Dear Cynthia, I just wanted to let you know how fabulous I think your site is. I am really impressed with its scope and the obvious amount of thought and effort that has gone into it. My family was at Butterworth from mid 1980 until mid 1982. You're so right about RAAF School Penang being a special place. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that we all knew what it was like to be the "new kid" and therefore were able to fit in so much more quickly. We all also, obviously, had the RAAF in common - and being far from home. We have the Australs from 1980 to 1982 although they are at my parents place in Adelaide. I am hoping to get them some time after Christmas, so if you still need them by then I'll send them along to you so that you can scan them in. You have also mentioned that other sites make reference to RAAF School Penang. Are you considering linking to any of these? We have found a school friends site that currently has 55 people listed from RSP. I have found a few lost friends this way. I'd certainly love to find more. If you are considering putting links to other sites, this one is: http://www.schoolfriends.com.au/ Again, thanks for a great site. Haley Jones
Firstly, thank you so much for creating the "RAAF School" website. What a great idea. My name is Karen Aspros (nee Svensson) I was in Penang from Jan 1981 to Dec 1983. I completed Grades 7-9 at the RAAF School. I think the website is fantastic and agree that the our time at the RAAF School and Penang was very special and hold many fantastic memories. It is amazing that we did all the things that you talked about and we were there 10 years later! I had forgotten about the Eden Cafe but as soon as you mentioned the murals I remembered it, we used to go there all the time. And so many things mentioned on the website brought a smile to my face - Magnolia icecreams, the swimming club, Sheriffs etc etc. Thanks again I will be in touch.
Hi Cynthia, wow what a great page. My oldest son went to the Annex primary school from August 1978 to August 1980. Somewhere in this place I have a copy of Austral mag so will scan all the classes and email them to you as soon as I can get some time !!!! Also have a pic of the pool at the base at Butterworth, will scan and email that too. This site really needs to be linked to the Penang Turf Club site which has heaps of RAAF stuff too. Think there also needs to be a message site, maybe we will get some more people catching up. Thanks for such a GREAT job. Pam Rackley
Firstly let me congratulate you on the wonderful job you have done on the site, it is fantastic. I was based at Butterworth - 75 Sqn 1982-83, and my two sons James and Dennis both attended the RAAF School, I do have photos of classes and sports events during that time and also some of Hillside and the characters who you came across in everyday life (Hong the Shoeman) etc. I will endeavour to scan some of these and send to you in the near future. My last trip to Penang was in 1999 and the changes from 1991 were considerable, I hope to be heading there again at the end of next year to once again look up old friends. By the way we lived at 22 Road 2, Vale of Tempe. Peter Sloane
Best years of my childhood!
Now living in Sydney.
Melanie Therese Ahern. 1982-1984 Years 5,6,7
Crikey, talk about awakening old memories. An old and good friend told me about this site. Fantastic.............looking at the photos brought back heaps of memories. Thank you for a great site.
(P.S. I was in primary school 1968 to 1971)
Does anyone remember the red flags in the hills? It was the last ditch effort by the communists in Malaysia but us kids were warned not to go near the red flags as they could be boobytrapped. Naturally we went looking until we heard that 2 british kids were killed via a boobytrapped flag. No idea if that story about the 2 british kids is true but at the time it had an effect. Lot of memories about my time in Penang. Cameron Cudahy
Hello Cynthia, I was put onto your site by a friend who knew I went to school in Malaysia. I'm glad they did, it brought back some fantastic memories of my own. I attended RSP from 1985 to 1987 with my two brothers Glenn and Mark. I've recently returned from a holiday in Malaysia and was surprised at what had changed and then some things don't change like Penang Hill and the Monkey (Botanic) Gardens. Thank you for putting in the time with this site as I think that the school was the best I or anyone could have hoped to attend and they were definitely the best days of my school life. Jason Martell
I have just been through your site and am amazed at what I've seen. It is absolutely fantastic! I just read a message from a Cameron that was there when we were there and I hadn't thought about the red flags on the hill until I read his message. It is a real spin to hear something that is in the back of your mind and haven't thought about for years. I remember seeing these red flags on the hills and everybody said that the communists (or whatever the bad people were called!) were getting closer to us. I remember being frightened and hoping that they didn't get closer to us. Well, I will be going onto your site to keep up with everybody and hope to see someone I know! Thanks Cynthia. Sally Cooke (nee Fisher)
What a great site! My family were in Malaysia from 1971 to 1973, I was in the Annexe, I was about 6 years old. I have two olders sisters to remind me of what life was like over there, and numerous slides to bring back memories. We still keep in touch with people that lived over there, the same time we did. Unfortunately I don't have any photos of the Annexe, but would love to see some. My teacher's name was Mr. Dickman, and he was the first and last teacher to wack me with the cane!!!!!!! And I swear it was not my fault!!! It was some kid called ? Greenwood might be Alison, anyway, I have never forgotten that hahaahaha!!!! And the Durian Ice creams!!!!....yuck! So thank you for this blast from the past. Kathryn Glazner
Hi Cynthia, what a great idea you have here. I was at RAAF School Penang from 1970 to 1973/4. I think I was in 5th grade to second year high school. My name then was Susan Glazner and my sisters Bronwyn and Kathryn also attended the school. My favourite teacher was Mrs Emmerton she taught home economics. I am now living in Russia with my husband. Sue McCavana
You have brought back lots of memories for me. Yr 6 in 1974 and Form 1T in 1975. My sister Sarah and brothers Roy and James were there too. I am in the process of trying to remember school teachers and friends. Can't remember the address, but we were in Tanjong Bungah. Lived in the same street as Lisa Jeffreys and Leon Sallway the love of my life back in 1975. Where are you? I went back to Malaysia in 1986 six months pregnant with my 2nd son. My then hubby Steve Manning was at Butterworth. I have 2 sons, Stephen 18 and Michael 15, who is one day going to pay for his mum to take him and show him where he was born. I am remarried now and living in Quinns Rocks WA, 50kms north of Perth. Hubby Charles(Chuck) Coventry also did a stint in Butterworth. Both Steve and Charles are now no longer in the RAAF. Will be back Anne Coventry (Cottrell back in 74/75)
Thankyou for putting this wonderful site together. I attended the school in 1978/79, grades 9 and 10. Even though I wasn't considered one of the 'in' crowd, I still have many fond memories of the school. Over the years I have travelled to Penang many times, the most recent in January this year when we took our two children. I have seen many changes but the worst was the poor old hostel hard to spot under the boarded up windows and huge shopping centre nearby. Some things never change like the little shops going up to Ayer Itam temple. After all these years they are still selling stink bombs. I remember buying them on an excursion and throwing them out the bus window at crowded bus stops. We also had a meal at the Eden Restaurant and the fish and chips had not changed in 20 years! Thank you once again, Linda Parker (Hawkeswood)
Dear Cynthia, Thank you for creating RAAF School Penang website. My name is Kylie Burton and I was at RAAF School Penang from 1984-1987 (Year 3-6). It was amazing to see how the school and the Hostie have changed it all bought a tear to my eye. Thank you for the memories. Kind Regards, Kylie Burton
Dear Cynthia, What a great site! Congratulations on the work you have done in getting this site up & running. Certainly brings back great memories of the time we spent there between late 1970 to 1972. I was in grade 2 and found my school photo on your site. The teacher was Ms Maseretti. Both myself and my brothers (Robert & Phillip Andrews) have fond memories of climbing Scout Rock every 2nd week, and being advised to look out for the red flags (booby traps) planted by the communists??(That's what they told us). Our house was on the corner (sorry don't know the street name), but it backed onto the school. We use to roam the school grounds after-hours and on weekends and torment the security guard (I think we called him 4-eyes). Will endeavor to track down some old photos from the parents files and scan them for you. Will keep in touch, thanks again for the great site. Regards David Andrews
Well, finally the School is getting the recognition it deserves! Would love to know any news on Trevor Stollery, Mark Coleman, Danny Armstrong, Vicki Quinn, Tony Grepp, and Paul Phelan. And if there are any other people out there who remember the Hardy's with the big trampoline in the front yard across the road from the School, drop us a line. I have the others' emails too (Tricia, Carolyn & John). Life is pretty damn good and having seen your site about the RAAF school really did bring a bigger smile to my face. Thanks for the wonderful memories. Peter Hardy
Hi Cynthia, Just came across your site after an old friend from RAAF School Penang saw my name at the School Friends site. This is great! What a fantastic job you have done! So many things I had forgotten about all came back to me...like the school song! (how could I have forgotten it???) I have so many fond memories of the school, the friends, the travel on the buses across on the ferry, the bus conductors, the bus escorts, the Dolphin swimming club, the dances, the clothes! (I am still a COMPLETE '70's music buff & still have all the moves!!!) I attended Years 7 & 8 from Jan.1977 to Dec.1978. My sister, Joanne, was in Years 6 & 7. I still have my old school uniform covered with autographs of all my school friends. Along with my Dolphin swim jacket & my Hustlers basketball uniform! I have heaps of photos at my parents place that I will find this Jan. when I come "home" & send them to you to add to the site.(I think I have the 1977 Austral so can send that to you also). Thanks for all your effort! (1978 Austral, 8-2 front row first on left). Best regards, Alison Manjyoume (nee Dickie)
Dear Cynthia, Thanks for going to such a lot of effort with the RAAF School Penang site. It brought back such a lot of memories and I shed a tear when I played the school song - even remembered some of the words. I was at RAAF School Penang with my brothers (David and Ross) and sister (Kathy) from 72 - 74 I was in 3W, 4P and 5/6H. We lived in the Married Quarters (302) at Butterworth. Just how long was that journey to school each morning from Butterworth? Does anyone remember? I have a vague notion it was 1 1/2 hours but it couldn't have been could it? I remember when the Mecca boats were in we couldn't go to school (shame). I remember friends like Fi Phillips and Carl Bomball and spending most of my time swimming! Thanks again Cynthia. Regards, Gina Pederick
Hi, I think your site's great. I spent 69-71 at RAAF school and was madly in love with the leggy + lovely Michelle Harvey in 6A and form 1A. Michelle has already posted her story. My family returned to Ipswich in 71 and later my parents did a stint in Penang in the mid 70s. I visited them occasionally there in my late teens. I currently work as a management consultant in Darwin with my wife and teenage kids. I spent 15 years as an academic teaching psychology and sometimes computing in different universities including 3.5 yrs in Singapore- but never made the time to visit Penang after my teenage visits. My father went for a visit in 91. The irony for me was that in Penang I was keen to go home but once home I was desperate to go back to Penang. I'm very keen to catch up with my 2 best mates- Tom Hilston and Richard Ball.
I've just been made aware of your website and have really enjoyed awakening all those memories of a wonderful life at RAAF School. You have obviously made many people happy by taking the time & effort to produce the site. I agree, it is wonderful and is a credit 2U. My father FLTLT Bob Scott (retired as SQDLDR for anyone who might know him & is interested), my mother Maxine & my younger brother Ben. We lived at 24 Jalan Hajai Rafai (spelling?) on Penang. We were right at the top end of the street. At the bottom street corner was a place called "My Cafe", just along on the same side from KK Store. We were frequent visitors of the Penang Swimming Club also & I just loved it!. People who were there in about 1983/84 might recall that the decking by the pool was damaged & under repair for some time as there had been some rough weather & a boat had come adrift, smashing into the pylons underneath. My favourite meal on weekends at the Club was fried rice with chilli sauce. How spoilt we all were in those exotic surroundings sitting in the "Snake Temple" over the water! Other memories: riding bikes to the water pumping station behind the deaf school (supposedly off-limits), the duplex housing of Vale of Tempe, cats with stumpy tails, school discos, youth group, The House - where school texts were kept, the dreaded Dental Clinic, videos sent from Oz watched for a small fee during lunchtimes, the Monkey Gardens where we'd take our rollerskates to the outdoor rink! I had my first real kiss in Malaysia too - I'm sure I'm not alone in this! I look forward to making contact with some other long lost school friends. Thank you again for "being the one". I'll be sure to visit again & for my family to see the site also. We all live in Wagga Wagga now, having settled here when Dad left the RAAF. Married 4 years, no kids (yet!) Lisa Vidler (nee Scott)
I would like you to know what a fantastic web site this has been for me. As the mother of 3 daughters who all attended RAAF School Penang and I myself was a Bus Escort for three terms and I also had a fantastic time and made lots of friends through the RAAF School Penang. I will be sending the information about this web page to my friends that I still have from my days in Malaysia. Our family was in Malaysia in July 1977 until Jan 1980 we all returned in Feb1982 until August 1983 I have to say that the whole family has very fond lasting memories of both our tours to Butterworth. We have copies of all the Australs and RAAF News magazines. If there is anything my family can assist with please don't hesitate to ask. Many thanks again for the memories.
The Moores (Ron Moore (Sgt/ Flt Sgt) 3 Sqd, Sharyn Moore (Mother, Bus Escort & RAAF Radio Butterworth Announcer), Donna Moore (now Garman), Liza Moore (now Burke), Rachel Moore (now Van Der Vorst).
What more can one say besides thanx and what a great web site! Like a few other "RAAF Brats" I first became aware of the RAAF School Penang web site after visiting www.schoolfriends.com.au and reading your message regarding http://raafschoolpenang.tripod.com. My parents were first posted to Malaysia in 1966 - 1969 and my elder brother and myself were actually born there, though of course to young to remember. The second posting to Malaysia was from Dec 1976 - Dec 1978 and we lived on the "mainland" at 876 Tan Sai Gin. My older brother Daryl: Austral '77: 4H Pg 162, Front Row-first at LHE and Austral 1978: 5B Pg 66, 2nd Row from the back-first at RHE ), Younger sister Ann-Maree: '78: 1C Pg 32, Front row-first at LHE and yours truly, Kevin: '77:3R Pg 154, about 2 rows back from the front and in the middle with my face partially obscured and '78:4H Pg 59, Front row and first at LHE. My fondest memories of that time were playing soccer for either the "Blockheads" or "Socceroos" and almost always beating the "Islander" teams such as the "Hotspurs" etc. There is also the great memory of the Dolphin Swimming Club and who could forget the end of season "disco" with the unrelenting "Boney M", Village People and Sat Nite Fever grooves!!! Other memories include the Cub and Scout activities especially the camping trip to Pulau Badan when "Hueys" transported us all. Who could ever forget the journey to school form the mainland and the rush to get one of the "fast ferries" such Pulau Pinang…well maybe not!….and egging our bus driver Ooi Teik Chooi (yes as signed in my autograph book) to "jalan cepat-cepat"! Can also remember swimming everyday after school and, without fail stepping onto a small catfish, Ouch!!! So many great memories of a wonderful time. Kevin Hartigan - Ipswich, QLD Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Kevin Hartigan
Hi, I thought the web site was fantastic. I went to RAAF School Malaysia from Sep 1985 - Jan 1988. My first class room had thatched walls and no windows. I lived at 23 Road 7. Not sure of the suburb, but it was cut into the side of a mountain about 2k from school. My friends and I spent our time riding our bikes around the block, building forts up in the mountains in the mud, eating Sugar Roti's from the guy with a truck on the corner of road 5 & 3 and watching movies at Aussie House set up by the Mason family. When we left, the Hostie was barely used anymore. Movies stopped being shown there the charter before ours. It was really sad. I would have liked to have seen it during its heyday. I have three Australs and look at them all the time. Jason Martell (one of the other guests) used to chase my mates and me all the time. I went to scouts while I was there too. Though it died out in the final months. We shopped at Gamma a lot, and I remember McDonalds opened about three months before we left. Groups of families would go out to Batu Ferringhi Beach to one the hotels and have huge Buffet Lunches. We'd then swim till dark. We'd often go over to Butterworth to the Boat Club and go sailing and water skiing. Played soccer at the school every weekend. There where only four senior teams and four junior teams. Miss Hardie was my French teacher and also the first teacher I had a crush on. I was short too. The ladies at the canteen wouldn't serve me because they thought I was a primary school kid (dark blue shorts). I had to jump up to show them the colour of my shorts (white for high school) to prove I was in Yr 7. Thanks for letting me share this with you all. Chris Hurling
Dear Cynthia, Thanks for the memories that you brought flooding back! I was at RAAF school with my brother for 3 years (1974-1976). I started in 5th grade and finished in 1st form. My dad was a Sqdn Ldr when we were posted to Malaysia and we spent the first year in Penang, walking into the jungle to play amongst the ruined "Jap forts". After my dad got a promotion to Wg Cdr, we were sent to Butterworth where I spent the next 2 years on the OMQ on the base. The bus trips across on the ferry were not actually that bad, as we were with friends the whole way. Looking at the site made me remember a lot that I thought I had forgotten, although I was sad to see what became of the Hostel. I keep promising myself that I will return one day and show my son what I (and probably a lot who were there) took for granted. Does anyone else remember writing the countdown back to OZ on their hands? David McInnes
18/1/02 Teaching Staff
My name is DAVID ATKINSON. I was a member of Staff at RAAF School Penang in 1980 and 1981. In 1980 I taught Grade 4 (4A) and in 1981 I taught Grade 6 (6A). My wife Helen and our four children, Michael, Paul, Andrew and Kate, lived on the Island at Tanjong Tokong. On our return to Australia we spent twelve months in Melbourne and then moved back to WARRNAMBOOL in regional Victoria. Congratulations to those responsible for the RAAF School site. David Atkinson.