- Current Issue - Past Issues - Links -

ISSUE 14, March 2010

Corporal Punishment At Halton

The time has arrived for me to compile  my second issue of  'THE WHEEL'. I have to report that I haven't been overwhelmed with contributed letters or articles. Con-sequently I decided to examine the purpose of the Association and to try to understand what I think members expect from it. So here goes!

The association is an informal group of ex Air Force personnel who had the common experience of three years of character building military and engineering training as RAF Apprentices. Some of us hailed from NZ and others from the UK. We attended the RAF Apprentice Schools at different times but it is that three year experience as a Trenchard Brat that bonds us together.

 Our Association is a very loose knit group. We have no formal charter or structure and no published list of aims or ideals. As far as I can see, Bill Cowham did the initial legwork in 1993/94 and together with Mel Innes-Jones wrote to all the ex Brats that they knew of and  organised  a reunion in Rotorua.  (I can vaguely recall attending that reunion so I must be a founding member). A President, Vice President and Secretary were elected and are still in Office. Initially, as I recall, the secretary published a newsletter about once a year, primarily to advise details etc of the next biennial get together.  Then in July 2003, the first newsletter in the current format was issued by Dave Sykes.

I think we can say that the purpose of the Association is to provide a means for EX RAF Apprentices, in NZ, to maintain contact with each other and their families in a spirit of friendship, and to remember and celebrate that character forming experience we all shared as young men. The membership encompasses all RAF Apprentice Schools and has recently been extended to include the RAAF scheme which NZ subscribed during the 1960's.

The newsletter is the primary means by which we maintain contact.  It encourages members to reminisce and share their Halton experiences and their careers both within the RNZAF, RAF and subsequent after service life. It is also a means to publish topical news/articles which may be of interest to members.

Looking back through the past 13 issues of this newsletter I note two things that stand out. The amount of correspondence to the editor is spasmodic and that the majority of the articles published have been instigated by the previous editor (Dave Sykes).

Having superficially examined the back ground and aims of our organisation I come to the conclus-ion that its organisation is  suited to its function. Members want to belong and take part to the extent that they are happy with. Occasionally something will ring their bell and they will participate. Otherwise they are happy to go with the flow. And I guess that's as it should be.

I would be wasting my time waiting for inspirational contributions to appear  in my email or letter box so I might just as well bite the bullet and do my own leg work and gratefully accept any small morsels that come my way. So hope springs eternal, meanwhile I'll rabbit on and hope that what I produce interests at least some of you.
Gus Smart 80th Editor
Back to Top

The New Zealand Window
The commemorative window has been made and is now in the UK awaiting installation. It was designed and made by Graham Brooks, a local photographer who also has a thriving sideline of videoing funeral services. Towards Christmas I was getting quite concerned at the lack of progress with the window because funerals kept playing havoc with Graham's plans. We had tentatively set Christmas as the target date for completion but I had foolishly said that there was no real rush! However towards the end of last year I received an invitation to a wedding on the 25th February at Peria (near Kaitaia). This gave me the excuse I required to apply pressure as it provided an ideal op-portunity to personally deliver the window to the RNZAF at Whenuapai as I drove up the Island.

So the pressure went on and shortly after I got a call from Graham to have a look at the window when all the pieces had been made and loosely assembled. Both Graham and I had serious misgivings and a redesign of the bottom half of the picture was produced by Graham. However his wife, Cynthia, prevailed on us to persevere with the original design and it was amazing how it came to life as the lead work was completed and the class cleaned.  She was right and the finished window is quite stunning and certainly met our aim which was to produce a contemporary design that would immediately stand out from the more traditional windows in the chapel and un-mistakably say New Zealand.

When I viewed the window just before the final assembly I said to Graham "you made sure you got the size right, didn't you?" Sure, he said "I added a centimetre to the dimensions you gave me". "Why?" I asked.  Well he said "the sizes you sent me were minimum and I didn't want it falling through the hole". He then showed me the email from Min Larkin I had forwarded to him. The email read, "The size of the window position as measured by our installer is 92.7mm by 31.7mm. Min".

In my next email to Min I suggested that he might like to change his name to Max to prevent any further such misunderstandings. He replied that I could call him Derek if I really wanted to. All's well that ends well and after some judicious trimming it should fit. I hope!!

I delivered the window to Whenuapai on the 25th Feb and it was forwarded to the UK on a 757 Flight leaving 8th March. I sent a photograph to Min on the 17th Feb and it was included in the www.oldhaltonians.co.uk web site within days so anyone interested in seeing how we stack up against the others can do so on the web.

Window Dedication

The next decision is when will the dedication take place? Initially I thought we should aim to have it coincide with the RAFHAAA Triennial Reunion in Sep 2010 however I understand that this would impose a burden on the triennial organisers and tend to get lost in the overall activities.

Min Larkin has advised that the following is the normal procedure for a dedication:

"Arrive morning,  preferably on  a Sunday,  but could be a weekday, at say 1030 for a tour of Halton House.
Dedication service noon lasts 25/30 minutes. Somebody from your group gives a short, max 10 minutes, talk on NZ Brats.
Photos at the Tribute.
1300   Lunch at Henderson mess at £6 a head.
1345 VisitMuseum.
Depart A/R."

He has subsequently suggested that we could combine the dedication with their Annual Remembrance Service on Tuesday 16th November. After the service they hold a re-ception at Halton House and view a Recruits Passing out Parade in the afternoon. The Reviewing Officer at the Parade will be AM Sir Dusty Miller 210th.  A visit to the museum is the norm after the parade. Our dedication would add something to the day and may swell their usual numbers of about 100.

I have also obtained agreement in principle from the RNZAF for travel assistance to the UK should a routine RNZAF flight coincide with the dedication. I believe that coordinating the dedication to a RNZAF flight, the uncertainty of seats and the possibility of such arrangements falling over at the last minute make this option non viable. I am not prepared to pursue it.

So in summary:
1.  The triennial is out.
2.  From my point of view use of RNZAF travel is out.
3.  A specific dedication ceremony at a date mutually agreed between the HAAA and us is possible, and
4.  A ceremony combined with the RAFHAAA Annual Remembrance Service on Tuesday 16th Nov 2010 is possible and the HAAA's preference.

I recommend that we advise the HAAA that we would like to combine the dedication with the Remembrance Service. Anyone wishing to attend from NZ is responsible for their own travel arrangements.  I may arrange to attend in person, or if not, I will provide background information for a representative, (either a member attending from NZ or someone from NZDLS, London) to represent us and speak on our behalf. To this end I will be contacting a member from each entry to provide the following info:

Complete list of names of their entry members (Locking & Halton)
Significant achievements such as Pass Out order of merit, Cadetships Awarded and if taken up significant achievements. i.e. Sword of Honour etc. Number of members commissioned into GD, Engr or other Branches plus any other significant achievement by our members.

I am sorry that this saga has got a little long winded but I can't see any other way of doing it. If there is a significant group out there that disagrees with my handling of the situation feel free to take over. If not bear with me and please provide the info in a timely manner when I approach you.

Back to Top

2011 Reunion New Plymouth
Sam West has certainly put together an interesting programme for our next reunion.  Considering the rates being charged for the World Cup the room rates look pretty good as well.
Let's all get in behind Sam and make New Plymouth the best reunion yet. Also let's hope that there will be a number present who will have attended the Window Dedication ceremony!

Click here for details
Back to Top

The last surviving founding member of the Royal Air Force Henry William Allingham (6 June 1896 – 18 July 2009) was a British super centenarian, First World War veteran and, for one month, the oldest verified living man in the world. On 13 Feb 2007, he became the UK's second-oldest living per-son behind Florrie Baldwin, and on 29 March 2009, he became the oldest ever British male, surpassing Welshman John Evans who died aged 112 years and 295 days. He was also the first ever verified British man to reach the age of 113. Guinness World Records confirmed that at age 113 years, 13 days, he became the oldest living man in the world, following the death of Japanese super centenarian, Tomoji Tanabe on 19 June 2009. On 18 July 2009 Allingham died of natural causes aged 113 years and 42 days.  At the time of his death, he was the 14th oldest verified man of all time.
Allingham was the oldest ever surviving member of any of the British Armed Forces and the oldest surviving veteran of the First World War. He was the last survivor of the Battle of Jutland, the last surviving member of the (RNAS) and the last surviving founding member of the RAF. From 2001 he had become the face of the First World War veterans' association and made frequent public appearances to ensure that awareness of the sacrifices of the First World War was not lost to modern generations. He received many honours and awards for his First World War service and his longevity.
I wonder if we have records of the surviving RNZAF founding members, if any. Editor
Back to Top

Never Assume
His request approved, the CNN News photographer quickly used a cell phone to call the local airport to charter a flight. 
He was told a twin-engine plane would be waiting for him at the airport. 

Arriving at the airfield, he spotted a plane warming up outside a hanger. 
He jumped in with his bag, slammed the door shut, and shouted, 'Let's go'. 

The pilot taxied out, swung the plane into the wind and took off. 
Once in the air, the photographer instructed the pilot, 'Fly over the valley and make low passes so I can take pictures of the fires on the hillsides.' 

'Why?' asked the pilot. 

'Because I'm a photographer for CNN', he responded, 'and I need to get some close up shots.' 

The pilot was strangely silent for a moment, finally he stammered, 'So, what you're telling me, is . . . You're NOT my flight instructor?'

Back to Top

History Lesson
Interesting facts!

There is an old Hotel/Pub in Marble Arch, London which used to have gallows adjacent. Prisoners were taken to the gallows (after a fair trial of course) to be hung. The horse drawn dray, carting the prisoner was accompanied by an armed guard, who would stop the dray outside the pub and ask the prisoner if he would like ''ONE LAST DRINK''.
If he said "YES" it was referred to as “ONE FOR THE ROAD”
If he declined, that prisoner was “ON THE WAGON”

They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families used to all pee in a pot & then once a day it was taken & sold to the tannery. If you had to do this to survive you were "Piss Poor". But worse than that were the really poor folk who couldn’t even afford to buy a pot they "Didn’t have a pot to piss in" & were the lowest of the low.

Back to Top

Statue Of Battle Of Britain Commander Unveiled
A statue of Air Chief Marshal Sir Keith Park, who led the RAF over London and the South East of England throughout the Battle of Britain in 1940, was unveiled in London's Trafalgar Square on Wednesday 4 November 2009. During WW1 a Kiwi soldier who became one of the countries most celebrated airman, was wounded and told he was unfit to ride his horse. Unable to follow the traditions of artillery officers by leading his troops into battle on horseback, Keith Park swapped his khakis for a pilot's uniform and flew Bristol fighters with the Royal Flying Corps on the Western Front. By the end of WW1 he had 20 victories and had been shot down once by anti-aircraft fire and once by German flying ace Kurt Ungewitter.   He was the highest scoring ace with No 48 Sqn and won the MC & Bar, the DFC and the French Croix de Guerre.

In 1940, after the Allied forces had been routed at Dunkirk, Britain prepared for the inevitable aerial onslaught. By July 10th, when the Battle of Britain began, Britain had switched its aircraft production to Spitfires and Hurricane fighters but the Royal Air Force's 700 fighters faced nearly four times that number of German fighters. By September 15th, the battle had intensified and London was bombarded day and night by more than 1000 enemy bombers. In spite of the overwhelming aircraft numbers the Luftwaffe failed to overcome the RAF but, more importantly, failed to break Britain's spirit.

Hitler called off operation Sea Lion, the name given to the German invasion plan, on October 12th. He had been thwarted by a small band of airmen and ground crew, 11 Group, Fighter Command, led by New Zealander Keith Park, the soldier who was once told he was unfit to ride a horse.
"If any one man won the Battle of Britain, he did. I do not believe it is realised how much that one man, with his leadership, his calm judgement and his skill, did to save, not only this country but the world." Lord Tedder, the chief of the RAF said after the war.

The efforts of Fighter Command also produced one of Winston Churchill's most famous and most repeated quotes "Never in the history of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few".
Park's success in saving Britain was later attributed to his outstanding leadership abilities. However another key factor was his willingness to gain intelligence first hand. When he was charged with protecting 350,000 troops being taken of the beaches of Dunkirk from attack from the air, Park was often in the air himself, spotting enemy weaknesses and directing his fighters. He was the last to leave the air space over Dunkirk.

London has finally paid tribute to Sir Keith Park, the strategic mastermind who defeated the Luftwaffe in the skies over England 69 years after the RAF triumphed in the Battle of Britain.

The statue of the WWII hero was unveiled in Trafalgar Square as the public joined surviving RAF aces who took part in what London Mayor Boris Johnson described as the 'epic battle' which turned the tide of the war against the Nazis.

Speaking as he unveiled the statue, Mayor Johnson said: "London owes an enormous debt to Sir Keith for his courage and leadership."Hosting a temporary memorial in Trafalgar Square in time for the 70th anniversary of this epic battle is a mark of our gratitude for the bravery and commitment this great hero showed to London and the World."

The temporary 5 meter statue, presented by the Sir Keith Park Memorial Campaign was fabricated in fibre glass at Weta Workshops, Wellington, NZ. It will be in place for six months before a permanent 3 meter bronze memorial statue of Park will be unveiled in nearby Waterloo Place next year on the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

The Sir Keith Park Memorial Campaign is to be congratulated for having finally succeeded in having this great New Zealander, who did so much to ensure our freedom, finally recognised in the City he was instrumental in saving. Editor.  

Part 1 of the enthralling saga of Lord Trenchard's bust follows. I have already received its sequel from an anonymous contributor but unfortunately space limitations preclude publishing it in this issue.  It bears little resemblance to my version which I can only attribute to advancing senility on the part of the contributor. I can now understand why he wants to remain anonymous!  I must stress that there was no collusion between Anon and I in the production of the two versions.
Gus Smart 80th

Back to Top

Lord Trenchard's Bust
(Version 1)
During the weeks leading to the 80th entries passing out parade a great deal of thought went in to how to make the occasion memorable. As I recall, we were the first entry to be allowed to have a passing out dinner off Base and someone (probably Monty Firmin) thought it would be a good idea to "borrow" the dinner gong from the Officer's Mess. There were six of us in the raiding party to lift the gong, Monty, Me, a Rhodesian and three Brits. I can't remember the other names now and Monty is denying all knowledge of the incident. (And to think how envious I used to be of his memory). Selective methinks!

We set out on a Friday night at about 11 o'clock (sorry 2300 Hrs) and after arriving in vicinity of the Mess split into two groups to reconnoitre the surrounds.  We arranged to meet at 2345 Hrs to carry out the raid. My party went around to the back of the Mess and everything was very quiet. We found an unlocked door into the Dining Room and decided that would be the best way in. At about 1130 all hell appeared to break loose. Lights came on and there was quite a carry on inside the Mess. We withdrew in the best military manner (as taught by F/O  "Rommel" during Summer Camp at Southport). We scurried back to the rendezvous point quite sure that the others had been caught, only to find them already there and discussing our capture. Shortly afterwards an ambulance pulled up outside the main entrance of the Mess and a body was carried off. We later learned that a young Officer had appendicitis.

When everything quietened down, we made our entry. The gong should have been on its stand at the bottom of the stairs, but what we didn't know was that it was away being repaired as it had been damaged by the junior officers using it as a sledge on the staircase.  However there on the landing half way up the stairs was Lord Trenchard's bust.

After a whispered discussion we agreed that it would look good sitting on the top table at the dinner. After all, we had all contributed a "voluntary donation" of one shilling towards its purchase. So of we went with our spoil, plus a few ashtrays as souvenirs'. The Bust was placed in Monty's room on top of his wardrobe with a blanket draped over it.

On the Saturday morning Monty had a meeting in 3 Wing, to discuss pass-out celebrations, so I was filling in for him on the Wing inspection. At about 0930hrs I was called to the Wg Cdr's Office and told there was a bit of a flap on as Lord Trenchard's bust had been stolen. The Wg Cdr was quite sure that apprentices would have had nothing to do with it but asked me to keep my ears open and to let him know if I heard anything. He told me that the Camp Cdr, who was visiting AOC Trg Cmd for the weekend, was returning, the police were investigating and all Officers had been confined to camp.

Well, I was to say the least somewhat frightened, but I agreed with the Wg Cdr that I doubted very much that Halton apprentices would be involved and I would certainly let him know if I heard anything. About an hour later I was escorting the Wg Cdr on the No2 Wing inspection and you can imagine my concern as we approached Monty's room. I tried to steer him past into the dormitory but in he went, looked around the room and said "very good" and carried on. All I could see was the blanket draped over the top of the wardrobe. Just after 1100hrs Monty returned and I told him about the situation. We decided that the best thing to do would be to confess. I recall that there were three of us culprits in 2 Wing and I think the other three were in 3 Wing. I seem to remember that they weren't too pleased with us for dobbing them in. The three of us trooped down the stairs carrying the Bust which was still wrapped in the blanket. We met the FIt Cdr on the stairs, who on seeing Monty said "What have you got there Firmin, Lord Trenchard's Bust?" "Yes Sir" said Monty lifting the blanket.

The FIt Cdr suggested that we put the Bust in the back of his car and he would dump it in the woods near the Mess where it would be found. We declined and carried on to the Wg Cdrs Office. The next half hour was not pleasant and I got the distinct feeling that the Wg Cdr was very disappointed with us. After some phone calls we where told to report to the Stn Cdrs Office at 1400hrs and the others were dismissed. The Wg Cdr then proceeded to tear strips of me for not owning up earlier when he had told me about the theft. I had some difficulty in explaining to him the concept of "honour amongst thieves".

We spent all Saturday afternoon standing outside the Stn Cdrs Office and at 1700hrs were told to return after Church Parade on Sunday. I guess the Commandant finally saw us about 1500 Hrs and we got a right royal roasting. He said the only reason we were not being Court Martialled was because there were three "Dominion" apprentices involved as the ring leaders and we obviously didn't appreciate the gravity of our actions. I think this was borne out somewhat by Monty asking him, as we were being dismissed, if he minded if we kept the ash trays as a memento of the occasion which of course instigated some further one sided discussion as to whether we had fully understood the seriousness of our crime.

When I think back to that weekend I wonder just how much the system knew (or surmised) and strung us along. Looking back on it I wouldn't be surprised if we were seen in the Mess and the whole thing set up to let us stew for our sins. I know I did.
Gus Smart 80th.

Notwithstanding my comments above, I have now decided to publish version two of the Trenchard bust saga in this issue. It bears a slight similarity to my version but I really question the reliability of "Anon's" memory. I will make no further comments as they could result in "Anon" withholding future contributions. I will leave it to readers to judge which version appears most reliable. All I will say is that it certainly wasn't the Wg Co's suggestion that he cover up for us. Editor.
Who Flogged the Father of the Royal Air Force By Anonymous?
(Version 2)
Graduation of the 80th entry was fast approaching. A graduation dinner was being arranged. The Station Commandant was approached and agreed to break with tradition and allow the dinner to be held off the base. Arrangements were made, a big band from London was booked, all that was missing was an embellishment to remind us of our service.

Suggestions were forthcoming; the final choice was a dinner gong. Where better to get one than from Rothschild's Halton House, the Officer's Mess. On the landing above the large bronze bust of the "Father of the Royal Air Force" was a metal gong of some five plus feet in diameter. With hindsight why oh why would you want a gong of such size in a dining room. The thought of doing a "J. Arthur Rank" to bring diners to order beggars belief.

A raiding party of six assembled and near midnight set off. Approaching the  mess bedlam broke out with lights going on and vehicles arriving. A quick retreat to the bushes, watch and wait. A medical alert complete with ambulance unfolded. Calm returned and we moved in again with a simple plan in mind. In the front door, across the massive hall, up the broad stairs to the landing, gong off the wall and a quick retreat. Surprise, surprise, the gong was not there. We subsequently learnt some inconsiderate junior officers had ridden it down the stairs, apparently a regular occurrence even up to more recent times, causing sufficient damage to have it sent away for repairs. A quick look at the top of the stairs and there before us was a high wide hallway with doors off it to officers bedrooms and neatly lined up pairs of black shoes outside. Too good an opportunity. Shoes were redistributed, not always as matching pairs, so two left shoes ended up outside some doors and by a process of elimination two rights were left outside other doors.

One of the team was left to complete the redistribution while the others regrouped at the bottom of the stairs to reassess the situation under the friendly gaze of Lord Trenchard on the landing above. Why not? We were, after all, some of Trenchard's Brats, and having him in pride of place at our dining out would be most appropriate. He was heavy but easily lifted off his pedestal. Just as we exited the officer's mess a car was heard approaching. While we made it safely to the bushes our concern was for the shoe redistributor who had not come downstairs when we left. A couple entered the main entrance just as our sixth team member was coming down the stairs, forcing him to quickly throw himself behind a large couch. The couple, an officer and his lady friend, sat on that very couch and proceeded to develop a relationship to the point where clothing started coming off. This was too much for our team member who leapt up and dashed out the main entrance amidst screams of female concern.

In the morning the balloon went up. All hell broke loose. The disappearance of the Father of the Air Force went right to the top. Scrambled egg was dispatched to Halton to oversee recovery operations. The senior apprentice, who had the bust on top of his wardrobe covered with a grey blanket, was asked by the Wing Commander if he had heard anything of a break -in during the night at the officers mess. Answering his own question, the idea was dismissed with "it would not have been an apprentice, the only thing taken was Lord Trenchard" .A quick chat between the co-leaders, the decision was made, it would not be appropriate to have Lord Trenchard attend our dinning out.

While going down the stairs with the grey blanket as covering, a flight commander asked "what have you got there". The reply "Trenchard's bust" was laughed off. Entering the Wing Commanders office, the look of surprise was priceless. "Right, put it in the boot of my car outside. I'll take it back and say that it was found down in the tree belt". The generous offer was declined; the music had to be faced. The co-leaders were left standing outside the Station Commandants office for some hours while top brass came and went. Finally, a stand up, hats on, right bollicking. It was suggested that as the news had not spread far and wide that the most revered man in the Air Force had been flogged, thereby bringing disgrace to the whole service, we would probably be allowed to graduate.

In the explanation of events that night, it was mentioned that the couch couple had disturbed us as we were carrying out our escapade. This was news as no one had apparently seen or heard anything. It is understood the young officer ended up getting into a lot more trouble than the raiders.

Back to Top

Corporal Punishment at Halton
Text Box:  In the last issue of 'The Wheel' I published an email from the daughter of George Holmstead (33rd Entry). It was quite a unique entry….so large that it had to be assembled in three batches over three weeks, the last entry to wear the old choker collars, it served under three different monarchs during their time at Halton and was the last entry to have a public flogging.

In the latest issue of 'The Haltonian' (Winter 2009) the son of the late W G Rogers, 23rd Entry, provided the following extract and drawing from his fathers hand written memoirs. This is the only known pictorial evidence of these barbaric punishments.

"The whole Wing, about 1000 boys would be marched to form 3 sides of a square, all in full dress and bayonets fixed. A dining trestle table would be strategically placed and the culprit marched on and identified to all the parade before being stripped to the waist and held across the table to receive punishment as ordained by the Sqn Cdr. He would then be taken to the hospital. I am glad that I never suffered this cruelty or indignity but have always been puzzled. It was mandatory to ask parents for their permission, but I can only surmise that they were asked if "they" could deal with the matter as "they" thought fit".

Shortly after receiving the above account, 'The Haltonian' received the following from George Jackson, 19th, in which he describes a flogging in great detail.

"The whole Wing was assembled on the parade ground, the 3 Sqns forming an open square around a box-type vaulting horse. When all was ready, the Wg Cdr, Adjutant, Medical Officer and the 3 Sqn Cdrs arrived followed by 5 SP's and an Apprentice dressed in a greatcoat over PT kit. The largest SP, a WO I believe, and the size of a rugby forward, carried a bundle of canes under his arm. The Apprentice, who was not in my Sqn, was told to take off his greatcoat and lay face down on stop of the vaulting horse. The 4 SP's held him down, one to each leg and arm. The WO was then instructed to carry out the punishment. After careful selection from his bundle of canes, he took out one which he thought was the most robust and carried out a few practice swings to loosen his arm just like a tennis player. The punishment was not just like a Headmaster caning an unruly pupil; it was a savage attack on the backside of the tethered lad. After 6 strokes, it was over and the WO policeman was breathing hard but, from his facial expression, enjoyed the exercise".

Back to Top

Make what you will of the following. Editor

From The Halton Magazine 1926
Apprentices going on the annual tour of the WW1 battlefields had to sign the following declaration. "If admitted to the Halton Battlefield Party, I agree to obey the conductor at all times and carefully maintain the bearing of an English gentleman and member of His Majesty's Forces".

An extract from an article by AVM C L Lambe CB CMG DSO--Easter 1926.

"Discipline is sometimes interpreted as a word for harsh treatment connected with rigid hide-bound regulations. In its wider sense, it is an entirely different matter. Every human being should, starting from the nursery, be taught and encouraged to control his or her own feelings. If this early lesson is learnt thoroughly, discipline in later life becomes comparatively simple. It is sometimes forgotten that it is necessary for everybody and is not confined solely to Aircraft Apprentices; thus members of Parliament have to observe the strict rules in the House of Commons and to obey the Speaker."
Oh yeah!!!!  
I wonder what on earth instigated the AVM's article, anyone know? Editor

All of the above is reproduced from the winter 2009 issue of  'The Haltonian.'        

Back to Top

March 25th-27th 2011.

New Plymouth is a buzzing city, recently nominated as the "Best small City in the world" by United Nations. It has many impressive Parks and Activities, like "Womad" and "Americana" which draws international crowds. World Renowned Artists want to come to the Bowl of Brooklyn for their concerts and regular sporting events are held within the region. Many ratepayers would prefer a lower profile as the popularity of the city make finding accommodation difficult and we lose the slower pace of life that many like here. However that said. There is much to be seen and done here and most is FREE!
For the reunion rooms are reserved at the Auto Lodge Motor Inn, 393 Devon Road, East New Plymouth.         Room Rates are:      
Standard rooms           
Single - $107.00  plus gst
Double - $125.00  plus gst

Executive rooms
Single - $117.00  plus gst
Double - $135.00  plus gst

Superior rooms
Single - $128.00  plus gst
Double - $146.00  plus gst

These rates include Breakfast in the restaurant with full Continental and cooked selections.
Please book direct to Auto Lodge quoting "Aircraft Apprentice Reunion"
Phone: 0800 800 896 or email to reservations@autolodge.co.nz

Proposed Programme
A coach trip to visit the Tawhiti Museum (which is seen on TV1).

Visit the Elvis Presley Room in Hawera, and Wine Tasting at a Vineyard on the return, and then Dinner at the venue in a separate room, menu TBA, cost $42.00 p.p.

The RSA is in easy walking distance and although in the process of change should be available for our Friday night get together..

As always changes are possible but an early indication of Possible/Probable attendance would be appreciated.

………………………………………………………………………………………………print & return please
Name:                                                 Address:
Telephone:                                         E-mail:
            I will be staying at the Auto Lodge motor Inn……………..Number……………
            I will be attending the Saturday Night Dinner……………..Number……………
            I am interested in the Coach Trip…………………………..Number……………

Please return to: 
Sam West, 
11 Gardenia Ave, 
Bell Block,
New Plymouth 4312 

or E-mail:

Back to Top

Commemorative Window for St Georges Chapel, Halton
Our aim was to produce a contemporary work that would immediately stand out from the more traditional windows currently in the Chapel, and unmistakably say New Zealand . I think that has been achieved.
Back to Top

Parting Thoughts
What pranks can you recall from your Halton days? I seem to remember that most entries did something to highlight the end of their training.  What about the detouring of traffic from one of the adjacent major roads through Halton in the middle of the Night. There must be lots of stories that can be told now. Let's have some of them.
Back to Top

- Current Issue - Past Issues - Links -