British aircraft engine fitter served with 201 and 230 Sqdns, RAF during the Berlin Airlift 1948; served with 206 Sqdn, RAF in GB, 1949-1954
REEL 1 Aspects of enlistment, training and service as engine fitter with RAF in GB, 1946-1948: enlistment, 11/1946: training as engine fitter; postings, 1947-1948. Recollections of period as engine fitter with RAF in Germany during Berlin Airlift, 1948-1949: servicing Short Sunderland flying boats of 201 and 230 Sqdns, RAF at Finkenwerde on the River Elbe; experience in jet engine fitting; description of servicing a flying boat engine; description of refuelling flying boats on the water; method of bringing flying boats ashore; description of Short Sunderland flying boat; returning to RAF Calshot after six weeks; benefits and disadvantages of using Short Sunderlands; loading of Short Sunderland flying boats; servicing aircraft used in airlift at RAF Calshot; restrictions on airlift personnel in Germany; wartime destruction of Germany; attitude of Berliners towards British and Americans and the airlift.
REEL 2 Continues: shortage of manpower in early days of airlift. Recollections of period as engine fitter with 206 Sqdn, RAF at RAF St Eval in GB, 1949-1954: witnessing the sinking of Flying Enterprise; question of whether cargo was nuclear; search for lost American Boeing B29 Superfortress; arrival of first Avro Shackleton at RAF St Eval; comparisons between Avro Shackleton and Avro Lancaster; rule that fitters had to fly in the aircraft they serviced; character of Lockheed Neptunes; importance of 'sonobuoys'; flying as flight engineer when short of personnel; learning to fly and land aircraft; story of bomb falling out of aircraft; presence of Americans at RAF St Eval; leaving RAF, 1954.
REEL 3 Period with Vickers Supermarine, South Marston: working on early Swifts and Scimitars; recollections of pilot breaking the sound barrier; opinion of Les Colquhoun. Positions after leaving Vickers Supermarine.