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222. Thassos, here we come!

26/02/2016

It’s been a busy day.

We haven’t made too much of it so far, in case it didn’t happen, but now it is, and it’s time for a bit of a catch up.

In January, you may remember that myself and Stephen Saunders (the film producer who’s making a documentary of our project) travelled to  Thassos with Paschalis Palavouzis and Panos Georgiados in order to discuss the practicality of getting flying 1264 from the very same spot she flew with my Grandad 100 years before.

Since we left, Panos (who runs the very large Kavala Air/Sea show with which the whole exercise is to be co-ordinated) has been very busy pressing the case for the event at the highest level – even the Presidential office – and last week he spoke to the Ministry of Defence to obtain their backing.

Meanwhile we have had an offer of support from the Fly Navy Heritage Trust to help us get 1264 out there.

We’ve decided, since the Hilux seems to be such a magnificent tow vehicle for the trailer, to tow it out ourselves. This means Stephen will get better film footage, we can maintain better control of the aircraft, we’ll have a vehicle available in Greece and we can also visit the Somme on the way back to drop poppies for my cousin David on the centenary of his fatal wounding in the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

And so today, I’ve booked the ferry, and we are definitely committed to going. We’ll be travelling out well before, giving ourselves a week to get familiar with the site, sort out any last-minute issues with the field, and wait for suitable weather to get the all-important filming done. From 24-26 June, we’ll be doing as much flying as we can, and talking about 1264 and the flying being done 100 years before. We’ll head back on the Monday, giving ourselves enough time to get to the Somme before the 1 July.

It feels like a massive step forward, and I feel a bit breathless that the wheels are all set in motion.

But that’s not the only development today. I spoke to Ian Tibbitt of the Fly Navy Heritage Trust, who confirmed their enthusiastic support for the Thassos project, but also asked (and I agreed) that we’d be at the Culdrose Air Day on 28 July – another date for the diary.

And last but not least, we learned that we’ve been awarded the John Blake Rose Bowl by the Vintage Aircraft Club.

I’ve come over all unnecessary, and will have to go for a lie down!

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One Comment
  1. Looking forward to watch that film… 🙂

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