Artefact of the Month
DONALDSON’S RETIREMENT CARTOON
Air Commodore Edward Mortlock ‘Teddy’ Donaldson CB, CBE, DSO, AFC* LoM (USA) retired from the RAF on 21 February 1961.
His final appointment was as Commandant of the RAF Flying College and his ‘dining-out’ from the Service was held in the College’s Officer’s Mess at RAF Manby on 10 February 1961. It was attended by many of his former commanding officers, all eager to pay testimony to his distinguished military career. To mark the occasion a drawing was commissioned from the cartoonist Wren to “record a few of the many who were at the RAF Flying College to say ‘Goodbye’ to its Commandant on his leaving the Service”.
Attending the dinner and drawn in the cartoon are the three other members of No 1 Squadron’s successful 1937 aerobatic team, led by Donaldson when he was a Flight Commander at Tangmere. Also featured, is his World Air Speed Record achievement of 616 mph when he commanded the RAF’s High Speed Flight at RAF Tangmere in 1946.
‘Teddy’ died, aged eighty, on 2 June 1992 and is buried in the churchyard, St Andrews Church, Tangmere.
THE ORIGINAL WREN CARTOON WAS RECENTLY PURCHASED AT A WEST SUSSEX AUCTION HOUSE AND HAS BEEN GIFTED TO THE MUSEUM WHERE IT IS DISPLAYED IN THE TANGMERE HALL.