AMES equipment

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Sir,

Mention of the 1924 Rolls-Royce armoured car awakened memories for me as it may well have been the same one attached to 535 Air Ministry Experimental Station for protection in the Western Desert as late as 1942.

Our prime movers, incidentally, were Crossleys of c.1922 whose, even then, very vintage appearance belied their contents; some of the most advanced RDF (Radio Direction Finding, later to be called Radar) equipment in the world at the time. They gave very little trouble apart from a disinclination of the mags, to spark after a particularly damp desert night, though the exhaust manifolds would glow like a furnace after a few miles in bottom through soft going. The massive chassis were a comfort to sleep under and to dive under on odd occasions. The brakes were not famous and well do I remember seeing the other one going backwards down Derna Pass, complete with trailer and occupants, after a missed downward change, a situation retrieved only by “Chiefy” Boucher leaping out and throwing a tin hat under one of the large front tyres bringing the lot to a juddering halt less than a foot from the edge of the drop, the only casualty being a very dented tin hat. Truly the perils of war are not confined only to things that go “bang”!

Littlestead Green.
G. Cox. (Ex-“Chiefy”)

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