The 2015 reunion, held over the weekend 8 - 10 May, proved to be yet another very successful event.  The numbers attending, although down on last year, still represented a good turn-out and feedback immediately after the event suggested that the tried and tested format still meets with general approval.
The Meet and Greet in the Officers’ Mess at RAF Waddington was a convivial gathering attended by 48 members in the spacious anteroom opposite the main bar.  The self-service barrel of Spitfire eased congestion at the bar and provided welcome lubrication as acquaintances were renewed, hazy recollections retrieved and old stories embroidered.
On Saturday the RAF Metheringham Visitor Centre was the venue for a light lunch followed by the General Meeting.  Sadly the planned fly-past by the Lancaster of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight had to be cancelled but members were treated to a video showing last year’s historic formation flights by the three Avro sisters - two Lancasters and the sole remaining airworthy Vulcan.  There followed a presentation on the History of Metheringham Airfield by Andy Marson and afterwards the Metheringham Museum was opened for visitors. Saturday’s programme concluded with the Annual Dinner in the Officers’ Mess at RAF Waddington; by all accounts a lively and thoroughly enjoyable evening.
On Sunday morning a service of remembrance was held at Dunholme Lodge Farm, where we were delighted to welcome a sizeable contingent from the Towlson family.   Eileen Towlson and her son Russell, had featured in a BBC TV programme presented by John Sergeant.  The documentary told the story of the crew of Lancaster DV202 which was shot down during a raid on the missile base at Peenemunde on 17th August 1943.   Eileen’s father, Stan Towlson, was the rear gunner.  The wreckage fell into Kolpinsee, a lake in northeast Germany, where it remains clearly visible to this day.   Eileen and Russell braved an alarmingly small rowing boat to be taken out to the wreckage.  The Association paid tribute to the crew of DV202 by dedicating a plaque placed on the memorial at Dunholme Lodge.
Once again we were immensely grateful to the Wykes family at Dunholme Farm for their generous hospitality.   Not only had an open-sided marquee been erected to shelter the congregation, but also a full-size outline of a Lancaster bomber had been meticulously cut from the adjacent lawn.   A very nice touch.  Musical accompaniment was provided by the RAF Waddington Band under the direction of Sgt I Woodley and a retiring collection after the service raised £80 for the RAF Benevolent Fund.
The concluding event of the 2015 reunion was Sunday lunch at the Farmers at Welton Hill, a short distance north of Dunholme Farm.
The Avro Sisters get together for a memorable photoshoot over rural Lincolnshire.   Photograph copyright John Dibbs.
Reproduced by kind permission of the 'Vulcan to the Sky Trust' www.vulcantothesky.org