The Saga of the AOC’s Sandwiches
During an exercise many years ago, two crews of 44 Sqn found themselves detached with two crews of 101 Sqn at RAF Wyton.   This started on a Monday.    On Tuesday, Waddington’s Station Commander , Gp Capt Des Hall, arrived and cheerfully informed the crews that they should prepare for a long ‘siege’, and a visit from the AOC, AVM Horsley.
On Wednesday, the AOC arrived and, as it was lunch time, some sandwiches were obtained from the aircrew feeder.    These were secreted in the aircrew lounge and those who were present were warned, “you eat those at your peril !!”.    Never let it be said that V-Force aircrew were averse to a challenge.    Sometime after his arrival, the AOC decided to inspect the aircraft on the ORP and appeared, to those in the lounge, to be taking his leave of Wyton.    To prevent the AOC’s sandwiches from wasting, the hungry aircrew, it now being close to 1400 hrs, consumed the ham, chicken, cheese and tomato sandwiches, even the garnish, with great gusto.
Oh, joy!    Just as the chaps were wiping their chops, a hungry AOC returned from the ORP.    The now empty plate was hastily returned to its drawer and an air of innocence immediately pervaded the lounge.   Pleading for the return of the AOC’s sandwiches was met with contended smiles, and assurances that there were no cockroaches in there !!
Fresh sandwiches were obtained for the AOC but not before the fate of the first round had been made known to him.    This episode caused enough consternation to result in the following exchange of correspondence.
“Signal from AOC: Personal for Fenner.   Subject codeword Sandwiches.    ‘Had time permitted it would have read, ‘For Bedford, substitute Wyton’!”
The Wyton crews returned to Waddington on the Wednesday evening.    The Bedford crews remained there for 15 days!
From this incident, the following words evolved, sung to the well known Australian tune:
The Ballad of a Hungry Man
The V Force went on a Mick, Dick,
The V Force went on a Mick;
They all felt pretty sick, Dick,
When the V Force went on a Mick.
Tie me sandwiches down, sport,
Tie me sandwiches down;
Don’t leave ‘em lying around, sport,
Tie me sandwiches down.
The AOC left Group, Bruce,
The AOC left Group;
He went to Wyton to snoop, Bruce,
He went to Wyton to snoop.
All that time in the air, Fred,
All that time in the air;
And he hadn’t been fed, Fred,
And he hadn’t been fed.
The boss, he ordered the nosh, Tosh,
The boss he ordered the nosh;
It didn’t have to be posh nosh,
The Boss he ordered the nosh.
The Boss’d gone for a ride, Clyde,
The Boss’d gone for a ride.
When the sarnies arrived, Clyde,
The Boss’d gone for a ride.
When at last he came back, Jack,
When at last he came back,
Capp’s crew had eaten the snack, Jack,
When at last he came back.
Now, if you feel like promotion,
If you want to get off the ground,
Tie your sandwiches down, sport,
Don’t leave them lying around.