Ernie was born in 1923 and joined the RAF in 1941 as an eighteen year old.
Ernie really wanted to go into Bomber Command, as he wanted to get back at the Germans for bombing our cities! He was refused, as he had been only trained on single-engine aircraft.
Ernie got to train on the Hurricanes. He was taught using a camera gun, then proper air-to-air guns using a live target. The live target was another plane – he was a brave target! He was sent to No. 30 Squadron, where they were fitted out with Spitfires and posted to the Far East, India and Burma.
Near the end of the war he was a test pilot in Pakistan and flew many planes that were brought over from England and America, including upgraded Spitfires, Tempests and the American Thunderbolt.
Ernie left the RAF in 1947. He was refused by many civil airline companies as he was a single-engine pilot, so to train him for multiple engines would cost them money. So he ended up in advertising and publicity. Ernie married and had four children.
Print taken from the book ‘A TIME TO FIGHT Living and Remembering WWII’