Where Are They Now?

The Aircraft
The People
Where Are They Now?
On Silvr'd Wings
Visitor Book



BAYLEY, DEBBIE. Member 1970-7? Duty Officer and student. Flying Officer, Adjutant XV Squadron.

BENT, JOHN. Member 1970-73, QFI, CFI 1971-73. On leaving the RAF John flew Tridents and Argosies before joining Cathay Pacific in Hong Kong in 1976. Over the next 23 years he flew 707's, Tristars and the Airbus 320/330/340 series, but also made best possible use of his CFS training by specialising in Flight Training. He was Manager Flight Training for all the airline's fleets, and from 1993-95 was Flying Training Manager (Airbus) for the introduction of the A330 and A340 into Cathay service. John finally hung up his head-set in 1999 after 37 years, and 13,000 hours, of flying. He is today a recognised authority on airline aircrew training and a well-known speaker on the international flight safety symposium circuit. He spent five yeas as Managing Director (Asia) for GE Capital Aviation Training [GECAT], setting up and operating 4 full flight simulators from the Cathay Pacific Airways Flight Training Centre in Hong Kong, supplying over 20 airlines in Asia. He is now an international aviation consultant (see http://www.asahk.com/html/people_john.html ) and still keeps his hand in as a private pilot, flying with the Hong Kong Flying Club from the former British military airfield at Sek Kong in the New Territories.

CAMERON, DON. Member 1976 (?). QFI. Wing Commander. (SEE BELOW).

CAMERON, RUTH. Member 1976(?). Student and PPL. Daughter of Don Cameron and later married Andrew Pooley (SEE CAMERON ABOVE AND POOLEY BELOW)

CAMPBELL, ANDY. Member 1992-96. Engineer and student. Still serving.

CHORLEY, JOHN. Member 1970-73. Student and PPL. Returned to Academia on leaving RAF. Currently Admissions Tutor for Post-Compulsory Education at Wolverhampton University, but maintains his RAF links by running a Certificate in Education for RAF instructors at Cosford. Still using his PPL.


CLARK, STEVE. Member 1988-1992. Club PPL. Engineer Officer at Bruggen. Left RAF in 1992, became Flying Instructor at East Midlands Flying School before initial commercial job at Centreline Air Charter. Joined fellow club member Mitch Page on the ATR at CityFlyer Express in 1996 where one night they operated a schedule together to Dusseldorf (two club PPLs flying an airliner past Laarbruch!). Became a Captain on the RJ100 in 1998, but left the following year to join Virgin Atlantic where he now flies the A340, still with many ex-Laarbruch people. Contact: airclark@compuserve.com Also, check out Steve's website at: www.airclark.plus.com


COLVIN, PIERS. Member 1983-86. QFI. Pilot XV Squadron Tornados. Left RAF in 1986 to begin a career in civil aviation. Now a Base Training Captain on the Boeing 777 with Cathay Pacific in Hong Kong.


CORNTHWAITE, PETE. Member & Club Chairman 1982-84. Student and PPL. Still flying with 637 VGS at Little Rissington and in the process of regaining his PPL with the RAF Cosford Flying Club. Still serving, as Group Captain Principal Dental Officer at RAF Cosford.

EHRHARDT, WULF. Member 1969-75. Major, Luftwaffe. student and PPL. Later QFI at a Luftwaffe Flying Club at Bonn Hangelar. Specialist Air Traffic Control posts with NATO and Luftwaffe including SATCO Clutch Radar and CO of an Air Traffic Unit in Southern Germany. Retired 1991 as an Oberstleutnant. Now runs a successful Air Traffic Control Consultancy advising the European Community, Eurocontrol, German ATS and various airports. Living in Hochheim.

GAMBRELL, MARTIN. Member 1973- ?? Deputy CFI. Pilot, XV Sqn. After leaving RAF joined Britannia Airways, rising through the ranks to eventually become Company Chief Training Captain.

GARTON, KEVAN. Member 1993-96. PPL, Duty Pilot and i/c bar. Grudgingly posted to RAF Waddington "after many happy years" with the club. Left RAF 2006, now working for British Rail as level crossing inspector/maintainer. Still flying as a member of the Lincoln Aero Club on PA28 Cherokee and PA28TR Arrow IV - "lovely stuff."  Keen to contact other ex-club members from the same era. Contact: kevangarton@hotmail.com

GOODWIN, ROGER. Member 1970-74. Student and PPL. Spent over 30 years in MOD Public Relations. Director of Public Relations, British Forces Hong Kong up to and including the final withdrawal in 1997, during which time he and John Bent spent many nostalgic hours together. Chief Information Officer, British Forces Northern Ireland 1997-2001. Took early retirement in 2001.Now a PR consultant and specialist Defence writer and journalist in Preston, Lancashire. CONTACT VIA WEBMASTER.

HADDOW, BILL. Member 1971-74. QFI. After RAF flew as a captain for Laker Airways. Later joined Civil Aviation Authority. Sadly died tragically young from heart problems.

HAWKINS, JACK. Member 1968-70. PPL. Also gliding instructor, Two Rivers Gliding Club and chopped between the two clubs, sometimes flying the "Yellow Peril," G-AREI, with Phil Phillips. Left Laarbruch to go aircrew. Still involved with old aeroplanes, now serving on the Reserve as Ops Officer and Adjutant of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight at RAF Coningsby, lucky man.

JACOBS, JAKE. Member 1971-74 (?). Engineer and student. Last heard of serving at RAF Odiham.

KENDELL, MIKE. Member 197?-7? Last heard of as a Flight Lieutenant at Manston.

LANGWORTHY, HOWARD. Member 1977. Student but at 16 years of age too young (then) to solo.

LAZENBY, CHRIS. Member 1984-86. Student and PPL. Assistant Air Traffic Controller at Gutersloh, then Bruggen. Completed PPL course at Laarbruch, then added Night and IMC ratings. Another for whom the club was the launch-pad for a successful career in aviation. Left the RAF in 1988 to fly, first, King Airs, Citations and 125's. Then in 1994 his "year's of pounding on CFI's doors paid off" and he joined Airtours on Boeing 757/767's, flying them all over the world ever since to a current total of 9,000 hours plus. Living in Cheshire.

LEMON, ALASTAIR. Member 1972-73. Club Secretary and Treasurer, Duty Pilot and ground instructor. Left RAF 1977 to fly the "awful" Trislander and "wonderful" Twin Otter on Loganair's Scottish Highlands and Islands service. Joined Britannia Airways 1977 and completed 7,000 hrs on Boeing 737's and 2,000 hrs on 757's and "all-time-favourite" 767's before ill-health forced retirement. Now owns a specialist craft woodworking, carpentry and cabinet making business in Durham. (SEE BELOW)

LEMON (Nee SCOTT), ELIZABETH. Member 1972-74. Student. In one of the several marriages for which the Club bears responsibility, married Alastair (SEE ABOVE) and brought up three children. Lives and teaches in Durham between adventure expeditions to various remote areas of the world.

MALTBY, BILL. Member 1972(?)-73(?). Glider Pilot and PPL. After RAF settled in Mill Hill, London, where he discovered golf, before moving to Little Paxton, near Huntingdon. Tragically Bill lost his wife soon after leaving Laarbruch and then, after years of ill health, sadly his own life in 1990.

McCLOUD, BOB. S/Ldr. The Club's last Chief Pilot and Club OIC 1995 -1999.


MUMMERY, PHIL. Member 1980 – 1984. Student and PPL.  Joined after posting to Germany with NAAFI where he worked as a barman in the airmen's at club at Laarbruch, then called the ‘Double L Club,’ before going onto the ‘German Net’ and selling tax free cars to BFG. Phil's rapid advance to PPL was the beginning of a committed and successful aviation career which saw him progress to professional commercial pilot with, today, an ATPL and over 10,000 hours in his log-book. Phil lives in the South of England, where he is a freelance flying instructor and PPL examiner principally with the Old Sarum Flying Club and Carill Aviation. MORE

NEWALL, PAM. Member 1972(?)-1974(?). Sgt WRAF Admin. Student and PPL. Glider pilot, also member of Laarbruch Gliding Club. Married to Ron (SEE BELOW)

NEWALL, RON. Member 1973(?)-1974(?). PPL. Chief Tech 16 Sqn. Also glider pilot instructor, member of Laarbruch Gliding Club. Married to Pam (SEE ABOVE).

O'NEILL, KEVIN. Member 1996-1999. The club's last Chief Engineer. Station's Harrier Quality Assurance Engineer. After RAF became Quality Assurance Surveyor for KLM Engineering & Maintenance (UK) (Formerly Air UK) at Norwich, Stansted and Schiphol Airports. Working on ATR 72, Fokker 50, 70, & 100, BAe 146/RJ & 737-300 aircraft. Lives near Norwich.
Contact: oneillindereckeO@aol.com

PAIN, STEVE. Member 1971-74. Photographer, RIC.  Student and PPL. Left the RAF in the mid-70's and served for 17 years in the Leicestershire Police before studying for a Degree in Horticulture. Now Nursery Supervisor at the internationally-renowned Powys Castle Gardens in Wales, and also President of the National Trust Branch of the Prospect Trade Union.

PARKER,JIM. Member 1973(?)-74(?). Student. Admin clerk in Station HQ. Left Laarbruch for officer training. When last heard of was still serving.

PHILLIPS, PHIL. Founding Member 1968-1970. First QFI and engineer. Phil was the unarguably the most important figure in the early days of the club and it was his efforts which set the firm foundations on which the following 30 years were built. Phil was one of that rare breed, an Engineering Officer who was also a fully-qualified General Duties Pilot - and a good one, who went straight to instructing immediately after gaining in his own wings in 1964.  All of which made him the best possible person to drive forward the club during his tour of duty at Laarbruch as OC Mechanical Engineering Squadron. Promoted to Wing Commander in 1975, he was Station Commander, RAF Kemble 1977-75 and CO No 5 MU. At Kemble he built his first home-build aircraft, complete with tail-wheel from a supermarket trolley; engine cowling cut from the prop spinner of an Argosy, and twin carburettors from the local auto scrapyard. He named it the Red Sparrow, an affectionate acknowledgement of the Red Arrows who in those days shared the airfield at Kemble. After leaving the RAF in 1979 Phil was for a time General Manager of Coventry Airport, but moved to Lasham Airfield in Hampshire in 1982, where for the next 18 years he was General Manager and sometime CFI of the Lasham Gliding Centre. Phil retired in 2000. Sadly, he died too young in 2006.

PITCHER, PETE. Member 1969(?)-71. Duty Officer and student. Navigator 16 Sqn. After his stint on Canberras transferred to the SAR helicopter world, where he remained for 20 years, finishing as Officer Commanding the SAR helicopters at RAF Coltishall, and an A1 instructor. Chief Instructor RAF School of Combat Survival, Plymouth, before returning to flying on the C130 Hercules at Lyneham, with 24 Squadron. Flew in the first Gulf War before final posting as  Displays Co-Ordinator, HQ 1 Gp, Upavon, managing Harrier, Tornado and Jaguar display participation. Left the RAF in 1995 to join Oxford Air Training at Kidlington, where he is Deputy Chief Ground Instructor. Still using his PPL, now with nearly 1000 hours as a pilot.

PLATT, DAVE. Member 1973(?)-74(?). Student. Married Gail Jenkins, yet another marriage for which the club claims responsibility.

POOLEY,ANDREW. Member 1976-78(?) and 1988-90. OC 2 Sqn RIC. PPL. Officer I/C Club for two "turbulent" years 88-90. Responsible for "acquiring" the ex- Photo RIC prefab. buildings and re-erecting them at the Old Tower as the new clubhouse. After leaving RAF joined Organisation and Research PLC where he is Group Commercial Director. Married former club PPL Ruth Cameron. (SEE ABOVE).

PORTER, JIM. Member 1970-72.  Student. After leaving RAF settled in Westgate-on-Sea where he has lived for over 20 years.

RENTON, ROBIN. Member 72-??. QFI. After leaving RAF served with SOOAF in the Gulf before joining Britannnia Airways as a pilot.

SMITH, KEITH. Founder-member 1968-69. GCA Radar 1966-69. Helped Major Nick Nichols set up the club and was one of the builders of the original club house and bar. Now living in Australia. Contact: keith@dingley.net

SWAINSON, BOB. Member 1970-72. Student and parachutist. Bob is one of those strange people who insist on jumping out of perfectly serviceable aeroplanes for fun. Having gained his PPL at Laarbruch, Bob went on to build a remarkable life and career around his dedication to and passion for sport aviation and, in particular, parachuting. Now with over 2400 jumps and 3300 flying hours to his credit , today he owns and runs his own airfield, jump school and small fleet of aircraft in Oklahoma, USA. For a genuinely fascinating story of one man's commitment and determination to fly, click here.  Also, see his website at: www.pegasusairsports.com


SQUIRES, Dave.  Member 1968-1972. Student and PPL.  Station Met Officer. Spent the rest of his career with the Meteorological office as an operational forecaster.  A senior forecaster at Waddington, London Weather Centre, and Leeds Weather centre with 10 years as a regional television presenter for both BBC and ITV.  Retired as a Senior Scientific Officer in 1993 and went out to Bahrain as senior forecaster/adviser, ostensibly for 2 year contract but stayed 12 years.  Finally retired at 72 and now lives in Nottingham.

THOMAS, IAN. Member 1973 - ?? CFI. Ops Officer on ground tour, took over as CFI from John Bent. After leaving RAF joined Britannia Airways where he became a Training Captain. Retired some years ago when he was thought to be living somewhere in the Manchester area.

THOMPSON, ARTHUR. Member 1974-76. Chief Tech 16 Sqn. Took over servicing of Club's aircraft from Ron Newall and kept very busy as the fleet expanded to six aircraft. Left RAF in 1983 to overhaul and service aero derivative gas turbines in Aberdeen. Now retired, but keeps active as a handy man.

WEIGEL, RICK. Member 1969-71. Member Two Rivers Gliding Club 1971. Of Canadian/German origin, Rick was an enthusiastic supporter of the club during his Luftwaffe service at ATC Goch where he served under Wulf Ehrhardt. After his military service trained for his CPL/IFR licence at Hamburg before starting a commercial flying career, initially between North Sea islands, mostly on BN2 Islanders 1972. Later F/O on a DC6 out of Basle, Switzerland, then headed for a special mission to Calcutta, and Dacca, Bangladesh, carrying relief goods for the International Red Cross, and other odd jobs. In 1973 went to Southern Air Transport, Miami, on C130s and DC6s to support an oil drilling project for the Texaco-Sub Sahara Mission, at Mauretania, Niger, Africa. Worked as pilot and aircraft technical supply manager, again Miami. Trained for FAA Aircraft Dispatcher Licence, and Aviation Management, at Sheffield School of Aeronautics.1976 moved to Frankfurt, worked for Saturn Airways, Trans International Airlines, joined Air Canada 1976, worked mostly as dispatcher, instructor, traffic/pax officer, load control, mostly B747/L1011 etc, you name it. Handled QANTAS/DELTA/CONTINENTAL/USAIR etc. also close relations to Cathay Pacific. In between General Aviation flying. 1995 worked at all three Berlin airports, various functions, including air freight. 1997 Luebeck Airport, Flt Ops Manager, Training Instructor, and the local aviation historian. Guiding tours of former British/Australian Berlin Airlift Veterans. My leisure time now is cycling and sailing. You are welcomed to contact me at www.whiskylima@t-online.de

WILSON, SANDY. Member 1972(?)-1974(?). QFI. S/Ldr, Flight Commander II(AC) Sqn. Returned to Laarbruch 1976-78 as first CO of II(AC) Sqn after re-equipment with Jaguars. Remained in the RAF and retired as Air Marshal Sir Sandy Wilson after hitting the headlines.

WOODS, GORDON. Member 1971(?) - 1974(?).Student and PPL. His caravan, manned by his long-suffering wife, provided a highly useful temporary clubhouse next to the old Tower on flying days. Last heard of running a trucking operation in Lincolnshire.

YOUNG, PETE. Member 1968-69 and 70-74. Engineer, student and PPL. Subsequently selected for pilot training but initially chopped from the fast-jet course at Valley. OC Accounts at RAF Wittering for a year before re-selection for helicopter pilot training. Therefore claims to be one of the few RAF pilots to have been awarded his wings twice. Flew Whirlwinds and Wessex on operations in Cyprus and Northern Ireland. Left RAF 1985 and joined Bristow Helicopters, flying Super Pumas and Sikorsky S76's to the North Sea Oil Rigs from Aberdeen, and occasionally Norwich and the Netherlands, ever since. Married Jan 1973, another successful marriage for which the LFC bears partial responsibility.

Last Updated:

20 February 2008