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A Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Founding of the Army Air Corps


Editorial and Photographs contributed by Greg PECK 53A




On a trip to mark the recent Golden Jubilee of the Army Air Corps, which involved a visit to the Army Aviation Museum at Oakey in Queensland's Darling Downs countryside, George Millie and I met with much appreciation from the resident staff and other visitors. We were duly asked if we would mind providing a short article for the magazine put out for serving and former members of Army Aviation in Oz and this, as below, was drafted and sent to the Curator.


George MILLIE (49B) and Gerry PECK (53B) at Oakey on a typical Queensland day – “Beautiful one day, perfect the next”.

(see more photographs below)


Addressed to Helen Bawden, Secretary of the Museum of Army Flying, Oakey, Queensland:


On behalf of George Millie and myself (Gerry Peck) as well as our good wives, Margaret and Marion, I would like to thank Helen Bawdon for a most gracious and informative welcome to the Aviation Museum at Oakey. Helen and her offsider were most kind, as was the young bloke proudly wearing the uniform of the Australian Army and badges of RAEME.

George and I are former Boy soldiers, Army Apprentices in point of fact, who enlisted at age fifteen to learn a trade in the British Army. After three years as the lowest form of life in a ginger suit, both of us entered into REME as tradesmen, transferring into the Air Corps ambit when the RAF passed the responsibility for servicing and maintaining AOP (Air Observation Post) and liaison aircraft to the Army. George was on the very first course to be mustered for the electronic trades at Middle Wallop, home of Aviation in the British Army. I volunteered for the conversion course onto Airframe and Engines and entered course No 12 of that trade requirement (It soon expanded into 'Air Cavalry' and became a fighting arm.)

Although George and I passed through the Army Apprentices School at Arborfield some four years apart, we managed to spend some concurrent time at the same posting on two separate occasions, without actually meeting. Life’s vagaries saw us both coming to Queensland and as we started to become interested in gaining computer skills, circumstances saw us discover each other on the net and we duly met up to become firm friends and despite my living near the coast, now marching together in the Toowoomba ANZAC Parade every year.

We journeyed to Oakey on the fifteenth of September 2007 so that we could honour the Army Air Corps, which celebrated its Golden Jubilee on that date. Being so far away from the celebrations at Middle Wallop, we settled on a trip to the Museum at Oakey as our way of remembering our comrades, those still alive and those that have passed on beyond our ken, as the years take their inevitable toll.

We had a truly superb day, thanks again to those we met at the Museum, not excluding the cheerful Chinchilla chapter of the CWA (Country Women’s Association of Queensland). We are most grateful for all the kindness and courtesy that was shown to us.

Yours aye, Gerry (with the big 'tash) and George.



A Selection of the Museum Static Displays

(G.P. & G.M. excluded)



Auster Mk. III (next to the “Red Baron’s” Triplane)





Auster Mk IX (ex-Army Air Corps)





Bristol Boxkite (model of a Chipmunk to the rear of the starboard wheels)


“Do you remember mate – the Airframe Mechanics had a pair of knitting needles in their tool kit?”



Iroquois UH-1 Helicopter






Kiowa Helicopter








Sioux Helicopter (ex-Army Air Corps)




Published: 1st October 2007




Pictorial Souvenir