Vol 8

Page 9




Your Say!



Our recent article on fuel prices (Vol 7) brought in a bit of mail, one letter was from Ron Johnston in the UK, he writes;


Your article on petrol prices pushing towards $1.00 a litre was interesting. British fuel prices are much worse. Unleaded now sells for stg£0.81/litre and that converts to A$2.22/litre. Some places are experimenting with left over frying oil from the fish and chip shops which apparently makes a good substitute for diesel. The Irish are trucking in an inferior grade of fuel which is selling fast in the cities—cheap but tears the engine to pieces after two or three tankfills. New secret weapon from the IRA???


Sometimes you just don’t know when you’re well off……….




Keith Fletcher, who now lives in Brisbane, also wrote in answer to our recent competition re the use of the scope iron. He says:


I believe there are five correct answers. The four answers to the multi-guess question are all certainly true, but I discovered another little known application for the scope. It happened in the control tower at Williamtown probably about 1965. The section Flight Sergeant was becoming a little impatient with the length of time being taken on a soldering job. He decided to take over himself at the precise moment that the transformer developed a short. He found himself hanging on to 240 volts and was indeed starting to burn. His quick thinking and fancy foot work saved the day with him dancing across the floor until the scope disconnected from the GPO.


My wife Kay and I will be attending the reunion in March, and I think anyone who wants to come should be made welcome. I think a base tour would be in order for nostalgia purposes if it can be arranged.




Jon Harris, who lives just out of Melbourne, writes:-


Hi everyone, I’ve just became aware of the association through Rick Lovett, who along with a few other 'Old Boys' from the Radio School days, still works in Laverton. My pedigree is 19, 21 & 40 RMT and as a Radtech G and spent some time at 114MCRU, SupCom, Base Radio Darwin, 1AD and SupCom/Logistics Command. I retired from the RAAF as a SQNLDR in 1999 after 31 years to join the Public Service though still working for Defence.


Among others of the old fraternity still at Laverton are Rick Lovett, Bob Mathers, Joe (Jose) Zarate, Brad Gould and Alan (Spider) Lambert (ex Telstech).  If you are interested in an article on what remains at Laverton today, I could write something up for you. As I was a 'Bagger' and a 'Thick', I do not have a lot of war stories to tell and most of what I did have was lost when I was re-assigned to wife 2 in the early eighties. Despite being at Laverton, I missed the 1999 reunion due to Uni commitments and being told about it after the event. I am keen to get up to Brisbane for the 2001 reunion. I will try and find any more of the old crew that might have retired in the area and see if they are interested in coming too. Could I suggest a section that would enable members to email contact with each other through the association.


Jon, thanks for your note. A couple of things, first we look forward to seeing you in Brisbane in March, and yes please talk a few of the blokes you mentioned into joining our association and also into coming to the reunion. Secondly, we’d love you to write a few articles for us, it would be great to hear some stories not associated with an aircraft squadron. As per your suggestion re email, we’ve got that in place now. We don’t publish an individual’s email address as that can cause problems, but we do operate a “message switching centre”. Should you wish to contact anyone on our back page who has a @ against their name, send you initial email to us (radschool@yahoo.com) and we’ll forward it on. Once contact is made, you can communicate direct.




John Mackie, who now lives on the Gold Coast writes:


My compliments on the effort you put into the news letter, some of those articles bring back memories I'd totally forgotten, e.g. the article about those bloody washing machines. The main reason for contacting you was the article about Frank Horne. While I was at 114 MCRU, Frank's brother Hedley, was a good mate of mine. Hedley stayed in the RAAF until a couple of years ago when he got out and moved to Perth. In September 1999, his heart failed, and he spent the next 14 months totally reliant on an artificial heart machine, until he recently received a heart transplant. I'm pleased to say he is now out of hospital after a few minor problems, and I'm sure he would be pleased to receive a copy of the latest newsletter with the article about Frank. While on the subject of articles in the newsletter, my future son-in-law's father was a radio tech in the RAF for about 30 years, and he flew in the Shackletons out over the Atlantic quite often, mainly in the Mk 3, so he was quite impressed with your article. Please put my name down for the reunion and keep up the good work, it really is appreciated - thanks.


Thanks John, there’ll be a lot of blokes who also know Hedley, and who wish him well and a full recovery.  See you in March.




Geoff Mayhew, now living in Brisbane writes:-


You may like to mention in the next issue a similar organisation which also produces a regular newsletter called Radar Returns and which also organises reunions etc. The newsletter which is edited by Pete Smith is of great interest to those who have worked on ground and aircraft Radar in the RAAF, which would be just about all the Radschool members. All the best for 2001 and I will be there this time in March. See you there!


‘Tis done Geoff, and if anyone wants to get in touch with Peter Smith send your email here first and we’ll forward it on.


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