A life devoted to finding the remains of wartime aircraft | Nostalgia

For those of you with a passion for crashed aircraft from the Second World War, whether RAF or Luftwaffe, then a just-published book will be of interest.

Sunday, 26th January 2020, 8:00 pm
A Spitfire data plate dug up by Terry Parsons and colleagues.

In 1961 a young Terry Parsons began his search for long lost aircraft and memories of the Battle of Britain and the Blitz. In subsequent decades the search went far beyond the tangled wreckage of military aircraft, both fighters and bombers.

Included in the items he discovered from many wreck sites were mud-cloaked control columns from a Spitfire with the gun button still switched to firing mode; blood-stained maps from a Luftwaffe bomber. and a buckled tail fin from a Messerschmitt110 with its unmistakable swastika symbol.

Melody Forman has performed a remarkable feat in writing this biography using notes and photographs stretching back nearly 70 years. Much of the book tells of research in Sussex and Kent but there is a story of a Junkers 88 which came down in Portsmouth Harbour and which was excavated in the 1970s.

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A mud-caked Terry Parsons searching for the wreck of a JU88 in Portsmouth Harbour.

With 208 pages and many photographs it’s available from Waterstones and New To You Books, Cosham.

Need a naval uniform? Try Queen Street

How many of you could guess that this photograph is looking east along Queen Street, Portsea, before the Second World War of course.

On the immediate left is ironmongers Kemp & Son then many businesses including a printers, watchmaker and chemist.

The Wreck Hunter, a book about digging up plane wrecks from the Second World War.

The navy was so big then that in Queen Street alone there were no less than nine naval outfitters plus the Fleet Outfitting Stores.

Some of the businesses were Chas Jones, CH Bernard, L Zeffertt, Erlich & Son, and Marks & Co.

How many would recognise this as Queen Street, Portsea? Picture: Barry Cox postcard collection.