In 1996, Richard Lee the Station Padre, suggested that Apprentice Training at Halton could be commemorated by stained glass windows (3ft by 1ft) in the St George's Church, sponsored by individual Entries. The 51st window project was masterminded by Ray Belsham and Pablo Morrison, and they put forward five designs which were published in the December 1997 newsletter. Members voted for their chosen design, and enclosed contributions towards the cost of the window. The project came to its successful climax on the 14th July 1998. The day began with a conducted tour of Halton House by Malcom Taylor (71st - HAAA General Secretary) and Min Larkin (63rd - HAAA Deputy Chairman), Halton House being a Rothschild family residence before it became the RAF Halton Officers Mess.
It transpired that the majority of us had never set foot in Halton House in the 3 years we were at Halton. One exception was Henry Ford, who said that he often played there with the band at Mess functions. The party then moved to St George's Church, when the 51st window was dedicated at a service conducted by Padre Lee and attended by a congregation of 35, along with Sandy Sanders brother from the 34th. Thanks to Pablo's close association with the church, our window is in a prime position immediately above the entrance door. It stands out with its predominately pale blue background and the 51st is clear for all to see. A quick lunch at the Chandos in Weston Turville, then back to the car park at the rear of the Polish block and onto the Henderson Square to witness the Passing Out Parade of some 72 airmen and airwomen who had just completed their recruit training. Then off to the Station museum at the rear of the workshops, followed by a Naafi break in the church 'rest room' which Pablo had organised for us, but not before Ken Savage had to dash off to "Thomas's" for some milk and coffee. So ended an excellant day out.
51st ENTRY TIE
In 1995, our Chairman Dinger Bell, thought it would be a good idea if the 51st Association had its own tie. We used the standard HAAA tie and added "51st" above and "ENTRY" below the wheel. A total of 80 were purchased and were sold at £6 each, with the last one being sold in 2001.
50th ANNIVERSARY COMMEMORATIVE MUG
In 1994, Bob Brooks suggested to the Committee that we should do something to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of our joining up on 21st August 1945, and he proposed that we should produce a mug. A request was put out for members to submit appropriate designs and just two were received – from Bob Brooks and Brian Creasey. A design was selected and Bob undertook the design work and an order was placed for 110 mugs. They were priced at £5.50 and went like hot cakes, and are now collectors items.
The 51st donated a tree which was planted in the Halton Apprentice Grove at the National Memorial Arboretum near Alrewas, between Lichfield and Burton-on-Trent. The Halton Apprentice Grove was dedicated on 13th September 2000.
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