EVENTS & NEWS

FAABA EVENTS / NEWS

Page last updated 09 June 2021

REMEMBRANCE SERVICE 2016

For those of you not living in the UK who would like to view the Remembrance Service please use the following link.

https://uk.video.search.yahoo.com/search/video?fr=fp-tts-fp-GB-en-GB-def&p=Remembrance+Sunday#id=0&vid=4829d6e8a02adad085f16f14d3f96cb3&action=click

(About 1 hour 35 mins)

Alan Breward took pictures of the FAA groups as they lined up ahead of the Remembrance March Past, at Horse Guards Parade and afterwards at the FAA Memorial. Use this link to view them:

https://www.flickr.com/gp/oldbrews/34Xf23

 

 

Alan says he apologises if you are not in the pictures but stand forward next year?

 

Alan Breward Fleet Air Arm Buccaneer Association.

 

REQUEST FROM BBC REGARDING 'TORREY CANYON BOMBING'

Mario Cacciottolo  has sent a letter to various FAA organisations as he is trying to contact veterans involved in the Torrey Canyon Bombing during 1967. If anyone can offer advice on tracking down veterans involved in this incident, or they themselves were involved please contact him at mario.cacciottolo@bbc.co.uk A full copy of the letter can be downloaded or viewed by clicking on the image.

Those who weren't at Lossiemouth but were involved at Brawdy or Yeovilton may also want to contact Mario with their experiences.

 
 

SERVICE OF HOLY COMMUNION - 13TH APRIL

Tina Cullen, Verger at the FAA Memorial Church has posted the following message:

Following on from last year’s successful get together of Associations, we would like to invite you and your members to join us on Palm Sunday (13 April) for a service of Holy Communion which will include the traditional Palm Sunday Procession, the blessing of any Standards present and prayers for members who have died in the year since the last service. In good, Church of England tradition, there will be tea and cake available after the service!

Last year we had good attendance due to the Junglie Association being in the area following their AGM. This will not be the case this year so we would really appreciate your support in sending representatives of your Association to this, YOUR church. 

Below are images of the ceremony held on Sunday 13th


 
 

FAABA  REUNION COVENTRY JUNE 2013

The 2013 Reunion was held at the Royal Court Hotel at Coventry from Friday 7th June until Sunday 9th June.

All the pictures from Alan Breward, Robin Harper & Phil Glover of this year's reunion are now on-line; use the quick links below.

Friday Night Pictures   Saturday Night's pictures    Sunday's Pictures (NMA)

 

 
 

CARRIER QUEEN ELIZABETH IN NEW YORK

Some pictures taken by Royal Navy Photographers & other when the Queen Elizabeth arrived in New York yesterday 19th October.

     

A PHOENIX RISING FROM THE ASHES

809 NAS is to be resurrected as the first Royal Navy formation to fly the Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter aircraft.

809 Naval Air Squadron, whose motto is simply ‘Immortal’, is to be reformed to operate the fifth-generation stealth aircraft that will fly from the Royal Navy’s Queen Elizabeth Class carriers from 2018.

The Lightning II aircraft will be jointly operated by pilots from the Fleet Air Arm and the Royal Air Force.
Earlier this year, it was announced by the Chief of the Air Staff that the famous 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron would be the first RAF squadron to fly the jets. Both Royal Navy and RAF pilots are already training on the Lightning II aircraft alongside the US Marine Corps at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.
809 Naval Air Squadron, which dates back to the Second World War, has been selected by the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas, because of its history of striking at the enemy in operations across the globe. In previous incarnations, aircraft from the squadron supported an attack on Hitler’s flagship, supported the invasions of North Africa, Italy and southern France during the Second World War and saw action in Suez in 1956.
It was last reformed to support operations in the Falkland Islands; the squadron also flew the Navy’s last Buccaneer, a low-level strike bomber flown in the 1960s and 1970s.

Admiral Zambellas said:
I am delighted to announce that the name of the second Lightning II squadron, when it forms, will be 809 Naval Air Squadron. This squadron number is chosen to link with and reflect the proud and distinguished history of embarked carrier strike, from the Second World War to the Falklands.
The early naming of 809 alongside the RAF’s 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron is a very visible demonstration of a joint ambition, spirit of collaboration and shared equity in the Joint Lightning Force.
When not at sea as part of the UK’s carrier strike force, the squadron will be based at RAF Marham in Norfolk. The joint nature of the squadrons means naval personnel will serve with the Dambusters, and their Air Force counterparts will do likewise on 809 Naval Air Squadron. (see https://www.gov.uk/government/news/royal-navy-air-squadron-reformed-to-fly-new-jets for more information.

To read the full speech by the First Sea Lord to RUSI click here

 

REMEMBRANCE DAY AT THE CENOTAPH & FAA MEMORIAL

 
Pictures of the FAABA Contingent taken by Mick Gowan at the Remembrance Day Ceremony in London on the 11th November and also the at the FAA Memorial afterwards.
 

It was excellent to see so many association members in London today on such a glorious Remembrance Day.  The gathering at the FAA Memorial on Embankment was a fine event once again.   

There was feedback about the long wait whilst associations gathered to march to Embankment, and whilst some waiting is inevitable at such an event it is unfortunate nonetheless.  This will be discussed at the next meeting, but overall I am sure an excellent day was had by all.

Attached are some poems written by the children of Windale Primary School, which sum things up very nicely.  Many thanks to the children, and to their Deputy Head Teacher Mrs Vicky Williams for bringing them to London to be shared with all.

 

Regards, 

Phil Carpenter

Secretary, Fly Navy Federation

Childrens Letters 1   Childrens Letters 2
Click on images and hyperlinks to view pictures and the childrens' letters
 
     

FAA Memorial Stone at the National Memorial Arboretum

Update on the FAA Memorial at the NMA 

Repairs: Paddy Clark (FAAOA) attended the last meeting of the FNF and gave a comprehensive brief on the completion of repairs to the frost-damage, and for detailing the proposals for the placement of logos and crests.  It has been decided to monitor the paintwork, which is ‘ageing’ as opposed to looking tatty.  Currently finance for the day-to-day upkeep of the memorial is not considered an issue, but this will continue to be monitored over the coming years.  

Logos and crests: A proposal for the placement of logos and crests was discussed, and a general plan for uniformity of design agreed in principle involving the placing of sandstone ‘paving’ stones separate from, but surrounding the memorial, with association logos and squadron crests sand-blasted on to individual stones.  This was closest to plan ‘B’ from the original 3 options and was agreed by the majority because it was cost-effective (requiring sandstone rather than expensive Portland stone), offered the greatest uniformity, excellent longevity, minimal maintenance, and the largest number of logos/crests to be placed (up to 78 initially, with room for expansion in the future).  Initial ground-works will need to be completed and blank sandstones placed.  The stones will then be removed by associations /squadrons for their specific logo/crest to be sandblasted on to before being formally ‘placed’.  Bronze plaques were discussed but considered too expensive due to each having to be individually cast.  

Funding for the ground-works needs to be found (cost approximately £8000) and, if all associations agree to assist, will be in the region of £750-£1000 per association Although it is a fairly large cost to bear it must be remembered that it is a memorial for the entire FAA that will last for many generations, and will be a great legacy to the generosity of the associations of the Federation.  Association representatives agreed to discuss this with their members at the first available opportunity, and to let the Secretary know the outcome and amount of funds willing to be added to the ‘pot’, in order that the ground-works can be started as soon as possible.  The FAAOA has generously agreed that once it is apparent that funds will be forthcoming from other associations it will underwrite the initial cost in order that work can begin – hopefully before the end of 2010.  Each sandstone block will then cost approximately £200 per association/squadron for (in due course) removal, sandblasting with logo/crest and final placement. We intend to raise this money from the raffle at our 2011 reunion but of course anyone who cannot make the reunion is welcome to send a donation to the Treasurer. 

The FAABA also will be launching an appeal for donations for the ground works in 2011, but we are also looking at the viability of holding a fund raising charity dinner at Yeovilton in 2011 which will be an open invite to any serving and ex FAA personnel. We have two ideas, one being the WO & SR Mess the other a dinner under Concorde at the FAA Museum.  Any feedback on support for either proposal most welcome. (see other article further down this page)

 

Service Personnel and Veterans Agency

 

The services of the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency is available to all former members of HM Armed Forces. Full details of the agency can be found on www.veterans-uk.info You can also call the free helpline on 0800 169 2277, send an Email to veterans.help@spva.gsi.gov.uk  or write to:

 

The Veterans Advice Team

Service Personnel and Veterans Agency

Tomlinson House

Norcross

Thornton-Cleveleys

FY5 3WP

Best regards

Dave Clark

FN100 Newsletters

1st Newsletter 2nd Newsletter 3rd Newsletter 4th Newsletter 5th Newsletter

 

COVENTRY REUNION JUNE 2010

800 Squadron Aircraft Maintainers from 1970 - 1972 aboard HMS Eagle attended the recent FAABA 10th Reunion 40 years later to catch up and have a drink together (Click on images to see them full size)

1. Mario DeMarco, 2. Nigel Garbett, 3. Tony Wiffin, 4. Chris Walsh, 5. Dave Morgan, 6. Gary Perkins

FAABA Reunion Photographs 2010   Bruntingthorpe Photograhs 2010
More 800 Squadron Maintainers meet again

Alistair Gilbert and Allan (Jimmy) Green decided to recreate their pose of sitting on the edge of a Buccaneer cockpit previously carried out during HMS Eagle's Far East Tour during 1967/68.

Thanks go to Guy Hulme who supplied a Buccaneer at Bruntingthorpe on Saturday afternoon 19th June for the two friends to recreate the photo.

A Health & Safety risk assessment found they were too old to use the ladders without falling off so we had a platform provided.

 

 

COVENTRY 2010 DECLARED A RESOUNDING SUCCESS

All FAABA Members and Guests who attended the 10th Annual Reunion at the Royal Court Hotel at Coventry voted it a resounding success; many new faces were seen and found to be enjoying themselves. The price of drinks had risen to £2 a pint but even that was not enough to put a damper on the weekend as can be seen from the happy faces of drinkers in the photo below.

On the left are another group of happy faces (from the 'Happy Hermes' of 1967/68); these are some of the aircraft maintainers from the Fleet Air Arm's longest serving Buccaneer Squadron (809).

Taff Davis + Don Cockle Johnny Tuke + Mal Drinkwater

Left to Right: Jimmy Andrews, Johnny Tuke, Don Cockle, Alex Muir, Billy Boyd. Missing is Mal Drinkwater who must have been sent for the next round of drinks; he was definitely at the reunion having travelled from Texas two years running.

   

Three FAABA Members who joined up together at HMS Ganges in 1964 as part of Frobisher 781 Class also got together over the weekend to remember how long ago they had first met and to drink to 46 years as friends.

Left to Right: Jim Reynolds, Al McGurk, Phil Glover

FAA CONTINGENT AT THE CENOTAPH / FAA MEMORIAL IN NOVEMBER 2010
 
FAA contingent at the FAA Memorial on the Embankment
    Associations “parked up” prior to the march off
       
PICTURES FROM THE CENOTAPH / FAA MEMORIAL NOVEMBER 2011
  A group of pictures taken by Alan Breward in London November 2011 at the Cenotaph and the FAA Memorial - click on the images to see larger versions

 

       

THE PUZZLE OF THE "CAIRD CHALLENGE CUP" HAS BEEN SOLVED

Peter Caird (the Half Brother of Midshipman Alexander J. Caird) has written to the RAF base at Lossiemouth giving further details about his life. He was the son of Alexander Peter Caird (an officer in the Royal Artillery) and Doris Jarvis Caird  (Both now deceased and previously divorced). The Midshipman was listed as Missing presumed killed whilst flying on the 24 June 1952 from HMS Fulmar. We still do not have any idea what the cup was awarded for although it was presented to RNAS Lossiemouth by Lt. Col. and Mrs G A Haward in memory of her son and his step-son. 

 

 
 

Further Research has now established the following details;

Pilot of 766 Squadron

Firefly Mk1 DK569

Flying from HMS Fulmar his aircraft crashed into the sea at Logey Head. Whilst carrying out a quarter attack he spun off a steep turn and failed to recover.

 

Chris Adams (Ex Lossie & 849HQ/B Flt) has passed on a story that appeared in the Northern Scot Newspaper  in January & February this year; has anyone heard of this cup?

Sergeant Tony Carlin, station historian at RAF Lossiemouth, is appealing for help to solve a puzzle. In November, a trophy arrived in the post in a package addressed to the station museum. There was no letter accompanying it, nor any information about who had sent it - the only information available was the inscription on the trophy and its name - the “Caird Challenge Cup”.

Sgt Carlin says: “I have done some research and found out that Midshipman Caird died in a flying incident at RNAS Lossiemouth in 1952; his plane crashed into the sea. But I don't know anything about The Caird Challenge Cup. If we could find out a bit more about the trophy we could decide if the cup should stay in the museum at RAF Lossiemouth. Also, it would be interesting to know who sent me the trophy.”

The trophy, which is silver and stands 22cm high, was sent in a package that was postmarked Thetford (Norfolk). The inscription on the lid reads: In memory of Midshipman A.J. Caird from his parents Lt Col & Mrs G.A. Haward and Family 24th June 1952.

On one side of the trophy is the inscription: The Caird Challenge Cup, RNAS Lossiemouth.

And on the reverse side is a list of recipients/winners from 1952 to 1962 including RAF Kinloss, Sgt Parsons, CPO Cox, CPO Moore and CPO Lillington RNSA.

Click here to view Article 1 & Article 2

PICTURES FROM THE FIXED WING REUNION AT YEOVILTON

Pictures by Alan Breward taken at the FAA Fixed Wing Reunion Dinner; click on a picture to enlarge

 

 

FAA MEMORIAL AT THE NATIONAL ARBORETUM

We have been asked to provide a plaque to commemorate the FAA Buccaneer Association that will probably be positioned on the memorial plinth and the FAABA have already donated £500 to help with this project, with further funding coming from the sale of whiskey. We are now asking for donations for the final phase which is the outer groundworks and siting of the stones. (updated, see article at top of this page)

Please send your donations to Dave Clark making the cheque payable to the FAABA and marking the reverse of the cheque 'Nat. Arboretum Fund'. If everyone in the Association sent £5 we would meet and exceed our target and send out a clear message of support to the FNF.

<-- Completed Monument on 11th September.

 

Thanks go to Alan & Vicky Breward for the pictures on the left of the completed memorial which were taken  after the dedication ceremony at the National Arboretum.

Click here to see recent other photos of the construction taking place

FAABA 9TH ANNUAL REUNION - COVENTRY 2009

FAABA Members outside the Royal Court Hotel on Saturday 6th June. Another successful reunion was held with many new faces enjoying the Royal Court Hotel facilities on the Friday and Saturday. More details will be published over the next few days..... Pictures can be viewed by clicking on the button below

Reunion Pictures     View Video

Pictures from 2009 Reunion

CENTENARY SERVICE AT ST PAULS CATHEDRAL

A service of thanksgiving and remembrance was held on the morning of Friday 8th May 2009 at St Paul's Cathedral to commemorate One Hundred Years of Naval Aviation.  The service was open to anyone who had served with the Fleet Air Arm or who has/had close connections with the Service.  Alan Breward attended this event and has made some pictures available..............

Click here to view a selection

 

 

SWORDFISH CENTENARY BEER

The Swordfish Centenary Beer was launched in London on Wednesday 20th May and is now on draught in Weatherspoons and in bottles at Tesco, Please see attached image of Swordfish Beer... the bottle has changed (it is bigger now) and the label is slightly larger with more Fairey Swordfish on it. A portion of the profits goes to the Heritage Trust so get drinking with a clear conscience. A launch of FN100 stamps was also made available from the launch date.

THE LIMES CHARITY BALL - 17TH NOVEMBER 2012

 

This event will be held at The Limes Country Lodge, Earlswood (just off the M42) on Saturday 17th November, Up Spirits at 1830. The Black Tie event is held at the premises of one of our members, Dave (Birdie) Morris with all proceeds going to Service Charities. Last years event was a fantastic night out with a packed entertainment package from comedy to music with a casino and late night dancing for “The Stayers”!!! The association has booked two tables of 10 so first names received will get the tickets.

For those of you who did not attend the Elgin Reunion this year why not come to the Limes Charity Ball instead.

Those who wish to attend this excellent Ball please give their expression of interest to either Les Smith, Dave Clark  or Brian Stanley. We have provisionally booked two tables.

Picture from the 2011 ball

 

 

     

Presentation of an Engraved Bell to the WO & SNCO’s Mess HMS Fulmar

Dave Clark, the secretary of the FAABA, returned to the WO & SNCO Mess on the 23rd July 2008 and presented WO Dianne McLeish, the CMC, with a beautiful brass hand bell as a thank you to the mess for allowing them to hold this memorable function here. Dave once again acknowledged that the mess had been excellent hosts for the evening and the members of the association had been delighted at having the opportunity to return to RAF Lossiemouth after such a long period. Mr Hughie Williams the Chairman, of the recently reformed HMS Fulmer Association also attended the presentation. The CMC rang the bell to celebrate its arrival and to signal “Toofers” before placing it behind the Top Bar (the old Petty Officers Mess) where hopefully it will be rung many more times by the members of the mess

Dave Clark, Diana McLeish (CMC RAF Lossiemouth) and Hughie Williams

 

 

BUCCANEER ASSOCIATION AT THE CENOTAPH NOVEMBER 2013

 

A selection of pictures provided by Mick Gowen taken whilst the contingent awaited their turn to march past the Cenotaph

 

 

THE BARRACUDA PROJECT (SUSPENDED)

The Fleet Air Arm Museum currently have a project underway to rebuild a Fairey Barracuda from a pile of damaged parts and other items recovered from crash sites over the years. There is no example of this aircraft anywhere as all examples have been destroyed with no survivors. As Captain Eric Brown says;

“Here is news to stir all naval aviators, a Fairey Barracuda is to be restored to rise phoenix-like form the wrecks of others. The once prolific Barra – some 2,600 were built by the Fairey, Blackburn, Boulton Paul and Westland factories for the Fleet Air Arm, where the aircraft received a mixed reception. It was never a pleasing sight in flight, and a positive eyesore when in the landing configuration. However, to be fair to the Barra it was not all bad news, for although it did not perform at all well in the torpedo-dropping role, it could lay claim to being an effective dive-bomber. Most indisputable of all, it was the easiest aeroplane to land on an aircraft carrier, and so with the help of rocket assistance, for take-off. It was able to operate from small carriers and give valuable anti-submarine protection to convoys in the Battle of the Atlantic. All in all, a welcome will await this orphan of the storms when it finally re-appears as the only one of its type in the world.”

  -Captain Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown, CBE, DSC, AFC, MA, Hon FRAeS, RN

The Buccaneer Association would like to publicise this to help bring it to the attention of all who could donate funds to the project, regardless of how little that is.

LATEST NEWS CLICK HERE

How it looks now

How it could look like (with TLC)

How to donate?

Donate online via the Just Giving website page at http://www.justgiving.com/Fleet-Air-Arm-Museum-Barracuda-Project

Need more information? Use these links;

http://www.barracudaproject.co.uk/

http://www.fleetairarm.com/barracuda-restoration-project.aspx

To download a poster to help publicise this Click Here

JOHN KEENAN'S SELF BUILD PROJECT

The culmination of John Keenan's 3 years of hard work in New Zealand building his own aircraft, whilst the rest of us were down the pub he was getting energy from somewhere. For those who don't know John he was on 801 Buccaneer Squadron at an early stage of his career.

FOR NON-MEMBERS OF THE BUCCANEER ASSOCIATION WHO WISH TO ATTEND THE REUNION AT THE MANSFIELD HOTEL, ELGIN ON THE 12TH AND/OR 13TH JUNE 2020 FOR THE MEAL AND EVENING FUNCTION ONLY

If you wish to attend the reunion and are not a member of the Buccaneer Association please download a copy of both the forms listed below; please read the "FAABA Reunion 2020 NM Meal letter" before filling out and returning your "Meal Booking Form". Any queries please email Robin Harper at robinh49@btinternet.com as soon as possible.

Please note: This will be the only method of booking meals as the hotel will only take orders through FAABA; there is also a supplementary charge towards the evenings entertainment for each guest as well.

Download the "FAABA Reunion 2020 Non-Members Meal Letter": Click_Here

Download the "FAABA Meal Booking Form 2020 Non-Members 28-6-19 Version" (Word Doc): Click_Here

or alternatively;

Download the "FAABA Meal Booking Form 2020 Non-Members 28-6-19 Version" (.pdf): Click_Here

 
 

BUCCANEER ASSOCIATION 17TH ANNUAL REUNION - 2ND - 4TH JUNE 2017

The FAABA Reunion will be held from Friday 2nd June until Sunday 4th June at the Royal Court Hotel near Coventry (CV7 8JG). 

The Association are inviting all Ark Royal and other carrier Air Groups (any commission) as well as the 892 & SHAR Associations to the reunion who wish to attend.  

Prices: (all prices per person)

£

3 Nights (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) 150
2 Nights (Fri/Sat or Sat/Sun) 120
1 Night (Saturday Only) 80
Thursday night prior (if required) 50
Friday Carvery (non hotel guests) 18
Sat Gala Dinner (non hotel guests) 25

 

   
Entertainment will be provided by the Royal Marine Association Dance Band & Singers.

To cover the cost of the superior music provided at the Gala Dinner; a one off charge of £10 will be levied on all guests including members. Any shortfall will be met from association funds.

The usual one-off charge of £10 for pre-dinner drinks will be levied on all persons attending except Full and Life Members of the association. This covers Friday & Saturday night's.

Drink Prices (Our Bar Only):

£  
2.50 House Wine, Bitter, 2 types of Lager, Cider
3.00 Guinness
     
Due to a change in policy by the Britannia Hotel Group, all hotel bookings have to be made direct with them using the attached booking form; please print it out then complete it and scan it. On completion email it to the hotel using the address given on the form (or put it in the post). For your security, the form requires you to pay by cheque or Credit Card only (No debit cards), you type/write in only the first four and last 4 digits of your credit card number. When the hotel receives the form they will email or write to you for the other numbers on the credit card to complete the transaction. I asked Brian Sharrock (Event's Organizer) if the hotel could confirm that the card details would not be used until two months prior to the event and this is the answer I received. “I have spoken to the Royal Court Hotel this morning ref question raised by Phil on payments for reunion, the hotel say that once they receive the booking form they contact the guest and ask them if they want to pay up front or if they want payment made 8 weeks prior to event (2-April). As for cancellation they will give full refund up to 48hrs before the event.”

Once a month we will receive details of bookings from the hotel and we will prepare a list of members and guests attending. If possible would all those attending inform Brian Sharrock at sharrockb@hotmail.co.uk with details of their booking.

We will send out a form nearer to the event to all those attending with details of payment required to the association for pre-dinner drinks and for the RMA Dance Band.

     

SHAR 2020 REUNION 20TH-21ST MARCH AT DRAYTON MANOR HOTEL

The Sea Harrier Association would like to invite any members of the Buccaneer Association to join them during their annual reunion in March this year.
The weekend is 20th-21st March at Drayton Manor Hotel, which is part of the Drayton Manor theme park complex at Tamworth, B78 3TW.
The week end will consist of a dinner Friday night and a Gala evening on the Saturday

Single room - Friday - £126.50. Saturday - £140.00. both includes B+B & Evening dinner
Double room - Friday £158. Saturday £185 includes both B+B & Evening 'Gala' dinner.
Saturday Evening will be a 'Gala Evening' to celebrate 40 years since the First Front Line Sea Harrier Squadron commissioning and we plan to have a band to play. Which will be subsidised by the Association. Therefore, should any of your members be interested we'd charge an extra £10 for the Saturday.
No payment is expected yet and we are going to arrange with the Hotel that a booking can be made using a booking code and secured with a credit card. Payment will only be taken on arrival or should you fail to attend and do not cancel the booking within an arranged period.

Yours Aye
Bob Gellett
Sea Harrier Association Membership Secretary;   SHAR Association sharamem@hotmail.co.uk 

 

2020 FAABA REUNION AT MANSEFIELD HOTEL ELGIN

From Robin Harper: Every available room at the Mansefield hotel, Elgin has now been booked by members for next year's reunion; if any members haven't yet booked they can still contact me to be put on a reserve list in case of cancellations.
There is also a Guest House just across the road from the hotel called St. Michaels. www.stmichaelsguesthouse.co.uk. It looks very nice and the prices are not far off what we are paying. It has 8 rooms.

2020 FAABA REUNION ELGIN (12TH - 14TH JUNE)

If any members of the association haven't heard from the Secretary - Next year the reunion will be held at the Mansefield House Hotel in Elgin. This hotel is expected to provide a better level of accommodation than our usual hotel and due to a previous booking here our usual dates around the first weekend in June have not been available. If you would like to attend please make your wishes known to Robin Harper using his email address shown at the bottom of this page. Demand for rooms is high so an early notice will be essential in being able to stay in the hotel where the FAABA Reunion Dinner is being held.

The Mansefield Hotel is in the centre of town so booking another hotel nearby will not be a major issue for those not able to obtain a room there.

 

THE CENOTAPH AND RBL REMEMBRANCE PARADE 2020 (CANCELLED)

From Brian Stanley,

Concurrently, the Legion has been working with DCMS, the MoD and others to define the planning parameters for the annual Remembrance weekend given the ongoing restrictions in place to minimise the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Legion team is acutely aware that Associations administrative timeline is now short and that your members will be keen to understand the arrangements that are now in place for a reduced and socially distanced Cenotaph Dispersal in this exceptional year.
Whilst the overall number of participants in this year’s Cenotaph Dispersal must be significantly reduced to approximately 2200 to comply with social distancing guidelines, it is also considered hugely important that in the centenary year of The Cenotaph, every Service Association is able to be represented. To that end, each association will be allocated eight spaces.

Please respond ASAP to me if you want to attend. Sadly I wont be attending as only yesterday the Street RBL Chairman and I came up with a plan to celebrate here in Street and Glastonbury involving the Parish council and Police as I hadn’t heard from the headquarters.

Brian Stanley
defstan2@gmail.com

 

THE LOSS OF THE SS ALMEDA STAR ON THE 17TH JANUARY 1941

80 Years ago this Sunday on the 17th January 1941 the SS Almeda Star was sunk on its way to Trinidad, this resulted in the loss of 360 crew, Gunners and Passengers. Amongst the passengers there were 20 Officers and 120 Ratings of the Fleet Air Arm transiting to HMS Goshawk, the Royal Naval Air Station at Piarco, Trinidad. Also among the passenger were 7 family members of the Aircrew. Please keep them in your thoughts this Sunday. You can read more about this devastating loss by opening or downloading the pdf files supplied below.

Story of the Loss of the SS Almedar Star

 

The Fleet Air Arm Roll of Honour - SS Almeda Star

 

Click on the images above to download or read the pdf files

REMEMBRANCE SUNDAY 2019

Pictures from the 2019 Remembrance Sunday event supplied by Chris Lawrence

   

Click on any image to see full size

VJ75 DAY COMMEMORATIONS HELD BY THE FLEET AIR ARM ASSOCIATION AT THE FLEET AIR ARM WAR MEMORIAL AT LEE ON SOLENT,  SATURDAY 15TH AUGUST 2020.

From Jim Moulson (FAAA). Just a quick note to say thanks to all who mustered on Saturday morning, it was a good turnout complete with Standard Bearer and a RM Bugler. The weather was kind to us and there were a good number of our ladies there to support us. The Bugler was a complete mystery to me and he said that he had tried to contact me and sent an email which I never received. However, the mystery was solved by the Webmaster, Ray Day, following the post I put on Facebook. A lady, the Bugler's friend/partner was browsing and came across the post and contacted Ray who gave her my contact details. Even though we never spoke he turned up on the off chance that he might be needed, problem solved. Below is a copy of what was published on the FAAA Website, FAAA Facebook and the FAAA unofficial Facebook page, so hopefully reaching out to people who may consider joining the Association.

An excellent turnout on Saturday at the Fleet Air Arm Memorial, Lee-on-Solent to pay our respects to the fallen of the conflict against the Japanese during WW2. There were 16 members in total including our National Secretary Peter Murray who had travelled down from Pinner to join us. It was touch and go with regards to the Standard, our official Standard Bearer, Ben Fenn, was unavailable, but at the last hour on Friday evening our previous holder of the post, Ron Chitty, offered to come out of retirement for the event. A very fine job he did too for a mere snip of a man at 89 years of age!
Also to our surprise, a very smart gentleman was standing with the members, on introduction it turned out to be a ex Royal Marine Bugler who offered to sound the last post and reveille for us. I had no idea how he found out we were going to hold a small informal ceremony. Just before 11:00 The Last Post was sounded, the Standard dipped, followed by 2 minutes silence and then reveille. On completion the wreaths were laid, the Association National by me and the Solent by the chairman Charlie Fitzgerald. A lot of people walking along the sea front also stopped and paid their respects. On completion we had a well deserved "up spirits", after a while we dispersed to retire to the Court Barn Conservative Club for a beer and bite to eat.
A huge thanks to all who joined the gathering, not forgetting our ladies too who came along to support us, as they always do and to our visiting photographer, Jenny. I must say that the Memorial and the surrounds are looking a bit tatty, I may need to call on the Buffers Party (Solent Branch volunteers) to spruce it up!

The Wreaths

Ron Chitty

Mustered

2 Minutes Silence

Up Spirits