“My RAF days bring back many happy memories although I was only a conscript serving for 23 months beginning in 1947. After a few weeks at West Drayton and Hounslow, I received a request posting to HQ 11 Gp Fighter Command. This was apparently organised by Harry Howell, Captain of Hillingdon Golf Club! The 1st green was just a few yards from the Operations Room at HQ 11 Gp. Arriving at the guardroom I was told to report to the AOC at 1000 the next day. I was just 18 years old and have never forgotten the Sergeant’s expression. I duly arrived at Hillingdon House on time, saluted and gave my number 2365646 AC Pearson. AVM Macdonald’s first words were “Have you brought your clubs with you?” His next were “Take a 36 hour pass and report on the 1st tee at 2pm on Thursday”. I was his golfing partner for the next 16 months. He always enjoyed winning matches. He was known on the Station as ‘Black Mac’ due to his thick jet-black hair. He treated me with great kindness.
In the evenings at the NAAFI, the WAAFs would enjoy pulling my leg; they used to say “Is the AOC playing with you today?” The following year I was invited to play for the RAF in the Inter-Services Tournament at Royal St George’s, which the RAF managed to win. A few days later a letter arrived from the Air Ministry. It read – “Dear AC Pearson, Congratulations on your contribution to the RAF’s fine win at Royal St George’s. Signed Marshal of the RAF Tedder.” I took the letter to the WAAFs in the NAAFI. There was total silence from then on!”
Regarding golfing achievements, I was runner-up in the Brabazon Trophy twice (both times to Philip Scrutton). I played 12 times for England in the Home internationals, also England v France, and qualified for The Open at Birkdale & Lytham. Hope I have not bored you too much.
The above extract from a letter to Roger Carr is reproduced by kind permission of Michael Pearson.