Op Ablaut Jul - Aug 1974

 

Reinforcement Scorpion tank offloaded at Kingsfield. 

The new UKMAMS Squadron proved it's worth during the Cyprus airlift. In all 7 teams were sent to Akrotiri under the watchful eye of Fl Lt Gerry Keyworth. Meanwhile at Lyneham the shift system was changed to provide 2 shifts on duty during each 12 hour period to cope with the extra workload. In fact it was decided at the end of the airlift to change the shift system permanently to the proposed 2 days, 2 nights 4 off system.

 

 

Each of the Hercules arriving at Lyneham carried 82 evacuees consisting mainly of women and children. The youngest passenger was only 5 days old! By the need of the evacuation, 5,255 evacuees had passed through the arrivals lounge at Lyneham.

 

Odiham - Fg Off Tim Leaning plus 4. Onload and deployment of Puma helicopter and personnel from 33 Sqn to Cyprus

 

Kingsfield - NEAF MAMS Red and Blue teams, consisting of FS Eric Batty, Cpl Gordon Black, SAC Dick Bullimore, Fg Off Ian Crouch, Sgt Cumbley, SAC Peter Herring, Cpl Alan Jeffs, Sgt Rick Desroches, SAC Tim Jessop, SAC Peter Orton, Flt Lt Roger Wharton and SAC Stu Whitton. FS John Guy.

 

Wives and dependants arrive in the UK after being evacuated from Akrotiri

August 1974 - Flt Lt Pat MacKenzie plus 4. Rotation of teams in Cyprus.

 

FS John Guy (Red Team NEAF MAMS) wrote - Whilst the teams were working flat out at Kingsfield, our families at Akrotiri or Limassol were having a hard time of it. The Limassol withdrawal had commenced and the Akrotiri married quarters became miniature barrack blocks. Morale was high, but Eric Batty and myself thought we could improve on it. So, during an infrequent lull in operations, we sauntered across the airfield (if you sat down one immediately fell asleep).

 

On the edge of Dhekelia Garrison we came upon the BFBS studios. Together we entered the air conditioned environs and the female receptionist instantly retreated. Until then it hadn't occurred to us that labouring within engine running metal tunes during a Cypriot summer caused Officers to perspire, and other ranks to sweat. Still clad in working clobber (flying suits) we obviously hummed somewhat and the receptionist kept some

A 70 Sqn Hercules takes off as another is loaded by the MAMS team at Kingsfield  

 distance between un. Determined to complete our mission before we were missed at the workface, we asked if we could make a request and have it played for those near and dear at Akrotiri / Limassol. Our wish was granted and we were asked to leave our request on the desk.

 

t was then that we played our trump card. We would like to dedicate it live on air, now! Somewhat startled the receptionist disappeared to make enquiries. Returning a few minutes later to usher us into a studio. The current programme was interrupted to carry a live interview followed by a dedication and our record request.

 

 

 

 

 

Dave Cromb remembers: "I was on first wave in, courtesy of Ian Berry, who dragged me from slumber about 2am, wouldn't have minded normally, but Phyl & I had been at a Lyneham Lanes party until about midnight. Groan. "

The pictures are of the MAMS camp site

 

 

Home away from home, Taff Sugg, n/k, n/k (possibly Graham Tye) & Stumpy Friar

 

18th Oct 1974 - Akrotiri in Cyprus, the largest and busiest of all RAF stations is providing the link for help to reach thousands of people displaced from their homes following the recent fighting.

Here, RAF Movements staff unload a stretched DC-8 charter aircraft which arrived with 22,000 blankets.

 

In recent weeks aircraft from Britain, US, Switzerland, Sweden, Holland, Germany and other countries have brought 300 tons of tents, camp beds and medicine.

 

RAF Akrotiri handled the lot on behalf of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and aircraft are still arriving with more.

 

In addition the Red Cross on the island have also received supplies which include 125,000 blankets, 8,294 tents, 11,541 camp beds, 38,000kilos of medicine and 105,000 kilos of food.

 

PRO, HQ NEAF