As an ex pay accountant i'm in a minority of regular visitors to this site. I would be ineterested in other trades who feel this way. Alternatively i'm also interested in your siggies' reasoned comments on other trades.
The accounts bods were one of the most important trades on Gan, without you lads, how would we have paid for our beer?
Catering staff also very handy to know. Fresh milk and the occasional egg went down pretty well.
The brown job posties. Did a grand job doling out the mail as quickly as they could, when it was unloaded off the VC10.
The unpaid volunteers who did Radio Gan, and the lads who manned the Astra. All did a sterling job, without whom, my experience on the island would have been a lot less enjoyable.
The Ruperts. Waste of space, but I suppose we had to have somebody in charge. Well, they thought they were, anyway, and we didn't like to disillusion the poor souls.
The aircrew who flew us in and out again, who brought the mail, the transitting women and women and women, who we admired from afar through the fence.
The NAAFI staff, without whom no beer would have been sold, Maldivian and British.
The room boys, who did a sterling job of keeping us and our billets clean and tidy, all for the princely sum of, I think, £2 a week. Do you know how many beers I could have got for £2??
Last, but by NO means least, unless I have left anybody out, and if I have, please accept my apologies, and feel free to remind me of whom I have omitted, us SIGGIES!!!!!!!Love us or hate us, we were there as well. I think Gan would have been a poorer place without us.
That's about all I can think of to say at the moment, any further comments will be appreciated.
Willie, you forgot MCU without one of them Mike Coster,I would never have received the Lonely men video which has been copied onto dvd maybe 300 times and sent to gannites all over the world.Then the Qs,one of them Jolyeon Giles sat in the tower and talked to me for hours,preventing me from stealing the VC10 and flying it home.Then Willie the frog from supply who swallowed little frogs in his beer in an attempt to get off the Island[he suceeded] dont know if he survived..Plenty of trades and plenty of stories,can we hear a few from non-siggies.Thank you in anticipation...Larry
Fresh milk what Gan was you at unless it came off a kite from somewhere, I was catering and the only milk I can remember was tinned wich was added to the tea and not least the the posb cocoa.In fact I can remember one of your fellow siggies JT Dave Lane 1972 who was a friend of mine from serving on the same rock sqn before Gan,the only thing he was looking forward to was a fresh pint of milk back in blighty the moment he landed.The eggs yes, they in fact were packed in Tiverton Devon amusingly we used to find messages left amongst the trays from the packing girls saying soldier write to me.Cheers.
I knew one of the guys who worked at in flight catering, it was amazing what he could get!!
Got an e-mail today,got the Qs name wrong,it was in fact Jonquil Giles and I remember what it was all about. One of my geordie pals[nameless]had earlier got a letter from his girlfriend stating she had a surprise for him[only one guess needed].Anyway we had spoken to Joan[wrvs]who had told him to write to SSAFA.No luck,CO no luck,so one evening the plan[drink fuelled] was to steal a plane[or stowaway]and get him back home,anyway Jonquil talked us out of it.I can only remember coming down from the tower and being escorted back to the block by some nice gentlemen in white hats..Next about the catering,you lads did a great job with what you were given,but I think they must have changed the egg suplier after 69 as I am sure our eggs came from India or somewhere.I promise it was pure chance,when you broke the egg into the hot water,pure chance that you got something from inside the shell that resembled an egg.The milk you are right about,just one pint of cold fresh English milk,what a treat that would have been..Plenty of little stories left to tell,,whos next????
Larry the mention of eggs reminds me of my time in 1961/62 when we had the case of 'Gan Egg'. The taste was revolting and despite everybody's complaint (apart from OM) they continued to be supplied. After an extreme length of time, an investigation was made. The conclusion was that between unloading from the supply ship and delivery on Gan the condensation seeped into the cardboard which in turn permeated into the egg. It took so long that I never had a decent egg all my stay. Apart from a cockcroach coming out of my first weetabix,the food wasn't bad especially when someone caught a shark or nasi goreng was on the menu. Oh happy days!
I did used to work inflights and came across many goodies as we used to have to strip the plane of any foodstuffs on change over.Think the one that stands out the most was a large bag of oranges from Cyprus distinct as they still had the leaves attached wonderfull ended up back at the cooks block for the lads.Talking on about eggs spent a bit of time at Kai Tak and we had some pretty strange ones there white yolks comes to mind.
I did start this topic in the hope that trades other than siggies were not apathetic to posting on this forum. The exercise so far has been a failure with inevitably more posts from siggies than any other. In the words of Delia 'let's be 'aving you'other trades and prove there is a genuine interest out there.
I don't know what it is, but, as you say, it's always Siggies posting, don't know why.
Things must have gone downhill after I left, 68/69.I was in Ops and ATC.We used to have the British Eagle Brit,(monthly I think) en - route to Aus and we took orders for fresh milk which they kindly bought for us.Siggies used to give me their order.I remember the crew sometimes gave us some fantastic baskets of fruit as well.I suppose they rated the service as we made out their flight plans and they just had to sign them.They said they had never experienced that before!
If I remember correctly British Eagle went out of business while I was on Gan and Monarch took over,correct me if I am wrong?
Another scam we had was to nip down to Transit after the shiney had landed and they used to give us trays of sarnies and cake which had'nt been used.
Sorry to rub it in guys but the offcoming afternoon shift in ATC could get a Transit meal from the Airmens mess,I can still taste that icecream!!!!
Reading some of these posts the ATC/OPS guys,myself included, seem to have been a bunch of scroungers!
Anyway we DID share and you ALL loved our morning announcement on the tannoy that 'stickies' were now available for collection from the Post Office!
All the best!
Do you remember me Pete I was in Accounts from 60/61 and I'm still in touch with 2 others Roy Fox and Mick Clerkin. It would be good to hear something from you
With regard to eggs I can remember using almost a whole box of eggs just to get 90 for scrambled egg for breakfast. We had to crack each egg into a cup before putting it in the bowl to whisk it. Some times you got a black liquid or nothing or sometimes a stinking mess.
Getting Fresh Milk to Gan
My father used to ship it in from Tengah 1972 - 1973 until he was posted back to UK
Flt Sgt Don Wickham (Air Movements)
I can remember when we flew back from Singers and we were given the VIP treatment in Gan because of what he used to ship from Tengah
Hi John,sounds like I was there the same time as your dad name does not sound familiar sad to say any way the flights in from Tengah if memory serves me right used to arrive late afternoons,must say the Inflights at Tengah used to do a good cold pud for the passengers wich we used to scoff with relish after we cleared the plane.
I was a pongo and spent most of my time on Hittadu. The thing I remember most was the water on Hittadu!! All our water was from a desalination plant - and one of the stages didn't work. The result was drinkable but salty tasting water and tea. It took about a week to get used to it.
You could always spot a Hittadu Hermit when he visited Gan Canteen - he would put salt in his tea!!! When I eventually got home it took me a couple of weeks to wean myself off the salt.... I got some very strange looks in cafes.
Dave (Pongo) McKay 1974/75