Airfield stories are recorded in new book before they are lost forever
PUBLISHED: 18:00 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 18:55 04 July 2019
Memories of when the Americans were based at a Suffolk airfield have been captured forever in a new book.
Clifford Hall, 87, was a boy when Allied Forces from the States were stationed at Rougham Airfield during the Second World War.
His latest book 'Memories of Rougham Airfield and the 94th Bombardment Group (H)' features stories of his time growing up next to the airfield and getting to know the men who worked on the planes.
It follows on from his pictorial history of the 94th Bomb Group, which contains more than 1,000 photographs he has collected.
Mr Hall, who used to work as an agricultural engineer, said: "This book is more on the social side and my involvement with the Americans on the airfield, the building of the airfield and various stories I have told over the years.
"People said I should write them down. Once I go, the stories will go."
Mr Hall, who grew up in Great Barton, was 12 when the Americans arrived and 14 when they went home.
He said: "I spent a lot of time on the airfield. I was chased off a lot of the time by the military police."
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He used to run errands for the troops, like picking up shopping from the nearest town, Bury St Edmunds, and getting camera films developed.
Mr Hall, who was allowed to keep a copy of the pictures, said if the men had their photographs developed on-base they were censored and in some cases they didn't get them back until the end of the war.
One light-hearted story he wanted to share was about Karl Moburgh, an intelligence officer, and flight surgeon 'Doc' Miller.
He said: "The beer flowed freely that night at the White Horse [in Beyton] and they staggered home along the old A45 to the airfield.
"They had to pass the entrance of the headquarters building and near the roadside there was a small building for broadcasting.
"They tried to do a Bing Crosby act halfway through the night, but what they didn't know was the last person to use it hadn't switched the equipment off and it woke up everyone on the base."
In 1975 Mr Hall set up a memorial association, now disbanded, and has hosted 12 reunions over here and been a guest at 10 in the States.
He was also the driving force behind the 94th Bomb Group's monument in the Appleby Rose Garden in Bury St Edmunds' award-winning Abbey Gardens.
'Memories of Rougham Airfield and the 94th Bombardment Group (H)' is being launched on Sunday, July 7, at the control tower in Rougham from 11am to 4pm.