Jack retired to Spain with his partner Pamela just over 4 years ago after a long career mostly associated with the Services and the RAF in particular. He served in the RAF for 15 years including 3 years as an Apprentice (80th Entry Locking), serving in UK, Iraq (RAF Habbaniya), Germany and Aden (covering all the Gulf bases), plus several other places on detachments. On leaving the RAF he changed into "civvies" and worked for the Service for a further 25+ years serving at Henlow, MOD London (9 years) involved with aircraft avionics, and finally back to Henlow in RAFSEE looking after many Ground electronic and computer projects. He took early retirement in 1995 but soon found himself working firstly on specialised Flying helmet projects and then on RAF Radio Paging projects. He still consults on the latter and occasionally runs familiarisation courses for the MOD. His main hobbies over the years have been music and theatre, he ran and played drums in a big band for 20 years and played for numerous shows in pit orchestras.
Mary and her husband had their honeymoon in Spain fifty-five years ago on the Costa Brava. Following that they spent many holidays in Spain. Some friends of theirs in the U.K. had an apartment in Torremolinos and let them borrow it for a holiday. That was over 30 years ago and once introduced they decided that this was where they wanted to live. They bought an apartment and spent holidays in it. When they retired they sold up and came to live down here.
A couple of years later Mary had an accident and broke her ankle. She was sent to the Maritimo hospital for several days following the insertion of a steel plate and eight screws. In the bed next to her was an English lady and Mary found out that she was the secretary of the Royal British Legion Torremolinos Branch. The rest as they say is history.
Mary has been a member of The Royal British Legion since then. Over the years she has been Branch secretary; Branch Chairman; Branch President. With the introduction of the District Committee for Spain South, she also held positions there, including Chairman and Secretary.
Military service runs through the men in her family with her great Grandfather; Grandfathers; and Father all serving in the army. Her brothers and various nephews have served in the Army; Navy and Air Force.
When Mary heard that RAFA were in need of a secretary she offered her services.
Reg joined the RAF in 1960, straight from school, as a Boy Entrant in the trade of Air Radar. After graduating from training at RAF Cosford, he was posted to various locations around the UK including Watton, Yatesbury, Coningsby, Cottesmore, Cosford and Topcliffe, with a two and a half year "holiday" at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus in-between, finally retiring from the RAF as a Sergeant in 1973.
Reg joined ICL as a Computer Engineer and graduated to Service Management and Project Management, before being made redundant in 1999 at the ripe old age of 56. Unable to find gainful employment, Reg realized all his assets and moved to Spain in 2000 with his wife Mary, now sadly deceased.
He has always had a great love of music and played the Tuba, also dabbling with the saxophone and clarinet, in various Voluntary Bands throughout his RAF career and also in civvy life. He was also given the dubious task by the Station Commander at RAF Topcliffe of forming and conducting a Voluntary Band. It has to be said that Reg played with probably more enthusiasm than talent but at least it was enjoyable.
He was a founder member of the Benalmádena Branch of the RAFA and has served on the committee continuously in the role of Treasurer and sometime Secretary, as well as carrying out extremely rewarding duties as one of the Branch’s Welfare Officers.
Following a query from the RAF Music Services about bringing one of the RAF Bands to Spain, Reg jumped at the opportunity and organised two very successful concerts by the RAF College Band and RAF Regiment Band in 2005 and 2006 respectively. Unfortunately bureaucracy got in the way of further concerts but it is hoped they can be revived one day.
As if the RAFA didn’t keep him busy enough, he also works one day a week at the municipal library in Benalmádena.
Having just reached retirement age and in receipt of a UK pension, Reg is looking forward to many more fruitful years serving the Royal Air Forces Association in Benalmádena.
Andy joined the Royal Air Force in 1989 as an L Tech TC, and spent time at 2SU RAF Bampton Castle working on HF Radio, RAF Buchan on the Type 92 Radar, RAF Stanmore and RAF Bentley Priory on Radar Display Systems and finally 1001SU RAF Oakhanger on Satellite Communications. He left the Royal Air Force in 2003 as a Cpl to work for Serco on the Paradigm Skynet 5 Contract, where he worked in Secure Satellite Communications for the MoD. In June 2013 he joined Copperchase Air Traffic Systems as a Project Engineer where he designs, builds and installs Air Traffic systems in various locations around the world. He says he has travelled more working for Copperchase than he ever did in the RAF, as his only overseas tour was the Falkand Islands.
He's not a committee member but took over as Web Master in 2004, and we thought you would like to know a little about him.
Andy lives in Poole, Dorset back in the UK.