In about 1966 the C O of Scampton, Group Capt. Dicky Wakeford had a view that the RAF could not just live on the Lincolnshire countryside without having some understanding of what they did by those who lived there.

He arranged for a group of local dignitaries and neighbours to come to Scampton one evening to explain to them what the RAF was doing there, I was included.

On the night chosen, the planes from Scampton were likely to be called out on a practice exercise taking place across Bomber Command.

In a national emergency the Vulcans would be fitted with Blue Steel stand-off bomb and would be kept at varying stages of readiness to be sent to known targets.

We were taken to see the Vulcans standing in the hangar and then came back to the mess. The planes were now with crews at 45 min readiness shortly this was reduced to 15 min and we were taken to the end of the runway by minibus to where the Ground Controller was in his red and white chequered vehicle The crews were already in the planes and the Squadron went to 5 min readiness the instructions from Bomber Command H Q were heard and the signal was given to ‘scramble’ (this seemed a bit strange for planes of this size) the first Vulcan started one engine and began to move and proceeded to start up the other engines and move down towards the runway. It was followed by a further two planes and when all were lined up were given the green light and at full power the three took off together.

The noise of the 12 Olympus engines was unbelievable as they disappeared into the night sky. Part of the exercise was for them to climb as fast as possible to be clear of any incoming weapons this was a most impressive demonstration.