Information Zone



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Aviation enthusiasts are well catered for in terms of the many existing web links which vary greatly in their format, content and purpose. A Google search will provide the enthusiast with  a veritable treasure chests of gems. The links below are merely a selection of some which might be of interest to members. Many other great sites exist out there in cyberspace. As real military assets decline we at least can be thankful for the growing proliferation of so many great aviation related websites and apps.     


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FLIGHTRADAR24 website - live flight tracker weblink

AIR TO AIR REFUELING TRACKS -        CHART weblink         

On visiting the 100th A.R.S. at RAF Lakenheath, some members requested info about refueling tracks. Thanks to Howard Gent for the weblink.

GLOBAL AVIATION RESOURCE website -           A must view website for aviation enthusiasts

More web links

Aviation Cleveland Aviation Society

                               airshows forum


Aviation Groups -  Durham Tees Valley Airport Mvts     100 Squadron Association                                


                               Cleveland Aviation Society homepage 



Aviation Portals -  Global Aviation Resource  Post War Aircraft Website



Airshows -             Flightline          Duxford Airshow          Waddington Airshow


                                 RIAT     Airshows Review     Cosford Airshow


Aviation Media -   RAPCON       Planes TV     Kev Pye (CAS ) Flickr Site    


Colin Fawcett's photos can be viewed by following this link to his flickr portfolio. 

For Graeme Hewitt's photos follow the RAPCON link above.

For Kev Pye's photos follow the Kev Pye link above.

The RSS feed "IHS Janes 360" updates regularly to show the last twenty posts from their website. Click on a headline to read it. 

Holiday flight booked yet ?

Although not military, this NATS video visualization of European airspace on a typical day in summer makes fascinating viewing. Next time you fly give thanks to all the guys of air traffic control, quietly going about their business of keeping Europe's skies safe for us travellers.

Duxford Flying Legends

As a highlight of the 2016 airshow calendar why not view this past Duxford Flying Legends video.


Alwyn's aviation anecdotes       -   compiled by FLAG Treasurer Alwyn Boulby

Recently Stuart and myself were talking about new content for the FLAG newsletter and it crossed my mind how much duplication of photographs and the like happens. We all know how the aviation scene and its possibilities have declined in recent times and so the search for unique material has become more difficult. Couple to that the amount of duplication as that same material is utilised by the many aviation periodicals on the bookstalls and any newsletter does not find it straightforward to be “unique”.


It led to my suggestion  to Stuart that I submit a review of aviation books in the context of those I have read recently and then I sat back and thought. And thought again as I realised a background to my involvement with such material was important to tell you. But was it?


My first recollection of any aviation book is many (and I mean many) years ago when only 14 years old there arrived in my Yuletide stocking Harleyford’s “Spitfire - The Story of a Famous Fighter”, nor will I tell you how many decades ago that was! What I will tell you is that not a squeak was heard from me all that holiday (so there was an ulterior motive here) and it set me developing a library, a library and following which to this day is both fascinating, totally consuming and is continually added to. Home groans under the weight of books, tomes and magazines and I continually “dive in” to unearth some reference or other.


The amazing thing is though the changes time has brought to this factionalised publishing sphere. Amongst the publishers Harleyford has long since disappeared, new ones have come along (Pen & Sword) and others have soldiered on (Ian Allan & Putnam). These names are but a few and if you have your favourite then I am certain their contribution is always worthwhile.


How have I amassed my collection? That question mystifies my wife also but I confess here and now to being a bookshopholic. In the early 1970’s I was fortunate to be in Carlisle in business one day when I spotted a few volumes for sale in the window of a gents’ outfitters. I popped into the shop and it transpired the owner had recently died and his son was selling everything including his late father’s dedicated aviation book collection. Recognising there were many duplicates to my already burgeoning library I made an “en bloc” offer and somehow transported the lot home in my vastly overloaded 1100 cc. Ford Escort. The duplicates I sold which more than recouped the cost of the purchase.


What interested me here was that as I delved through the material I found such treasures as programmes of The Hendon Air Show in the 1930’s. And then an RAF Pilot’s Log Book of the first years of WW2 which I donated to the RAF Museum.


So where else does one find wonderful reading about aviation today? If you are in Newcastle go and browse in Robinsons booksellers in The Grainger market. In London my bus pass always sees me looking into Henry Pordes in Charing Cross Road (a few paces up from Leicester Square tube station). I also used Motor Books in nearby Cecil Court but sad to say they simply disappeared. There are also the remainder stalls that appear at Air Shows…..some terrific bargains. And then the old favourite, The Aviation Bookshop who relocated to Tunbridge Wells a few years ago. Oh, and do not neglect The Works as they often have an interesting left overs. Wrong of me to miss out the full price stores however Waterstones comes out on top for me.


Now that you have the background I’ll set to give you a review in the next month. The problem I have is I do not know which book to start with. Shall it be a person or a second, third or fourth generation fighter?



RAF Linton On Ouse

Cleveland Aviation Society base visit

Wednesday 20 November 2013



ZF202/202      Tucano T1


HQ Flying Wing         on display outside the CFS Cheshire Hall building


XN589/46       Jet Provost T3A          carries 1 FTS markings


Parked near old control tower


No ID              Soko P2 Kraguj           really G-RADA and ex-YuAF 30140

                                                            PTF exp 5-9-2005      


Flight line – flying      14:15 – 14:30


ZF142/142      Tucano T1


Note ; all the Tucanos listed are resident aircraft and repeat their last three on the

nose , flaps and tail . I have omitted these for ease of listing but have given shadow squadron allocations where noted .


ZF239/RA-F                                       2013 display aircraft in desert camo c/scheme

ZF287                                                 72 Squadron


ZF343                                                 72


ZH899             Chinook HC3              F/T Odiham , c/s SHF547


1 Hangar


No access due to the hangar being refurbished for the arrival of YUAS from Church Fenton in December . It is believed that 642 VGS will also move into here from their present home in 5 Hangar


2 Hangar         is the gym !


3 Hangar         Tucano Rectification Flight


ZF135                                                 used for ground instructional purposes only










ZF338/MP-W                                      WHIZZO , 76

ZF374                                                 1952-2012 silver crown on tail and

                                                            Flt Lt Jon Bond below port side cockpit






4 Hangar         Tucano Depth Maintenance





ZF205                                                 72


ZF244                                                 72






ZF512                                                 72


ZF145                                                 parked up outside of hangar


A new mod being fitted to the Tucanos as they rotate through here is a Mode S transponder with ZF210 being one of the latest aircraft to have one fitted .


5 Hangar         642VGS , spray shop and wash bay


The hangar is currently storing the inmates normally housed in 1 Hangar whilst it is being refurbished . Several of these aircraft are missing control surfaces and all of them are in a general ‘untidy’ state .


ZF137                                                 207

ZF169                                                 72


ZF172                                                 no serial number on fuselage . This Tucano was

                                                            previously MP-D DOROTHY

ZF290                                                 207 , in Spray Booth 1 – bofors gun in SB 2 !

ZF292                                                 207

ZF294                                                 207



ZF341                                                 207



ZF349                                                 72 , wreck – cr on take off at Linton 8-1-2013


ZF417                                                 207

ZF515                                                 72

ZH121/TG      Vigilant T1                  642

ZH146/TT       ditto                            642




P7895/RN-R   Spitfire IIB                 FSM , dismantled on trailer outside of hangar


There were also overshoots by a pair of Typhoons and a Tornado but no serial numbers were noted .


David Thompson

21 November 2013


Aviation Bookshelf


Local author PETER CAYGILL has written many aviation titles of which the latest is about the safety record of the famous RAF fighter, the Lightning.


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George "Johnny' Johnson remembers the Dambusters Mission, 1943

The book The Last British Dambuster by George "Johnny" Johnson (Ebury Press) is available now.

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My crew and I were with the 97 Squadron before we moved over to the new 617 Squadron for a special mission in March 1943. In the front row are me, the bomb aimer; Len Eaton, wireless operator; Joe McCarthy, pilot; Ron Batson, front gunner; and behind us are Dave Rodger, rear gunner; Don MacLean, navigator; and Bill Ratcliffe, flight engineer. Joe was the big man and I thought of him as an older brother. We had a friendship that was beyond that of pilot and bomb aimer, and when we first met we just seemed to gel.

We had no idea what we were training for until the day of the briefing. I was young enough and stupid enough to not think too much about it. The general conjecture had been that it would be against the German battleship Tirpitz, but the next day, May 16 1943, we discovered how wrong we were when we went to the briefing with Wg Cdr Guy Gibson and the inventor of the bouncing bomb, Barnes Wallis. That was the first indication we had of what the target was going to be – three dams within Germany’s Ruhr Valley.

It is difficult to say what the mood was when we found out. At that stage, most people were concerned with their own crew, because the crew were a family, always. But I do know there were one or two who had a nasty feeling they weren’t going to come back.

Gibson was a strict disciplinarian and his big problem was that he could not bring himself down to lower ranks. He had no verbal connection with the air crew except to tell them off when something went wrong. But the true essence of the man as a leader was portrayed in the actual raid, where he made the first attack on the Möhne. We knew it was the only dam that was defended. As he called each aircraft in, he flew alongside them to attract some of the defence. He said, ‘You’re doing this, I’m doing this, we’re doing this together.’ That to me is the essence of good leadership.

The scale of the raid didn’t hit most of us until we saw the outcome and the number of crews we’d lost – we lost eight of our 16 attacking planes that night and only three of the aircrew from the downed Lancasters survived. We lost 53 crew in total. It was pretty devastating.

 I’ve talked to school children about the raid and I can see the interest in their eyes. That makes it for me. It’s a relief to know that they’re teaching Second World War history in junior schools. There’s been an increase in the interest over the last three or four years, and I enjoy it.

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