THE EVOLUTION OF BOMBER COMMAND!
Heavy bombers have been part of the war-fighting effort for many years and as the RAF has evolved, so have the aircraft. We’re delighted to be hosting an exciting event at the UK Gallery where we’ll be joined by veterans who served on Lancasters in WWII, through to Vulcans, and many others.
Our special guests include:
Wing Commander JOHN BELL MBE DFC – after training as an Observer he flew his first tour as a Bomb-Aimer with pilot Bob Knight’s crew in 619 Sqn until the whole crew transferred to 617 Sqn flying the famous Lancaster named Thumper Mk.III. He completed a total of 50 Operations, 29 of which were flown on special operations with 617 Sqn including Operation Taxable and he finished the war as an instructor.
Squadron Leader ‘GARRY’ GARRATTS MBE – originally serving with the Home Guard in 1940, he volunteered for the RAF in 1941 where he graduated as a Sergeant Pilot. He amassed over 5000 hours flying 17 different types of aircraft including Wellingtons, Dakotas, Ansons, Yorks (during the Berlin Airlift), B-29s and Meteors. His notable squadrons included 575, 78, 242 and 149 Sqns along with postings in the Middle East, Malta and Belgium as the RAF element of a NATO join operation.
Wing Commander PHILIP GOODALL MBE – after graduating in 1953, he moved to RAF Marham with 90 Sqn on Canberras. He then flew as Co-pilot on Valiants with 138 Sqn and served during the Suez operation before becoming a Squadron Leader with7 Sqn at RAF Wittering, again on Valiants. He then served at Bomber Command HQ at High Wycombe before being stationed at RAF Scampton in the 1960’s as a Vulcan Pilot commanding 27 Sqn and was part of a team on standby to run a nuclear bombing raid on Leningrad, had the decision been taken by the government. Phillip was also a test co-pilot for Concorde.
Squadron Leader DICK HAVEN – joining the RAF in 1951 he was a Pilot on Canberras, Valiants and Vulcan B.2s serving with a total of eight squadrons including time as Chief Flying Instructor with 9 and 35 Sqns. He received the 207 Sqn Standard from Queen Elizabeth when she reviewed Bomber Command in 1956 and also flew on the Suez operation from Malta.
Corporal PAUL HARBOUR – after joining the RAF in 1978 as an Engine Technician, he served at RAF Coningsby on Phantom Spey engine maintenance before being posted to RAF Wyton as Groundcrew with 100 Sqn on Canberras. He was then posted to RAF Marham serving as Groundcrew with 617 Sqn on the Tornado GR1 before his final posting at RAF Coningsby with 5(F) Sqn as Groundcrew on the Tornado F2 & F3. Paul then worked for the Royal Saudi Air Force as a British Aerospace Contractor at King Abdulaziz Airbase as Groundcrew on the Tornado GR1 on 7th Sqn and then during Operation Granby, the First Gulf War conflict as Groundcrew on the Tornado F3 with 29Sqn. Junior TechnicianCLARE DUNDERDALE – joiningthe RAF in 1996 as an Engineering Technician – Propulsion, Clare served as ground crew at RAF Coningsby with 5(F) SQN on Tornado F3 ADV and then in the Harrier Maintenance Flight at RAF Cottesmore seeing Harrier GR7, 7A and 9 through minor and major services for 1, 3, 4 and 20SQNs where she also covered aircraft servicing to aid operations in the Middle East. Through injury Clare was also employed within the Squadrons Training Cell where she gained the rank of Acting Corporal, Aircraft Documentation and Station Logistics Information Technology Systems and Station Statistics. Junior Technician KAREN MALPUS– joining the RAF in 1989 as an Armourer, Karen served as ground crew at RAF Lossiemouth with 8 Sqn on Shackletons and 12 Sqn on Buccaneers. She then served at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus in the explosive storage area before returning to the UK to join 25(F) Sqn on Tornados at RAF Leeming where her duties included servicing, maintenance and arming the aircraft. Her final posting was at RAF Honington before leaving the RAF in 2005 having participated in both Gulf conflicts, former Yugoslavia and Operation Fresco.
Entry to our Gallery events is FREE but for safety reasons it is important to reserve your ticket in advance Unfortunately, on event days, we can’t allow entry to anyone who hasn’t reserved a place.
Even if you’re not 100% sure that you can make it, please book your place in advance and if your plans change, just let us know. Bookings are now being taken so please contact us to reserve your place!
If you are booked in but are not able to attend we’d really appreciate you letting us know so someone can take the place.