". . . Jake joined 830 Wyvern
Squadron late in its time at RNAS Ford, Nr Arundel, Sussex,
and sadly I never really got to know him although we all
shared the same common aircrew room. I remember him as a
relatively tall blond hair Lieutenant who always had a smile
for everybody, but sadly I never knew him personally. I
believe that he, like me, had come up through the
Upper-yardman (Air) scheme - i.e. we were serving on the
lower deck and volunteered for aircrew duties/commissions.
Jake may have been an ex-Artificer, he certainly gave me
that impression, but I can't be sure, because he may have
joined as a short service aviation officer. His family will
know that history.
Jake was a fine
officer and everybody liked and was impressed by him. It
always seems that the best are taken from us too soon in
Extract from FLIGHT 9th March 1956
Wyverns of Nos. 830 and
831 Squadrons, Fleet Air
Work-up at Ford
TWO squadrons of Wyvern strike aircraft arc now working up at
Royal Naval Air Station Ford, in Sussex, preparatory to going
aboard H.M.S. Eagle in April for a tour of duty in the
Mediterranean. They are Nos. 830 and 831, both of which were
reformed last November for the first time since World War 2.
HMS Eagle in 1956
Preparations for carrier flying are going well, and many and
various types of operation have already been practised. The
pilots, most of whom had not flown Wyverns before, and some of
whom have never previously served with an operational squadron,
have taken a liking to the Westland product, as well they might,
for the Wyvern is something of an achievement. Certainly, it is
unique in being the only turboprop strike aircraft to go into
service with any navy and represents a tremendous development
effort on the part of both airframe and engine manufacturers. It
has now proved itself during three years of Naval service. The
ground crews of the two new squadrons are now getting the feel
of servicing the aircraft; and, for a recent Flight visit
to Ford, the units put up a formation of twelve Wyverns for
Not satisfied with this, they then each got a further division
of four aircraft into the air for other pictures. One aircraft
was also armed-up with 16 rockets and flown for the camera. That
the pilots of the Wyverns and of the Vampire trainers which were
used by the cameraman did their work well is shown by the
pictures accompanying this article. No. 830 Sqn, incidentally,
are wondering what their early history was, since they know only
that they were first formed in Malta in 1942 and largely manned
by New Zealand personnel. The squadron badge in fact
commemorates the connection with the islan by the inclusion of
the Maltese cross. The unit was disbanded at the end of World
War 2, probably while still overseasórecords appear to have been
lost. No. 831 Sqn. is more fortunate; a complete historical
record of its war-time career is available.
No. 830's Commanding Officer and senior pilot are, respectively,
Lt-Cdr. C. V. Howard and Lt-Cdr. W. H. Cowling and the air
engineer officer is Lt. J. H. Dunphy.
The CO. and the senior pilot each led a division in the large
formation depicted [on page 266]
and were accompanied by Sub-Lt. P. A. McKern, Sub-Lt. J. Webster
and Sub-Lt. R. King. One aircraft went u/s. and was replaced by
a machine from No. 831, flown by Sub-Lt. R. E. Sandison. No.
830's second formation was flown by Lt. G. W. Barras, Sub-Lt. A.
C. Parsons, Lt. J. P. Smith
and Sub-Lt. B. Scott. No. 831 Squadron's contribution
to the "Balbo" was led by the CO., Lt-Cdr. S. C. Farquhar, and
the senior pilot, Lt-Cdr. W. A. Tofts. They were accompanied by
Sub-Lt. M. J. Doust, Lt. A. Gray, Lt. R. C. Hunt and Lt. P.
Wheatley. This squadron's second formation was led by the CO.
and included Lt. Doust, Sub-Lt. A. M. Steers and Lt. J. T.
Spafford. The rocket-armed aircraft was flown by Lt. Wheatley.
No. 831's air engineer officer is Lt. A. J. Bastick.