"Not a feather in sight!"

    I was privileged during the war in that, firstly my father was a Police Sergeant of the area bordering Leicestershire and secondly in 1943, I started as a trainee with GPO Telephones. So, on both counts I had access to many and varied places that ordinary civilians couldn’t go, many rarely moved out of their towns or villages.

    I went to Saltby airfield about three times. The main memory is that (probably in April/May 1944) I went with my father to Saltby, as we had been promised a flight in a Waco Glider. We waited for a long time in the guardroom, but eventually found out that we couldn’t make the trip, as an exercise was being arranged. There was a party of our Airborne there at the airfield, as well as for co-operation with practise drops, etc. However, as a consolation we did get a look in a Horsa Glider. The Airborne Officer who was showing us around recounted the story, possibly apocryphal, when a high-ranking officer was being showed inside. He bent down to place a large diameter tube at the side towards his mouth and said, "I suppose this is the speaking tube"; otherwise it was known as the Sanitary Tube!

    I do remember a guy in fatigues being pointed out doing a bit of ‘gardening’ in a plot across from the guardroom as being a ‘full-blooded Cherokee Indian’ who was in the ‘Cooler’ for being AWOL.
Not a feather in sight!


    By Donald M. Stewart.








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