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Other titles:ROYAL AIR FORCE OPERATIONS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR [Allocated Series Title]
Summary: Air Chief Commandant Lady R M E Welsh, Director of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force ('the WAAFs') visits No. 9 RAF General Hospital in Calcutta, India.
Description: A cantilever girder bridge with a Short Empire flying boat passing over it. A small motor launch heads off upriver to rendezvous with the flying boat. A group of RAF officers await the arrival of Lady Welsh on a jetty. A launch ties up at the jetty. Lady Welsh, Group Officer Campbell and Flight Officer Tempest Holmes of the WAAF step ashore and are greeted. One of the Indian crew of the launch wears a shirt marked 'British Overseas Airways' (BOAC). The party go aboard the BOAC reception boat Sonainuki. Lady Welsh, Group Officer Campbell and other officers are served tea. A motorcade sets off. Close-up of a sign which reads 'No. 9 RAF General Hospital'. Lady Welsh is greeted by a senior nurse. The group of officers inspect the wards and meet some of the patients. The group departs.
Production Details: Air Ministry, Directorate of Public Relations (Production sponsor)
Royal Air Force Film Production Unit (Production company)
Orchard, Harry James (Production individual)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: Welsh, Ruth Mary Eldridge (person)
Battle, Henry Frederic Vulliamy (person)
Royal Air Force, Women's Auxiliary Air Force (regiment/service)
Royal Air Force, 9 RAF General Hospital (regiment/service)
Keywords: Calcutta, North East India, India (geography)
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 274 ft; Running time: 4 minutes
Notes: Dopesheet names the following officers:
Air Commodore H V Battle.
Group Captain W S R Simmonds.
Group Captain McKern.
Squadron Leader Fraser.
Flight Lieutenant Adams (wearing Deputy Assistant Provost Marshal (DAPM) armband).
Flight Lieutenant Woods.
Pilot Officer Orchard's typescript dopesheet adds that he 'tried very hard' to get usable mobile shots of Lady Welsh's staff car but these proved impossible 'owing to the terrific speed...and the awful condition of Calcutta's roads'. These shots do not appear in this film. This in turn would suggest that the cameraman's request to have these shots excised before dispatch to the Air Ministry was acted upon, and reveals something of the administrative and editing process at No.3 Film Production Unit's HQ in Calcutta.
For other film of WAAF activities in India, see related items.
Lady Welsh can be seen in two IWM photographs referenced below.
No slates, date from dopesheet.
ABY 53 (THE FIRST CONTINGENT OF THE WOMEN'S AUXILIARY AIR FORCE ARRIVES IN INDIA [Allocated Title])
ABY 58 (WAAF PERSONNEL ARRIVE BY AIR IN CEYLON [Allocated Title])
ABY 73 (SO THIS IS INDIA [Allocated Title])
ABY 117 (WAAFs AT WORK AND PLAY IN INDIA [Allocated Title])