Thursday, 7 October 2010

Lancaster over Ontario

I'm a bit of a military history type guy. I love this aircraft. It was `state of the art` in 1943 but didn't have a SatNav until a few years ago. Some of the feats of flying performed by the crew of these planes leaves even the most skilled of their modern equivalents breathless in their admiration.  The men who flew these beasties, in unthinkably dangerous conditions, time and time again, always leave me in awe, be they navigators, pilots or gun crew. I had the rare priviledge of meeting a quiet, unassuming old man recently. Turned out he was aircrew in one of these, flew 20 night missions, was shot down, captured and spent the rest of his war in a POW camp in Germany. He now looks after his disabled wife. Bloody hero. Long may they be honoured.



Avro Lancaster Flight from Transgressive Media on Vimeo.

18 comments:

TonyF said...

A damn fine aeroplane. Funnily, I am owed a flight in PA474. I repaired and calibrated some of her instruments some years ago. I somehow don't think it'll happen.

It's a pity there are no Halifaxs (I know 'Friday the Thirteenth' is a Halifax, but it is a bitsa, some of it being Hastings....)or even Stirlings left

CI-Roller Dude said...

.....something about "so few gave so much for so many...or something like that.

These old planes still are amazing...and the people who flew in them are true hereos!

I had an old friend who passed on a few years ago...he was in the US Army Air Corp in WWII, stationed in England. He had a lot of good stories I loved to listen to.

If not for them, who knows how life would be now.

Blue Eyes said...

Hogwash. The real heroes are those at HQ wrestling with charts, graphs and targets. They are the ones who should be rewarded and remembered!

TonyF said...

Blue Eyes; You old cynic you ;-D

Hogday said...

Bluerinse, I'll be calling you Captain Darling if you keep this up.

CI-RD: That was pretty good sir! "Never in the field of human conflict, was so much owed, by so many, to so few". That was Churchill's thoughts on Battle of Britain fighter pilots, but Bomber Command were something else, regardless of the politics of their campaign. Their attrition rate of 45% fatalities was, by todays conflict losses, totally off the page.

There's a lot of Americans still remembered with great affection and respect in the County of Suffolk, where the `Mighty 8th` was based.
http://mighty8thaf.preller.us/
American Air Force Vets unveiled a plaque in the Square in Lavenham, recently. See my post about 2 back of holiday snaps. The Old crooked houses are in Lavenham.

TonyF: There's something about 60,000 rivets flying in formation that will always be a showstopper. Make that flight happen!!!

TonyF said...

Shackletons were 70,000 rivets in loose formation....

Hogday said...

TonyF: ....and safer than the average Nimrod?

CI-Roller Dude said...

Yes, The county of Suffolk, where I was born many years after the 2nd war when the USAF was sent back to fight the cold war with our UK mates.

Hogday said...

CI-RD: Well well, we're both men of Suffolk! RAF Bentwaters or RAF Woodbridge by any chance?

TonyF said...

Dimsod or Bag of shackles? Difficult. Let me think now. Ah, E3D, at least we have a galley....
Mind you, the 707 with the spinning roof rack is a bit of a pig to fly...

Blue Eyes said...

With a name like "Roller Dude" I would say there's a good chance it was Bentwaters.

Now and exclusive housing development I hear!

Blue Eyes said...

Please excuse the poor typing, I am in the West Country.

CI-Roller Dude said...

Is Skulthorpe (spelling?) still there?

Hogday said...

Blue: You can still see the outline of the airfiled from the sattelite views, but I believe you're correct. Woodbridge is an industrial park, for which President Putin must be grateful.

CI-RD: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_Sculthorpe

allcoppedout said...

I was once at a research conference where something worse than Blue Eye's quip happened. The heroes of feminism and queer theory were lauding themselves as veterans of the 'war'. Paper tigers could almost be revered after that!

TonyF said...

http://maps.google.com/?ll=52.847,0.763333333333&z=12


Sculthorpe!

Hogday said...

Blimey TonyF, I was in South Creake only 4 weeks ago. I was actually visiting the birth place of our dear Lord Nelson in Burnham Thorpe, but there you go...

TonyF said...

I hav'nt been there, Marham is the nearest place I went on det.

'Little Snoring' was a Mosquito unit, almost aptly named..