THE ROYAL AIR FORCE BENEVOLENT FUND

We start our update for this edition with a few messages of sincere thanks to many of you that have supported the Fund in recent months. Firstly, a huge ‘Thank You’ must go to the RAF High Wycombe Thursday Club Charities Committee who, following their endeavours at the 2010 Christmas Fair, held a Charity Dinner Dance in March of this year. After working hard to finalise the accounts, Lady Bryant hosted the Fund’s Controller, Sir Rob Wright, on 12 September to hand over a cheque for over £19,000.00. A fantastic effort, and our thanks must go to all of those that supported each of these events.

The Regional Director, Mr Paul Hewson, was recently presented with a cheque for £525.00 by Jane Akazi, MAC Serco Site Director. Jane organised a Charity Band Night, in memory of two of their former employees, which was held in The Oakeshott Centre on 2 June 2011.

Continuing on the Fundraising theme, a number of RAF High Wycombe/Air Command personnel competed in the British London 10K on 10 July, in support of the RAFBF. At this time we are unable to tell you the amount raised as donations are still coming in, but again our thanks must go to all of those who took part. There were a total of 85 runners supporting the RAFBF in the event, so the total sum raised is sure to be considerable – we just hope that the blisters were worth it!
We were extremely privileged to be invited to the official opening of The Oakeshott Centre by Sir David Jason on 24 June 2011. Our Regional Administrator, Bryan Kettle was asked to display details of the Fund’s work and was delighted to be given the opportunity to chat with Sir David and explain in more detail the range of support we give to the RAF Family.

The Play Park to the rear of The Oakeshott Centre, towards which RAFBF has contributed significant funds, is due to open soon and we are confident it will be a welcome addition to the facilities already enjoyed by so many at the venue.
An event that you must all be now familiar with is the effort by personnel from Manning to cycle, relay style, from John O’Groats to Land’s End in 72 hours. The team faced some treacherous weather during their epic journey and managed to complete the 900 mile ride in an extremely impressive 73 hrs 15 mins, just outside their target and no doubt due to the horrendous winds they faced on a daily basis.

Many RAF High Wycombe families have enjoyed respite breaks at Seacot House which is located at Rustington on the south coast and we are in the process of renovating a second property, Shencot. Work is well under way and we expect the property to be completed and available for use by the end of the year.

Please don’t forget that your Station Champion for the Fund, Flight Lieutenant Penny Brady, (OC PSF, Ext 6734 – penelope.brady884@mod.uk) will assist the Regional Team in raising its profile and alerting us to anyone who may wish to raise money for your charity. Therefore, please keep Penny informed about anything you are hoping to do in support of the Fund.

By Bryan Kettle, Regional Administrator