Long ser­vice

Pilot - - FLIGHT TEST - Dave How­ells, Devon

I was de­lighted to read your ar­ti­cle on page 68 of Fe­bru­ary’s Pi­lot about the long­est serv­ing RAF trainer be­ing sold and still fly­ing.

About ten years ago, a friend of ours who had been a WAAF dur­ing the war (Beam Ap­proach talk down) passed to me her hus­band’s wartime log­book be­fore she died. I even­tu­ally passed it to the RAF Mu­seum ar­chive to be kept in­def­i­nitely. Be­fore I did, I thumbed through the pages to see his many fas­ci­nat­ing trips. One of them for 1945 con­tained a train­ing sor­tie in which he had flown KF183. I was be­side my­self be­cause one of my last trips, when at Boscombe Down in 1999, was to fly KF183 with Mark Leon-zcek on HATS. I re­mem­ber sit­ting in the back seat with the side win­dows open mak­ing for a good all round view and fly­ing ap­proaches to the short run­way at Boscombe as well as Old Sarum. It was a lovely aero­plane from that era to fly, in par­tic­u­lar, the stall threw a wing un­der as the air­craft rolled around that big ra­dial en­gine and, if I re­call cor­rectly, we pulled through a half roll by way of re­cov­ery!

Many thanks for the ar­ti­cle — such nos­tal­gia!

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