Saturday, 6 October 2012

Flight of the Spitfire

By John Ludgater (RhAF)

These photographs were taken on the day that the Spitfire did its first test flight, March 28, 1980.

Spit 1, Flight of the Spitfire
Malloch's aircraft being prepared for flight

Spit 2, Flight of the Spitfire
A very low pass at the end of the test flight.

Spit 3, Flight of the Spitfire

Assembly of Spitfire Pilots
Unknown - Chris Dams - Unknown - Unknown - Ian Shand - Frank Mussell - Unknown
Archie Wilson - Mick McLaren -Unknown - Ozzie Penton - Unknown

Do not know all the names but hope that the others will be able to fill in the gaps.

Fifth from the left is Ian Shand who invited Dad to go out for the day, as far as I can recall the rest were all people who had flown Spitfires either during or after the war. The photo's below of Jack strapping in before the first take off and the other was a very low pass at the end of the test flight, hope this is of interest, all the best.


 Thanks to John for sharing his photographs and memories with ORAFs.

  Comments are welcome, please enter them below or mail them to ORAFs and they will be uploaded to this article

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At 7 October 2012 at 13:21 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Ron Jarman (RhAF) Writes:-

Well Blow me down..Twas during my stay with A. I. S. Remember well the hassels I had in procuring batteries for the Spitfire
I remember New Sarum comming to a halt as everyone crowded the western fence and the roof of Station Headquarters to watch the Test Flight

As far as Identification of personel is concerned, as far as my addeled inverted memory goes I reckon the fellow on the extream left is Charles Paxton and next to him is Ernie De Govia (ex Air Force Sparkie) Then working for Afretair.

At 7 October 2012 at 13:24 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Paul and Carole Brooks Write:-

We can help a bit regarding the photograph of the Spitfire:-
A/1st L Charles Paxton
B/4th L David Harvey
C/ 7th L Jack Malloch
D/3rd R Des Anderson

At 7 October 2012 at 13:26 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Peter Petter-Bowyer (RhAF) Writes:-

You can count of this. Only the tall pilot behind and between John Deal and Ian Chand gives me a problem.

Left to right: Charles Paxton, Chris Dams, John Deal (rear –possible John Fairey), Ian Chand, Frank Mussell, Jack Malloch, Archie Wilson, Mick McLaren, Des Anderson, Ozzie Penton, John Mussell.

At 7 October 2012 at 13:27 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Craig Fourie Writes:-

Charlie Paxton,Chris Dams,Johnie Deall,Ian Shand,Dave Harvey,Frank Mussell,Jack Malloc,Archie Wilson,Mick McLaren,Des Anderson,Ossie Penton,John Mussell.

From Ossies book Half a Century in Uniform.

At 7 October 2012 at 13:29 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Auv Raath (RhAF and RhArmy) Writes:-

The first guy I'm sure is Charles Paxton and the person between Mick McLaren and Ozzie Penton is Des Anderson (who was also the Airport Manager of Charles Prince Airport )

At 7 October 2012 at 13:30 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Robin Thurman (RhAF) Writes:-

In my book ~ Half a Century in Uniform the list is shown.
Charlie Paxton, Chris Dams, Johhny Deall, Ian Shand, Dave Harvey, Frank
Mussell, Jack Malloch, Archie Wilson, Mick McLaren, Des Anderson,
Ossie Penton and John Mussell, all Spitfire pilots.

At 7 October 2012 at 13:37 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Nick Baalbergen (Intaf) Writes:-

Great photos of Jack Malloch. Fond memories of him 'buzzing' the house of Jimmy MarshalI, his partner in early ventures, whose house was just down the road from us.

I will pass them onto friends who knew him personally.

At 14 October 2012 at 09:50 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Anne Shaw Writes:-

Ian Shand DFC Commanded 237 (Rhodesia) Sqn and he was a fantastic man and a dear friend.

At 14 October 2012 at 10:14 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Dave Hann Writes:-

The article you published on the 6th contains one basic error and I think it should be address. John says that the first flight of SR 64 took place on the 28th March 1980 which was in fact a Friday. The test flight took place on Saturday the 29th March 1980 and coincidentally was the anniversary of Jack's first Military flight of 29th March 1943.. I was totally unaware of this fact until many years later and when we set up the test date Jack made no mention of the coincident. We could have flown a week earlier but de-laid the event to ensure every thing was in order.

Although we tried to keep the first flight date a low profile event news like that in the aviation business spread like wild fire and Jack being the man he was certainly informed all his old buddies about the event. Our DCA Inspector of the day Graham Pearce was fully informed of the test flight as we were all Licensed with the department and using dispensation from the Rh.A.F to clear the F700 and all pertinent documents. Affretair must have been the only company out side of the appointed servings companies, the like of Fields and Airwork Services using air force documentation. I had full signing rights on store items and all Spitfire related documents. Worked satisfied by Air Rhodesia was done via purchase orders.

At 14 October 2012 at 10:27 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Dave Hann Writes:-

The three photographs of SR 64 (PK 350). In the first photo Jack is sitting in the aircraft and was about to start up for his first flight post rebuild. The trolley acc positioned behind the wing was there to supply power to the starter. We modified the staring system to an electric motor for a couple of good reasons and to have power available to the starter introduced access in the Stbd side of the engine. Normal services electrical power was via a socket in the Port wing root fairing. In the second photo the Spitfire was doing a beat up along the taxiway and the group of people you can see standing Salisbury City side were the Affretair employees and ground handling crew. The Spitfire obtained a flight speed of ± 450 knots during that pass - not too dusty for an old bird! And the final photograph was taken of all the pilots who took part in the Spitfire ferry flights out from England. There are two sources to establish all the names one is Nick Meikle and the second is the Sunday Herald of the 29th March. Incidentally Jack is standing in the middle holding his flight notes.

At 18 October 2012 at 19:21 , Blogger philippe martins-baltar said...

Hi Dave...:) ...I am the little frenchie to whom you gave a chance to live a bit of this fabulous story close to you ...and to see and live things that are still unbelievable to commun people today. I feel very grateful and I want you to know that. Since awhile I tried to have your contact.
So here is my contact: or +33(0)760 240 589
Hope to get in touch soon
All my kinds and gratefull regards

At 21 October 2012 at 09:53 , Blogger Rhodesia Remembered said...

Bill Sykes (RhAF) Writes:-

A small correction to be made in Dave Hann's letter ...

The Spitfire obtained a flight speed of ± 450 knots during that pass - not too dusty for an old bird!

Replace speed of 450 knots with 290 knots as per the record stated in the film

At 2 November 2015 at 13:06 , Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Dave, your family from Dorset are trying to get in touch with you. My contact is would be lovely to hear from you - Peter Dadds


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