Monday, 25 October 2010

The day after the RBRR 2010

On the Monday after we finished the RBRR, we returned home to Howard’s place. After unloading all the gear from the car, we decided to pay a visit to the nearby Shuttleworth Collection at Old Warden ...

Turned out that the BBC were shooting a documentary on Leonard Ratcliffe, D.S.O., D.F.C., A.F.C. that day. He is the last surviving squadron leader from the top secret RAF Tempsford aerodrome who actually flew into occupied Europe during WW2, to deliver and collect resistance fighters, flying a Westland Lysander ...

Alert and full of life at 91, he was interviewed by Sir John Allison Air Marshall (retired) before we were treated to a private air display.

Sir John is one of the regular Old Warden display pilots and after the Lysander was towed to the airstrip, he treated us to a superb impromptu display.

Although the Lysander might look ugly and awkward on the ground, in the air it becomes quite elegant and alive.

After this private display the ground crew allowed us to photograph the car with their precious plane. A very unexpected and humbling privilege!

Edited using Howard’s private diary ...

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