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Next section meeting - Thursday 31 August at The Bull Hotel, Bull Lane, Wrotham, Kent, TN15 7RF.

Section BBQ at Manston Spitfire Museum - Sunday 21st July 2013

1200 hours BST and the gleaming machines of the Kent and East Sussex squadron are expertly marshalled into their dispersal between the Spitfire and Hurricane Memorial Museum and the RAF Manston History Museum.

The only problem is that the meteorological officer hasn’t done his job and the low grey overcast is threatening proceedings. However, having due regard to the history of this former RAF aerodrome, Squadron Leader Kaby orders the deployment of FIDO (no madam, leave the poodle at home). I refer, of course, to Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation last used at Manston in 1952 which used vast quantities of petrol burned in rows either side of the runway to clear fog and low cloud. Now, given the price of unleaded these days, it was decided that a trio of large charcoal braziers might do the trick. Sure enough, with the addition of a few burgers, sausages and kebabs, the clouds miraculously dispersed allowing the sun to shine through.

Having sorted out the weather the assembled personnel proceeded to tuck in to the al fresco feast beneath the somewhat sinister backdrop of a German doodlebug missile. Also on view at the other side of the aerodrome was British Airways latest acquisition the Airbus A380 (not as well polished as the Alfas or was that just soot from the charcoal).

Following an excellent lunch there was time to explore the two museums on site; one housing a Hurricane and a Spitfire the other a variety of more modern aircraft and memorabilia.

All too soon it was time to fire up the kites, chocks away and roar off into the blue (Thanet Way). We managed to collect a (rather appropriate) total of £105 which was presented to the Spitfire and Hurricane Memorial Museum.

Many thanks to Flight Lieutenant Hodson and Squadron Leader Kaby for the organisation and not forgetting all of those on cookhouse fatigues for a memorable day out.

Toodle Pip
Dave N.

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