SNITTERFIELD WI

OCTOBER 2014 REPORT

Sylvia , our president, welcomed us to the October meeting and also welcomed visitor Sue Moon, a very recent newcomer to the village. Amongst the news items this month we were informed about an exciting day at Bulkington Village when there will be a demonstration of “teatime treats” followed by a talk given by Mr William French an ex butler to Royalty and film stars. We were also reminded of the group meeting, which our institute is hosting, on October 9th.

Our speaker for the evening was Captain Chris Rigby an ex airline pilot. Captain Rigby was a very impressive sight in his pilot`s uniform. He had been a pilot for over 40 years and had flown more than 20,000 hours. From the age of 14 he was intent on flying but was not able to start training until 18. He worked for a number of airlines including Brittania Airways,Easy Jet, British Airways, Flybe and was even freelance. Since retirement he has been involved with flight simulators at Coventry airport.
Captain Rigby never flew supersonic himself but he accompanied his talk with some original newsreel coverage of Concorde including one or two spectacular disasters. One of these happened at a flying display when ,as well as the pilot, a number of spectators were killed.
Pre second world war saw the invention of supersonic aircraft but the first prototypes were not built until after the war. The UK, France, America and Russia worked on supersonic aircraft but the final Concorde was a collaboration between France and the UK.
Frank Whittle designed the engine and the first man to fly faster than the speed of sound was George Welch. The first woman was Jackie Cochran. The British have invented a supersonic aircraft which, if it is ever developed, would carry only 20 people and could fly to Australia in 4 hours.
Captain Rigby`s final piece of film was a recording of Concorde`s last flight which was very moving.
The Annual Meeting is Wednesday November 12th.