ALDERGROVE R.A.F. 774
Here are the men who helped put Aldergrove squarely on the aeronautical map
with their pioneering endeavours.
This is the maintenance crew at 23 MU Aldergrove back in 1954. Sitting in
the middle wearing a black suit is Jock Bain, the 'gaffer'. 3rd on the left
is Ernie Jenkins then Billy Carson the rest of the men are unknown.
The planes they are working on are possible from the 502 Squadron - either
C19 communications or T 21 trainers, the final variant of the Anson.
RAF 23MU 107
Of three men standing the first two on the left are unknown but the last man
is called James Surgenor a carpenter, seated on the display lorry are Cecil
Johnston, Artie Kirkpatrick and Samuel Steele who were joiners. Samuel along
with his two friends built the model Phantom jet in the wood shop section
of RAF 23MU in 1968.
RAF 23MU 108
In this photograph taken at RAF 23MU in 1968 you can see the Phantom jet model
working. The RAF pilot sitting in plane's seat every so often would press
a button which made smoke pour out of the back of the plane. This was made
for the Lord Mayor's Show in Belfast but it turned out to be that popular
that it was used at other events. Sammy Steele by the way is second from the
left then tenth from the left is James Surgenor a carpenter, the gent in the
suit third from the right is Tommy McDonald, Tommy was a Professional and
Technical Officer at 23MU. He was a gentleman, his brother Billy also worked
at the MU as an engine fitter, with Norman Campbell they worked together on
the Phantoms, sadly the rest of the men are unknown.
RAF 23MU 958
Here in 1968 standing proudly at their completed display in which was made
at RAF 23MU Aldergrove in the spraying department of the Maintenance Unit
are seated Sam Meehan and Jim Costella and standing in front of them are G.McCullough,
J Anderson and Giles Mombay.
RAF ALDERGROVE FOOTBALL TEAM 2235
It's 1945 and this is the RAF's Aldergrove Football team with Service personal
having their photograph taken.
Here are the names that I have but their positions are not known: Southworth,
Nicholson, Cowley, McDonald, Samuels, Scott, Parker, Pykett, Wilson, Green,
Halagh and Brooks. They were a great winning team by the cups in front of
them including the Glenavy Cup and the Charity Cup.
It's no wonder they were good for remember it's still wartime and the English
League was cancelled, but these fellows all played for English teams!
6th Entry 23MU 3558
This is the 6th entry apprentices of 1969 at 23MU RAF Aldergrove,
this photograph was taken outside the training school at the top camp which
had been previously the camp social club. The training school moved
in 1972 to one of the hangars inside the camp, and the former social club
was returned to its original use and named The Phoenix Club. The gentleman
to the left of the RAF officers was Mr. Brennan and the gent to their left
was the training school head Mr. Moran. The gent to the far right in the white
coat was Mr.Tom "Bomber" Harris.