The Brooch

This is a true tale about a Halifax Bomber that had been on quite a few raids during WW2. After the war these planes were put to service by helping to train glider pilots.

During 1947 the circular engined Halifax was sent to North Luffenham airfield where my hubby used to be a fitter on the engines.   The Halifax Bomber was a replacement sent to teach Glider Pilots.

Before it was accepted it had to go on a test flight to make sure that it was safe to tow the gliders.  On its first test flight it crashed through a fault in the control column.  It turned right over on to its back and crashed in a ploughed field at the end of the drome.

One big cloud of dust that scared the living daylights out of the ground crew.  My hubby said everyone was terrified of what they would find but the pilot,  engineer and the radio operator all climbed out dusting themselves down and getting the dust out of their eyes.

Everyone was relieved and pleased to see all three climb out unhurt but to this day my hubby says he will never know how they did.  My hubby was NOT one of those that had serviced this aircraft but there was a big enquiry as to what happened.

From what my hubby could gather a bolt at the bottom of the control column had snapped.  Hubby said out of the Halifax and the Lancaster he preferred the Halifax because you could walk down the middle of it but with the Lancaster you had to crawl on your hands and knees to service them.

After his stint at North Luffenham my hubby was sent to Cottesmore to work on Mosquitoes. He also worked on the first Meteor.  Hubby said he enjoyed his time in the National Service and only wished it was brought back again to straighten some of the yobs out of today.

Out of the wreck of the Halifax my hubby had a piece of perspex that was the windscreen and made this brooch for me (Above).  Its now over 58 years since he first gave it to me.

as written by - Maisie Walker

RIYAN Productions