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Thread: Witchford

  1. #1

    Default Witchford

    Photos taken by me on 22nd February 2009

    Note RAF Mildenhall in the distance in this photo


    Turning overhead

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: Witchford

    Two buildings located at the junction of the A142 and Sedge Way (called Common Road on some maps).








  3. #3
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    Default RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    Forgive me if you've seen these elsewhere...

    I've just treated myself to a new Camera.

    I wanted to go somewhere to try it out, so I went back to the RAF Witchford Memorabillia Collection.

    Firstly, the Memorial



    The only remaining Hangar



    The entrance to the collection



    Some of the exhibits




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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection










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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    A view of how RAF Witchford once looked



    The Whistle Nicholas Alkemade used to summon help after falling from his Lancaster without a Parachute



    The Bristol Hercules Engine from a Lancaster that crashed on it's way back to RAF Witchford






  6. #6
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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection



    And there's a place nearby that restores Classic Rovers...



    And the AFL "Shuttle" Trailer






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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    For those unfamiliar with the story of Nicholas Alkemade.

    Flight Sergeant Nicholas Stephen Alkemade (1923 1987) was a tail gunner for a Royal Air Force Avro Lancaster bomber during World War II who survived a fall of 18,000 feet (5500 m) without a parachute after his plane was shot down over Germany.

    On March 24, 1944, 21 year old Alkemade was a member of No. 115 Squadron RAF and his Lancaster II "S for Sugar" was flying to the east of Schmallenberg, Germany on its return from a 300 bomber raid on Berlin, when it was attacked by a Luftwaffe Junkers Ju 88 night-fighter, caught fire and began to spiral out of control. Because his parachute was destroyed by the fire, Alkemade opted to jump from the aircraft without one, preferring his death to be quick, rather than being burnt to death. He fell 18,000 feet (5500 m) to the ground below. His fall was broken by pine trees and a soft snow cover on the ground. He was able to move his arms and legs and suffered only a sprained leg. The Lancaster crashed in flames and the pilot Jack Newman and three other members of the seven man crew did not survive and are buried in Hanover War Cemetery.

    He was subsequently captured and interviewed by the Gestapo who were initially suspicious of his claim to have fallen without a parachute until the wreckage of the aircraft was examined. He was then a celebrated POW before being repatriated in May 1945. (Reportedly the orderly Germans were so impressed that Alkemade had bailed out without a parachute and lived that they gave him a certificate testifying to the fact.) He worked in the chemical industry after the war and died on June 22, 1987.
    Last edited by vulcanlover; 08-02-2010 at 04:06. Reason: In the words of Homer J Simpson...D'OH!!!

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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    REF on the Key Publishing Forum kindly asked me to post these pictures here, and I would like to warn everybody here like I have warned everybody else.

    Don't be fooled by the size!!!

    It's a wonderful collection and not a scrap of space is wasted. However, the overall feel is that it's not overcrowded either.

    I have been twice now and have spent a couple of hours each time and there are still things I know I have missed.

    It's in the reception of the Grovemere Holdings Ltd. Building on the Lancaster Way Business Park. To get there take the A142 towards Ely and turn off at the Lancaster Way Roundabout.

  9. #9
    SuperMod Peter Kirk's Avatar
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    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    Vulcanlover,

    Thanks for posting the pics. To me it's the content that matters in a museum and the information that goes with it. I much prefer the old style museums as they don't go for "style over content" which seems to be the way of things.
    Last edited by Alex Brown; 15-12-2013 at 20:26. Reason: cathedral reference moved to new thread

  10. #10

    Default Re: RAF Witchford & Mepal Memorabillia Collection

    Hi vulcanlover, thanks for posting the photos up, great photos. Great story about Nicholas Alkemade too, though I am now whistling "he jumped for fourty thousand feet without a parachute"!!!!

    I really must go up to the museum, I have visited Witchford and Mepal and until I saw your photos I didn't know of the museum!

    Thanks again

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