Village Hall & Shop car park re-surfaced

A most welcome change to the Hall and Social Club is the car park and the addition of the wall adjacent to the front of the Club. Luckily for us the Parish Council managed to raise £10,000 from West Berkshire Council, which they put towards laying a tarmac car park and new wall. This had become essential given that the old car park had become a morass of mud and debris as a result of increased traffic to the new village shop. It is early days but it looks very smart and gives a whole new feel to the area. Unbelievably (or perhaps not) 2 people have already reversed into the wall.


Text : Ed James
photos Matthew Clayton
: Ken Tarbox



              The Pre-Cheltenham racing forum

East Garston's annual pre-cheltenham forum proved to be a very successful evening with over 100 people in attendance.The panel of racing experts included, the head of handicapping at the British Horseracing Authority, Phil Smith, former jockey turned tipster Colin Brown, jockey Andrew Thornton, and trainers Ed James, Oliver Sherwood, Stan Moore and Pat Murphy. The panel discussed the races and took questions from the floor.

This year the event was sponsored by Star Sports Bookmakers who donated £500.00p. to the Injured Jockeys Fund and £500.00p. to East Garston Village Hall. The evening itself raised £700.00p. so a cheque for £1,200.00p. is on its way to the Injured Jockeys Fund.

The Newbury Weekly News




             Farewell to our Spitfire

Summer afternoons in the village could, and often did, prove to be tinged with nostalgia, admiration and down right unadulterated pleasure as the unique and beautiful sound of a Merlin Engine growled its way up the valley toward us. Eyes would scan the horizon for that first glimpse of the infamous Supermarine MK VIII Spitfire piloted, by owner, Robs Lamplough or his friend Pete John. In no time at all it would appear, coming in low over the grass air strip at Manor Farm. A steep climb, followed by a victory roll over the open counrtyside Bank right, and a second much slower approach, lining up the aircraft with the strip below. It was always a thrill to see her arrive as there was then always the chance of seeing her again in a very short space of time. I would spend many hours working in my own garden, with a spade in one hand and a camera in the other- just in case.

Our Spitfire was aquired in October 1961 by Sqn Ldr 'Titus' Oates, for restoration as a memorial to Battle of Britain pilots. It was subsequently moved to Bankstown Airport and reassembled. However, the plan fell through, and it was sold to Sid Marshall of Marshall Airways, for a museum. ...Eventually, Robs took ownership and the MK-VIII, arrived at Duxford in the winter of 1979. It went to Charfield, Gloucester, for restoration to airworthy condition, and was registered G-BKMI. The final assembly was at Filton Her first flight was on May 28th 1994.
The only Supemarine Spitfire Mk VIII fighter in Britain, MV154/G-BKMI, has been sold to Max Alpha Aviation. The former Royal Australian Air Force machine will soon move from its current base at Filton ~ to Bremgarten, Germany, where it will take up residence in the Meier Motors hangar. I was fortunate enough to be here on March the 9th when she left, and watched the final flypast and roll before the plane levelled out for the last time and headed west toward Filton.
Spitfire at East Garston 2009 ~ You Tube Video from Paul Harmer click text
Robs shared his passion for the Spitfire with anyone who was of a like mind, actively encouraging close quarter examination and enjoyment of a kind most enthusiasts would never experience in a lifetime of airshows. I and many others will miss very much the brief but exciting mini air displays we enjoyed here in East Garston for so many years. Thank you Robs for all the pleasure you and G-BKMI have given us.


Ken Tarbox





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