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From Tom Wilson 1956


I joined EUAS in 1956, well aware that it was quite an honour to have passed the selection board. Having done some basic gliding and being in the RAF section of my school corps may have helped. Shortly after my three years, I qualified as a CA, working in London and Johannesburg before joining Jenners, the Princes Street store, for 25 years until I retired in 1997.


My most treasured memory of the air squadron (apart from a glorious initial flight, dodging clouds with S/L Blackford) happened at Hemswell summer camp. Nearing the end of my detail, I asked ATC for a course to steer, as I was completely lost above the featureless Lincolnshire landscape. The response was a faint crackle in the headphones. After several more vain attempts, I put out a Pan call and sat with mounting terror, staring at the fuel gauge, which did not help. Suddenly, the whole sky darkened and the cheery voice of a Canberra pilot (who had formated on me from above & behind) called “follow me” and shepherded me back to the airfield. I remember S/L Doak just gave me an old-fashioned look when I climbed out, but he could see that I had learned a lesson!


My time with EUAS gave me a life-long interest in aircraft and the RAF. Summer and Easter camps were great adverts for service life – as shown by the number of members who subsequently made the RAF their career. Personally, I have found that friendships made during my term in the EUAS have remained with me, for which I am ever grateful.



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