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On these pages I recall some experiences of my R.A.F. service. I would love to hear from anyone who remembers me, shares my experiences, or who recognises themselves in any of the photographs in the photo album.

When I was called up for National Service in June 1954 I decided that I would like to learn a trade in the R.A.F. that involved electronics. I was told that I would have to sign on for 4 years and I could then become an Air Radar Mechanic. I agreed and was posted to R.A.F. Padgate to do my 8 weeks "square bashing". I remember well, the reception on entering the airman's mess where the inmates cheered, stamped their feet and banged their eating irons on the tables and sang to the tune of "The Mountains of Mourne":-

Padgate Oh Padgate's a wonderful place,
but the organisation is a F*****g disgrace,
there's' Corporals and Sergeants and Flight Sergeants too,
with their hands in their pockets and f**k all to do.
For all that they teach us, we might as well be
shovelling s**t on the Isle of Capri.

This ritual, in which we enthusiastically participated, was repeated every week to welcome the new entries! I also remember attending my first Rugby League Match at Warrington, being ordered to cut the grass outside our hut with my eating irons and after passing out, attending a party where I got drunk for the first time in my life (unfortunately not the last!) and then on returning to the camp, being stopped at the guardroom because my cap badge had been stolen and due to my intoxication, I could not explain what had happened. Fortunately as most of the returning revelers had a similar problem, the Corporal S.P. at the gate did not feel he was able to arrest us all and let us through, to stagger back to our huts! ...next page



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R.A.F. Photo Album

R.A.F. Yatesbury

R.A.F. Jever

65 Squadron
R.A.F. Duxford