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19 November 2012.....Shef has announced that his daughter Amy has applied to join the
RAF as a 'Snowdrop'.

 

21 October 2012.....Many congrats to Ken Waugh and Jaqui who have finally tied the knot
yesterday (Ken's 58th birthday)

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27 September 2012.....Many congrats to Dave & Sue Squires on the birth of their first grandchild:
"Entered another stage of life when Clare gave birth just 13 days late to our first grand child , well never 
a good time keeper herself , Oscar Robert David Ballinger 9lb 7oz appeared probably with a thud at 20.28"



14 August 2012.....Congratulations to Paul (Pancho) and Mary who celebrate 25 years man & wife today.
(brave lady)



13 July 2012.....Tony Newman has now finished working with the RAF and now works for Cotswold Outdoor 
Leisure at Kemble, says he is missing pulling things apart as his new job is somewhat different!. 

 

28 June 2012.....Dave Squires has just spent 5 days with the RAF Halton Aircraft Apprentices Association Golf Society
at Ufford Park near Woodbridge and kept the motto “Small but Deadly”, having won the Hurricane Plate, Lancaster plate, 
Wellington plate best gross over 3 days and Mosquito plate best net over the 3 days, and just missed out on the
Spitfire Plate which would have given him a full house.
Well done that man, nice to see 223 represented so well!.
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28 June 2012.....Check out Mick Stelmach's two grandchildren
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21 April 2012.....Latest update from Phil Francis (please send yours)

I changed jobs at the beginning of the year; I am now Operations Manager UK (Central) for Swire Oilfield Services.
We are a massive company but hardly anyone has ever heard of us.  My part of the company deals in Cargo Carrying 
Units (containers, baskets, skips etc.) which are used to transport all sorts of items to and from the North Sea Oil/Gas Platforms.  
We have 20,000 hire-able units at Aberdeen and my role is to ensure that all returned damaged and/or corroded units are 
repaired as soon as practicable to get them available for hire again.  I am responsible for two workshops, 50+ people.  
I am really enjoying the work and these days seem to have more energy/interest to put into my work.

As for personal life: My wife, Laura, still works as a school technician in a Dundee school.

My son Scott finally graduated from St Andrews with a BSc last November, he is pursuing a career in hotel management 
and has a goal to become a manager in a large London Hotel.

Daughter Libby has almost completed her second year at Saint Francis University, Pennsylvania, where she is studying 
Physical Therapy.  She unfortunately broke her ankle in two places last summer and took a long time to get fully race-fit 
for her swimming again.  But the good news was, at the last race of her season (a few weeks ago), she was back to 
normal fitness and managed a second place in the 200yd Butterfly and 1st place in the 100yd Butterfly (proud father moment).  

I am still playing golf every Saturday but other than that, there's not much more to say.

 

02 April 2012.....Can you spot Steve (Lex Luther) Farmery running for charity in Luxembourg recently
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16 March 2012.....Geordie Fishburn has contacted me with the following:

"I am now a granddad for the 2nd time (boy born 21st Feb) to my youngest daughter in Basingstoke.  
Also if I sell our bungalow on Anglesey, we will be buying back to Hampshire where both my 
daughters live with our grandsons !!"

 

16 March 2012.....Following from John Kerr who has had a little mishap recently:

"I was in the lambing shed with Andrew, the farmer, when he said, "there's a lot of smoke in the yard" adding, 
as a joke, "that will be your house on fire". When I went out, there were flames shooting out of the chimney 
and smoke coming from the roof and stonework. Being a former fireman, I knew exactly what to do, but 
I couldn't figure out how to work the video on my new iPhone. So I phoned the fire brigade. After 
chucking out the cats, I opened the woodburner, but there was no noise (chimney fires tend to roar a bit). 
Neither was there any noise in my office, above the room with the woodburner. But the 
loft was full of smoke, although no flames.

Seems it was only the top few feet and the rest of the chimney was clean. This is puzzling, but I think I've 
figured it out. There was a cowl on top of the chimney (burnt to a frazzle now) and I think the guy who 
sweeps it wasn't cleaning all the way to the top. As a result, there was 8 years of gunk 
accumulated, which is not there now!

He'll clean all the way to the top in future, even if I have to shove his head up there so he can check!"
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01 January 2012.....Greetings all and a very happy New year , I've had an email from Geordie Fishburn 
just to say he is still kicking and fighting his cause, he hopes to move back to Hampshire in the near future.

 

14 December 2011.....More from Pete Lewis regarding his daughter Amy:

Amy attended R.A.F Henlow recently for a week's work experience with the Snowdrops . 
She fancies becoming a dog handler !
She was the only Cadet from Her Sqdn to attend ( same as Halton ) , and enjoyed the company 
of an eclectic group of youths from the far corners of the UK .

 In many Jobs the R.A.F now require a prospective entrant to posses a full UK driving licence - prior to entry , 
so in addition to 6th form college + Air Cadets , Amy  has 2 x Part time jobs to pay for the lessons etc.

 In the School Summer Hols she also did voluntary youth work via Rotherham Utd.Football Club coaching 
youngsters in various sports + 2 weeks of outward bound camps ( as well as Cadet Activities / Camps ) 
which went towards achieving the new Young Citizens Award and will stand Her in good stead for Her next D.O.E

 In recognition of their service , many participants including Amy were bussed to Wembly Stadium for a special 
award ceremony - they also got to watch the England V Wales footy match that same evening ( England won - Please tell Taff ! )

Out of the Blue , She also received a signed Certificate from the P.M David Cameron , which may help 
with her C.V in the future ?
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21 November 2011.....Sad news in from Mick & Tracey Carter, his Dad has died
suddenly which follows the death of Tracey's Mum 6 weeks ago.

 

14 November 2011.....Rich Hopkins has informed me that he is building another
aircraft (his 3rd I think!)

 

15 October 2011.....Davey Jones & Irene marry in Exeter
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21 August 2011.....Below from Pete Lewis who sent these about his daughter Amy,
Amy attended summer camp with her ATC squadron at Halton this summer:
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26 July 2011.....Photograph below the reason why Steve Blemings and his wife Julie
could not make the reunion on the 28th May, his son decided to get married!,
some excuse....

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25 July 2011.....check out latest page added to website, 'Famous RAF Personnel',
from index page, if you know of more let me know

 

01 July 2011.....Another excellent 'Stinger' Newsletter produced by Bob Wilson which
can be viewed on the 'Stinger' page.

22 June 2011.....Below additions to the latest edition of the Haltonian about our reunion
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18 June 2011.....Sad article about Cottesmore below, when I was there it was full of Tornado's!
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15 June 2011....Congrats to Dick Bothamley and his daughter Michelle:
"Hi Bob, Just a quick note to inform you that I have now joined the Grandfather`s club. 
My daughter Michelle gave birth to a little boy,Archie, at 2.08 this morning.How about 
a glamorous grandad competition at the next reunion ?"

05 June 2011.....Entry Reunion in Oxford was a great success last weekend, everyone had a
great time, check out the photographs at:
http://223halton.hosting.idnet.net/reunion2011.htm

22 May 2011.....Below a brief history from Paul Deakin
"After Halton it was Finningly for me on the Varsity following that I was at the UAS in Bristol where 
I decided to take up flying rather than maintenance. It helped being in Bristol because of the lodging 
allowance which went a long way towards paying for my licence! After gaining my licence and instructor 
rating I spent the next fifteen years or so in Devon, Qatar and the USA before coming to Loganair to 
fly the air ambulance and Twin Otter. For the past 5 years I've been a line training captain on the Saab 340 
mainly doing Scottish routes. I'm married to a French lady and we have one son who is about to graduate 
from St Andrews university next month after which he's going to do an MBA in New York....so I need to find a big wad of cash!!"

16 May 2011.....one of those 'sooty' types has made contact and will be
attending the reunion, Stuart Thomson - welcome

12 May 2011.....Paul Deakin has surfaced and is working in Glasgow.

04 May 2011.....Best wishes to Bob Wilson who has been in hospital for the past
3 weeks, get well soon Bob.

10 April 2011.....Trev Dutton has recently had a hip replacement operation and is
back home and doing well (that's two that I know of so far!)

12 March 2011.....Found Steve Blemings, now living in St. Helens, hopefully he will
be at the reunion.

17 February 2011.....Had not realised but Rod Wallace is at present recovering from 
Pneumonia and a minor stroke sustained September time last year, get well soon Rod.

27 January 2011.....News in from Bob Wilson who is finally calling it a day with the ATC
due to bad health, he has amassed over 44 years continuous service apart from a blip called Halton!.

28 December 2010.....Hope everyone has had a good Christmas and are looking forward
to New Year's Eve of course, just a quick update regarding a couple of the guy's, 
Phil Francis is still trying to get his irregular heartbeat sorted, let's hope he achieves
this sooner rather than later. The other medical condition advised is Nick Rogers who 
has been diagnosed with Diabetes, look's like father time is catching up with us!.

09 December 2010.....Another new Grandfather has joined the club, Dave Shephard has
a new Granddaughter (Beatrix Rose) born 2nd November, congrats to Dave and Marilyn.

17 November 2010.....Heard from Pete Dunne who is just checking in to say all is well

09 November 2010.....The following report from Nick Rogers who has finally finished his work
in Thailand

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"The pics show the ceremony that comes with the acceptance and hand over. Monks, chanting, important bods, food, bowing, scraping etc.
Funny how we, the guys that did it all and conceived manufactured and built the whole shooting match are a bit sidelined at the end.  
They arent keen on giving too much credit to foreigners. We were always under the impression that they think we are a bit stupid.

6 years from initial meeting to finish and sign off, including working  meetings and on site I have been to Thailand 36 times in that period.
Local civil engineers and architects worked from our concept plans  to build the concrete sheilding and working chamber area and 
the building offices and labs that house it , while we designed the research irradiator and all its controls and systems including all the 
safety and hundreds of other regulatory requirements for such a plant.

The heavy steel work was contracted out in the UK and the lead shield filling of the outer body done near Derby. The pnuematics and 
mechanical movements, exposure tubes and drives, gears and motors were fitted in a workshop in Newbury, then stripped off for shipping 
of the whole assembly to Thailand. The main body came in at about 16 tonnes, heavy old stuff that lead. Had to put that in a special shipping 
container with a detachable lid.

The Cobalt came in direct from Argentina, which we unloaded in a dedicated 5 meter deep underwater pool inside the chamber, into a 
transfer flask and then into the irradiator.

Lots of testing and fettling was required on site, we didnt quite manage to grasp how frigging hot it would be so things didnt always 
fit or work as thought, we were dry testing in December at 8 deg C it was working in 35 deg C. There is a picture here of extra lead 
shielding we had to add due to some unexpected "hot" areas under the body of the irradiator, they had to be fitted overhead with us 
under them, did I mention how friggin heavy lead is ? its even heavier when its 35 deg C All the electronics and computer controls and 
data and safety logging was done by us, when I look back its almost unbelievable that 3 of us pulled it off.
We obviously had local help, but it was us 3 that got it done.

The facility is used to irradiate gemstones to enhance the colour and improve their value also research into plant mutation is possible 
along with anything else they fancy I guess. Its suprising that a weak coloured gem can be turned into a nice strong colour after 50 odd 
hours of zap, but it does.

There were some gutty and difficult times too and the business side definately wasnt as good as expected. During the six years we 
witnessed a military coup and the decline of the pound against the baht and many contractual cock ups that cost us dear. These were 
mainly due to a poor line of communication and translation between the customer, our compulsory Thai agent and hence through to us.

Our electronics guy managed over this period to get himself hitched to a Thai girl and we went to his wedding over there a few months back.

We also in this time finished a similar project in Malaysia, so that too was a diverting factor. We managed to see every tourist destination in 
Thailand over the period during weekends off, I feel I know Thailand very well now and I fully understand that I have been most lucky to have 
been involved in this project and get to travel and see and do things I would never have imagined.
One trip which was really interesting was a 4 day weekender and visa run to Vietnam, Saigon and visiting the tunnels where the US failed to 
oust the Vietcong.

Back in the UK now trying to keep the prison service sorted and 
waiting for a breakdown or servicing trip back".


26 September 2010.....Triennial went well yesterday and a good day was had by all, myself
Bob Wilson & Dave Gingell representing 223.

20 September 2010....Keith Godden has gone and had a new hip fitted, wore the other one
out climbing in and out of those engines !.
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14 September 2010.....Check out the photographs from Paul Hayworth as his company takes
delivery of their new Hunter !

01 September 2010.....Email from Geordie Fishburn just to say he is still around, although sounds
a bit cheesed off so if you can give him an email to say hello.

18 August 2010.....Dave Squires handed over a cheque for £50 on behalf of 223 for our entry Paver
at the National Memorial Arboretum

11 August 2010.....The following from Dave Squires.................

"Bob Received phone call today  from another member of the gardening team at NMA regarding my team leader, 
a nicer chap you will never meet a truly sad loss to his family and tHalton Grove at he NMA. 64 years old I am told, 
below from the Old Haltonian"

Ian Sloss had blue blood in his veins. Commissioned into the Engineering Branch after his 3 years at Halton he led by 
example throughout his career and was always an active sportsman. He retired as an Air Commodore and joined LSC Ltd 
in Lichfield Staffs. 

Apart from his wife Viv and family and his love of the Apprentice heritage Ian devoted much of his time to supporting the 
National Memorial Arboretum and particularly our Halton Grove. His vision and energy lay behind the enhancements now 
well underway to commemorate our 9oth Anniversary in 2012. 

At the 2010 AGM Ian gracefully accepted the nomination as Chairman Designate of the Association and was due to take up 
is appointment in September. Sadly, and this is an understatement, Ian was taken from us on 9th of August 2010 following his 
collapse during the London Triathlon the previous weekend. 

Typically for Ian he was participating to provide sponsorship for SSAFA Forces Help. He will be sadly missed by all who 
came to know him and will be a great loss to the Association.

14 July 2010.....Well myself and Yvonne have joined the Grandparents club, our daughter
Heather gave birth this morning to a girl Abigail, both are doing well.

03 July 2010.....Check out the latest on the Arboretum at:
http://223halton.hosting.idnet.net/arboretum.htm

26 June 2010.....Don't forget to complete the form and send it off for the Triennial in September
at: http://www.oldhaltonians.co.uk/pages/news/news.htm

24 May 2010.....The following from Phil Francis - "my daughter Libby has been awarded a full scholarship - 
for her swimming achievements -  in USA, she is going to attend a University in Pennsylvania studying 
Physical Therapy (PT).  The problem is; the scholarship pays everything for 4 years but the PT degree is 
6 years, if passed she will be a Doctor, this means I have to find $64,000 from somewhere!"

15 May 2010.....Check out the update regarding the Halton Grove on the Arboretum page.

22 April 2010.....Heard from Tony Newman who intends to make at least one of the evenings
at the reunion next year.

09 April 2010.....Reunion 2011 now arranged and will be held at the 
Spires Four-Pillars Hotel Oxford 28 - 30 May.

17 February 2010.....Bad news in from Davey Jones, his wife Lynn passed away two
days ago with heart problems, our condolences to Davey and his family.

09 February 2010.....This is how Chris Lowe spends his evenings in sunny Spain::-
"Banquet for 4 inc all drinks ( wine ,water and cokes) and free liquors at
end (they leave bottles on the table) Of meal, 30 euros total!!!
Not bad eh!!"

21 January 2010.....First edition of the 'Stinger' edited by Bob Wilson sent out, and is also displayed
on this site, well done Bob and the next issue is scheduled for April so get any material to Taff ASAP.

29 December 2009.....Bob Wilson has graciously volunteered to produce the 'Stinger Newsletter'
3 times a year starting in the very near future.

23 December 2009.....Heard from Tony Newman who is still alive and kicking !.

20 December 2009.....Pic below from Pete Lewis and is his 15 year old daughter Amy who
will obviously be enjoying a career in the RAF in the not too distant future !, keep it up Amy !
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02 December 2009.....Well time must be catching us up as I've just heard that I should
be joining the Grandfather club next July !

02 December 2009.....Below published in the latest edition of the Haltonian
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18 November 2009.....Check out our composer at the following link:

http://www.myspace.com/trevordutton1

04 November 2009.....Seems 216 entry had their first reunion at Halton last weekend
to celebrate 40 years since graduation, there were over 300 of them !
.

23 October 2009.....Update from Phil Francs:

My son (currently at St Andrews University studying Economics), works part time in 
one of the massive hotels there (The Fairmount) and was working during the Dunhill 
Links Golf Tournament; he got a £20 tip from Carl Lewis, he physically bumped into 
Louise and spoke to her husband Jamie Redknapp and also to Ruud Hullitt. 
He saw Ant and Dec and spoke to some guy called Sam Torrence but did not know who he was!
My daughter is still competing high level swimming; she is in 6th year at school 
studying for her advanced highers (some sort of Scottish qualifications).  We are 
in the middle of discussions with a recruitment agency about her hopefully gaining 
a sporting scholarship to a USA college where she will study Pharmacy.
My wife is getting older - 50 in January (that will cost me a fortune no doubt) - 
and I am still taking the tablets for my suspect ticker and my high blood pressure.

16 October 2009.....Rod Wallace say's all is well and he has not yet had a Tattoo !

14 October 2009.....Heard from Geordie Fishburn who is fine but bored !

11 October 2009.....From Paul Hayworth:
Just got back from Newfoundland Canada, work of course. Went to commission an 
Avon at Holyrood power station, lots of beer and lobster mainly.

11 October 2009.....In from Carl Reynolds

My busy working life revolves around my company which keeps growing with demand, which is good for me 
and several others. We are currently gearing up for what promises to be the biggest thing since double glazing: 
Solar Voltaics. Probably means nothing to you yet, most electricians dont even know what it is, but this technology 
which enables individual homes to generate their own electricity, will be a household name within the next 5 years 
and hopefully we should be in good position to benefit as a company undertaking domestic installations. Along with 
air sourced heatpumps, wood burning stoves and LED lighting technology.
In a nutshell, you should be able to 
generate sufficient electricity yourself to power an average 3/4 bed home at an install cost which will be less than 
the current annual electricity bill for such a home. With electricity prices predicted to rise by up to 60% over the 
next few years, our age group should be very interested.
Anyway, dont get me going or I will probably bore you 
to death with it all!

11 October 2009.....Bob Wilson is still keeping busy traveling back and forward to Wrexham every other week 
delivering training to managers in Brother UK, he also tells me his diet is going well and that he has lost
6 stones so far .... I'm awaiting the photographs.

11 October 2009.....Trev Dutton has retired from racing, this is due his crash at 
Snetterton last year which has damaged his shoulder and still causing problems.

05 October 2009.....Report from Alfie on his C2C Bike Ride recently completed:
"Ride went to plan - textbook really, but was the physically toughest thing I've done for many a year; 
must've used the planning/map skills learnt on exped at Llangurig, although at least this time I stayed 
in B&Bs overnight! Weather was relatively good with steady rain only on Day 2 of ride. On my Day 3 
at the highest point (1998 ft asl) met an RAF team from various units doing the route for charity over 3 days; 
they had full mobile back-up/support, which made me feel like a pioneer as I was on my Jack Jones!"
Timetable for Keef's C2C:
Sun 6/9 train transfer with bike from N'castle to W'haven for o/n stop 
Mon 7/9 Day 1 W'haven to Threlkeld 35.2 miles 
Tues 8/9 Day 2 Threlkeld to Kirkoswald 30.8 miles
Weds 9/9 Day 3 Kirkoswald to Stanhope 36.2 miles
Thurs 10/9 Day 4 Stanhope to Tynemouth 38.1 miles

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03 October 2009.....Check out the pic of Ian Hovey with his first TATTOO at the
grand old age of 55 !, he tells me it's a Bass Clef.
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15 September 2009.....Ken Waugh has moved house again, now living in
Somerset, at this rate he will be in France soon !. So much for being a Geordie
.

03 September 2009.....He's at it again, check out below from Alfie :
"Well it's a year since I finished work & embarked on my gap year - doesn't time 
fly when you're enjoying yourself. Finally managed to organise one of my target projects 
which I couldn't squeeze in earlier: Coast to coast by push bike. Driving up north this 
saturday to drop car & stay at John Martin's (ex 222) o/n at Morpeth. He's driving me + bike 
to Newcastle rail station on sunday to catch the train to Whitehaven on the west coast & 
after an o/n stop start my C2C journey on monday morning 7/9. Plan to take it easy 
@ 35 miles/day to reach the east coast at Tynemouth some time on thursday afternoon 10/9. 
Hope to give my ar*e a rest afterwards & talk over old times with John until I'm fit to drive 
back to Norwich".

10 June 2009.....Alfie Bass has completed the Norwich 50 mile bike ride in the aid of the 
British Heart Foundation, well done Keith.

09 June 2009.....Looks like Phil Francis daughter Libby is a star swimmer and the reason Phil
is missing reunion's, below are her results for the weekend of the get together and last weekend:
Scottish Midland
District Distance events (in a 25m pool)
400m Individual Medley - District Champion.
200m Butterfly - District Champion.
200m Freestyle 2nd place
(in a 50m pool) East of Scotland District
200m Butterfly 2nd
100m Butterfly 2nd
50m Butterfly 3rd
Well done to her and good luck for the future.

01 June 2009.....Excellent reunion at the weekend, also all turned up who were supposed to.
hotel very good and weather glorious, next one will be 2011 when we will be celebrating
40 years since joining. Will be a special 2 day event so put your thinking caps on.

29 May 2009.....Call from Paul Pickwell who tells me he is now a Grandfather (twice)

03 May 2009......Last call for the reunion as final numbers about to be submitted to
the hotel so if you wish to attend call Bob now.

17 April 2009.....The following from our resident Farmer John Kerr:
I've just lambed 200 sheep, on my own, and would never in a
million years have believed I'd be up to my elbow inside a ewe
feeling for a lamb's legs. I still can't believe it. Very rewarding
when you get them out, though, and they're alive.

01 April 2009.....Check out Chris Lowe's latest rental property in Spain on the Ads page.

14 February 2009.....Advised by Min Larkin of the RAFHAAA that Sgt. Wiseman has
died, seems he was quite impressed by our entry so if you should wish to attend his
funeral it will take place on the 29th Feb. in Amersham.

28 January 2009.....Finally caught up with Geordie Fishburn (thanks to Dave Gingell) who is 
still fighting the RAF for his medical pension, hopefully he will be at the reunion in May.

17 January 2009.....Spoke with Pete Lewis (Shef) today who is still having medical problems
and not sure if he will get to the reunion, however he hopes to hear from you guys in the near future.

17 January 2009.....The following from John Kerr:
When working for AEA Technology at Harwell Laboratory, I left my ID in a hire car. 
They handed it in at the 'gate', manned by the Atomic Energy Police. When I went to collected it, 
the guy went to a room out the back and returned with my ID. "Got any identification?" he asked. 
"Yes", I said, "my bloody photograph is on it".

14 December 2008.....If you are in receipt of a Veterans Pension do you know that you can obtain
free travel on all London Transport, this is thanks to a Boris initiative and all you need do is fill
in a simple form and you will be sent an Oyster card which is valid for 4 years. So even if you
only make the occasional visit it will save you some money.

29 November 2008.....Dave Squires has been helping other ex brat's at the National Arboretum to
improve the site after being approached by RAFHAAA, he is back up there next January.
Check out the pic on the Arboretum page.

17 October 2008 .....received a letter from Paul (Pancho) Bedward who is looking forward to
the get together next May, only way to contact him at present is by 'snail mail' as his phone
lines are down !.

09 October 2008.....Had meet with Nick Rogers in sunny Bingham as he was visiting
HMP Whatton, (no not as an inmate), still working hard and losing weight !.

02 October 2008.....Reunion 2009 page added to the website.

15 September 2008.....below from Keith Godden:
"This is to show that I am now officially half jockinese"
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10 September 2008.....Yet another guy on irregular heart beat medication, Paul Hayworth, looks like
our previous lives are finally catching up with us, still we can all compare medication at the next get together !.

08 September 2008.....This heart business is spreading, Phil Francis is off to hospital on the 24th of this month
 for a 'jump start' on his heart to shock his heartbeat, to a normal regular beat.

04 September 2008.....Just in from Ian Hovey, he's changing jobs again, says he wants to compete
with me - no chance. His new employer from 22 September will be: Serco, Middlesex 

12 August 2008.....Don't forget if you want that special aircraft painted onto glass, check out
Steve Foster's site at:
  http://www.aircraft-glass-profiles.co.uk/

07 July 2008.....Alfie Bass has taken part in the Norwich 50 for the second year running on June 6th - 
a 50 mile bike ride in aid of the British Heart Foundation. He managed to complete the course in 3hrs 25 mins 
on the road time with a 30 min pit stop 2/3rds of the way round. Not bad - clipping 15 mins off last year's time.
(Well done Keith for a charity which is now close to my own heart !) 

07 July 2008.....Just an update regarding my Bypass surgery, I had the full monty quadruple Bypass
2 weeks ago and am now starting the road to recovery, with luck all should be well in 3 months or so.

29 May 2008.....Many congrats to Don Tanner who has just received his RAF Colours at the 
grand old age of 53, he is also moving jobs next month back to Yeovilton to join the Chinook IPT team. 

24 May 2008.....Steve Farmery is now officially a Grandfather, congrats to him.

18 May 2008.....Congrats to Ian Hovey on his new arrivals,  11 week old and 7 week old Chihuahua pups,
Both boys, one is Black & Tan and the other is White. They are BILL & TED.........Excellent!!!

05 May 2008.....Checked out the new Armed Forces Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum
just off the A38 in Staffordshire this weekend and very impressive it is, recently dedicated by the
Queen it lists all those (by service and year) that have died whilst serving for whatever reason since
the end of the second world war. It seems strange to see names of people you have actually worked
with even though with myself it was mostly the early years 70's, if you are ever in the neighborhood
I recommend a visit if you can. There is already a page on this website dedicated to the Arboretum
but it has improved drastically since it was added, I would have added recent photographs if only
my camera had not packed up on me !.

04 April 2008.....Just a bit of personal news if I may on the medical front: after having an Angiogram (not
the most pleasant experience I have ever had) seems the arteries around my heart are a bit the worse for
wear and so I am now on the list for a bypass in the summer which will hopefully have me bouncing around again.

17 February 2008.....Tony Newman has joined the 'Old Farts' club, his brand new Grandson Danny was
born 13th Feb, congrats to Tony and family.

31 January 2008.....Paul Hayworth has a new home email address, check out the 'Contacts' page.

18 December 2007.....New email address for Pete Lewis on 'Contacts' page.

02 December 2007.....Trev Dutton has a new email address, check out the 'Contacts' page,
he has also become a Grandfather for the 5th time !.

28 November 2007.....On a personal note which I hope you will not mind, someone decided to try and take me
out the other day by writing off my car with me inside, pleased to say apart from the usual whiplash
all is well, just need a new car now !. 

14 November 2005.....Check out Paul Hayworth's new business venture on the 'Guys Advertisements' page.

14 November 2007.....Ian Hovey has a new work email address which is on the 'Contacts' page

01 November 2007.....Steve Smyth has a new email address which is on the 'Contacts' page.

14 October 2007.....Seems Ian Hovey is also a recent Grandfather (for the second time)
Caleb James arrived recently.

11 October 2007.....Bob Wilson's latest Grandchild has arrived - Finley James

23 September 2007.....The following from Keith Godden I am still training the A youth team in our village 
which is very enjoyable ( except when we lose). My wife Stephanie is the treasurer of the football club here 
and also takes the women for keep fit twice a week. All in all we are pretty busy and pretty well integrated over here.

20 September 2007.....Paul Hayworth's new contact details are now on the 'Contacts' page.

20 September 2007.....Dave Squire's wife Sue has been in hospital for the past 4 weeks
after a fall, here's hoping she recovers and gets well soon.

21 July 2007.....Rod Wallace has sent the following about his father who was in the 55th entry Halton:
"My father joined the RAF as an aircraft apprentice way back in 1947 in the 55th entry. He was an electrician. 
He served in Aden Kenya henlow cranwell Bulmer bicester benson that I know of he may have been to other places he
ended up as Fl Lt engineering officer. He died quite young when he was about 62  I think. 
His death was probably caused by beryllium inhalation while he was on radar at boulmer"

13 July 2007.....Looks like Davey Jones is on the move from Telford, he has accepted a new job
in sunny Exeter.

13 June 2007.....Pete (Shef) Lewis has signed the Guestbook, his details are on Contacts page.

27 May 2007.....Heard from Chris Lowe who is still living the life of reilly in sunny Spain.

25 May 2007.....Pancho has surfaced living in Ellesmere Port, phone number on 'Contacts'.

11 May 2006.....The following from Dave Squires -
"Just had a golfing trip in Wales just in land from Aberystwyth two days the second very wet. 
However as well as seeeing numerous Red Kites of the bird of pray variety and a number of 
Hawks of the Valley variety, we were treated to a low level dog fight between a Tornado 
and what I thought was a Viggen (showing my age) that turned out to be a Typhoon. 
The Tornado won and did a victory roll and as it did so another Tornado appeared from 
nowhere and beat up the Typhoon which then turned tail. It was surprising to see how small the new 
boy on the block is compared with the old stagers. All below 1500ft and some 3 mins when 
all golf stopped and watched the free airshow overhead. Nice to know how the tax I pay is spent".

08 May 2007.....Reunion was enjoyed by all that attended, although numbers were down
compared to previous get togethers.

19 April 2007.....Paul Hayworth has jacked his job with TC Turbines, bought a house
in Newport Pagnell and is joining his brothers business - good for him.

08 April 2007.....Carl Reynolds Post RAF History added.

07 April 2007.....Terry Hayward's Post RAF History added.

29 March 2007.....New email address for Steve Smyth which is on the 'Contacts' page.

18 March 2007.....Phone call from Geordie Fishburn who leaves the RAF 16th April this year,
unfortunately he still not fully recovered and has to return to Hedley Court for afurther months
treatment so not sure if he will make the reunion.

18 March 2007.....Check out the following link if you wish to claim a free Veterans badge from MOD,
all who served up to 31 December 1984 are eligible.
http://www.veteransagency.mod.uk/vets_badge/vets_badge.htm

07 March 2007.....Dave Milnes and Paul Hayworth have new email address's which are on the 'Contacts' page, 
also received a complaint from PP as the 'Contacts' is not up to date - sorry PP I promise to pull my finger out !. 

24 January 2007.....Steve Smyth and Paul Hayworth have surfaced hope to make the reunion,
don't forget to send those deposits to me ASAP.

06 January 2007.....Spoke with Colin Stockton who is now working for Wolverhampton Council as
as Training Officer.

31 December 2007.....Heard from Steve Foster who has retired from the Police force and will now
be concentrating on his Glass paintings. (lucky devil)

11 December 2006.....Reunion page 2007 added, check it out.

15 November 2006.....Dave Gingell has discovered email - on 'Contacts' page.

30 October 2006.....Congrats to Rae Stevens and Julie who have tied the knot whilst on holiday in
Cyprus - congrats to them both 

29 October 2006.....Spoke with Geordie Fishburn who is recovering well and working part time
(alright for some), tells me he has accepted redundancy and expects to leave the RAF next April
which means he will be attending the next reunion.

13 October 2006....The following from Nick Rogers latest detatchment to the Far East ...

"Just a short update on my exploits of work and errrm other stuff abroad.
Following on from the latest excursion back to Malaysia, where we couldnt finish the job, due to the locals stealing the shielding 
lead  for the irradiator, the next plant needing our most excellent attention was in Nakhom Pathom about 35 kms outside Bangkok.
I know Bangkok a little, after getting bored looking for lead in Malaysia, we decided to shift camp and have some tourist 
time in Bangkok earlier in the year and was out there at the start of the year too.
The people are very friendly, the girls are generally very easy on the eye and things are so cheap, its hard to believe. 
So to have to work out there for a fortnight was something to look forward to.
Despite the heat and humidity, which is a shock to the un initiated, and the dependable one hour rain and thunder 
storms at this time of the year, I couldnt wait to get there.
I read somewhere on the interweb a guy saying something about the place getting into your soul, maybe he is right, 
I think he is, or maybe I am having a mid life crisis.The job was at a medical irradiator, changing it over from 1980's 
electro mechanical contactor logic to a dedicated PLC and PC monitoring safety system.
Most of the parts had been shipped well in advance, pity we forgot to ship the tools.
So airfrieght some cheap tools and throw em away when we leave was the answer.
Working with the locals was a little difficult as the level of spoken english diminishes with every kilometer you travel out of Bangkok.
 I did a very un British thing and learned some Thai phrases, (mainly concerned with food and what time is lunch).
Some of the work involved fitting proximity switches to hydraulic cylinders on the roof of the irradiator 
( a concrete block 14 mtrs x 14 mtrs x 8 mtrs high.) It was 38 deg C up there, I left puddles of DNA for later analysis like you wouldnt believe.
We stayed in a five star hotel about 6 k's away from the plant, 5 star luxury at Travelodge prices, unsure as to how they felt about a bunch of sweaty, 
dirty oiks rolling in each evening to their polished halls.
The hotel had massive grounds and contained some sort of working elephant display area, they didnt come out at night, so I didnt see any.
The job sadly went a bit over time and we had to extend our stay, the last three nights of this ...ahem over time we spent in a hotel in central Bangkok.
I will just briefly mention Nana, Patpong and Soi Cowboy, any of you who have been there will understand, 
any of you with Google that can be bothered will soon understand.I need to go back, we have quoted for full maintenance on this 
plant and I have this feeling we may have to go to a meeting in Bangkok before the end of the year.
I am a lucky guy, my life has turned out so different from those ugly days way back when, work three or four days a week and 
a lot of overseas stuff too.
Long may it last, I dont take it for granted. 
A few pics of surroundings and maybe a work one too.
All the best Nick.

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08 October 2006.....Paul Pickwell has finally got on email - his address is on the 'Contacts' page,
he's also recently changed jobs now sub-contracting at Marham on Tornados.

13 September 2006.....Dave Milnes has moved house now living in sunny Grantham, said he wants
to be near Maggie Thatchers home town !

02 September 2006.....Ian Hovey has decided to return to his roots ! starts a new job in Portsmouth next
week with EADS Astrium, although he will be commuting from home in Brandon

04 August 2006.....Roy Davidge has moved house now living in Leicestershire - contact Bob for details

03 August 2006.....Phil Francis has been suffering of late with an under skin infection of his knee (that will teach
him to play golf), glad to say he is now recovering.

22 July 2006.....Ian Hovey has agreed to start producing a quarterly '223 Newsletter' so many thanks
to him and please start sending him any items or material you may have for inclusion.

11 July 2006.....Bob Wilson is a proud father ! his daughter Jodie has just graduated with a
BA (Hons) in Education Studies & Social Inclusion - must have inherited her mums intelligence.....

10 June 2006.....News from Geordie Fishburn he is still recovering and working part time at the
moment, review in a couple of months.

08 June 2006.....New email address for Rae Stevens - on the 'Contacts' page

07 June 2006.....Another Grandfather has appeared Keith Godden, grandaughter Faye arrived last Wednesday

22 May 2006.....Congrats to Karen & Phil Scott who celebrate 30 years married today

06 May 2006....Grandfathers again, Trev Dutton is a Grandfather 4 times over with Taylor 5, Jaiden 3, 
Lydia 1 and Kaitlin 10 months - well they are American !.

03 May 2006.....Rae Stevens announces his forthcoming wedding on 18 October 2006 in Cyprus

26 April 2006.....Maintaining the Grandfather theme, just in from Steve Foster, he became a Grandad last 
Wednesday to a little girl 'Emily' congrats to him

25 April 2006.....Seems Bob Wilson is a grandfather 2 times over !!, start young in Wales !

23 April 2006.....Bob Wilson has become a grandfather again, last Saturday.

20 April 2006.....Terry Haywards new email address added to the 'Contacts' page

19 March 2006.....Heard from Ian Hovey just back from holiday to Canada and Alaska, only went and got himself 
knocked down by a car silly bugger, suffered 3 cracked ribs and a damaged leg.
Pleased to say he is now healing well at home.

11 March2006.....The following from Dave Squires-
Wednesday of last week I was at the Home Office Scientific Development Branch exhibition at RAF Halton.(sounds a little 007 but isn't) 
Had to park the cars at the airfirfield register and then catch a coach to workshops. The exhibition was actually in the "hangar" where the 
Sea Vixens and Sea Hawks used to be. Not an aircraft in sight. It also appeared a lot smaller than I remembered. 33yrs later and deja vu.

21 February 2006.....Congrats to Colin Stockton who graduates from the University of Wolverhampton tomorrow with an MSc

28 January 2006.....Heard from Geordie Fishburn he is recovering well now attending physio at Hedley Court.

14 January 2006.....New Blogs page added - blame Pink Panther !

13 January 2006.....Dave Gingell has now moved house to Exeter, his new phone number is on the 'Contacts' page

06 December 2005.....Dave Gingell is famous after being mentioned in the latest issue ofthe
'Haltonian' magazine thanks to his efforts in 'The Golden Oldies' band.

06 December 2005.....Excellent news about Geordie he is recovering well and presently at
Hedley Court and should be back to normal soon.

01 December 2005.....Check out Air Cadets Wales & West site (Bob Wilson commanding !)
http://www.aircadets-walesandwest.org.uk/

16 November 2005.....Glad to say our 3rd reunion went well and all that attended enjoyed themselves.

31 October 2005.....Check out this link from Pink Panther -
http://www.pepipoo.com/

12 October 2005.....Some bad news in about Colin Fishburn seems he is seriously ill after being 
involved in a road accident - we wish him well and a speedy recovery.

04 August 2005.....Jock Strachan has decided to try again - he gets married 1st October 05 !

03 August 2005.....News from Rod Wallace - he's part of the crew aboard a sigma38 called sigmania in the
Fastnet race starting next Sunday, you can track his progress at -

http://rorc.org/fastnet/results/default.php

22 June 2005.....Well who would have thought it Ian Hovey is now Chairman of his towns village hall and
a Parish Councillor ......

23 May 2005.....New email address for Roy Davidge now on 'Contacts' page

07 May 2005.....News from Rae Stevens who now works for KLM based at RAF Finningley sorry I mean
Robin Hood Airport - Doncaster Sheffield (what a mouthful) he sends the following:-

"Permanent for KLM (looking after Thomsonfly) at Robin Hood Doncaster Sheffield, or 'Finningley' to 
ex R.A.F. or Yorkshire boys like me. Ive only done one lot of shifts but it looks great to me.
Its also good to see the camp back in use, but some people may be sad to see the old barrack blocks etc 
being knocked down. The hangars, gaurdroom and flagpole are still there though. If there are any ex Finno bods 
interested I have put a couple of links on for them.
 If you or any other ex 223 are flying through Finno please let me know."

www.finningley.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk

www.robinhoodairport.com

http://www.airliners.net/o0pen.file/737923/L/

21 April 2005.....New email address for Dick Bothamley now on 'Contacts' page

20 April 2005.....Roy Davidge has a new email address which is on the 'Contacts' page

19 April 2005.....Click the link below to check-out Bob Wilsons write-up about Dave Squires retirement 'Do'

17 April 2005.....Trying to start organising a reunion at the Hinckley Island Hotel on 12th November 2005
if interested please get in touch.

19 March 2005.....Just for info Dave Squires retires from the Police next month - are we really that old?

17 March 2005.....News from Ken Waugh - he's getting wed this coming November

26 February 2005.....Mick Stelmach's new email address is on the 'Contacts' page

13 January 2005.....Congrats to Ian Hovey who has just got himself a new granddaughter Tegan Marie Hovey

15 January 2005.....Seems Ian is not alone in the Grandparents stakes - Bob Wilson also has a Granddaughter
7 year old Georgia Ellie, anyone else?

17 January 2005.....Jock Kerr admits to being a Grandfather for the past 4 years

30 January 2005.....Another email address for Gezz which hopefully works is on the 'Contacts' page