CLICK on (top left) ‘no images?’ to see them.
CLICK on ‘The countdown to Zero’
CLICK on (top left) ‘no images?’ to see them.
CLICK on ‘The countdown to Zero’
NB. I’ll try to translate this article in English, asap.
First we shall attend the ceremony this afternoon.
Monument voor vliegtuigcrash in Ysselsteyn
Door Bas Dammers — zo 26-03-2017, 17:39
in Evenement Ysselsteyn
Monument voor vliegtuigcrash in Ysselsteyn
Ruim zeventig jaar nadat een Canadees verkenningsvliegtuig neerstortte boven de Deurneseweg bij Ysselsteyn wordt een monument onthuld ter nagedachtenis aan deze vliegtuigcrash.
Een crash die niet had hoeven plaatsvinden. Zo kan het ongeval waarbij twee Canadese vliegers en een passagier omkwamen het best worden omschreven.
Medio oktober 1944 was het bijzonder slecht weer. Desondanks besloot het duo Piché en Horrell op 11 oktober toch op pad te gaan met hun Auster-verkenningsvliegtuig. Horrell zou een Spitfire ophalen bij vliegveld Deurne bij Antwerpen, terwijl Piché in Brussel onderdak zou regelen voor technisch personeel. Eenmaal opgestegen vanaf vliegveld Grave zou men over geallieerd gebied vliegen, maar dat verliep onverhoopt geheel anders. Hoewel beide piloten uiterst ervaren waren, zorgde een navigatiefout ervoor dat toestel boven het front in de Peel terechtkwam. Aldaar viel het ten prooi aan mitrailleurvuur vanaf de grond, waarna het vliegtuig weldra in brand vloog en neerstortte. De piloten, alsmede de aanwezige soldaat Harold Hallett Philips, raakten hierbij zo hevig gewond dat ze Duitse soldaten niet veel later verzochten hen dood te schieten.
Het drietal kreeg een veldgraf nabij het vliegtuigwrak. Een week later zou Ysselsteyn worden bevrijd. Ruim een jaar lang werden de graven verzorgd door de familie Jeurissen, alvorens de omgekomen vliegers met paard en wagen werden overgebracht naar de Engelse Oorlogsbegraafplaats in Venray. Hun graven bevinden zich hier vandaag de dag nog altijd.
Op zondag 23 april wordt ter ere van deze gebeurtenis én op initiatief van Stichting Historie Ysselsteyn een monument onthuld nabij de Deurneseweg 173 in Ysselsteyn. Een kleinkind van één van de vliegers komt over vanuit Canada om bij de plechtigheid aanwezig te zijn. Tevens maken een of twee Harvard-vliegtuigen een fly-over. Fanfare De Peelklank speelt het Canadees volkslied.
Foto: De veldgraven van de omgekomen bemanningsleden, via Stichting Historie Ysselsteyn
At Chu’s Garage
by the gentle author
Quang Chu of Chu’s Garage
Chu’s Garage under the railway arches in London Fields has become a reliable institution among motorists in Hackney over the last thirty years for good service and honest dealing. Contributing Photographer Sarah Ainslie & I met the Chu family while making a survey of the small independent businesses under the arches which are currently being threatened with excessive rent increases up to 300% by Network Rail, and we decided to return to hear the Chu’s story.
In the middle of the day at Chu’s Garage, work ceases and a ring is attached to a gas bottle for Jimmy Chu to cook a fresh lunch, which the family eat around the table in the cosy hut, complete with an altar, which serves as their dining room.
Sarah & I were honoured to be lunch guests and afterwards, over cups of green tea, we learnt of the astonishing story that lies behind Chu’s Garage. This was an unexpected epic, the dramatic tale of the Chu family’s perilous journey from Viet Nam to Britain, revealing their remarkable hard work, courage and tenacity in pursuit of a new life, which culminated in opening their beloved garage.
Chong Kim Chu in Hai Phong, Viet Nam, 1974
Nhi Chu – My father, Chong Kim chu, was Chinese but he was born in 1935 in Viet Nam. My grandfather had come from Quanzhou in the south of China and migrated with his brothers to Viet Nam. So my father married by mother, Lien, who was Vietnamese and, although we grew up knowing that my dad was Chinese, we did not speak Chinese until we came to the refugee camp in Hong Kong.
Quang Chu – I remember when I was small my grandfather tried to speak Chinese with us. At that time, Viet Nam and America were at war and, many times by day and by night, they were bombing the city where we lived. It was very scary but interesting for a child. At night I saw the rockets and they were colourful, like fireworks. I remember the sound of the aeroplanes and fire everywhere. The table and chairs shook! Many times we were evacuated from the city to escape the bombs.
Chau Chu – One day my mum said there was a siren and, as we didn’t have a shelter, my mum went to the neighbours and asked ‘ Can we please come in to your shelter?’ But they said, ‘We’re so sorry, there’s no space.’ So my mum took us somewhere else and later that day, when we came back, we found our neighbours’ house had been bombed and everyone killed.
Nhi Chu – When my father grew up in Viet Nam, the family were poor so he didn’t go to school but he taught himself to read and write, Vietnamese and Chinese. He said, he learnt by eavesdropping on classrooms. When my father was seven, my grandfather, who was a herbalist, saved someone’s life and in return they said, ‘Your son can come with me and I will give him an education.’ But, one night, my father wet the bed andwas so scared that he would be beaten up that he ran away, and that was the end of his education. When he was thirteen, he became an apprentice in the engine room on a big passenger ship. He had such a curious mind that, when the captain went away, he took an engine apart and memorised how it fitted together. But when he put it back he forgot one piece, so when the captain returned he got a whack over the head.
Chau Chu – We never saw our father much because he was always away from home as a long distance lorry driver. Whenever it broke down, he could fix it himself. That was how he started as a mechanic. The company gave him the lorry and he had to look after it. He saved up a long time to buy his truck, yet when the Communists took over they just took it from him.
Nhi Chu – During the war with America, Viet Nam and China were on good terms but, after the war ended the two countries fell out over a border dispute. At that time, there was a campaign by the Vietnamese government to get all Chinese migrants and their descendants to leave the country, and they were as hostile to them as they possibly could be. People started to lose their businesses. My mother said that my father was being subjected to a lot of abuse at work, from his colleagues who had once been his friends. He was quite a popular person and every year when they had the competition to see whose lorry was in the best condition, my dad always won the first prize. But then the tables turned and he had his truck taken away, so he no longer had his business or customers. My father knew that he had to leave because he was no longer able to make a living.
Meanwhile, my mother was being bombarded by people saying, ‘Leave your husband! He’s Chinese, you are Vietnamese. If he goes to China, you should stay here because you will be abused there.’ So there was a conflict, but my mother decided she wanted to stay with her husband and children. As children, we felt we were Vietnamese, we didn’t know we were Chinese, we didn’t make the distinction.
Chau Chu – All of a sudden, people were pointing at us and saying, ‘You are Chinese, you don’t belong here!’
Quang Chu – When we got to Hong Kong, they spoke Cantonese and we had to start everything from the beginning. Everything was very hard for us.
Chau Chu – We were forced to leave Viet Nam, we had to choice. We didn’t go to Hong Kong right away, we just wanted to leave the hostile environment of Viet Nam.
Nhi Chu – Because my father was Chinese, the Chinese government gave him visas and paper to go to China legally and we travelled from Viet Nam to China by train. We lived there for a year but the problem was that, although my dad was accepted as Chinese and got a job as a lorry driver, my mother and us kids were not accepted. We were city folk but we were sent to the mountains and every day we were given a portion of a field and had to turn it into fertile soil. Unfortunately, my mother looks Vietnamese and she was subjected to a lot of abuse from the locals. She had no choice but to hide inside the house. My dad realised this was no way to live and no future for us children. We couldn’t stay and he knew he had to find a new territory where all of us could live together peacefully.
We left China illegally because in those days no-one was permitted to leave. We couldn’t all leave in one go, so we divided the family. The plan was for our elder brothers Quang and Jimmy to leave to Hong Kong and make some money and send it back, and then the rest of us would join them there.
Quang Chu – The sea was very rough and lot of people died. The old boat was rotten and leaked inside, and it was overloaded. There were more than two hundred people, old and young and even babies just born. All kinds of people but all seasick. It was their first time ever on a boat. This was a short distance but a long journey, very long. Suddenly the sky might turn dark with thunder and lightning, heavy rain and strong wind – oh, it was scary. It was only a few days but the captains are inexperienced and they went round and round. We were lucky we survived the sharks but a lot of people didn’t.
Nhi Chu – We waited but we didn’t hear anything from them for six months and then a year.
Quang Chu – We sent them letters but they didn’t get them.
Nhi Chu – My dad decided that we couldn’t wait and we needed to go. We left at night but we had to make the house look as if we were still living there, because if the police found out they would come and stop us. For about a week, we were stranded at sea and then we got to Hong Kong.
Chau Chu – They hated us as well because we wanted to come onto their small island. We wouldn’t let our boat land, it was only when it was sinking that they picked us up. They had to check we were not from China, because if they knew we were from China they would send us back, so we had to say we had come from Viet Nam.
Nhi Chu – For two nights, we were on the boat and there was a storm which hit our boat and it began to sink, which is why they took us on board. For two weeks, we were held in a Forbidden Camp, where you can’t get out of, and then we were released to a Freedom Camp. We were waiting to be allocated a sleeping area, when we saw my brother Jimmy. He came with Quang and we asked, ‘Still alive! How come you didn’t write to us?’ They explained that they had to get rid of all their paperwork at the border, so they lost the address and every day for a year they took turns to come to the camp to see if we were there. Finally, we were reunited but we found out that if we had been a month later we should have missed Quang and Jimmy, because they had already decided to go to America.
My dad didn’t want to go America, he wanted to come to England because he had been told that they treat old people very nicely here. He said, ‘I’m going to be old one day.’
Quang Chu – He said, ‘Why don’t they say ‘Speak American?’ – they say ‘ Speak English.’ So he thought England must be a very good country, better than America.
Nhi Chu – That was 1979 and Mrs Thatcher announced she would accept ten thousand Vietnamese refugees, so we among the first batch. We came to England in 1980 and we first settled at the refugee centre in Dorchester for ten months where we started learning English.
Quang Chu – We went to the sea at Bridport, it was very nice.
Chau Chu – There were about fifteen families and we were happy there. Each of the families took turns cooking. Then we were resettled in Barrow-in-Furness and all the racism started coming in again like in Viet Nam.
Nhi Chu – We had been sheltered in Dorset but then suddenly we were the only Vietnamese family in Cumbria. It was back to square one, and we couldn’t find work so Quang had to move to Wigan and Jimmy to Bournemouth.
Quang Chu – Barrow-in-Furness is a very small town where everyone works at the shipyard and that only offers enough jobs for the local people, so we had to go elsewhere. But I think it’s good to see other places and other ways of life. You learn a lot when you have to stand on your own two feet, facing life.
Nhi Chu – After five years, we moved south.
Quang Chu – I think my father had decided that Barrow was good enough for him, but then he met so many people in London.
Nhi Chu – Even though my father was in his late forties by then, he managed to pick up the English language. He continued to attend evening classes after the rest of the family stopped and, after about a year, he managed to get a job at the local garage in Barrow. When he went for an interview, the manager just said, ‘Here’s a car, tell me how many faults you can find with it.’ When he came back, the manager said, ‘There should be eleven,’ and my father said, ‘I found thirteen’ – and that’s how he got the job. Dad worked there for three years to get his qualification and then he was promoted to foreman, but he had such a hard time because the other mechanics resented him because of his age and race.
Chau Chu – He always knew that he would come to London one day to set up a garage.
Nhi Chu – One of his mottoes in life was ‘Whatever anyone can do, the Chu family can do it just as good, if not better.’ We could never go to him and say, ‘Dad I can’t do that.’ He’d say, ‘What do you mean? You can’t yet!’
Chau Chu – He was fifty when he came to London.
Quang Chu – In 1985, he started across the road from here in a shed that shared it with a Turkish guy. There were holes in the ceiling, which made it very slippery when it rained. At that time, the railway arches were vacant and this was a very rough area.
Nhi Chu – After a year, quite a few people applied to rent this arch, but my father was lucky and he was successful. The rent was between five and six thousand annually then.
Quang Chu – We moved in here in 1988 and we fitted it ourselves but there was no business.
Nhi Chu – Bricks and cement fell from the arch whenever trains ran across. We contacted Network Rail but they ignored us for years and years.
Quang Chu – Business was very difficult, so my father decided to do MOT Class 7, vans and light commercial vehicles. There were so many garages doing MOT Class 4 but MOT Class 7 was very rare. In Hackney, we have not heard of anyone else doing it. So my father decided that doing Class 7 MOTs was the way to survive. There was so much regulation and red tape to get to be an MOT Station – but then we realised we had not MOT testing equipment! Everything for us for us was new. It was very scary.
Nhi Chu – Dad had to study the MOT textbook, the rules and regulations, and then he had to go and do a test. He really struggled, so he had to have the help of his old English teacher to translate all the terminology – and my dad passed.
Quang Chu – When we first became the MOT-nominated tester, we held a party and invited our old friends. It was very expensive to set up and we had to borrow money from so many people. The bank wouldn’t lend to us, so we had to do it Vietnamese style – we go to a lot of people, relatives, neighbours and friends, and borrow small amounts of money and keep a list. They said, ‘This is good for everybody, good for you and for the Vietnamese community.’ So we have tried to look after them and pay back everyone gradually.
Chau Chu – The MOTs have kept our business going, otherwise we would have shut down.
Quang Chu – We feel good about it – even Hackney Council bring their vans here for MOT.
Nhi Chu – When we start talking about our father, we realise what an amazing character he was. When he passed away, we had to tell the customers and some of them burst out crying. A lot of people miss him. Without his motivation, we would not have been able to bring the whole family from one country to another country. This garage is his legacy.
When my dad died, we wanted to have a grave to represent his life, so we got a designer to come here and take a look at the garage. He said, ‘Howabout if we design it with an arch?’ My father used to say, ‘I spent all my time here, my blood and sweat to make this garage as it is, so when I die bury me in the maintenance pit.’ We achieved that in a way by creating a tombstone in the shape of an arch which he is now resting beneath.
See for story and all pictures :-
spitalfieldslife.com/by the gentle author.
Quang Chu of Chu’s Garage. The story starts in 1935, as does Carl Lowe (Globe Automatic) and myself…………..and shows not only the place of the cradle is crucial, but also what men/women did with their lives.
“Chu’s Garage under the railway arches in London Fields has become a reliable institution among motorists in …” etc.
P.S. the pictures were not ‘taken’ by me (Hans Dooren) but the system recorded this.
HansYou recently posted images of this FX3 on the LVTA site and although I have no idea who owns this cab at this moment, there are pieces of information which maybe of interest.The interior has been retrimmed “recently”. The roof rail is not original. The rails offered by Mann & Overton as PCO approved accessories, were of a totally different design. It is possible that the rail is actually from a Beardmore Mk VII, although whilst the construction appears to be the same, I shall have to check some very old photos to be sure.With reference to ownership, this cab was offered for sale in the US on eBay, maybe three years ago. Graham Waite made an enquiry about this cab, at that time.It appears from some very early LVTA ownership records of 1982 that NDW713 was owned by Tony Spinelli of Philadelphia. At that time, he stated that it was a petrol engined example of 1957 (possibly incorrect year) and that he was “in process of rebuilding engine & some bodywork – will probably be completed on or before 9/1/82 (1 Sept 1982). Licence tag NDW 713”. He also owned 1967 FX4D SME431F, 1958 Bm Mk VII VYL 788 & 1955 Bm Mk VII RYN 868.Although the cab shows London General decals, it may not have been owned by the General. A small supply of these decals were circulating in the eighties amongst members and only two unapplied sets are known to exist. Evidence of General ownership would be provided by any original gold paint on the road wheels.Hope this is of interest.RegardsBrian West(Ed. who does know the present owner and has more details on the cab? I feel “it might still live in the USA”?
I read this call and it remembered me of our time at Mt Darwin, Southern Rhodesia, when my collegue Land Development Officer Roger Gladden had an Austin Gypsy imported (ca.1960)from the UK. I drove my Land Rover and we had a kind of a friendly competition, which was best in the bush. Roger came from Melton Constable in Norfolk. He drove it weekly from Mt Darwin into Chimanda Reserve. Sadly Roger passed away some years ago. Reading this call for a meeting of Austin Gypsy’s I awakenend and thought it fit to advertise this call in my private weblog. Hoping it might service you and a small tribute to Roger who took the risk to import that vehicle. I will abstain which vehicle was best:))
Glenn Kemp , March 20 at 5:12pm (From Facebook)
“Not sure if anyone on this group is in the UK, but thought I’d pass on this message. For the Love of an old Gipsy. If you have an Austin Gipsy or know someone who has a Gipsy. Please read on….
I am trying to arrange a Gipsy gathering at Preston Hall, Stockton-on-Tees 24th & 25th June 2017, within their Fire Engine and Vintage Vehicle Rally.
So far we have been promised ten gipsy’s with two from Holland, we could do with more ..
Please if you have one of these iconic vehicles or know someone with one, we would love to hear from you, especially if you are able to join in us at the event .
For further details please contact Alan Dunderdale tel 07801 195603. firstname.lastname@example.org
N.B. Maybe I may see some pictures of the event and publish them?(email@example.com)
How much blood can you buy for US$13 billion worth of diamond revenue had gone missing
Dear Family and Friends,
For the last couple of months high up in the branches of the Musasa
trees in and around my garden a Goshawk has been rearing her chick.
It’s been a noisy affair that has dominated the area and left most
other birds well and truly intimidated and keeping out of sight.
Regardless of the wind, rain or fierce lightning storms, the Goshawks
haven’t missed a day: whistling, calling and screeching. The
youngster has a seemingly insatiable appetite and screeches again and
again for more. From one particular Musasa tree with a good vantage
the mother and chick have launched their daily attacks, dropping and
pouncing on anything that moves. When that same Musasa tree took a
direct lightning strike recently and shed all its leaves, suddenly
everything changed and the predators became easily visible to all
The predator in my garden feels very much like life in Zimbabwe in
2017; we are rapidly returning to the conditions of 2008 but this time
we can see clearly and no one is fooled as to who is to blame for the
economic crisis. The It’s almost a year ago to the day that
President Mugabe admitted in an interview to mark his 92nd birthday
that US$13 billion worth of diamond revenue had gone missing.
President Mugabe turns 93 in four days time and in the past year,
since his damning revelation about the missing US$13 billion, not a
single dollar has been found or a single person held to account.
It’s like the Musasa tree hit by lightning in my garden: there’s
nowhere to hide anymore and no one else to blame: not white
Zimbabweans, not farmers, not opposition parties, not sanctions and
not the West. Everyone knows why we’ve run out of money and who is
2017 has started with a serious crisis unfolding in the country’s
health sector. Essential drugs for chronic and non-communicable
illnesses are in short supply. This is because these drugs are
imported and hospitals are unable to access US dollars to import them.
Private pharmacies are having the same problems accessing their own US
dollars from their own bank accounts to buy stock to resupply their
businesses. Strange you say; why are there no US dollars to import
critical drugs and yet so many of our leaders were able to access US
dollars to spend a month out of the country over Christmas?
The crisis is much bigger than just drugs. Government Doctors have
just gone on strike asking for better working conditions and better
pay. Imagine being the doctor on call and you only get paid US$1.20
per hour. That’s just downright insulting. You could earn more than
that by standing outside the hospital gates and selling bananas.
Doctors who embarked on the strike were then told by the Minister of
Health that if they didn’t return to work they would be fired. Hmmm,
5-7 years of training to end up being fired for asking for more than
$1.20 an hour, that doesn’t make much sense. To put the doctors’
request in context, consider this: an electrician or IT specialist in
Zimbabwe charges anywhere between $20 and $30 an hour.
The health sector crisis is not only about drugs and doctors in
Zimbabwe it’s about us, the ordinary people. If you don’t have
money or medical insurance, which most Zimbabweans don’t have,
it’s literally a matter of life and death if you get sick. You have
to pay $100 deposit to be admitted to hospital and then you have to
buy and/or pay for everything that is needed to save your life:
needles, syringes, cannulas, scans, tests, X rays, drugs and blood.
Blood is the biggest horror of all:$130 a pint; that’s a death
sentence in a country where 90% of people are unemployed. Then
you’ve got the consultants fees, the anesthetists fees, the daily
hospital bed fees, the oxygen fees and so it goes on and on.
Similar crises are underway in almost all sectors of life in
Zimbabwe, in both government and private enterprise with many not
knowing how to survive another month. While the economy and country
unravels, unbelievably ZBC TV last night flighted an advert calling
for donations for President Mugabe’s 93rd birthday party. Organisers
are looking for US$2.5 million! That’s enough to buy over 19,230
pints of blood; imagine how many pints of blood you can buy for US$13
Until next time, thanks for reading, love cathy 17th February 2017
Copyright � Cathy Buckle. www.cathybuckle.com