ACA Woking News by Paul Holden, PRO

20 December 2005

New Chairman Elected at AGM

The 2005 Committee delivered its annual reports
Oldd Committee

At their AGM held in December, the Woking Branch of the Aircrew Association, which draws its members from all over North West Surrey and North East Hampshire, elected Laurie Taylor OBE FRAeS to take over from Eric Smith GM at the conclusion of his three years as Chairman of the Branch. Secretary John Thorburn and Treasurer Stan Instone, who was able to report that the Branch’s finances were in good shape, were re-elected, together with the rest of the Committee, with the exception of Sir Paul Holden, who is standing down after a five-year stint as PRO.

Laurie Taylor, the new Chairman
Laurie Taylor
New Chairman Laurie Taylor enjoyed an extensive career in aviation. Following the usual training in UK and Canada, a stint as staff pilot on a gunnery school, he flew Stirlings in 38 Group doing supply dropping, glider towing and other transport duties in Europe. After the war he joined BOAC, flying types ranging from Argonaut and DC-7C piston engined aircraft to the jet-powered Boeing 707 and 747 types. During his time with BOAC Laurie became interested in BALPA, the airline pilots' union. This led to membership of the Council of the Air Registration Board and the Air Worthiness Committee of ICAO. He then successively became Chairman of BALPA and Vice-President of IFALPA, the International Federation of Airline Pilots, whose main role is standardisation of flying rules, air safety programs, and procedures to facilitate international air travel.

Bill Bawden, the new PRO
Bill Bawden
The other new face on the Committee is Bill Bawden, who takes over from Paul Holden as PRO after this report. Bill served for 14 years from 1950 as a navigator on Lincolns and then Canberras in Bomber Command.

Eric Smith ran a challenging quiz
Eric Smith
Following the AGM, Eric Smith divided the members into teams of four or five, and acted as Question Master for a quiz that he had devised, which stretched their minds and memories over a huge range of aviation and general knowledge subjects. This was voted an outstanding success by all present.

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