouraged to take off on dodgy expeditions to sunny places where there were lots of Bars - Below are a few photographs of a brave band of explorers who followed the pilgrims route to Santiago de Compostela - In a mini-bus with a roof rack that would carry lots of wine?

Santiago de Compostela  is located in the northwest region of Spain.

A popular etymology of the name "Compostela" holds that it comes from Latin campus stellae, i.e. "field of stars", making Santiago de Compostela "St. James of the Field of Stars". This name would come from the belief that the bones of St. James were taken from the Middle East, to Spain. These bones were then buried where a shepherd had spotted a star and a church was eventually built over the bones and later replaced with the Cathedral de Santiago de Compostela. The City lies at the end of the important medieval pilgrim route, the Camino de Santiago or Way of St James.  - Seemed like a good story to get a free ticket through France & Spain! 

Right - Steve Walton (now Baines) making sure the emergency exit works!


Right chaps where's the next pub stop?

Dave Foulger, Paul Cooper, John Liddell and Steve Walton outside a church.

(Well they couldn't have a photo outside an Auberge or Tapas Bar - could they?)


More Inspections and  Parades



89 Entry Passing Out Parade 1966 




Click Here to see a copy of the original programme and commissioning list


It's time you learnt the words

To the Lincolnshire Poacher

Click here for the Cranwell version complete with accompaniment

When I was bound apprentice,
In famous Lincolnsheer,
Full well I served my master
For more than seven year,
Till I took up with poaching,
As you shall quickly hear:
Oh! 'tis my delight of a shiny night,
In the season of the year.

As me and my comrades
Were setting of a snare,
'Twas then we seed the gamekeeper
For him we did not care,
For we can wrestle and fight, my boys,
And jump o'er everywhere:
Oh! 'tis my delight of a shiny night,
In the season of the year.

As me and my comrades
Were setting four or five,
And taking on him up again,
We caught the hare alive;
We caught the hare alive, my boys,
And through the woods did steer:
Oh! 'tis my delight of a shiny night,
In the season of the year.

Bad luck to every magistrate
That lives in Lincolnsheer;
Success to every poacher
That wants to sell a hare;
Bad luck to every gamekeeper
That will not sell his deer:
Oh! 'tis my delight of a shiny night,
In the season of the year.

More pics awaited - in the meantime click here to return to the top