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Pilot’s birthday
CAPTAIN Eric ‘Winkle’
Brown is the Navy’s most
decorated pilot and a legend
in his lifetime, so the Fleet
Air Arm couldn’t let his
90th birthday pass without
● Tank (right) greeted by HMS Gannet’s Commanding Offi cer, suitable celebrations.
Lt Cdr Bryan Nicholas, as he returned from the fl ight which notched To mark the event on January
up his 6,000th fl ying hour 21, a Lynx from 702 Naval Air
● LA Scott Galloway
Squadron dropped in from RNAS
Top Tank
Yeovilton to see him, bearing
birthday gifts.
The aircraft crew, commanded
by Lt Cdr Al Haigh, presented Safe in
Capt Brown with a framed picture
depicting various fixed and rotary
HMS GANNET, as our readers know, is the Royal Navy’s busiest wing aircraft, and a card from the
helicopter search and rescue station. So it’s not surprising that one of its Fleet Air Arm.
pilots has clocked up a milestone of 6,000 fl ying hours. Capt Brown, who was the first
Lt Cdr Andrew ‘Tank’ Murray, who joined the Navy 23 years ago, man to land a jet aircraft on a
passed the 6,000 hour mark earlier this year – and celebrated the ship at sea, was able to sit at the
occasion with a large cake. controls of the Lynx, a modern
HMS Gannet’s Commanding Officer, Lt Cdr Bryan Nicholas, said: variant of a helicopter he once
“This really is quite unusual and a great achievement.
LEADING Airman Scott
“We’re delighted to have been able to share this moment with him. A
Capt Brown enjoyed an
Galloway, from HMS Illustrious,
celebratory cake, along with a bit of a get-together, definitely seemed the
illustrious 31-year career in the ● Capt Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown pictured with the senior pilot of 702 Sqn,
has been awarded a prestigious
order of the day for this fantastic milestone in his career.”
Navy, which saw him serve as a Lt Cdr Al Haigh, who presented him with a framed picture
safety award for his contribution
Tank joined the Navy in 1986 and deployed to many areas of conflict
fighter pilot in the Battle of Britain
Picture: PO(Phot) Terry Seward
to fl ight safety.
around the world. He was Gannet’s training officer at one time and has
and later as one of the world’s
carrier and the first British pilot to having been awarded successively
Scott, a survival equipment
trained hundreds of pilots in helicopters ranging from Gazelles to Sea
greatest test pilots.
fly a helicopter. Two months short the MBE, OBE and CBE, together
specialist, received the Guild of
He holds many world records of his 90th birthday he travelled to with the Distinguished Service Air Pilot and Air Navigators’ Air
Tank, who lives in Helston, Cornwall, said: “It was a great surprise
including the most types of aircraft the USA and flew a simulator for Cross and Air Force Cross. Safety Trust Award at a ceremony
and I was really honoured everyone had taken the trouble to organise
flown (487) and the most carrier the Joint Strike Fighter. He has written 26 books and on board the carrier.
the cake and a bit of a do.
deck landings (2,407) Capt Brown is the Royal Navy’s will be taking a leading part in To qualify for the award, Scott
“I have to say that I love my job and I’ve had some great fun over the
He was also the first man to most decorated Fleet Air Arm the Fly Navy 100 celebrations had to get familiar with charts and
years notching up that 6,000 hours. Obviously there have been some
land a twin-engined aircraft on a pilot and holds the distinction of this year. complex airspace usage, so that
tough, challenging flights, but being able to rescue people or make a
he could provide detailed briefs to
difference in areas of conflict is very satisfying.”
To the beat of a different drum
pilots and observers before every
He added: “I wouldn’t change it for the world and look forward to
getting yet more hours under my belt.”
He was working out of branch as
an Aviation Briefing Officer, and
Cold friends
BAND Cpl Gary Turner is
was largely self-taught, winning
hanging up his drum sticks for
the award without any specialist
a new career as an officer in
the Royal Navy.
Air Commodore Rick Peacock-
The musician has been
Edwards, who was Master of the
selected for promotion and
Guild until March 2009, said:
is readying himself to begin
“Scott has done extremely well to
his training at Britannia Royal
come to terms with what can be a
Naval College in Dartmouth.
demanding and unforgiving job,
FORMER PO Chef Jan Davey had a blast from the past when he met the
Gary began his military
even for professional aviators.
Naval Regional Commander for Wales and the West of England.
music career in 1992 at the
“For him to have done so well
Jan, from HMS Flying Fox, in Bristol, explained: “Twenty odd years
RM School of Music in Kent,
without any external specialist
ago, two of Her Majesty’s grey funnel cruise ships were traversing the
and has served overseas and
training is something for which he
waters between the Falkland Islands and Argentina, when catastrophe
on board the carrier HMS
and the ship can be rightly proud
fell upon them.
– it is a great achievement.”
“One ship, Coventry, sustained fatal damage and sank. Luckily for
He said: “I’ve been fortunate
Also at the ceremony was Rear
her the other ship was ours, HMS Broadsword, and we were on hand
enough to travel all around
Admiral Colin Cooke-Priest who
to pick up survivors.”
the world and UK entertaining
is Master-Elect of the Guild,
He went on: “I was a petty officer in charge of the forward first-aid
people, doing my hobby as my
who said: “I’m very honoured
party and busy with survivors coming on board. In all the chaos going
full time career is fabulous.
to be taking over as Master
on around, amongst all the frozen and injured, one person stood out
“My time in the Royal
when I succeed Rick in March,
because he had survived the sinking of his ship and then his life raft.
Marines has presented many
particularly in the centenary year
“The extreme cold had taken effect, and he had to be placed in the
challenges, both in music
of Naval aviation.”
captain’s bath for his wellbeing.”
and working in a military role
The survivor was none other than Jamie Miller, now a Commodore,
with 3 Commando Brigade,
but at the time officer of the watch and interpreter onboard Coventry. He
but I feel it’s time now for a
Young Hawks
went on to serve in Danae, Dryad, Avenger, Ark Royal, Marlborough,
new direction and I’m looking
and HMY Britannia, and was Commander Amphibious Task Group in
forward to my training to
get airborne
Fearless, Illustrious, Ocean, and again in Ark Royal in the 2003 Gulf
become a Royal Navy officer.”
After his initial seven-
Jan, meanwhile, went on to serve at HMS Heron, Sirius and Drake,
week spell at BRNC, Gary
before being discharged in 1986. For the last 13 years he has been
will return to Raleigh to train
employed as an MDPGA manager. He also works for the Sea Cadets
as a Logistics Officer at the
THERE’S special delivery and
and believes he may well be the oldest PO Chef in the country.
specialist school on site.
special delivery. Usually the goods
He said: “Four years ago, the Naval Regional Commander for our
you order come through your
● Band Cpl Gary Turner is
region retired and a new one was appointed. Guess who? Yes, we have
saying goodbye to his drum kit
now gone full circle. He is Commodore Jamie Miller, the Naval Regional Picture: Dave Sherfield
But the young rugby union
Commander, whose Broad Pennant now flies at HMS Flying Fox.
players with Glasgow Hawks midi
“Small world, isn’t it?” asked Jan, adding: “Even now, I am giving
team had an extra-special delivery
him assistance by organising his early call in the mornings!”
when their new kit arrived in the
say thanks
back of a Sea King helicopter.
The Sea King, from HMS
Sight for Soar eyes
Gannet in Prestwick, delivered the
THE SALE of Type-23 frigates to
strips in an air-drop before land-
the Chilean Navy is now complete,
ing at the Anniesland fields.
and to mark the occasion, the
The team members were pre-
FRIENDS were reunited at Chatham when the submarine Commander-in-Chief of the
sented with their new tops at
Ocelot, now preserved as a museum piece, was visited by her Chilean Navy, Admiral Rodolfo
half-time in front of a crowd of
old commanding officer, Vice Admiral Trevor Soar (pictured Codina Diaz, presented two RN
some 1200 fans. Once the match
standing on the left). offi cers with medals in recognition
was over, the young players were
The admiral made an unofficial visit to the Historic Dockyard of their part in the project.
invited to have a look around the
in Chatham to show his office team around the submarine which Cdr John Howarth and Lt Cdr
helicopter and chat to the crew.
was his first command, from 1986 until 1990. Geoffrey Palmer both played an
Now the players from Glasgow
During this time, the boat was deployed to the South Atlantic, important part in the Type 23
Hawks’ Midi team will cut a dash
Pacific and the Caribbean. Among his other commands, he also Purchase Project, which involved
in local fixtures wearing their
took charge of HMS Chatham in 1996 and in 1997 took her into a dedicated training programme.
Navy-sponsored kit.
her namesake port for a visit.
Now that the FF Almirante
“These players all show tre-
Vice Admiral Soar said: “I have a long-standing relationship
Condell (formerly HMS
mendous enthusiasm and com-
with Chatham going back to the late 1970s and hold very fond
Marlborough) has arrived in
mitment and we’re delighted to
memories of Ocelot as not only was she my first command but
Valparaiso the sales project is
be able to support them in this
when she arrived in Chatham to be preserved, I assisted the
way,” said Lt Cdr Gary Farmer,
team with her interpretation.”
Both men received the one of the RN’s regional business
He added: “It was good to see some old friends here today and
Chilean Medal of Honour in managers in Scotland.
I am pleased to see the Historic Dockyard doing so well. I will
the class of Knight on the after He added: “Teamwork, disci-
certainly be giving it my support wherever I can in my next posi-
deck of Almirante Condell, in a pline and determination are key
tion as Commander-in-Chief Fleet when I take over in June.”
ceremony attended by the Chilean on the rugby pitch, but they are
Defence Minister and the British also qualities which mirror those
Ambassador to Chile. found in the Armed Forces.”
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