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Significant Memorabilia

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    family it would be the shrapnel they pulled out of my Great Grandfathers leg from the shell that crippled him and ended his service as a pre-war professional.

    Non-family it would be the 1942 diary kept by F/Sgt 'Babe' Haddon. The last entry, 1st January 1943, reads:

    "Jan 1st. And so ends an eventful year and I am on the threshold of another which has promise of lots more fun and excitement and maybe even a little glory if God wishes it to be so."
    Some of my best friends are imaginary


      Originally posted by Snapper View Post
      Non-family it would be the 1942 diary kept by F/Sgt 'Babe' Haddon. The last entry, 1st January 1943, reads:

      "Jan 1st. And so ends an eventful year and I am on the threshold of another which has promise of lots more fun and excitement and maybe even a little glory if God wishes it to be so."
      Very moving...
      Could you please share details of his service and death?
      Last edited by J Boyle; 5th December 2007, 23:17.
      There are two sides to every story. The truth is usually somewhere between the two.



        Family it would be my grand dads medals from his service with the Merchant navy.
        collectibles etc would have to be my large section of Wellington bomber flap with flak damage.
        "Merlins always drip oil, when they don't....worry!"


          Originally posted by J Boyle View Post
          Very moving...
          Could you please share details of his service and death?
          I think I can do that.

          1192577 Flight Sergeant Alan 'Babe' Haddon

          Alan Haddon was born on 20th August 1920 at 8 Edward Terrace, Pelton Lane Ends, Pelton Road, Chester-Le-Street, County Durham, in the north of England, where he grew up. His younger brother Ronald was 14 months old when their mother, Catherine Ann Haddon, died, and he went to live with one of his paternal aunts until he was five, before returning to his fathers household until the age of seven when he left to live with his paternal grandparents until the age of 15. Alan stayed with his father, Joseph Hutchinson Haddon, a veteran of the Highland Light Infantry in the First World War who had been seriously affected by the death of his wife.

          Well liked by his peer group, Alan enjoyed reading, and riding his bicycle - he also had an eye for girls, and was a keen sportsman, playing cricket, and excelling at bowls (much to the chagrin of some of the old men he beat). He had a studious turn of mind and did well at school. Although Alan and Ron didn't see much of each other when they were growing up, Ron recalls that in the 1920's and 30's food wasn't as available as now and you ate what you were given. The only time the two boys fell out was one dinnertime at their grandparents when they argued over who was going to get the top of an apple charlotte. As an elder brother, Alan would sometimes partake in a spot of the usual brotherly bullying if he could do so undetected.

          At the age of 15, Alan moved to Leicester to find work, living with his father, and enrolled on an evening course for technical drawing and associated subjects. At this time he was working for the company of Ashwell and Nesbits (engineers and iron founders) and training to be a draughtsman. His father also worked for this company and became a highly regarded foreman.

          With the coming of war, Alan decided that he would like to join the Royal Air Force as aircrew. However, he was rejected due to insufficient expansion of the chest. Still determined to join, he purchased a Charles Atlas body-building course and altered his physique. He was subsequently successful, and soon left for pilot training. Ron was working in Bedfordshire from the age of fifteen, waiting until he himself was old enough to join up, and was allowed home by his firm for his birthday in October 1942. Alan arrived home on leave a couple of days later. While together, they visited their maternal grandfather who was very ill. With Ron returning to Bedfordshire and Alan returning to his squadron at Biggin Hill, the brothers were destined not to see each other again.

          Alan was posted to 609 (West Riding) Squadron at RAF Digby under S/Ldr Gilroy, arriving on 9th December 1941, in the company of Sgt's McConnel and Dickson from New Zealand, and Sgts Young and Patterson. According to F/Sgt Bob Walling's diary: Babe looks about 15 years old". On 19th July 1942 Alan damaged the squadron Miles Magister while low-flying with Johnny Payne as passenger - he hit a tree with the pitot head and was punished by Group Captain John Grandy. On 12th October, Alan, who was on leave at the time, was promoted to Flight Sergeant.

          On 23rd October, at around 15:50 hrs, P/O Dopere flew into a hill in very poor weather at Ashburnham Pottery near Hastings, Sussex, in Hawker Typhoon R8812 PR-K and was killed. Alan was flying with him at the time and climbed, while Dopere chose to descend. On 15th December 1942, Alan was flying with P/O Amor as his No. 2 (it was not unusual for an inexperienced officer to be wingman to a more experienced SNCO) when they became involved in a dogfight with an unknown number of Fw.190's which had crossed the south coast. F/O Raw, S/Ldr Beamont and F/Lt Baldwin joined in the fight just as P/O Amor called over the R/T "I've hit him". Both Haddon and Raw saw Amor attacking a Fw.190 with his aircraft ablaze. Alan called to Amor to bale out, which he did, but at 900 feet it was too low and too late. He had already been attacked and the aircraft was all but destroyed by Unteroffizer Zirngibl of 1./JG 26. The aircraft, Typhoon MK1A R7689 PR-B crashed into the sea and Amor's body was later washed ashore and buried at Margate Cemetery. Alan got the only confirmed kill that day, a Messerschmitt Bf.109 which was shot down over the French coastline at 16:00hrs, the pilot bailing out - the first 609 Squadron Typhoon pilot to shoot down an enemy aircraft Although Amor's claim was officially one damaged, it is likely that the aircraft he hit was Destroyed. Baldwin claimed a Probable. 4 days later, on the 19th, Alan was flying with F/O Lallemand when they got involved in a combat with two Fw.190's. Each made a claim, with Lallemand's being confirmed by Alan, who saw it burst into flames, and also claimed a damaged, as all four of his guns jammed. He continued to take photographs of the Fw.190, and while he could not cause further damage it was felt that its chances of making it back to France were slim.

          On 14th February 1943, under S/Ldr Beamont at Manston, Alan was flying Typhoon DN294 PR-O, in company with Sergeant Pilot Wiseman in PR-S. Approaching a disabled Motor Torpedo Boat with the intention of flying protective orbits the two Typhoons were bounced by Fw.190s of 111./JG2 and both Typhoons were shot down at 11.00 hrs in the Straights of Dover. Babe had served some 15 months as a fighter pilot, in 609 Squadron. Having been shot down over the Channel, Alan's loss is commemorated on Panel 136 of the Runnymede Memorial in Surrey.

          Johnny and Babe

          By a curious coincidence, Ronald was later also posted to 609 (West Riding) Squadron at RAF Manston from Skegness in 1943. Having joined the RAF as an airframe fitter, he was sent there on general duties. Alan kept a diary in 1942, but his logbook was lost over the years.

          Some of my best friends are imaginary


            I have an exhaust valve from one of PA474s Merlins which was given to me by WO Barry Sears as a thank you after I spent a week with the BBMF whilst on Air Cadet summer camp at Coningsby in June 1985

            Once you've tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you long to return


              I have a Cessna 150 left hand door (G-BFLM) which is the door through which I had my first flight in 1983.

              And lots of Harvard bits and pieces - mostly ex-Italian Air Force Mk.IIB parts (from the ones that came over in the early 1980s). Dad has some canopies which he uses as cloches in his garden!



                I have some cockpit instruments from a Shack that were left over from a renovation and some rejected replica parts made for an Ohka (Cherry Blossom) restoration


                  Mine are the items i've collected to do with Ormond Haydon-Baillie, including a helmet & patches from one of his flight suits & the ensign he "took" from RCAF Cold Lake when he left the RCAF.


                    Mine are some original Halifax manuals including a repair manual as well as some original Halifax documents and the original control column that's the focal point in my cockpit project.


                    Ultravox at Lokeren 08.08.09, I was there!


                      I also have a wooden propeller blade in my dining room but i do not know what that came off,all i know was it was going to be used by a farmer for fence posts along with many others My Dad saved that for me but i do not know what/where/who he got it from
                      Looks cool in the house though and it is a talking point !


                        A piece of lozenge fabric from the LVG CVI - bought at a Shuttlewoth display around 30 years ago after the LVG had been re-covered.



                          Hi All,

                          Can I just say that the responses to this thread have far exceeded what I imagined when I started it.

                          It has been fascinating reading and I think it's tremendous that these items are treasured and that their stories are being preserved by people with a passion.

                          Well done!


                          Author: 'Without Precedent', 'Down to Earth' and '50 Tales of Flight'


                            An air aid spotters guide from 1943/4, bought for 5, with a hand written inscription detailing the frst owner's RAF service and subsequent demise in the last combat loss of 640 Sqn..... I was subseqently posted to the previous owner's base at RAF Leconfield and this book re-envigorated my interest in avation history. Its priceless to me.

                            edit: I completely forgot that I have a section of fabric from PA474's Coventry Major...( part of the Mickey nose art ) and one of the Elevator W/T stencils. Can't and won't get rid of them - they mean too much. I had to wait 15 years to work on that aeroplane only to have the experience ruined.
                            Last edited by Lindy's Lad; 8th December 2007, 00:52.



                              Boxes of scraps and parts recovered from the fields out at Oakey.Remembering these came from famous planes who defended Darwin and Australia during WW2.
                              "If the C.O. ask's you to be Tail End Charlie...just shoot him!!!....A Piece of Cake.


                                I have the log book medals and various bits to F/Sgt Albert Oxley, the DFC and family archive of F/Lt Rolf Cardale Luck and the medals of F/O Douglas Cowan Moore. All purchased separately. The special bit? All were part of the same Catalina crew lost on a special duty op' in Burma Oct '44. (Still looking for the rest of the crew!)


                                  Meteor F-3

                                  I have a 1/32 scale Gloster Meteor model made of metal that was reputedly on the OC's desk at Cranfield- would LOVE to know if its worth anything- very scratched and looking sorry for itself though
                                  Give a man a fish and eat for a day. Give a man a fishing rod and he'll eat for a lifetime. Give a man religion and he'll die praying for a fish!


                                    I've shown this before in another thread, but it's worth uploading again.

                                    An original copy of the Design Certificate for Flight Trials of Lancaster prototype BT308, dated 5th January 1941, and signed by Roy Chadwick.

                                    Attached Files
                                    Who's the bloke in your avatar?



                                      I have the pilot's seat from Corsair IV KD621. Would love to know how it came to survive, as the actual aircraft was lost at sea during the war.


                                      PS. Snapper... thanks for that wonderful story about 'Babe' Haddon... it was wonderfully poignant, and equally well told.

                                      PPS. Lindy's Lad... how come your experience on PA474 was ruined?


                                        A fired starter cartridge from Canberra WK163.

                                        I assisted with the aircraft's first full power engine runs after they had been overhauled two years ago.

                                        It was the first time I had been near a classic jet when it was being run and Chris Cawdron the propulsion engineer on the project gave me the cartridge as a souvineer.

                                        Whoosh ,whine,rumble.
                                        'Get the wheels in line, get the wheels in line......!'
                                        Those that can, do.Those that can't be bothered, talk about it!
                                        Classic Flight volunteer.


                                          Further to my list of aircraft pieces.......or clutter as my better half calls it ! here are photo's of my bit's and pieces.
                                          The dials came from the Failsworth aircraft dump and the Prop blade from a farm field in Cheshire somewhere.