249 Sqdn

Those who served with 249 Squadron are welcome to submit pictures and stories.

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Charles Marshall (Chick)
I was an airframe mech. with 249 Squadron under Sqdn. Ldr Sutton (now sir John Sutton) My family spent three memorable years with the 249 family. I would love to revisit Akrotiri but I now live in Canada.

From: Tommy Cullen

249 Squadron Canberra Crews Return to Akrotiri for a Reunion

64 Members of 249 Squadron Association (Canberra Crews) and wives/partners returned to Cyprus for a reunion led by the Association's President, Air Marshal Sir John Sutton and his wife Lady Angela.

We made a visit to RAF Akrotiri, where the Canberra Squadron served from October 1957 until it was disbanded in February, 1969. Many of us had not been back for over forty years, so it was quite an emotional return.

Our visit Project Officer was Flt Craig King, DSATCO and Curator of the Akrotiri Aviation Museum. We began the visit with a presentation by Flt Lt King outlining the current role of the base. This was followed by a base tour where we found that not a lot had changed in the past forty years, although the trees were larger and the whole site appeared to be a lot greener.

We went to our former Squadron Dispersal where to our pleasant surprise some of the Squadron offices are still standing and now used by the Akrotiri Flying Club. (Again, not much had changed!)

After this, the highlight of the day, we had a splendid Buffet Lunch at the Sergeants Mess, where a large bottle of Keo was 38 cents!. Our grateful thanks to the CMC and his members for their excellent hospitality.

The final stage of the visit was to the Akrotiri Aviation Museum which has been opened in the last two years. There, Sir John presented the Museum with a Squadron Crest and a framed Squadron History, while Terry Gill, the Association Secretary and Treasurer also presented Flt Lt King with a signed copy of "249 at War", donated to the museum by Brian Cull, the author. Eddie Kelly, who was a Master Navigator on 249, presented the museum with the medals of the late-Squadron Leader Andy Leddy, on behalf of Emma, his widow. Andy was a much respected navigator on 249, a loved member of the Association, and will be missed by us all.

After the more formal business was concluded, some of the ground crew went to check on their Squadron Billet No. 86A. Some alterations had been carried out, but on the whole the building seemed in much the same condition as it was in the 60's. A quick visit to view the (new to us) RAF Hospital then a short trip to Limassol rounded the day off nicely.

The next evening saw a Squadron Commemorative Dinner at the Pioneer Beach Hotel, Paphos.
We had a surprise guest, Mr Niyazi Adeniz, who once owned a restaurant in Paphos Street, Limassol, we all used to frequent forty years ago. Niaze, now is the proud owner of a Hotel in Northern Cyprus but clearly remembered his association with 249.

The evening started with a reception, hosted by Mr Lambros Kakoulis, Hotel manager, and after some presentations and a photograph call, Sir John and Lady Angela led us out to an excellent dinner which was accompanied by local entertainment.

All in all, the visit was a tremendous success and there is already talk of another visit to Cyprus in 2009.

Our grateful thanks to Group Captain John Conway, Officer Commanding, Flt Lt Craig King and all the Staff at Akrotiri for making our visit there such a success and also to Lambros Kakoulis at the Pioneer Beach Hotel for his willing help, generosity, and support.

Email: tcullen@tinyworld.co.uk

I have been through all the information on the "Akrotiri" web and to my dismay find nothing referring to the sterling work that was carried out by me and a few "volunteer armourers" I presently think the work they did in very difficult times and conditions should in some way be acknowledged.
We all enjoyed our day at the old base, sad to see our old squadron pan (249) reduced to a flying club base, but hey Bill that's progress in modern times. The RAF are taking a hell of a battering with the cuts and more cuts, yet our commitments are increasing.
Thanks for your time with Taff and I on our visit taking us down to the old mole, fisherman's cove etc many changes there also.
The Web site is full of all the right stuff bringing many memories back.
The book I left for the Museum has a lot of details of the role we played all over the Island carrying out the BD tasks.
Kindest Regards
Fred Knox EX 249 57/60
RAF MEAF NCO I/C Bomb Disposal 1971/74

The photos below were taken at the Reunion of 249 at RAF Akrotiri on 24-09-07

Arriving at 1030hrs at RAF Akrotiri, Association members were met by Flt Lt Craig King and Bill Cundall, after the arrival processing the first stop was the briefing room in the Education centre for a brief on the Stations role. A coach tour of the camp in the morning terminated at The Akrotiri Flying Club, which used to be the Squadron HQ of 249. Lunch and refreshments were held in the Sgts Mess, a visit to the Station Museum to see exhibits and photos of Fred Knox  followed lunch, the day was concluded with a trip to TPMH and the Golf Course.

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