The Royal 97th Entry

No 1 School of Technical Training - RAF Halton


Ken Ashbee - Engines R.I.P.

In 1967 Corporal Ken Ashbee (engines) was on 64 Squadron (Javelins) at RAF Tengah, Singapore. The Squadron was about to disband and it was decided to give the ground crew a trip in the back seat. On the 30th May Ken took off in XH708 with pilot Flying Officer William Brendan KAY. During the flight XH708 collided with another Javelin, XH896. Ken and Fg Off Kay perished. Fg Off P McKellar and SAC M.Lokanadan in XH896 ejected and survived. R.I.P.

Terry Hoy - Electrical R.I.P.

060 S J Smith - Instuments R.I.P.

Tony Watson - Electrical R.I.P.

'Yuk Yuk' Smith - R.I.P.

David Howard Smith was born on 27th February 1944 in Brighouse, West Yorkshire. He attended Rastrick Grammar School in Brighouse and at the age of seventeen, in 1961, he joined the RAF 97th Entry at Halton, where he was to train as airframe fitter. He excelled at football and won School colours, but was above average at all sports including rugby. He also joined the pipe band as a trumpeter and one year played at the cenotaph in London. He graduated in December 1963 with accelerated promotion to corporal having achieved above average in academic and technical examinations. At Halton Dave's was nicknamed Yuk Yuk from the sound he made when laughing. A natural comedian in Room 6, Block 1, 3 Wing.

After leaving the RAF he married Anna and they had two sons, Nicholas and Laurie. Then, in 1976, after 9 years in civvy street working at Hawker Siddley, he joined the Royal Navy as a direct entry Petty Officer in the Fleet Air Arm, he was promoted to Chief Petty Officer before leaving after 9 years service and joining British Aerospace on the development side of the Eurofighter. He always loved a challenge and enjoyed the cut and thrust of the job. After a transfer to Italy, he eventually became the Typhoon project manager at the Sardinia trials for the aircraft.

Dave and Anna became active in the local rugby scene and enjoyed the lifestyle deciding to build their retirement home and settle there. Just after retirement with many plans ahead Dave was devastatingly diagnosed with a brain tumour from which he did not recover despite the efforts of the team of doctors, and died on the 17th August 2009 in Cagliari. R.I.P.

Obituary provided by Yuk's widow Anna

Dave 'Yuk Yuk' Smith

Yuk Yuk and family

Vic Peek - Airframes R.I.P.

Vic and a few others were posted to 32 MU, St Athan after graduating. On the 8 Sep 1964, Vic was driving back to camp and was involved in a fatal car crash. He was buried in the military section of Boverton Cemetery, Llantwit Major, near RAF St Athan. R.I.P.

Paddy Usher - Airframes - 25 Nov 2018 - R.I.P.

Dennis Hoskins - Airframes - R.I.P.

Dereck Henson - Engines - R.I.P.

Malcolm Hill (Rhodesian) - Engines - R.I.P.

P. J. Moore - Armaments - R.I.P.

Dave Ruddock - Airframes - R.I.P.

R Sims - Instruments - R.I.P.

Big Dave Smith - Airframes - R.I.P.

Ian Thompson - Airframes - R.I.P.

Henry West - Armaments - R.I.P.