“Unfortunately, in today’s uncertain times we have now deemed it necessary to password protect parts of our website in order to respect the wishes of RAFLing members who, (for various reasons) do not want personal details on the website. Those parts of the RAFLing website are now only freely accessible by members of the Association.”

Death of Michael Stear on 5th January 2020

We have just received information from Keith Scott who keeps us in touch with happenings in the Chinling world of the death of Michael Stear on 5th January. 

Michael was a member of No 5 Course studying Mandarin which began in October 1957 at RAF Pucklechurch and ended in October 1958. He was posted to Little Sai Wan as a Jr Tech in Hong Kong. On completion of National Service he studied Oriental Languages at Cambridge where he joined the University Air Sqdn and began pilot training.

In 1962 after graduation he joined the RAF as a regular officer and underwent training as a fighter pilot.

As you can see from the list of his achievements he had a long and extremely distinguished career retiring in 1996 as Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Stear KCB CBE. 

1964: pilot with No. 1 Squadron after completing flying training.

1969: a three-year United States Air Force Exchange Tour

1974: posted to Germany as OC No. 17 Squadron

1976: OC No. 56 Sqdn RAF Wattisham (a Lightning squadron)

1976: appointed Personal Staff Officer to the Chief of Air Staff, Ministry of Defence

1980: returned to Germany as Officer Commanding RAF Gutersloh in 1980

1982: Assistant Chief of Staff (Operations), HQ Second Allied Tactical Air Force

1982: Falklands War, posted as Air Commodore Plans, HQ Strike Command

1985: Air Officer Commanding (AOC) No. 11 Group

1987: Assistant Chief of Defence Staff (NATO / UK)

1989: AOC No. 18 Group and Commander Maritime Air Eastern Atlantic and Channel

1993: Deputy Commander in Chief, Allied Forces Central Europe

I don’t think many of us knew we had such a high flyer (in all senses of the phrase).

(Click here for detailed version of Air Chief Marshall Stear’s career)

Cenotaph Parade 2019.

Once again there was a very good turn-out by members of the Association for this year's parade. Although he didn't march this year, Brian Scott again took care of the planning and organisation. Those taking part this year were; David Jackson, Tim Hutchinson, Ralph Sainthouse (right marker), Frank Morley, Stephen Walker, Lee Bryant (left marker and wreath carrier), Richard Osler (who led our contingent), Dave Johnson, Roger Mayhew, John Kelland, Frank Johnson and Keith Bell. Our thanks go to Lee Bryant for the photos. (Click on image for Photos)

Benidorm Reunion 1 - 8 Nov 2019

The Benidorm Reunion was held from 1 - 8 November 2019, with 32 Association members & guests attending, some travelling from as far afield as the USA. We were accommodated in the Sandos Monaco hotel, which is an all-inclusive, adult-only establishment close to the Levante beach. This year's Reunion was a less formal affair than usual due to the lack of facilities available in the hotel, but this did not in any way detract from the occasion. (Click on image for Report & Photos)