Lympne Airfield History Society

 

On a very wet night on September 5th, Tony Moor presented the story of Florence Mary Morris-Davies, a very successful lady pilot of the CPFC. Born in London, the daughter of the 3rd Baronet of Rochester, Mary as she was better known, took up flying here at Lympne after the death of her husband in January 1934. Inspired by the likes of Amy Johnson and Jean Batten, Mary learned to fly with the CPFC. During this time, she rented a flat at Marine Parade in Hythe rather than travel from her home in Guestling, Sussex. Joining the CPFC in 1935, Mary went solo in a De Havilland DH60 Moth, and was soon to buy a B.A.Swallow of her own. Mary’s main instructor had been Leslie Cliff, who together with his wife was a well known figure skater who won Olympic medals in Germany in 1936. For her part Mary was an award winner herself, together with Jane Donald flying to Budapest in 1937 in the Swallow recording the best time in competition with others. It was sometime after this she was to meet Amy Johnson at a dinner. Today memorabilia of Mary’s flying exploits are on show at Brenzett Aeronautical Museum. She died on 3rd July 1989 aged 98.

Tony went on to show us several never before seen photographs from a private collection, featuring Lympne Airfield from WW1 to the late 1940’s.

November 7th’s meeting features a talk by WW2 Lancaster pilot Henry Shackleton from Elham. All meetings start at 7.30pm sharp.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078 Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

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Lympne Airfield History Society

 

Our next meeting on September 5th, is hosted by Tony Moor who will tell the story of Florence Mary Morris-Davies, a very successful lady pilot of the CPFC in a male dominated world. November’s meeting features a talk by WW2 Lancaster pilot Henty Shackleton from Elham. All meetings start at 7.30pm sharp.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of, Lympne Castle’s East Bar.

There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078

Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

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Lympne Airfield History Society

thumbnail_BillDavis[1](click on image to enlarge)

Our meeting on July 18th will be presented by David Goldsmith, who will tell the story of the Cinque Ports Flying Club formed between the wars and spent many years at Lympne before eventually transferring to Lydd in the 1970’s. The CPFC were a civil aviation organisation also responsible for training many RAF pilots who would go on to serve in WW2. Hosts of many air shows before and after the war, the CPFC operated many different types of aircraft, significant numbers of which are still in existence either flying or in museums all over the world today. Indeed one of the many real characters of the CPFC, its manager Bill Davis lies in Lympne Churchyard today having been killed in a flying accident with three others in 1938. He was succeeded by his wife Ann as manager at the time.

Forthcoming meetings later this year include a talk by WW2 Lancaster pilot Henty Shackleton from Elham.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078 Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

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Lympne Airfield History Society

img014aa_small Lympne 1930's (2)

Lympne Airfield History Society

 

Our meeting on July 18th will be presented by David Goldsmith, who will tell the story of the Cinque Ports Flying Club formed between the wars and spent many years at Lympne before eventually transferring to Lydd in the 1970’s. A civil aviation organisation, the CPFC were also responsible for training many RAF pilots who would go on to serve in WW2. Hosts of many air shows before and after the war, the CPFC operated many different types of aircraft, significant numbers of which are still in existence either flying or in museums all over the world today. Indeed one of the many real characters of the CPFC, its manager Bill Davis lies in Lympne Churchyard today having been killed in a flying accident as he came into land in 1938. He was succeeded by his wife Ann as manager at the time.

From our September meeting all our meetings will be the first Tuesday of the month as we avoid clashing with the SHAL meetings. Owing to holiday commitments our July date is later, but this does not clash. It was good to see several SHAL regulars at our May 2nd meeting as John Simpson told a well attended meeting the fascinating story of WW2 RAF heroes, Douglas Bader and Roger Bushell, both household names who knew our village very well indeed.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078 Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

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Lympne Airfield History Society

Squadron leader Douglas Bader on his Hawker Hurricane 1940

Squadron leader Douglas Bader on his Hawker Hurricane 1940

Douglas_Bader_headshot

  NPG x163805; Sir Douglas Robert Steuart Bader by Godfrey Argent

Our meeting on May 2nd will be presented by John Simpson, who will tell the true events of two RAF WW2 legends; Douglas Bader and Roger Bushell and their connections with Lympne Airfield. Both shot down Spitfire pilots, and both ultimately incarcerated in well known prisoner of war camps; Colditz and Stalag Luft 111 respectively, owing to their continued prowess in escaping earlier captivity. Both subject in later years to be portrayed on the silver screen by Kenneth More and Richard Attenborough  in Reach for the Sky and The Great Escape respectively.

They were both here at Lympne on numerous occasions before, and in Bader’s case after the war. Heroism, humour, survival and tragedy are all part of these accounts of these two household names who knew our village very well indeed.

Come along and learn about these larger than life ‘Boys’ Own’ characters at Lympne and beyond. Some great rare images survive from before WW2 of those years. Remember we do not clash with the SHAL meetings anymore!

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078 Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

 

 

Bushell Roger Bushell 3

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Lympne Airfield History society

Ann Hill 2

Over thirty people attended our presentation by Betty Black on the life of Skyways as a Lympne based airline from 1955 to 1974. Betty’s presentation was well illustrated with many colour photographs of all aspects of the era. The first flight to Beauvais near Paris was made on 21/9/55 linking London with Paris as a coach air service. The man behind Skyways was Eric Rylands who had seen a similar service linking Blackpool with the Isle of Man, and brought the idea to Lympne. He bought the airfield outright in 1956. The booking in hall and airport lounges had been created by Silver City, but since this car carrying airline had moved to Lydd in 1954, Skyways had to have them extended as they were too small. Other routes to Jersey, Ostend and Montpelier were also operated at first with Dakotas and then a brand new fleet of Hawker Siddeley 748 twin turbo prop aircraft. By 1968 Skyways were flying 247,000 passengers from Lympne. Many Lympne residents and others from the local area were working at the airport, with over 300 working for Skyways alone. By 1969 Lympne became Ashford Airport opened by Ted Heath the then leader of the opposition. A new runway had replaced the grass one after a serious landing accident in 1965, in which all survived the upturned 748 as it rolled over in poor weather. Other hair raising airliner incidents were recalled including one landing on a French beach and another diverting to Manston with a nose wheel jammed half way, to land on a foam covered runway. Again no loss of life

Many personalities were remembered with affection by our audience which included several former employees, too many to mention here, save for Cpt. Murray (Andy) Anderson who had flown PRU Spitfires in WW2 and gone on to fly Lysanders in and out of France at night dropping off and collecting SOE agents. He would go on to have a further flying career in the civil sector including Skyways. Several other Cpts. had been RAF pilots in WW2. We even learned that Prince Charles and the Duke of Edinburgh flew into Lympne often in a Queen’s Flight Andover (a military 748) to visit the Brabourne estate. One such flight was in 1967.

Skyways Coach Air became Skyways International in 1971 after a management buyout and part of Dan Air in 1972. The last flight of a Dakota left Lympne on 31/10/74. Its return flight landed at Lydd where everything transferred that year ending a 19 year golden era of aviation history for Skyways at Lympne.

Our next meeting on May 2nd will be presented by John Simpson on the stories of Douglas Bader and Roger Bushell (Great Escape Big X) at Lympne before, during and after the war. We meet every two months at 7.30pm in the East Bar of Lympne Castle. There is no admission charge. Please note we are working with SHAL to avoid clashing dates in future, albeit holiday commitments may make this more difficult for our July meeting. From September this should be the case, as we look to occupy the first Tuesday in the month.

 

Skyways 2Skyways4Avro 748 County Members - Copy

For more Information please contact:

John Simpson 01303 265078

Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com

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Lympne Airfield History Society

Lympne Airfield History Society

 

Our meeting on March 14th welcomes Betty Black who worked for Skyways/Dan Air at Lympne from 1968 until 1974 when the airline moved to Lydd. Betty will present her experiences of those times with many images being shown to demonstrate what a busy enjoyable time it was for her. Part of the ground staff, Betty went on to say it was a great time for aviation and that locals will be surprised to hear just what used to happen at Lympne in those days.

Other presentation subjects to come this year will include Douglas Bader & Roger Bushell at Lympne, Silver City and more stories from the Second World War.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to our generous hosts Richard and Rod at the castle.

For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078

Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.comavro-748-county-members-copy

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Lympne Airfield History Society

Happy New Year to you all.

The next meeting is set for Tuesday 10th January, 7.30pm – Lympne Castle East Bar.

We will be playing host to David Goldsmith as he presents his look at the attempted and achieved record breaking flights from England to the rest of the world (excluding Australia), of which Lympne was a major player. Diverse destinations like Brazil, USA, China and South Africa being just a few. Famous names such as Amy Johnson, Jim Mollison alone and together and Bill Lancaster predominate.

I look forward to seeing you there.

Best regards
John

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Lympne Airfield History Society

Lympne Airfield History Society

Our next meeting is taking place on January 10th when David Goldsmith will conclude his record breaking flights made from England to Australia and the rest of the world and back again, with a large slice involving Lympne. David covered the flights to and from Australia in part one, and will now cover flights to South Africa, Brazil, the USA, China and other diverse destinations. Such household names as Amy Johnson, Jim Mollison, Bill Lancaster and many more will feature. Glory, failure, death and heartbreak all play a part in this era.
Then on March 14th Betty Black will be presenting the Skyways story at Lympne in the 1960’s and 70’s. As recently as 1974 you could fly from here to Paris. It is a fascinating story. Betty was there and will speak first hand of those exciting years.

Please feel free to enjoy our continuing celebration of our Airfield in the wonderful surroundings of Lympne Castle’s East Bar. There is no charge. Thanks to Richard and Rod for providing the Castle in this way. For more information please contact: John Simpson 01303 265078
Email: johnsimpson43@btinternet.com Web: www.lympneairfield.com

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Lydd Airport Action Group

LAAG  members are concerned at the knock on effects that would be felt on the Marsh should Otterpool Newtown become a reality and the renewed threat it brings to Lympne Airfield.

In both our interests we are publishing this Press Release which adds to the record of highly questionable behaviour by Shepway District Council.  

             

Preserving  Protecting  Defending  Romney Marsh

 

Lydd Airport Action Groupwww.lyddairportaction.co.uk

 

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                                       Press Release:  Monday, December 5th, 2016

 

Kent Crime Commissioner urged to speed up delayed Police investigation into suspected bribes accepted by Shepway District Councillors

   

LAAG has written to the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, Matthew Scott, urging him to take steps to ensure this case is given priority by the Kent Police. The case involves the reported giving of material undisclosed gifts to Shepway District Councillors by Lydd Airport ahead of the determination of its planning application for its large scale development in March 2010. 

 

The case arose from a 2011 High Court judgment (Neutral Citation Number: [2011] EWHC 354 (QB) – Case No: HQ09X00332) involving litigation between the former Managing Director of London Ashford Airport Ltd (Lydd Airport), Zaher Nicola Jeries Deir (Mr Deir) and Fahad Bin Saleh Mohammed Al Athel (Sheikh Fahad al Athel) – the owner of Lydd Airport and associated companies. 

 

There were a number of claims and counter claims by the respective parties in relation to Mr Deir seeking payment of unpaid directorship fees.  The substance of the claims against Mr Deir included that he misused his company credit card and incurred excessive expenditure. Some of the items challenged were items that Mr Deir said constituted gifts to councillors.  The judgment makes clear that there is evidence available and that the sums involved were material.

 

At the determination meeting on March 3rd, 2010, 66% of the 41 councillors present voted for LyddAirport’s development. This was in stark contrast to the 66% of local residents who voted against the development in the earlier referendum conducted by Shepway District Council. There was also strong opposition to the airport’s expansion from the UK’s main national environmental organizations and local opposition groups.

 

This case was first brought to Kent Police’s attention in February 2012, but it was April 2016 before theKent police confirmed that the matter was being investigated (case reference number ZY/035502/14 in the Police National Database).  The investigation is on-going.

 

High priority should be given to the solving of this case as years have passed since the gifts were allegedly made.  Valuable evidence is in danger of being destroyed as institutions are only required to keep records for prescribed periods.  Of more concern to local residents is the knowledge that many of thecouncillors present at the time are still in office, proposing and making decisions about equally controversial developments.  

 

 

Louise Barton

Lydd Airport Action Group

The Hook

Madeira Road

Littlestone

Kent, TN28 8QX

01797 361 548

blmbarton@aol.com

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