100th Anniversary of Flight
On February 22, the Society held an open house to celebrate the first flight in Canada of a heavier-than-air machine. This was one day sooner than the day 100 years ago that the Silver Dart lifted off the frozen lake at Baddeck, N.S., to commence Canada’s participation in the world of aviation.
Running the Merlin engines on the Lancaster, to add to the celebrations, had been suggested but was cancelled due to extreme winter weather conditions. So the event was a quiet one. However, thirty or so visitors, including NLS board members and local volunteers, did attend. A special cake was on hand, courtesy of Air Canada Capt. Karl Kjarsgaard. This was enjoyed by all, along with coffee, etc.
Local media representatives were on hand from both the local newspaper, The Nanton News and the bi-monthly Nanton Review to record the “mini” event. This resulted in some mid-winter publicity for the museum.
The special cake donated by Karl Kjarsgaard to help celebrate the day.
Above are some of the folks who attended the Centennial of Flight anniversary celebration.
Can you pick out the mannequins?
Relaxing after enjoying a slice of 100th anniversary cake are
L to R: NLS Past president, Dan Fox, board members Dave Birrell and Karl Kjarsgaard,
and local media person Geneva Macgillivray, whoe publishes the Nanton Review, a four page, twice monthly update of local happenings.
Back To Baddeck
Under the leadership of the Canadian Aeronautical Preservation Association (CAPA), aviation museums and aviation heritage sites across Canada will celebrate Canada’s Centennial of Flight with a unique and historically oriented event. The “Back to Baddeck” vintage aircraft relay flight project recognizes Canada’s aviation roots in Baddeck, Nova Scotia, celebrates the wide variety of aircraft involved in our aviation history, and aviation’s national impact.
This relay flight will be done in 36 legs utilizing a variety of vintage aircraft owned and restored by member museums. The northern portion of the relay started in Greenwood, Nova Scotia, on 5 March, going west across the Canadian north (with the help of Canada’s Air Force) to end up in Comox, B.C., by May. The southern portion will be done west to east from Comox, B.C. starting on 23 May and end at the Nova Scotia International Air Show in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia,12 and 13 September.
The “Back to Baddeck” relay is scheduled to arrive in Nanton on May 30.
Planes, Trains, Elevators and More – May 30
The Museum of FLight’s Waco aircraft.There are numerous reasons to attend the museum’s opening event during Canada’s “Centennial of Flight.” This will be the first Merlin Engines Run-up for the year and, as well, the Rocky Mountain Model Club will be holding their Western Canadian Regional Model Contest in the main hangar. This is one of the premier modelling events in western Canada. The 2008 event attracted modellers from the provinces of B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and even the U.S. Over 500 models were entered in 93 categories. The No. 604 RCAC Band will be entertaining, members of the Alberta Pioneer Auto Club will be on hand, and the 1937 Waco Cabin aircraft from the Canadian Museum of Flight in Langley, B.C., will be arriving to participate in the “Back to Baddeck” sea-to-sea-to-sea vintage aircraft relay together with other vintage aircraft. As well you can tour Nanton’s grain elevators, visit Ultimate Trains’ 7000 square foot garden railway layout with its 22 operating trains, and enjoy shopping along Nanton’s “Antique and Art Walk.” For details check our website [www.lancastermuseum.ca]
Tribute to Jonathan Spinks
Jon Spinks was a remarkable young man who played a pivotal role during the early years of the Nanton Lancaster Society and left a significant legacy to the museum. Richard de Boer, Jon’s close friend and fellow “airplane hunter,” will be making a special presentation at the museum on June 27, 2009, to tell Jon’s story. The Merlins will be run-up as well. Check our website www.lancastermuseum.ca
Acting on a suggestion made by NLS board member, Karl Kjarsgaard, the Society will be setting up an annual award titled The “Jonathon Spinks Memorial Scroungers Award.”
This award will go to the person deemed to have added most significantly to the museum’s collection and/or facility. The first such award will be presented at our August 15, 2009, summer event.
Jonathon Spinks – Aeroplane Hunter.
Salute to Jack Allan
W/C Jack Allan as C/O of the Golden Hawks exhibition team.
W/C Jack Allan was born and raised in Nanton. He helped form the Golden Hawks and was their commanding officer for three years during the early 1960s. To salute Jack, the Snowbirds and Hawk One, an F-86 Sabre jet, will be doing fly-pasts over the museum on July 23. Other activities, including Merlin engine run-ups, are planned. Watch [www.lancastermuseum.ca] for details.
W/C Jack Allan’s Golden Hawks jacket. Note the shoulder crest.
Tale of Two Tiger Moths – NLS Collection Expansion
DH82 Tiger Moth – RCAF #1214
Gordon Jones of High River, informed the NLS museum board that when he decides to finally quit flying his Tiger Moth, #1214, it will be presented to the museum. NLS has assured Gordon that it would become a permanent display along with Gordon’s own unique life history in which this Tiger Moth has played a significant role.
Many of our members will be aware that Gordon Jones was a flying instructor during the war and flew Tiger Moths, (including Moth #1214) at the #5 EFTS, High River, Alberta. Even though he went farming after the war, he has been involved with flying most of his life.
In the early 1990s, Gordon found Tiger Moth #1214 for sale and became the owner. Since that time, Gordon and his Tiger Moth have been part of every NLS event where a fly-past of vintage aircraft was scheduled.
Gordon Jones will be flying his Moth in a fly-past on May 30, along with a Waco from the Canadian Museum of Flight, from Langley, B.C., as part of the “Back to Baddeck,” Centennial Flight. The next day, May 31, Gordon will fly his Tiger Moth on the Nanton to Springbank leg of the Centennial Flight.
DH82 Tiger Moth – RCAF #1202
The second addition to the collection is the Tiger Moth, the fuselage of which has been on loan and exhibited in the museum for a number of years. It first belonged to Ron Jackson, an AME with Field Aviation in Calgary, for a number of years. In the 1980s, Ron restored the fuselage to an airworthy condition and had the engine majored. After that his job kept him so busy that he didn’t have time to rebuild the wings. In 2004 Ron moved to Ontario and sold the package to AME Colin Markle, of Claresholm. In 2008 Colin decided he had too many projects and sold the Tiger Moth package to the museum. NLS has contracted with Neil Davidson, Kimberly, B.C., to have the wings restored to an airworthy status. NLS will do the fabric covering.
Neil Davidson loads the Moth wings to transport them to his Kimberly shop.
Tiger Moth #4080
The Murray Peden Tiger
Murray Peden, DFC, will be honoured by the museum by placing the number of the Tiger Moth (#4080) in which he first soloed on our soon-to-fly Tiger, #1202 (see preceding page). There are many reasons why Murray was chosen, including his wartime career with Bomber Command, his highly regarded book, “A Thousand Shall Fall,” his connection to #5 EFTS at High River, and his continuing efforts to ensure that the role of the Canadians who served with Bomber Command are properly recorded and remembered. We are pleased that Murray has accepted this tribute and look forward to members of his family being in attendance on August 15 when #4080 is officially placed on display.
“Baz” – The Second Edition
The museum’s first book was published in 1996. It was the biography of Ian Bazalgette, VC. An expanded and much improved second edition has been published to commemorate the sixty-fifth anniversary of Baz’s Victoria Cross Flight. As well as thoroughly documenting S/L Bazlagette’s air force career and the VC Flight, the book chronicles the wonderful relationship between Ian and his sister Ethel, and the bond that was formed between the Village of Senantes, Ian Bazalgette, and the Nanton Lancaster Air Museum.
Remembering Baz August 15
As part of the museum’s commemoration of the sixty-fifth anniversary of S/L Ian Bazalgette’s Victoria Cross Flight, the Village of Senantes, France, will be officially “twinned” with the Town of Nanton. Through this relationship, the home of the Ian Bazalgette Memorial Lancaster will be forever connected with the village in France that S/L Bazalgette flew over prior to landing the aircraft just 800 metres to the north. It then exploded killing S/L Bazalgette and the two other crewmembers who were unable to parachute. The citizens of Senantes and area helped the surviving aircrew evade the Nazis and eventually buried S/L Bazalgette in their churchyard. This Canadian hero is recognized on a regular basis by the citizens of Senantes.
We are honoured that Christian Gavelle, the mayor of Senantes, will be travelling to Nanton for the ceremonies, accompanied by Siméon Desloges, who, as a nine-year-old watched Baz fly over his farm just seconds before landing the Lancaster.
“Remembering Baz” will be a very full day of activities beginning with a pancake breakfast and concluding with a Big Band Dance. In between there will be special demonstrations and presentations, the unveiling of Murray Peden’s Tiger Moth and Ronnie Jenkins’s Nose Art, engines start-ups, a luncheon, aircraft flypasts and much more.
Check www.lancastermuseum.ca where up-to-the-minute information and a complete schedule will be posted.
One of the highlights of a visit to the museum this summer will be viewing our recently completed commissioned artwork by Len Krenzler that depicts S/L Ian Bazalgette’s aircraft flying over the church in the Village of Senantes. Only the port outer engine was running at this point and the starboard wing was on fire. Len has worked closely with the museum over a period of several months to ensure the historical accuracy of this spectacular work. It may be viewed on the museum’s website www.lancastermuseum.ca. Limited edition prints are available. Len will be joining us on August 15 for our “Remembering Baz” event and several of his other aircraft paintings will be on display.
Mobile Airshow Display
The Society tries to attend several air shows and fly-ins every summer to promote the museum. A display package has been developed over the years which contains some bulky items. It is always a chore to find a vehicle to transport the various components of the display.
To solve this dilemma it was decided to make up a self-contained trailer unit in which all the display items could be stored. It was agreed that putting wheels under the museum’s mock-up Lancaster fuselage centre-section (see photo above) would be ideal as it would be a display in itself.
As this mock-up has an opening for a mid-upper gun turret, volunteer Charlie Cobb offered to build up a mock-up turret using parts left over from previous turret restorations, with missing components being shop fabricated. Volunteer Dan Hawken was called upon to make some of the missing pieces. Dan is a very talented machinist who has, in the past, built several home built aircraft and has a well-equipped shop. Another volunteer, Alvin Berger, has made up two very realistic wooden machine guns that will be fitted into the turret.
As this newsletter goes to print, the display is well underway. So if you happen to be travelling to air shows or fly-ins this summer and see what looks like part of a Lancaster Bomber, complete with a mid upper turret, going down the road, it’s one of the museum’s newest displays.
Gun turret for the travelling display under construction in the new shop.
If you lived in Calgary during the 1950s, you will remember the network of Jenkins Grocery stores that dominated the market before Safeway came to town and changed everything. Ronnie Jenkins left the family business to serve in the RCAF during WWII.
Clarence Simonsen has reproduced a full size replica of the nose art that was on Ronnie’s wartime bomber, painted on a salvaged Lanc wing panel. This will be unveiled at the NLS summer event on August 15. Members of the Jenkins’ family will be in attendance.
Minnie Simcoe Update
Finding No. 431’s Mascot
Minnie Simcoe, an Iroquois Indian doll, was No. 431 Squadron’s mascot during its wartime years. Even if she still survived, her whereabouts were not known when a replica was made during 2008.
Thanks to The Snowbirds and an excellent article in Airforce Magazine by Jacqueline Cartier, we were able to bring the story to the attention on Canadians.
We are pleased to report that this has led to the museum contacting the daughter of W/C E.M. “Marty” Mitchell who was a wartime c/o of No. 431. Kathy advised that Minnie was safely stored in a trunk, a little the worse for wear after being played with a lot during Kathy’s childhood. Watch for the “Minnie Simcoe” display when you next visit the museum. Her complete story is on [www.lancastermuseum.ca]
2000 Fleet Flights
The museum’s quest to learn more about Minnie Simcoe’s story (as reported on this same page) has also led to our learning much more about W/C E.M. “Marty” Mitchell, the C/O of No. 431 Squadron during the time Minnie was posted there.
We were excited to learn that W/C Marty Mitchell has a very direct connection to our museum’s Fleet Fawn aircraft. Over a six year period from 1935 to 1941, Marty Mitchell flew 99 different Fleet Fawns and Finches, logging 2000 flights in the type while at the RCAF’s Flight Instructor School at Camp Borden. Sixteen of these flights were aboard our museum’s Fleet Model 7C, Fawn, aircraft #264.
Peter Mitchell, Marty’s eldest son, visited the museum recently and has provided us with copies of his father’s logbooks. Peter is looking forward to visiting the museum again as we have promised to have him in the cockpit as we run-up one of his father’s old Fawns.
A page from W/C E. M. “Marty” Mitchell’s log book showing six consecutive entries where he flew Fleet Fawn #264,
which is now restored in the NLS museum as a taxiable aircraft.
An art installation in landscape
“Gravitas” is about the weight of time. It is also about the entropy of the material world, of memory, of dreams; how all such things go to ground; it is about death and dying. It is about excursion and return; of overcoming the forces of gravity and of adversity. It is about courage, about rising up and extending the horizon. It is about the birth of possibilities and living.”
The above statement is taken from a grant proposal made by Keith Harder, Chair, Dept. of Fine Arts, Augustana Faculty, University of Alberta in Camrose, Alberta. It is in regard to making use of twelve remaining Anson “carcases” that will be removed from the property of Curator Bob Evans and taken to another site near Cayley, Alberta, about nine miles north of Nanton. Keith’s proposal is to create a compass circle about 80 yards in diameter, filled with gravel except for twelve grassed aircraft “silhouette” areas in which the Anson remains would be situated. These remains would become lasting symbols of the BCATP era similar to the ancient stone medicine rings found in several locations in Alberta, Montana, etc. Again in Keith Harder’s own words:
“I have been working with the curator of the Nanton Lancaster Museum, on a series of art works based on a number of derelict aircraft from the era of the BCATP program. These few artifacts are some of the only palpable remainders of a galvanizing moment in the history of Western Canada; a time that was fraught with desperation and hope as well as romance and grievous tragedy. This moment produced stories where much of the mystery that comprises the human condition is condensed.
In their current state these artifacts have little value beyond their use as reference material for aircraft restorers. But to say they have no value at all is to view any ruin from history, whether cathedral, castle or city, as merely rubble standing in the way of another condo project. Rather, all these things are a reminder of who we are, what we need to overcome, and to what we might aspire. It is my intention to arrange these artifacts in a setting that will stimulate such reflection and highlight these values.”
A few of the Anson carcases – March 09.
Museum Financial Report
As our members realize, other than some assistance to hire summer students during July and August, our museum receives no funding from any level of government to support our operating costs. Phase II of our building expansion, the restoration of our Merlins for the Lancaster, and numerous other developments are financed solely through donations from our visitors and members. Our strong volunteer program enables us to operate the museum with only two dedicated and efficient half-time employees. Their wages, as well as utilities and other operating costs, are also supported solely by donations.
The acquisition of our Tiger Moth aircraft, a vital component of the BCATP story, comes with yearly commitments over the next five years. A donation through the estate of long-time member Ted Hackett has enabled us to commit to the building of the Tiger’s wings, the last major component required prior to the museum having a flying aircraft. However, we will have to direct additional funds towards the completion of the wings.
On the building side, we would like to begin Phase III of our facility expansion. The next step is to build a 22’x84′ mezzanine for additional storage space that will enable us to make better use of our hangars. This will cost $27,000.
Please consider supporting your museum during 2009.
Shop Tools Donated
Former NLS board member Eric Bryant and his wife Doris have sold their house and have moved into a seniors’ apartment.
Eric had to give up his well-equipped home woodworking shop when moving to the smaller accommodations. So he has donated most of the shop tools to the NLS museum with one provison, that he can use the museum shop anytime he has a project.
Due to Eric’s generosity the museum wood shop now has just about any tool needed for future restoration work. Our GRATEFUL THANKS to Eric Bryant!
Crane for the Engine Shop
The new engine metal working shop now has a wall mounted crane arm for lifting engines and other heavy items. This crane was designed and fabricated by local machinist/welder Neil Wilson. Neil has over the years, made up many things for the museum, including the mounts for our gate guardian aircraft, the CF100 and T-33.
Dave Birrell, Dan Fox and Tink Robinson duscuss something important while welder/machinist Neil Wilson welds the upper pivot fitting to the structural beam.
by John Phillips
The Merlin crew has been busy since the 2008 annual event moving workshop tools, benches, manuals, etc., into the new shop in the north wing of the hangar. This shop is isolated from the woodworking shop and also from the larger open area where the Anson II project is forging ahead.
Maintenance work has been done on #3 to stop oil & coolant leaks. They were minor but annoying since #4 is a very dry engine. An experiment involving the thermostat on #4 will be evaluated in an effort to achieve better cooling.
The Prop from the #2 Merlin hangs from the museum’s fork lift while John Phillips, Fred Hollowell, and Greg Morrison check it over. Curator Bob Evans on the fork lift.
The propeller from #2 (port inner) engine has been removed and set aside in preparation for #2 to be hoisted off as a complete assembly from the firewall attach points. This will allow far more attention to be paid to detailing and allow work to be done at shop level rather than on the airframe. Previously, the engines had been removed from the bearers.
Volunteer, Shane Chipchase, checking fuel lines and wiring in the Lanc’s port wing.
So for the next couple of years, maybe less, the #2 engine will undergo the refurbishment necessary to make it run along with the starboard engines. No deliberate date is being set. But think about the thrill of seeing 3 engines start and run !
Because the engines that were purchased for FM159 ever so many years ago were rather incomplete in many detail parts, parts from the other engines were cannibalized to the present refurbished engines. When we get to #1 engine, we will face some serious parts shortages. This has to do with ancillary components mostly. April 21: Merlin #2 was lifted off FM159!
Merlin #2 about to be lifted off Lanc FM159.
A Mule for the Museum
For the past few years, Farmway Machinery Ltd., High River, has been very helpful to the NLS by loaning a small tractor to the museum for the purpose of moving the Lancaster bomber in and out of the museum hangar for summer events.
Last fall your Society purchased a aircraft towing tractor/tug (Mule?) so that we would have our own means of pushing or pulling aircraft around. The “Mule” was purchased on E-Bay and was located at Battle Ground, Washington, U.S.A. Mullen Trucking (NLS trucking company of choice!) hauled it to Nanton.
Since its arrival the “Mule” has undergone a complete mechanical check-over and now sports a new BCATP yellow paint job. This was done in one of our shops in the new addition. Also looking closely at the engine hood pictured below, it sports a piece of “nose art” as applied by our museum’s friend and nose art authority, Clarence Simonsen. Look closely at the photo in the next column. Remember that a mule is also referred to as an “ass!”Our volunteers will get to try out the “Mule” for the first time on May 30, the date of the first event of the season. We’ll find out then if we have a mule or an ass!
The new “Mule” as it looked when it was delivered by Mullen Trucking in November.
It looks much better in its new livery. The cab was removed as it is inconvenient when being used in the museum hangar.
Anson Project Update
by Rob Pedersen
Progress continues and that is a great feeling. The Anson project seems to run on forever sometimes with little visible progress. However, this winter we have met several milestones and she really is starting to look more and more like an aeroplane.
Annie now has the window frames mounted and the entire group of upper cabin formers installed. We have also picked up a fair-sized work crew, which is the primary reason for such a boost in progress. Four students from SAIT have started making a weekly trip down to Nanton. Bruno, Chris, Chris and Richard are deep into working on Annie’s engines. While both engines have been restored and are operational, they both need to be fitted with the proper fittings, paint and baffles. By the time the SAIT team is finished, Annie will have two engines that sparkle and shine.
The team working on the fuselage has been joined by Bernie Jensen. Bernie comes to us with a wealth of woodworking knowledge and is a welcomed member of the team. By summer the plan is to have all fuselage formers mounted and to be well into running the stringers.
John Maze and the Anson cabin floor frame now ready for the plywood cover.
Bernie and Rob checking formers.
57 Rescue Report
by Karl Kjarsgaard
With regard to the Halifax Project., the deep sea sonar ship “Polar Prince,” which is planning on doing the LW170 sonar search, is now being refitted with improvements to its gear. It will then be going overseas from Halifax, N.S., this summer to do a sonar contract for a European customer.
The ship’s owner has agreed to do the sonar survey to find Halifax LW170 while they are enroute to do their contract work. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to get that critical sonar location and image of LW170 which we must have if we are to move to Phase 2, the recovery of LW170.
The cost of deep sea sonar services, for a ship the size of the Polar Prince – 200 feet, is charged by the day. I have been plotting and estimating the basic costs for the sonar survey based upon previous estimates.
If we are fortunate with weather and ship’s equipment and if the Irish coordinates of the main target hotspots in our Halifax survey box prove to be accurate, we are looking at a minimum of 3 to 5 days to finish the sonar survey. Even with the best prices agreed to by the ship’s owners of “Polar Prince,” we are still looking at a very sizeable bill for such special sonar services.
We have accumulated just under $40,000 in cash and pledges, for the sonar survey. I believe, considering all variables and contingencies for such a special historic project, that we should have another $20,000 in our funding to cover our financial requirements.
This is an edited excerpt from progress report #27. The full report is on the website [www.57.rescuecanada.com]
Above is an article from the George, South Africa, newspaper sent to Karl recently by Roz Piejus, the daughter of the pilot Philip Piejus, who ditched LW170 in 1945. this is just part of the story of this aircraft. For updates to the on-going search for and efforts to recovery of this WWII Halifa bomber see [www.57rescuecanada.com]
N.A. Yale Project Update
As this project will result in an airworthy aircraft when completed, progress is therefore very time-consuming. We are looking at a probable five-year time frame to finish this aircraft. However, the aircraft components will be on display in the museum soon.
To date, the rear fuselage has been completely restored as has the forward tubing fuselage and the engine mount. Due to the generosity of one of our members, we now have all the main Wright 975 engine components on hand to make up an airworthy engine. John Phillips, who heads up the engine crew, and your curator will be sorting out the parts for this engine to make sure everything is on hand for eventual rebuilding. The next step will be to access funding to have the engine assembled by a qualified engine shop.
Part of the center section that had to be removed to get at the main spar.
Bob Long examines the last rivets to be drilled out in order to remove the main spar from the Yale center section. The spar needs to be replaced.
The main component under restoration at present is the wing centre-section. This has been stalled over the past two years due to the need to find a licensed metal working shop to make up a new main spar and a sub-spar. We now have contact with a company that can do this work. Also, our main volunteer, Bob Long, is now back working on this component after being absent for personal reasons. So this project is now underway in earnest.
The museum’s Yale has serial #64-2157 and carried RCAF number 3404. When completed it will be dedicated to the memory of the late Jonathon Spinks.
N.A. Yale #3404 will look like this when it is restored.
Lysander to be Displayed
As this newsletter goes to press, arrangements are being made to haul the 2/3 scale Lysander aircraft (photo right) from the Alberta Aviation Museum (AAM) in Edmonton. This aircraft will be on permanent loan to NLS in exchange for a similar loan of the NLS owned, 7/8 scale Vickers Viking mock-up to AAM. This mutual agreement has resulted in the enhancement of the collections and displays of both museums.
Enjoy Your Next Newsletter in Colour – By Email
Beginning with the Fall 2009 edition, we will be offering members the option of receiving their museum newsletter as an email attachment. There are a number of advantages to receiving the newsletter in this way. It will be in colour, may be easily forwarded to others you think may be interested, and you may print it out if you wish. From the museum’s point of view, this method of delivery does not require the costs of printing, envelopes, and postage, or the volunteer effort required to process it.
If you would like to receive the next newsletter as an email attachment, please advise us at [[email protected]]
We’ll send you a colour copy of this newsletter too. Please be assured that your address will not be shared with any other organization.
Email and Letters
San Leandro, CA
November 4, 2008
An RCAF Flying Log Book recently came into my hands. It belonged to M. Davies, who trained in Canada, but seems to have lived and served in England. Stuffed into the book after the last entry is a RAFA membership card, a temporary pass, a supplementary clothing book, and most importantly, a negative of what appears to be a mother and child. Anyone having information about M. Davies, please contact me.
November 9, 2008
I am trying to find any information regarding Clifford Eugene Leroy Cook’s flight “crew” He died November 1, 1944, with squadron 106. He was on loan from his normal crew that fateful day and I am just trying to figure out who he normally flew with. If anyone knows anything, myself and my grandfather will be forever thankful. THANK YOU!
February 24, 2009
What a great website. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Nanton Lancaster Society site. Keep up the good work.
February 23, 2009
Hi there, warm greetings,
My name is Jehne Morse; my father Walter O. Morse (he passed on July ’03) was a member of the RCAF. I am his only surviving family member and have been keeping a number of things from his years as a flight engineer.
I was watching a television show this evening that highlighted your museum. The Lancaster perked my attention so I found your website on the internet and then pulled out my Dad’s Flying Log to see if he might have ever flown in FM 159 that you are restoring. And what do you know, he did. The picture of log pages show an entry 4 up from bottom left page May 21, 1951.
I have included a picture of my Dad that I believe was printed in The Calgary Albertan April 12, 1951, of him sitting in Lancaster KB 937, his log shows an entry for that Lancaster for April 9, 1951.
I also have a photo album of pictures he took as he travelled with his flight log, air fields at Vulcan and other.
If you might be interested in any of this, let me know.
March 1, 2009
We are holding a memorial service at Skipton on Swale, North Yorkshire, on the 21-06-2009 in memory of four Canadian squadrons that were stationed there during the second world war. The squadrons were: 420, 424, 432 and 433. If you have or had any relatives in those squadrons and would like their names to be read out at the service, please contact me.
November 5, 2008
Congratulations on a great site. My father was a Lancaster Bomber Pilot during the War. His tour in England was from approximately Jan. ’45 to June ’45. The name of his aircraft was the Horsey Harry. I would be interested in hearing from anyone who flew with my Dad (Flt. Lt. Wes Hodson). He is still with us and living in White Rock, BC.
March 3, 2009
To Dave Birrell,
Thank you for your condolences on the passing of my father. I listed Nanton Lancaster Museum as our ‘charity of choice’ for donations in dad’s name, Robert R. Kerns. Family, friends and village of Wimborne have been sending you donations.
It was both dad’s and my eternal hope you, the Nanton Lancaster Museum can help save and eventually restore the Hurricane and the Mosquito planes in Calgary. I, on behalf of Robert, sent at least three emails to Calgary Aldermen/Alderwomen objecting to them trying to sell these antiquities and wrote that Nanton has graciously offered to take these planes.
I firmly feel that if the councillors and City of Calgary persist in their attempts to sell these planes that a ‘court injunction’ be filed to stop them from doing so by the Calgary Mosquito Society once it is official.
These planes in Calgary are antiquities and not for sale. They tell the future generations a proud part of Canadian history that is not taught in Canadian schools. Nanton’s wall shows all the names of the ultimate sacrifice so many young Canadians made. So do these old war planes. Both dad, now I support Nanton Lancaster Museum. It has already become a Kerns family memorial. So thank you so much for all that you have given dad and our family. We will continue to support Nanton Lancaster Museum, Calgary Mosquito Society.
Robert W. White,
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
March 5, 2009
From Nov. ’44 to April, ’45 I was a member of a crew attached to RAF 153 Squadron, Scampton. When we finished our tour, we dispersed, five of us to Canada, two stayed in Britain. Crew members were:
Keith Firth, pilot , Toronto, Ont.
George Denbigh nav., Toronto, Ont.
Bob White bomb-aimer, Montreal
L. Laur, mid-upper, Windsor, Ont.
Shorty Lawrence, New Westminster, B.C.,rear-gunner,
“Paddy” Jones W. Oper., Sheffield, U.K.
Peter Clowes engineer, Scotland.
The seven of us flew 31 ops, then went our separate ways, never to meet again. Any info about any of my six buddies would be appreciated.
Hon. Col. Art Smith, O.C., A.O.E., D.F.C.
Died June 2008. Friend of the NLS Museusm.
Charles Ross Goldie,
Passed on in 2008. Formerly of Calgary. A dedicated member who helped set up the museum’s gift shop and education activities.
John G. Halliday,
Died Sept. 2008, long-time member.
Went to her rest in February 2009. NLS Sq. Ft. member.
Robert R. Kerns,
Passed away February 15, 2009, at the age of 97. Long-time NLS member and former 166 Squadron navigator.
Died February 2009. Former WWII air gunner, past president of the Alberta Air Gunners Assoc. NLS life time member and friend of the museum.
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 are reading this we will be well on our way into spring and with any luck the snow will just be a memory. Spring is always a busy time for us as we ready the museum for the summer season.
This year promises to be very special with celebrations centering on the Canadian Centennial of Flight. Flypasts by the Snowbirds and “Hawk One,” an F-86 Sabre Jet painted in the colors of the Golden Hawks aerial demonstration squadron, are just a few of the highlights that our members can expect from this year.
With our Lancaster Engine runs becoming such a hit, we are planning on monthly demonstrations of the mighty Merlins. Engine runs will occur between May and September. Of course, as with any piece of equipment that is 64 years old, demonstrations will be subject to availability of equipment and weather.
I look forward to seeing many of you during the summer as you visit the museum. It is always great to see old friends. Have a great summer.
Curator / Editor’s Desk
This report is very short with none of my usual philosophical musings or attempts to look into the future. I thought it more important to use some of this space for one more news item. The preceding pages will have given you a resume of happenings since last fall and a schedule of events that will take place during the summer months.
One item I would like to mention is the dramatic increase in the number of shop volunteers. Our scheduled weekly work day (every Tuesday) has seen up to twenty-two volunteers on hand, with an average of sixteen regulars. Very encouraging!