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Squadron Leader Geoff G W Timms MBE
Article in the Times 13Jul94 about an ex-93 Sqn pilot 1957-58.

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Geoff in his Harrier cockpit.   Timms: "It suited me to be flying"

By A STAFF REPORTER 1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesTHE RAF's oldest jet pilot bowed out of the service yesterday with a 500mph low-level flight in a Harrier jump jet.   Before landing, he bowed the nose in salute.

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesSquadron Leader Geoff Timms, 62, joined the RAF in 1948 as a 16-year-old apprentice, earning his wings after being selected for a commission at the age of 20.   Since then he has logged more than 7,000 flying hours.

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes"I've been hiding, so they haven't been able to catch me and tie me to a desk,"   Sqn Ldr Timms said.   "I think I've lasted so long because I've been involved in the training programme for such a long time.   It suited me to be flying.

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes"I've been expecting my retirement for some time, but it seems strange now to be standing on the ground and that's the end for me."

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesSqn Ldr Timms, who was awarded the OBE earlier this year for his service to the RAF, flew the Hunter as a display pilot and qualified as a flying instructor in 1965.   He has devoted most of his flying time to training Harrier pilots, including many who excelled in the Falklands campaign.

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesHis commanding officer at RAF Wittering in Cambridgeshire, Wing Commander Tony Harper, said:   "Geoff has more than 40 years' experience, which has certainly been a huge bonus to me and a whole generation of Harrier pilots since the aircraft's inception.   It's a great leveller to work with men like him."

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesSqn Ldr Timms touched down to a large reception of engineers - and station colleagues, including his wife Jill and daughter Jacqueline.

1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesAlthough leaving the RAF, he will teach in the simulator as a civilian.   Group Captain Pete Day, who joined Sqn Ldr Timms on his last sortie, said:   "I've known Geoff as a student under him and as a colleague alongside him.   He is the most sympathetic instructor any pilot could wish for."
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