Author Topic: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project  (Read 9309 times)

Aidan

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2008, 08:57:08 AM »
Hello Everyone,
      Well I saw Kathleens2's post and she welcomed everyone so I thought I would do a wee bit of reminising, maybe somebody will remember things too.  I was born in the Docks district of Belfast, maybe or maybe not Sailortown.  I always thought it was sailortown but if you look at the Sailortown site on the net Gamble Street isnt in it.  Anyway being born in December 1954 and living there till I was about 4 or so, my days were filled with swinging around the lamp post, chasing cows up the street to the docks until one of them ran up our hall after me, going up the docks with my brothers and cousins and when the docks peeler was coming being lifted up and put into a packing case with white straw in it and being told to stay quiet till we come and get ye.  Maybe my first bruch with the law LOL

The new house came through and we moved to a place away out in the country called The Braniel, all it was was , houses and muck but I guess it didnt take too long for all the Daddys to make gardens out of the muck and then there were all us kids and for  a lot , no in fact most of my years there till 1968, I really didnt know what a Fenien or a prod was, we were all just kids going to school, playing football ona sunday, pictures on a Saturday and the rest of the week going to and coming from school.

Holidays were great, we had all these fields up behind us, and all the kids would go up the fields for the day, if we were lucky we had a Ma at home who would make bread and Jam sandwiches and if you didnt have a Ma at home you pinched a spud and when we lit a becky (fire) throw the spud on and eat that.

Then there were days when we would go down to Gilnahirk, there was a garden Centre there and a wee stream flowing through it and from here we would catch spricks and stickle backs and hope to keep them alive, then further up the lower Braniel Road there was the Prespaterian Church that had a stream flowing through the grounds and we used to catch tad poles in there.  Well may I say, they were great days as a kid growing up in the very late 50's and early 60's.  Not a care in the world and the worst that would happen to you was you would get belted for coming home late in the summer time because the sun didnt go donw till 10 o clock.

Then I started Secondry school, cos I couldnt pass the 11+ so away to ST AUgustines I went and I guess with all the wee boys at that time, I guess the Testesterone started to play its part I we all became interested in girls and my God what a relevation that was.   

By that time I was travelling to the Ormeau Road to knock about with mates from school after hours and go to a bit of a youth club which was in the Boat House in Balfour Avenue and thats where the great revelation came to me
I FOUND GIRLS, and these days I am starting to think, maybe I would have been better off never finding them, I could go fishing when I want, drink when I want or just sit and watch TV without somebody talking about whats on and making me miss out on what I am trying to listen to.

Ah but then again , you wouldnt be without them, you know when I look back, a shop doorway on the Ormeau Rd, near the corner of Agincourt, at the bus stop, wasnt such a bad place to find out about the opposite sex, they always seemed to be more in controll and found time to hold your hand when it got a mind of its own and started to roam ( and all at the age of about 13)

Then the big day came and my Da said " We're away to Australia" so the furniture was sold or given away, the Guinnesse and the porter flowed and the last thing I remember of Belfast was my uncle Sammy standing on the dock at the Heysham Boat singing, " You'll be gone when the dawn comes tomorrow" and while he's singing that I am trying to juke off away from minding my wee brother to have the fag I got earleir from my cousin.

Anyway there are lots of memories and I shouldnt bore you all with them, but to be honest, it is nice to sit down and write about it all, it has brought back memories to me that I wouldnt be game to put on here but really they are all good memories.   If you read this, thanks for taking the time, if it brought back memories for you well then all the better.  Anyone can say what the want but being a kid in Belfast in the late 50's and early 60's wasn't so bad, now one of these days I might sit down and tell you all about what happened when we landed in Sunny Australia, now thats a real laugh.
All of ye take care and keep these pages coming cos you never know who might have their soul lifted by what you said
Aidan 

mafsef

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2008, 10:03:19 AM »
I do remember Arthur Field, a bit of a martinet as I recall; some other names from the Design Office were - Ron Hornby who had the controls section, Jasper Reid with fuselage structures and Bill? Lunney who was the Union organizer for the draughtsmen. Others with adjacent offices were Bill Hambrook, Dennis Hatton, Harry Adlerstein, Bill Day, David Keith-Lucas, Roy Fairclough, Brian Perry, Wolf Kay, Freddie Fox, Mike Bowden, Jimmy McClean and in Publicity Paddy Bott and Herb ? Then of course there was "Big Hughie" Conway (with a very buxom secretary who's name escapes me but who's body shape was something to behold) and Tom Carroll who came in towards the end of '62 if I remember correctly. Do any of these ring a bell?
Down in Flight test there was Malcom Wilde, Dennis Tayler (CTP), Bill Mortimer, Rick Steele, Peter Love, Timber Woods etc. and in Sales, Mike Ingle-Finch and Eric Hyde. My God what a mixed bag it was and what times we had - some bad, many good and always the good old government in the background calling the shots. Do you remember the maiden flight of the Belfast - the road by the airport was packed to watch Dennis Tayler take her up; a hell of a lot of pride of workmanship throughout the Company and down through the families too - many wonderful days and memories.
Can you add anything or anyone to this list that you have special memories of? It would be good to capture as much as possible of the old history before it all disappears into the Big-Sky-Hangar. Maybe the Ulster Aviation Society out at Longkesh could be prevailed upon to produce a story based on interviews and memories.
Alan F.

BLOOMFIELD

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2008, 10:37:44 AM »
Mafsef

I worked out at the Flight Shed, tracking Serial numbered components on

 the Belfast,  issued lists of items requiring Inspection or replacement, and

provided proof of airworthiness for the A.I.D.

I knew Mike Ingle - Finch, Dennis Tayler, Bill Day, Malcom Wilde.

I got one of Dennis Tayler's  cast off Flight Helmets, with the leather

headgear underneath, with built in headphones.

I wore it on my motor cycle, and connected it up to my transistor radio

Most of the other names you mention, I recognise, as I also worked in the

Insurance and Pension office, dealing with Superannuation Pensions,

works car insurance, Personal and baggage insurance of Staff travelling on

Business, insurance on planes going on Tours or Air Displays, and placed

insurance for Missiles on delivery.
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When will the I.R.A. pay Compensation to their Innocent Victims or Relatives.

Kathleen2

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2008, 01:21:42 PM »
Thanks for sharing that interesting post with us Aidan. I enjoyed reading about your memories. How long have you been living in Australia ?
" Tell them for their tomorrow, we gave our today"
A World War 1 soldier.

In memory of my grandfather, James McGimpsey. 9th Royal Scots.

mafsef

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #19 on: July 22, 2008, 01:58:31 PM »
Hey, great stuff. You and I must have crossed paths somewhere, even if only at a distance in regard to company trips. When we did the Britannia I spent some time in Bristol sorting out numerous design details prior to Shorts taking over the design for the RAF. I seem to remember having an argument or two over my expense accounts so I hope it wasn't you I got angry with on the phone. Can't recall the means of transport to Bristol but I think it was the old Rapide. Then there were numerous trips to London and Farnborough and a memorable one with Eric Hyde to Vickers to get some gen on the Tyne engines which were on the Vanguard; Eric and I did a trip on a test flight and were glad to get down as the early Vanguard was a little heavy on the controls on the approach. We were in the cockpit and watching the Vickers pilot fight like mad to keep the damn thing on the approach path, looking at each other and offering up some silent prayers.
Then I went to Pau on the early Astazou trials for the Skyvan prototype and came back with the machine loaded up with wine and cheese. Great days. Then there was the Sabre rebuild contract which was a great boon to many people - do you recall when the shipping crates arrived from the States there was more in them than aircraft parts - can't remember who it was had charge of opening them but he had a real lucrative business going as there were cigarettes by the hundreds and other goodies too all of which found willing buyers in the offices and the shop floor. I recall it well as up to then I was a pipe smoker but Pall Mall fags were so cheap and available they supplanted the pipe.
But I blather on too much - by the way what happened to DT's old helmet, if you still have it why don't you donate it to the Ulster Av. Soc. as they have a lot of old Shorts memorabilia.

weedotty

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2008, 08:28:08 PM »
Mafsef
Quote
I do remember Arthur Field, a bit of a martinet as I recall; some other names from the Design Office were - Ron Hornby who had the controls section, Jasper Reid with fuselage structures and Bill? Lunney who was the Union organizer for the draughtsmen. Others with adjacent offices were Bill Hambrook, Dennis Hatton, Harry Adlerstein, Bill Day, David Keith-Lucas, Roy Fairclough, Brian Perry, Wolf Kay, Freddie Fox, Mike Bowden, Jimmy McClean and in Publicity Paddy Bott and Herb ? Then of course there was "Big Hughie" Conway (with a very buxom secretary who's name escapes me but who's body shape was something to behold) and Tom Carroll who came in towards the end of '62 if I remember correctly. Do any of these ring a bell?

Yes, there are some that I do remember delivering items to their offices.
As a young girl straight out of school, Mr. Field put the fear of God in me, though he never did anything to deserve that.
I recall a buxom blonde who wore an ankle bracelet, and at that time, this was not something a "lady" wore.

BLOOMFIELD

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #21 on: July 22, 2008, 10:44:02 PM »
Mafsef

I don't have Dennis's helmet now, I left it behind when I immigrated in

1971, dear knows what happened to it.

Re. your Expenses, I only dealt with the Insurance aspect, you maybe had

your phone call with the Accounts Dept. :)

I know some of the names you mention, because I had to manually write

the Pension cheques for the Retirees. >:(

Mike Ingle - Finch was on a Skyvan Sales Tour to Nepal.

The Royal Family were at their mountain Palace, the Queen had a burst

 Appendix, so Mike flew her down ( at night ) to the lowlands to the

Hospital.  That was the first Night Flight in Nepal, they did not have any

mountain beacons----- he got an order for Skyvans. 8)

Dennis had an MG, I think it was an MGC GT, he used to take it in the

Belfast, so that he had transport .

He was a bit of a lead foot, he was going along the Autobahn in Germany

when an accident happened ahead. he could not stop in time, and he

ended underneath an 18 wheeler truck.  He now had a convertable  ::),

but he had the sense do unbuckle his seat belt and lie sideways before

the impact. I think he damaged / broke his leg, but was not seriously

injured.

When Shorts made the FOKKER wings, they were late with a delivery of

wings to Schiphol.  They got permission from the Air Ministry, and flew 2

sets of wings in the hold of the BELFAST.  The people at Schiphol were very

surprised. ;D

Did you know Ozzie Morris, who became Company Chief Inspector  ???
Soldier F Supporter, equal Justice for all.

When will the I.R.A. pay Compensation to their Innocent Victims or Relatives.

weedotty

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #22 on: July 23, 2008, 12:29:25 AM »
Mafsef,

A few other names come to mind...
Billy Mc Lean worked opposite Mr. Field.
Billy Baker ( married Sheila Glover...I think she was a tracer and her father worked in the factory) and Billy Kirk who was very well known in the cycling group.  The latter two Billy's worked in the first part of the upper floor office facing the road.
There was a Davy ( he had a limp) who worked in the main building mail room, very nice man.
Walter Gregg was my immediate supervisor in the Production Office, main building. There was a Billy Boyd and another Billy, tall, going bald and he was big in the union.
Do you remember a Silas who worked in the medical room...had somewhat of a reputation :o :o
Shorts was the first time I became a blood donor.
Did you ever go to Shorts swim club at the Ormeau baths?
Dot.

BLOOMFIELD

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #23 on: July 23, 2008, 05:54:42 AM »
Mafsef

Did you know that Mike Ingle - Finch's Brother was Peter Finch, the famous

Actor. ???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Finch

Can you remember when a certain "Head of Department" was caught

having sexual relations with his Secretary on top of the desk :D

A craneman in the Shipyard saw them thru the window, he shouted to

some of his mates, they climbed up the crane ladder to have a look, their

 Supervisor caught them all up the ladder, phoned thru to Shorts on the

internal phone, and Security :) went up to the Office and caught the Lovers

in the Act. ;D ;D ;D
Soldier F Supporter, equal Justice for all.

When will the I.R.A. pay Compensation to their Innocent Victims or Relatives.

Holywood4711

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #24 on: August 09, 2008, 06:18:12 PM »
Has anyone more information about the test pilots and engineers - I have seen mention of Mike Ingle-Finch, Eric Hyde, Dennis Tayler, but what about Brooke-Smith, Wally Runciman, 'Jock' Eassie (what was his real Christain name?), Doug Scard, even Lankester Parker or George Gedge? Going back a bit I know - to the days of the Sperrin, SB5, Seamew, Sherpa etc. - but those names might jog the old memory cells a bit! Thanks.

BLOOMFIELD

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #25 on: August 09, 2008, 09:48:40 PM »
I only worked in Shorts from 1964 to 1971. O0
Soldier F Supporter, equal Justice for all.

When will the I.R.A. pay Compensation to their Innocent Victims or Relatives.

Christopher

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #26 on: August 10, 2008, 04:30:56 AM »
Hello Holywood,

Welcome to the Forum.

If someone's doing a history of the test pilots at Shorts the name of Hank Adlam should be added to the list.

Didn't Terry Harryman, who won the 1967 Circuit of Ireland with Paddy Hopkirk, work at Shorts at one stage?

Christopher


mafsef

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #27 on: August 10, 2008, 05:04:56 AM »
Terry Harryman - another memory cell initiated; yes Terry worked in the design office although I can't remember exactly where. He had a large Scaleletric layout and a bunch of us used to meet at his house once a week to race slot cars. We built our own in those days and the favorite was a 1/32 scale Mini, I still have a chassis and some wheels from those days in a workshop drawer and it's only now that I recall what they were for. I don't remember Terry doing the Circuit with Paddy Hopkirk but it's entirely possible as he did a lot of rallying and certainly did the Circuit. those were indeed the Boyz will be Boyz days.
Any more of these type of stories and I'll be completely back in the 50's Belfast. Great stuff.
Does anyone recall John Bennett, at one time he lived out near Dundrod somewhere and rode a flat-twin BMW bike to Shorts with the proud boast that he did a ton or more down the Six? mile straight every morning. All with his duncher on backwards and an old pair of RAF goggles over his face. He worked in Ron Hornbys Controls Section and did most of the throttle work on the Belfast - then left and joined the government housing department.

BLOOMFIELD

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #28 on: August 10, 2008, 05:57:20 AM »
Terry Harryman shared an office with me at the Flight Shed for a while.

He was indeed Paddy Hopkirk's navigator.

He used to drive an NSU Prince car, to which he fitted 4 Amal motor cycle

carbs, with the float chambers fitted to the firewall.

They reduced his 0 - 60 MPH time, by 1 second. 8)

http://members.aol.com/rallyretro/rounds/coiroll.html
Soldier F Supporter, equal Justice for all.

When will the I.R.A. pay Compensation to their Innocent Victims or Relatives.

Holywood4711

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Re: Exiles required for the NI Emigrant Narrative Project
« Reply #29 on: August 12, 2008, 06:36:38 PM »
There's a list of Shorts' Chief Test Pílots in the "Short Brothers" article on Wikipedia. I think that Dennis Tayler is the last one in the list there ... were there any more? Thanks.