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Wings Over Wick
Mr S Kennedy,
My job at Wick was a wireless operator in Station Headquarters Signals and we used the school in the early days of the war, as the aerodrome was still in the process of being built.
I remember one night I was on duty and the pilot of a German plane had been shot down. He was uninjured and was escorted to the school by two soldiers of the Seaforths, to be interrogated by the Intelligence Officer.
He was held under guard in one of the classrooms, which still had all the desks in position as usual, and I managed to pop in and see him. He was a sergeant pilot of the Luftwaffe and spoke very little English but I did manage to have a few words with him about football, as he talked about "Hampden Park" - "Scotland v England", "plenty goals", then he showed me a photograph of his wife and children. He seemed quite friendly and not at all arrogant, as I had expected.
I remember there was a rather unusual Spitfire at Wick which was painted a bright sky blue and belonged to PRU (Photo Reconnaissance Unit), it had no guns or bombs, but carried an aerial camera to photograph the result of our bombing raids on Stavanger Airfield in Norway and relied on its speed and altitude to keep out of trouble. I remember the pilot was Polish, whose name was Czwerski, which was unpronounceable to us, - so we called him "Whisky".
I have many happy memories of the town such as on 'pay day' (usually Friday) we would forego our meal in the dining hall and make for the chip shop just down from the camp for a slap up meal of fish, egg, chips, bread & butter with a pot of tea, all for one shilling and six pence, then on to the cinema in High Street or sometimes over to the Breadalbane Cinema in Pulteneytown - boy that was living it up on an airman's pay.
I was posted back to Wick for a second time in 1944 to the Air Sea Rescue down at the harbour and was a wireless operator on the high speed launches. Our boat was berthed quite near the Deep Sea Fishermen's Hut, where we were made very welcome all day and everyday whenever we were off duty.
There are many more memories of Wick, which I treasure, as it is where I met my wife who was in the WAAF and we had 50 happy years together until her sudden death in 1991.