Biggles and the Charity Walk

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Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:36 pm

It was one of those months. The aging Austers both required some big maintenance jobs which Smythe had carefully scheduled three weeks apart. By the time a new supplier had sent the wrong parts, he'd been short handed because Davy had broken his leg falling over a Yorkshire Terrier, Jimmy had caught the flu, and Ginger had accidentally taxied into a hanger, both aircraft were going to have to be out of service together for a few days.

Raymond sent for Biggles to discuss the situation.

'Luckily, things are quiet at the moment. So quiet that I think we can do without you for a few days. There's a Round Britain Charity Walk going on, as you know, with the different forces sending teams out to walk the boundaries of their areas. Good publicity. You can join in that. Let me know how much of the country you're going to cover and what your itinerary will be.I suppose you ought to cover as much of Britain as you can, as your beat is a bit bigger than the average bobby's.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:01 am

Biggles looked at the Air Commodore's desk calendar. It was not April 1st.
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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:05 am

'Wouldn't it be better if I caught up with the filing,' Biggles suggested. 'A new copy of Flight will be out on Friday.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:12 am

"No. Your department has already been put down for the walk. There's a certain novelty in a policeman who doesn't walk a beat and you've caught the public's imagination, walking round Britain. It'll do you all good."
The Decision to Survive - A good pilot is both born and made. The best would look upon his work as a combination of adventure and a serious mission. – Major General Sir Frederick Sykes

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:18 am

'What's happened?' Ginger asked in concern as Biggles walked into the office. 'Has someone died?'

'Worse than that,' Biggles groaned, 'Much worse than that. We've got to participate in a Charity Walk. A long distance Charity Walk.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:21 am

"How long is long?" Algy wanted to know.
The Decision to Survive - A good pilot is both born and made. The best would look upon his work as a combination of adventure and a serious mission. – Major General Sir Frederick Sykes

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:24 am

'To take in as much of Britain as possible on foot.' Biggles lit a cigarette with shaking hands.
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:31 am

Three pairs of disbelieving eyes were turned in his direction, then Algy burst out laughimg. "Good one," he enthused. "You had me worried there for a minute.
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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:40 am

Mo from the Police Publicity Department knocked perfunctorily on the door and bounced in.

'Excellent news, Inspector Bigglesworth,' he enthused. 'This will be a great feel good story. Pilots Come Down to Earth for Charity. I'll set you up with a Twitter account and Instagram.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by RAAF Spitfire Girl » Tue Nov 27, 2018 5:56 am

Three pairs of disbelieving eyes now stared accusingly at Biggles.

"I say, old bean, you weren't pulling our legs then?" asked Bertie mournfully.

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:16 am

"No, unfortunately not," Biggles shook his head sadly. "The walk is around the perimeter of our beat...."
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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by kylie_koyote » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:44 pm

"It won't be that bad," Ginger said, trying hard to remain upbeat. "I once walked from Smettleworth to Newcastle. It only took ten days."

"Completely in the wrong direction, I might add," Biggles murmured.
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 2:13 pm

'Not all of it,' Ginger insisted. 'I started off alright, Anyone could have got lost.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 3:32 pm

"We've got the biggest walk of all, " Algy complained. "We're going to have to do it in relays and draft in the mechanics. They're part of our department, don't forget."
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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:28 pm

Biggles remembered something. 'There has to be a support team. I'll get a motorbike and stop every few miles to give you coffee and a sarnie.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:49 pm

"Oh, no you don't," Algy retorted. "You can walk with the rest of us."
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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 7:20 pm

'And we won't be able to include Smyth's lot,' Algy pointed out 'as they'll be working on the planes so we can return to being the Special AIR Police at some point. It's the four of us.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:12 pm

"How long timewise is this walk supposed to take anyway?" Ginger asked as he looked at the app on his phone which showed the outline of Great Britain. "And do we walk the Scilly Isles, Channel Islands, Isle of Wight, the Orkneys, Isle of Skye, Shetland Isles, Inner and Outer Hebrides, Isle of....."

"Okay, Ginger,we get the drift." Biggles cut Ginger off with a raised hand. "For simplicity's sake I think we can keep to the mainland."
The Decision to Survive - A good pilot is both born and made. The best would look upon his work as a combination of adventure and a serious mission. – Major General Sir Frederick Sykes

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:40 pm

Bertie rubbed his eyeglass thoughtfully. 'If we visit some of the islands, old boy, then we are showing that we are interested in the smallest parts of Britain and if we're in a boat going to them, then we're not walking.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by RAAF Spitfire Girl » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:51 pm

"What do you suggest? That we walk across the water somehow?" asked Biggles with deep sarcasm. "Because if you're going to apply the rules as literally as that, we can't swim either. And we'll have to take a lot of detours to use bridges on the mainland, so that won't be strictly walking the perimeter either!"

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 9:02 pm

'No, no, you misunderstand me,' Bertie protested. 'I'm suggesting that we do take boats to the islands, have a little trot round for appearances sake, then catch the boat back to the mainland. I'm suggesting that we do all our walking on these jolly little islets and in order to do so, given that we've got limited time to do our charity trot, we'll have to catch the train or bus or what-have-you between each harbour.'
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Tue Nov 27, 2018 9:17 pm

"That," said Biggles after a short pause, "is an idea! The mainland is being walked every day, more or less, but the islands are usually left to their own devices. Well done! I'll go and clear it with the Air Commodore."
The Decision to Survive - A good pilot is both born and made. The best would look upon his work as a combination of adventure and a serious mission. – Major General Sir Frederick Sykes

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:17 pm

The Air Commodore thought that it was a very good idea to visit the lesser known spots to advertise the wide ranging patrols carried out by the SAP. So too did Mo. It was only later, whilst awaiting a more detailed schedule from Biggles, that the Air Commodore wondered just how much walking they would be doing.
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Fairblue » Wed Nov 28, 2018 10:57 am

But he decided to wait for the detailed schedule before questioning Biggles about it. He picked up the phone and rang Mo to find out if there was an average distance which should be achieved.
The Decision to Survive - A good pilot is both born and made. The best would look upon his work as a combination of adventure and a serious mission. – Major General Sir Frederick Sykes

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Re: Biggles and the Charity Walk

Post by Kismet » Wed Nov 28, 2018 3:58 pm

There wasn't. It had been deliberately set up that way so those with very limited time or physical disabilities which prevented them from walking far, could participate.

Biggles had decided to start with the Isle of Man before heading up the West Coat into Scotland and then returning down the East Coast. No more than one island a day. Ginger was googling comfortable hotels in ports and harbours whilst Bertie was in charge of finding ferries and boat hire. Meanwhile, he and Algy studied maps, to identify nice, low level, easy walks.
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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