Tom Meek Photographs album 2

 

These photographs originate from the private albums of ww2 SAAF fighter pilot Tom Meek. It was kindly made available by Mark Penberthy who's dad, Vivian Penberthy, was a fellow pilot with Tom in 1 squadron during ww2. I placed the photographs on this web site in order to share these gems to enthusiasts and the wider public as a gesture of homage to these brave men of past glory. Please respect the copy rights of these photographs and contact me to obtain the necessary permission if you want to duplicate some of this material in other web sites or printed matter.

thanks

Tinus le Roux

Jan 2012





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Good evening

 

I have been looking at the various photo albums reproduced on your website.

I am particularly interested in Album No 2, Image No 1 from Tom Meek.

 

This portrays Wg Cdr George Hedley Stainforth (right) standing by his Beaufighter.

 

George was the Great Uncle of my late partner, and a notable test pilot before the war. The caption is slightly incorrect. He did not win the Schneider Trophy, that went to another team mate. George did however take the World Airspeed Record at 407.5 mph a few days later, flying the Supermarine S6B racing seaplane. He had 93 types in his logbook.

 

The photograph indicated above is probably the last picture taken of him alive, as he was killed in Beaufighter X7700 shortly afterwards. He ran out of fuel at night and both crew bailed but at too low an altitude for their chutes to open. He is buried at Alexandria.

 

He has another great nephew, Gordon Stainforth, who lives in Belper, Derbyshire, England. He is an author and photoographer and is currently working on a book about George. Having seen this photo, it would be fitting to include it in the forthcoming book.

 

May I have your permission to forward a copy of the photo for inclusion in the book? If so, please advise what credits should be shown in the caption.

 

(The family have a military history going back before the Battles of Stamford Bridge and Hastings in 1066, and every major land battle in English History since. Gordon's father paradropped at Arnhem.)

 

Many thanks

 

Frank Bell 

 

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