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Showing posts from July, 2009

Newport Revival

One of those days!

I had the Lowestoft Airshow to do this morning and there's a full council meeting this evening, so trying to fit in a 'spectacular' for the RMT Trades Union in between, presents a bit of a challenge.

Last night I was asked, if I could drop food parcels into the Vestas' UK, Newport, Isle of Wight wind turbine facility, which employs about 600 people in blade manufacturing and where 25 or so workers are into the fourth day of a sit-in protest. I explained that unlike the Berlin Airlift, the only thing you can legally drop from an aircraft in this country are poppies or cremated human remains, and as neither are particularly edible, that particular avenue for relieving the siege was closed.

This afternoon, I had another call from Newport. This time, would I fly a banner with "SAVE OUR JOBS - SAVE OUR ISLAND" past the facility at 6pm tonight to coincide with a visit and a speech from RMT Union leader Bob Crow.

Pulling the stops out, I can do it but…

Moon Mission

Following a walkaround the 'Pride' event in Margate this afternoon, I've just caught the end of a programme on the Apollo 11 mission on the BBC.



For me, the Apollo missions had an important influence on my life. I remember, age 13, staying-up all night to watch the landing. I was very much into the whole space 'thing' from Gemini on. For Apollo 11 I had a special moon mission pack which I studied religiously and included all the flight details and even some checklists and sadly enough, I can still recall some of the engine start sequences for the command module: "Inject prevalves on...." etc. At 53, I wish my memory was good enough to completely memorise the full sequences on the DA42 I will be using for my instrument flight test at Cranfield in the next two weeks. I have to confess that I've now explored the limits of my own abilities. Most commercial pilots take the IR exam in their early twenties and the ageing 1960's processor, which is now my …