Building Expansion Looking Ahead to Phase III
by Dave Birrell
Our building expansion has evolved into a three-phase project. As you may read elsewhere in this newsletter, Phase I has been completed, Phase II is well underway, and we are working towards acquiring funding for the third and final phase.
Phase III will see the installation of a 20′ x 160′ mezzanine (the full length of the building) above what was formerly our shop, kitchen, and storage area. The westernmost section of the mezzanine will be used for additional storage and will attach to our recently completed storage mezzanine. The remaining section of the planned mezzanine (20′ x 120′) will be accessible to our visitors. Its central location will make for a splendid viewing platform for all parts of both the old and new hangar space. As well, displays and artifacts will be located on the mezzanine.
The installation of a sprinkler system throughout the entire museum building must be part of Phase III under current building code regulations and the public cannot be permitted access to the new expansion without it. Once this is in place, the former restoration shop “lean-to” will be removed, connecting the old and new hangar areas to create an impressive 210′ wide open space from the door near the entrance kiosk to the north wall of the building. Phase III will also include a 20′ x 40′ expansion of the existing “small artifact” display area inside the south west corner of the main hangar.
As our Phase II construction winds up we will be evaluating our financial situation and beginning fund raising for Phase III.
Tiger Moth Sponsor Needed
The privately owned Tiger Moth fuselage pictured above has been on display in the museum for a number of years. This, along with a majored (recently overhauled and ready to fly) engine, all components to make the wings and complete the aircraft to an airworthy state, are being offered to the NLS for the sum of $40,000.
This Tiger Moth would indeed be a great addition to the museum, but at present the Society does not have funds to purchase the aircraft package. NLS is looking for a sponsor to assist in acquiring this special aircraft. Anyone interested in helping, please contact museum curator. Phone 403-646-2270.
Museum Addition Has Heat and Other Improvements
A modern heating system was installed in the new addition during February and was operational near the end of that month. The total floor space is heated via three high efficiency boilers and the in-floor heat tubing that was placed in the floors prior to the concrete floors being poured. Also 7200 sq. ft. of floor space in the main hangar, in which heat tubing had been installed but never “hooked up” before, is now in the system. The Society hopes to eventually fund a solar and/or geothermal system to reduce use of natural gas.
Zone valves and pump for the workshops.
Three high efficiency boilers installed.
One of the new workshops with drywall nearly complete in mid-March.
The 60 ft. bi-fold door is proving its worth.
August 23, 2008 Summer Event -Lancs In Peace Time
Planning is well underway for our major summer event that will honour the Lancaster aircraft that flew with the postwar Royal Canadian Air Force together with their aircrew and ground crew.
Following their wartime service, over 100 Canadian-built Lancasters were converted to post-war configurations and served in a variety of roles with the RCAF including anti-submarine and other reconnaissance patrols during the Cold War, search and rescue, photography and mapping, and ice patrols in the Arctic.
Our museum’s aircraft, “Lanc159,” served with No. 103 Search and Rescue Unit at Greenwood, Nova Scotia, and with No. 407 Squadron at Comox, British Columbia. 2008 will mark the Fiftieth Anniversary of its last flight with the RCAF.
We hope that “Lancs in the Fifties” will become a reunion of air and ground crew who served on post-war Lancasters. We are requesting that “Lancs in the Fifties” veterans complete a registration form, indicating their plans to participate.
Our plans include a pancake breakfast and an evening reception on Friday followed by a full day of activities on Saturday that will include a pancake breakfast, a private luncheon for “Lancasters in the Fifties” veterans, ceremonies in the hangar, and a hangar dance in the evening with a twenty piece “Big Band.”
The day will also feature a variety of special events including run-ups of two of the Lancaster’s Merlin engines and the Fleet Fawn’s 5 cylinder Kinner, demonstrations, presentations, flypasts, and the participation of “Living Historians.” We will also be honouring Bomber Command ground crew.
One Merlin runs in 2007. This year there will be two Merlin’s running!!The eastern end of our newly constructed “North Hangar” will be available all day long for snacks, pop, coffee etcetera, and general visiting and hangar flying. Informal lunches will be available for purchase there as well.
There will not be a formal luncheon this year and tickets will not be sold. This will allow for more activities and special displays in the main hangar during the entire day. A major section of the main hangar will be set up to accommodate special presentations. At 2:00 we will be honouring those involved with “Lancs in the Fifties” with our main program in the hangar that will include special guest speakers and presentations.
The day will conclude with a hangar dance in the evening with a twenty piece “Big Band.”Please note that all our members and “museum friends” are welcome to attend all these activities. Pre-purchased tickets are not required for any of the activities associated with this year’s special event other than the private luncheon for “Lancs in the Fifties” veterans.
As in previous years, a letter will be mailed to our members in June with final details. As well, up-to-date information is always available in the “Special Events” section of [www.lancastermuseum.ca].
We hope you are able to join us at “Lancs in the Fifties.”
by Karl Kjarsgaard
Re-enactor Don Zorniak flew out from Winnipeg, at his own expense in February this year. He met with NLS directors and members to help in planning for the re-enactors participation in the museum’s August 23, 2008, event.
We made good progress on these matters. Don is an expert on Canadian military uniforms of many eras. He inspected the many Air Force uniforms we have collected over the years and was very impressed with what he saw.
Air Canada Capt. Karl Kjarsgaard with re-enactor/historian Don Zorniak.
Due to his trained eye, Don was able to assemble six (6) complete wartime RCAF ground crew uniforms as worn by these unsung heroes. Thanks to his efforts we hope to have air cadets wearing these rare uniforms at our annual summer event. This will complement the group of re-enactors who are planning to “invade” Nanton for the whole weekend. So another colourful element of our RCAF history will be added to this year’s event, thanks to the dedication of the re-enactors.
David Coutts Retires as MLA
A good friend and supporter of the Nanton Lancaster Museum, David Coutts retired from his position as Member of the Legislative Assembly for the Livingstone-Macleod Constituency just prior to the recent election here in Alberta.
Our museum is indebted to David Coutts for going to bat for us and finding the main funding that enabled Phase I of the addition to become a reality. Without his help the Society would still be fund raising. The $600,000 he obtained from the Alberta Lottery Fund for the project, along with $200,000 that NLS had raised, as well as donations the contractor, Boychuk Builders Ltd., was able to acquire, made it possible to add such items as heat tubing in the concrete floors; install the heating system, complete the storage mezzanine; frame and complete the work shops; etc.
The Society extends THANKS to David Coutts for all his help and wishes him all the best in his retirement.
Now retired MLA David Coutts is seen here speaking at the 2007 summer event that honoured Americans who served with the RCAF during WWII.
As part of Phase II of our building expansion project, we are currently completing a new 20′ x 34′ room that will add significantly to our museum’s capabilities in a number of different ways. The room will be located in our former storage area and will be accessible to all our museum visitors from the main hangar. It will be carpeted and will feature artwork and other displays around its perimeter.
As the name suggests, the new area will be used for a variety of purposes. It will have multi-media capability that will include a permanently installed computer, dvd player, speakers, and a ceiling-mounted data projector with a large permanent screen. During the hours that the museum is open for visitors, the eastern end will be a small theatre. We are in the process of developing a number of short dvd presentations, specific to our museum, that will be shown on a regular basis to enhance our visitors’ experience and our abilities to present the history of Bomber Command and the BCATP.
At other times the room will be used to accommodate school and other group visits, large meetings, museum-related social functions, and the showing of museum- related DVDs and other presentations.
Our new “Multi-Purpose Room” will provide a venue for these and other activities and events that we cannot even envision at this time. We think it will be a great addition to our museum.
Snowbird Tutor Upgraded
Over winter, volunteers Greg Morrison and Dan Hawken have been upgrading the museum’s former Snowbird Tutor #177. They have installed batteries and rewired circuits with the end result that several original functions now again allows the canopy to open by flipping a switch, instead of using the “knuckle busting” manual crank! Also, the landing and navigation lights can be switched on.
Sometime soon, before the tourist season commences (April 16), the two seats will be installed in the cockpit.
The NLS is presently missing the mounts for the two smoke tanks on the aircraft. Once these are procured, or perhaps manufactured in the museum shop, the tanks will be installed.
Again, due to the dedication of volunteers, another museum aircraft has been upgraded. In this case, we extend a grateful THANKS to Greg Morrison and Dan Hawken!
Greg Morrison (in the cockpit) and Dan Hawken are busy wiring up the electrical system in the Tutor.
Paving the New Tarmac Area
NLS has contracted with High Country Paving Ltd. to pave the tarmac area in front of the new museum hangar. It is hoped to have this completed before the June 7 Planes, Trains, and Elevators event.
The paving of this area has been made possible by donations of funds from the Nanton Lions Club and from the Society’s most recent lottery casino.
Our website continues to expand in both content and features. Visitors now have the option to search for articles using key words and phrases.
The Canadian Built Avro Lancaster section continues to grow as we collect more information and photographs pertaining to these aircraft. In conjunction with our upcoming August 22-23 summer event, a new page relating to post-war RCAF Lancasters has been added in the Lancaster Bomber section of the site. Event information, schedule, posters and registration forms are all available in the Special Events section.
We have seen a significant increase in visitation to our site lately, with many of these visitors looking up names on our virtual memorial. This is an indication of how indebted we all are of the sacrifice made by those listed on the Memorial Wall, and that we should never forget them.
We are forever grateful to Lexicom Limited for hosting our website and helping us take our museum around the world. We highly recommend you pay Lexicom a visit at: [lexi.net]
Ex-Lanc Pilot Joe English and the Falco Project
Joe English’s long-time dream of building an airplane is in the works! The building of the all-wood Falco aircraft, as reported in the 2007 fall newsletter, is definately underway! A real boost to Joe realizing this dream is the dedication of his friend, Pieter Uithuisje, to the project. Pieter’s exacting carpenter skills, along with Joe’s drafting and woodworking abilities, have moved this project along very well.
To date, all the empennage parts (the horizontal stab, the elevators and the vertical stab and rudder), plus all the fuselage formers have been made. A jig has been built and the fuselage is presently being assembled. All this has come about in spite of Pieter having been back to Holland on business several times in the past 12 months.
Joe English is a founding member of the Nanton Lancaster Society and was a board member for many years. He is still active as a greeting volunteer. The Society wishes Joe and Peter every success in completing the Falco.
Pieter Uithuisje and Joe English glue up one of the formers for the Falco Fuselage.
Pieter Uithuisje “eyeballs” the center-line of the fuselage in the assembly jig.
Starboard side of the fuselage – March 24, 2008.
Port side of the Falco fuselage – March 24, 2008.
Large Paintings Donated
Three, 4 ft. x 8 ft. paintings by Harold Veresh, of Port Coquitlam, B.C, were donated to the museum in December 2007 by Harold’s sister, Linda Veresh of Calgary, Alberta.
A decision has yet to be made where to display these large, exceptionally well done paintings. However, they will likely go on a wall in the display area of the new addition. The paintings will definitely add to the museum visitor appeal. They have arrived at the right time when space exists in the new area for such items. The Society extends a grateful THANKS to Linda Veresh for her donation.
A painting of Flying Fortress bomber named Hell’s Belles is being examined by ground crew
after crash landing on a British farm after returning from a raid.
A shot-up Lancaster being excorted home after a raid by two Spitfires.
ME 109 going down in flames after being shot down by the Spitfire in the background.
Special Gift to Ex-Navigator
Over the Xmas holidays, Ryan Surbey from Edmonton, Alberta, visited with his grandfather, a former Lancaster navigator, George Surbey of Lethbridge, Alberta. Here is Ryan’s letter about a special gift he arranged for his grandfather.
Over the holidays I was very honored to present my grandfather, George Surbey, with a piece of his past. It all started when I visited the Nanton Lancaster Museum in October 2007. They helped me contact nose artist and historian, Mr. Clarence Simonsen.
Growing up, my Grandfather had told me many stories of how he was a navigator on Lancasters with 103 Squadron with Lancaster LM-131 (PM-V), nick-named MISS VENUS.
He was from Saskatoon, Sask. He volunteered for service and trained in Edmonton with the BCATP. He did one tour of duty with 103 Sqdn. and returned back for another tour. However, the war in Europe had ended. His late brother Jim Surbey flew in the Pacific on B-24 Liberators as a belly gunner. Clarence Simonsen did a wonderful job of reproducing the nose art that was painted on Miss Venus. I could not have found a better gift for my grandfather!
I’m very proud of my grandfather and all those who served with Bomber Command. Thanks to all for defending freedom and making possible the great life we have today.
I would also like to thank the Nanton Lancaster Museum for donating the “real” Lancaster skin and David Fell of the 103 and 576 squadron associations for researching information on Miss Venus. My Special Thanks to Clarence Simonsen for making a veteran proud he had served his country, by reproducing a piece of his past.
George Surbey holds the replica nose art that adorned the nose of Lancaster LM131
Ryan Surbey and the Miss Venus nose art.
by John Phillips
For those of you who want to hear and see the second Merlin on the Lanc running, be assured that the Merlin group is working steadily towards that goal. We actually had it firing on some cylinders right in the shop a while back to add to our morale. Three exhaust stacks had to be repaired by our maven welder, Neil Wilson. The spinner was paint stripped, had a few dents removed and Dr. Brian Taylor took it home where he primed and painted it. Looks great. Due to a large number of the spinner latches (8 in all) being either damaged or non-functional, Dan Hawken, one of our volunteers who is a home-builder (aircraft, not domiciles) and a machinist of a greater skill, took it upon himself to build from scratch essentially, a large number of brand new latches. This involved a number of jigs and fixtures and he can crank them out as many as you want. Ed Curnutte from the Windsor CH2A museum made three sets of header tank mounting brackets using the brackets from their Lanc as patterns. This will enable us to proceed to mount the header tank which is just about the last step before hanging the Merlin back on to its #4 position. A very large thank you, Ed, for this great show of cooperation between museums. We hope that again you can attend our annual event.
Work has started on getting the oil tank cleaned up, and there is still a lot of preparation before the engine bay is ready for the Merlin, like hanging the coolant and oil radiators. The overhauled propeller sits silently on its stand nestled up against #4 cowling. It looks beautiful, reflecting its cost. There is still an instrumentation issue to conquer to do with #4 engine but the solution is clear. We are also working towards using internal power and priming, instead of our external system of the past run-ups. This will be safer and more expedient. More news as it happens.
Fred Hollowell and John Phillips are seen here installing the header tank on the Merlin prior
to it being placed back on Lancaster FM159. Ed Curnutte, of the Windsor, Ontario, group,
which is restoring Lancaster FM212, had the brackets that mount this tank made for NLS. Our Grateful Thanks go out to Ed for his help.
This Packard built Rolls Royce Merlin is nearly ready to be re-installed in the #4 position on Lancaster FM159.
This 53 foot semitrailer was donated to the Society by Ocean Trailer Ltd. It is shown here in the new addition where it will have shelving installed for storing parts and pieces that are presently stored in a quonset.
We extend a grateful Thank You to Ocean Trailer and their service manager, Rick Deatherstone.
Rick also volunteers in the museum shops.
He has his own Spitfire project for which he will be allotted a space in the museum where he can assemble it.
Some of the tools donated by Barry Pedersen which include a miter saw, paint sprayer,
as well as five various sized tool boxes loaded with a variety of wrenches, pliers, hammers, etc.
The lower photo on the right shows the table saw. Also included but not shown are a rolling tool chest topped with a smaller tool drawer type tool box.
Mahogany plywood from the wing of a Hadrian Glider. The plywood may become a display or be used in the shop. Our grateful Thanks to donor George Ryning.
Shelving on the mezzanine was donated by Rick Featherstone. Our Thanks to Rick!
Anson Restoration Update
by Rob Pedersen
Progress continues to be made on old faithful Annie. When you come to the museum for a visit you’ll notice Annie is no longer sitting in the spot she has occupied for the last 13 years. Annie is the first aircraft to be moved into the new restoration hangar. To say that the restoration crew is excited about the move would be an understatement. Moving Annie into the restoration hangar means we can now work in a heated building with lights and lots of space around her.
John Maze has begun the daunting task of reassembling the floor. Each piece has been dry fitted and John is well underway to gluing the pieces back together. Looking at all the parts and pieces it’s like assembling a giant jigsaw puzzle with all the pieces the same color, size and shape. Once the pieces are glued together the next task will be to fit all of the hardware, like pilot and co-pilot seats, to make sure all the holes line up and all the mounting blocks are in place before the plywood coverings are glued on.
Annie rolled out of the museum’s main hangar to become the first aircraft project to be moved into what is the new display area when Phase III of construction is completed. Dave Birrell in photo.
With the completion of the starboard window frame, Charles and Garry have begun the restoration of the port window frame. All of the components have been repaired, 20 in all, and are now being assembled. Before the end of March we should see the port frame painted and, along with the starboard window frame, installed.
With the completion of the window frames, the next major steps will be to install the fuselage formers and stringers onto Annie along with the cockpit floor. By mid summer Annie will look quite a bit different.
Move completed” The moving crew standing in front of the Anson are from L-R,
Greg Morrison, Bob Evans, Rob Pedersen, and Gary Amundrud. With the in-floor heating functioning, work has already commenced to install the many fuselage formers that have been made and stockpiled over the past few years.
Visitors can look forward to seeing a marked improvement in this project as the fuselage starts to look more complete.
57 Rescue Report
by Karl Kjarsgaard
The initial plan was to do the sonar survey for the Halifax in the early part of 2008, but due to a ship maintenance delay and problems with sonar tools availability, Halifax 57 Rescue and the Marine Institute of Ireland agreed to reschedule the Halifax sonar survey to July 2008. At that time there is a scientific cruise planned that is near our Halifax sonar survey box. Also the weather in July is historically better for doing the deep sonar survey.
We not only have the green light from the Marine Institute for the ship time, but we also have the talents and experience of Fiona Fitzpatrick, a deep water sonar expert. She has agreed to oversee and advise us. I will be meeting with her in London, while I am on one of my flights for Air Canada, to plan the details of the Halifax sonar survey and arranging for the sonar equipment for the July scientific cruise of the ship Celtic Explorer.
Halifax 57 Rescue has the responsibility of arranging and paying for the deep water sonar system that will be used to locate LW170. Thanks to Fiona volunteering to advise and assist us, we will be able to make these preparations over the next few weeks. We are now well on our way towards locating LW170 as we prepare all the tools for our mission.
With regard to paying for the special sonar system and tools required we are doing moderately well for funding. Originally the Irish officials and sonar companies quoted us the price range of ($28,000 to $35,000 Canadian) to pay for the sonar lease/rental. It appears that with the exchange rates (of dollar to euro) fluctuating and increased insurance rates for the sonar systems being leased, the costs for required equipment could rise by 30 to 40%.
Thanks to all who so generously donated funds to date. Several wonderful people have come forward in the past few weeks donating sizeable amounts to our cause because they believe in our project and our efforts. Remember, all donations to Halifax 57 Rescue (Canada) are tax deductible and you will receive a tax receipt from us for that tax year. Tax receipts for 2007 were mailed in February.
Also, there has been a promise by a major personality and his group for support for the Halifax sonar survey costs which I will announce in the next progress report when all details have been worked out. We are indeed heartened by these offers of support and continued help in our historic quest.
Please do not assume that we are out of the woods financially with the latest donations. As I have stated before, there are many “incidental” costs which are adding up for our sonar survey and we must be prepared to cover our expenses and all contingency costs, should they appear on the scene. As project manager, I urge you now to send in your donations for this honourable project. Think about the great significance of recovering Halifax LW170 from the deep and you will know what to do.
Airspeed Oxford Project
The Airspeed Oxford project has, until now, been on the back burner. However, with an enlarged group of shop volunteers, we are anticipating some preliminary work can now be undertaken. Restoring metal fittings and other parts such as the canopy frame, metal nose section, undercarriage legs, etc., could now become a project for a couple of volunteers once the new shops are finished.
In the last few months some preliminary work for this project has been undertaken by NLS President Rob Pedersen. Rob has been making copies of the Oxford drawings received from George Ryning (of the Calgary Aero Space Museum) a few years ago. Rob is employed by Cargill Ltd. at High River, who have kindly allowed Rob to copy the drawings at no charge. George Ryning has contacted us again and arranged for copies of additional drawings that were missing from the original batch. He has also supplied other Oxford information that will be very helpful when the Oxford project gets underway.
We extend a grateful THANKS to George Ryning for his efforts over the years in helping NLS obtain all available drawings for the Oxford aircraft. NLS will be making sure the signage that will go with the Oxford project recognizes George Ryning’s contribution
The collection of Oxford parts in the museum. In spite of it not looking even vaguely like an airplane, most of the metal fittings, cockpit frame, metal nose section, metal flaps, and other components are there. Three other center-sections with additional parts are in storage elsewhere.
Bob Evans and George Ryning met in early March. George had additional Oxford drawings to complete a set for NLS.
A wartime Airspeed Oxford.
Friend In Paris Helps
NLS has friends in many places around the world. Philippe Uziel, of Paris, France, is one of those friends. Philippe is probably the museum’s most distant volunteer.
Philippe, his wife and son visited with Bob and Carol Evans in July 2007 and while there, they toured the museum and also attended the annual Fly-In. Philippe was so enthused that he offered to help translate some of the museum’s informational pamphlets into the French language. Due to his efforts the museum’s main introductory pamphlet is now available in the French language for French speaking visitors to our museum. Our THANKS to Philippe.
L-R: Guillaume, Francoise, and Philippe Uziel, with Carol Evans at the 2007 Fly-In.
The one side of the museum’s introductory brochure in French, translated by Philippe.
Heating in the new addition.
Mezzanine c/w shelving.
Engine mount being readied for reinstalling the overhauled rolls royce merlin.
The Anson project moved to a new space.
Lancaster FM159’s Merlin engine runs. By June 7 the second Merlin may be ready too.
June 7 the Fleet Fawn engine will be run.
The largest garden railroad exhibit in Canada. Well worth a visit!
Three prairie sentinels preserved in Nanton.
Beech Expiditor at our Annual Fly-In event. (2007)
Here are two “classics” – Gordon Jones’ Tiger Moth and Alex Bahlsen’s Stearman in the background. (2007)
Some pretty strange airplanes “fly” in to the NLS breakfast fly-ins. This young ladd is pretty proud of his “homebuilt”. (2007)
John Phillips and Gary Amundrud stand beside a WWII radio setup which Juhn has restored for static display.
He donated some of the components including the radio rack. Similar assemblies would have been installed in a Mk. I Anson.
Our Thanks to John for this donation. Both Gary and John are very knowledgeable about radios and electronics.
Gary is one of our newer shop volunteers and is retired from the air force. Electronics was his trade.
(We have him doing wood work on the Anson!) John is an AME and radios have been a hobby of his for many years.
Email and Letters Received
Letters and e-mail addressed to the Society have in some cases been edited.
We try to make sure the intent of the message is left intact.
Black Diamond, WA, USA
Site visitor entry:
In 1975, I can recall a family trip where the highlight (for this then 10 year old), was not the trip to Glacier National Park, but a side trip to see a lonely and somewhat forgotten Lancaster. She was starting to show her weariness of storage, with only a chain-link fence to keep her safe, but it always captured my imagination what happened to it.
I hope she flies, and I hope someday to bring my own son there, to see what captured my devotion to aviation.
UK RAF Lyneham
Thanks to NLS for my post from late Dec. last year. The sole surviving member (of 2) from the sortie which claimed my uncle has been in touch and sent me accounts of the crew. Again, many thanks!
Site visitor entry:
I have been a Lancaster fan most of my life, and it makes me proud to see that you are keeping the memory of all the guys alive, and allowing others to see what efforts these lads went to for us.
What a great, in-depth website! Loved the stories, pics and information about the Lanc. I can’t wait to get down and visit the museum. Very interesting!
Can I just say a huge thank you to everyone, who through this website has helped piece together information on Thomas Herbert (Herb) Warne and his crew, who sadly were killed near here in 1943. We now have lots of information about them as well as the Lancaster, and were able to put on an exhibition locally for the 65th Anniversary of the accident (as well as raising funds for the church where their memorial is). A lot of people have gone to a lot of hard work to ensure these men are not forgotten, it’s much appreciated.
Your website is well done. I am glad to see that my Uncle’s name, Adam Kidd Hodgins, is engraved on the memorial. He was in Squadron 405 and his Halifax bomber was shot down while on a bombing raid on the harbour at Bordeaux, France, in 1942.
New Glasgow, NS
Just a brief note that George Oliver, who served in the 408 squadron and is featured in the Nose Artists section of the Nanton Lancaster Society website, passed away shortly after Christmas in Liverpool, Nova Scotia, at the age of 85. The family is very grateful to Clarence Simonsen for his interest in George and his brief “Nose Artist” career and to the Nanton Lancaster Society for continuing to display George’s suitcase and replica of his nose art.
Thanks to all.
Dear Air Museum Staff: February 12, 2008
On behalf of the history students and faculty at Ambrose University College, I would like to thank you for your hospitality on the occasion of our January 31, 2008, tour of the museum.
Dennis and Bob were both deeply knowledgeable, and really brought the history of the Lancaster Bomber, the military operations of the Second World War, and the museum itself to life for us. I received extremely positive feedback from our students. All of us were very impressed with the energy and determination with which you have built up your museum. To have accomplished so much as a volunteer organization is impressive.
Again, thanks so much for the interesting tour. We look forward to visiting again and will follow with interest your efforts to recover the Halifax LW170.
Please accept our donation as a token of our gratitude for your work.
Kyle Jantzen, PhD
Associate Professor of History
Ambrose University College
Loving wife of John Rutherford, passed away in 2007, Both Mable and her husband have been long time members of the NLS. Both were accomplished artists. She will be sadly missed by the many friends she made at the museum and elsewhere.
North Vancouver, B.C.
Died in November 2007. Sid was a long-time NLS member and supporter.
High River, Alberta.
A long time NLS member and supporter, passed away in January of 2008.
Cedric G.H. Kennard,
Died February 18, 2008. He was a former NLS member and supporter.
Hon. A. Milton Harradence QC, DUC,
Passed away February 28, 2008. An NLS member, he was a well known Calgary jurist and pilot.
Passed away in March, 2008. Lee was a long-time member, supporter and volunteer in the museum.
William Donald Miller,
Passed away recently. Donn was a former WWII bomber navigator and long time friend and supporter of the NLS.
The Nanton Lancaster Society extends deepest sympathy
to the families and friends of these former members and supporters.
May God Bless.
By the time you read this report we will be well into spring and around your museum there will be a flurry of activity getting it ready for the 2008 tourist season.
This year we have many special events planned and will be winding up with a big event on August 23, at which we will be honoring the Lancaster crews of the 1950s. We will be featuring a reunion of those who flew and worked on Lancasters post war. The event ends with a “hangar” dance in the evening. The WWII re-enactors will join us again this year, as they did in August 2007. This group of enthusiastic historians (all volunteers) add colour to any event they attend.
Fitting with my belief that the museum has a life force of its own, upon your next visit you will find a few things have changed and grown. In February we moved the Anson into the hanger portion of the new addition where the restoration crew will have plenty of space to work on Annie.
Phase two is well underway with walls for the new shops built, heat for the restoration hangar and shelves for the storage mezzanine. With nearly all of the items in the old storage room relocated to their new home we were able to begin on one of the most exciting developments, the creation of our multimedia room. Once this is complete we will have a proper space to hold presentations. This opens up a whole new method of presenting stories pertaining to history we are attempting to preserve.
During the 2008 season I look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones.
Curator / Editor’s Desk
After twenty, plus. years of being part of a group that set out to preserve the “old” Lancaster, I should be past the stage of getting excited about new developments. However, I find myself just as excited today about recent museum developments, as I was when we erected the first beams of the main museum building in 1991. The energy that created our museum still persists!
With Phase I of the building addition being completed last fall and with funds left over to commence Phase II. Everyone here was exuberant! This mood carried on into the winter. Articles in this newsletter will bring you up to date regarding what we’ve done in the last three months. Due to this activity the new work shops are nearly ready to move into and the new multi-media room will be completed very soon.
Some aircraft will soon be moved into the new display hangar, which will ease the congestion in the main hangar. The Avro Anson is already in the new heated area and its restoration has gathered momentum. Other aircraft projects that will soon join the Anson, are the Cessna Crane and Airspeed Oxford. All three will become displays while being restored. (Our experience has been that visitors are quite intrigued with viewing aircraft under restoration.)
Another exciting, up-coming, happening will be our summer event which will salute the, “Lancs in the Fifties.” We hope you will plan on attending, to see the newly expanded museum and added displays. Another ‘first’ will be the running of two of the Lanc’s Merlin engines!