Can you help solve trophy mystery?

CAN you help the Times' colleagues on the Let's Talk magazine solve the mystery of the RAF Caird Challenge Cup trophy and its link with Thetford?

CAN you help the Times' colleagues on the Let's Talk magazine solve the mystery of the RAF Caird Challenge Cup trophy and its link with Thetford?

Sergeant Tony Carlin, station historian at RAF Lossiemouth, is appealing for help to solve a puzzle. In November, a trophy arrived in the post in a package addressed to the station museum. There was no letter accompanying it, nor any information about who had sent it - the only information available was the inscription on the trophy and its name - the “Caird Challenge Cup”.

Sgt Carlin says: “I have done some research and found out that Midshipman Caird died in a flying incident at RNAS Lossiemouth in 1952; his plane crashed into the sea. But I don't know anything about The Caird Challenge Cup. If we could find out a bit more about the trophy we could decide if the cup should stay in the museum at RAF Lossiemouth. Also, it would be interesting to know who sent me the trophy.”

The trophy, which is silver and stands 22cm high, was sent in a package that was postmarked Thetford (Norfolk). The inscription on the lid reads: In memory of Midshipman A.J. Caird from his parents Lt Col & Mrs G.A. Haward and Family 24th June 1952.

On one side of the trophy is the inscription:

The Caird Challenge Cup

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RNAS Lossiemouth

And on the reverse side is a list of recipients/winners from 1952 to 1962 including RAF Kinloss, Sgt Parsons, CPO Cox, CPO Moore and CPO Lillington RNSA.

Although he is stationed in the north of Scotland, Sgt Carlin knows the area from where the trophy was mysteriously sent.

“I lived in Bury St Edmunds for six years when I was stationed at Wattisham, Honington and Marham.”

If anyone has any information that might help us solve this mystery, they can contact Sgt Carlin by e-mail on: or by writing to him at: QCIT, RAF Lossiemouth, Lossiemouth, Elgin, IV31 6SD.

RAF Lossiemouth is the largest and busiest fast-jet base in the Royal Air Force. It is home to three operational squadrons of Tornado GR4s, the Tornado GR4 Operational Conversion Unit, a Sea King Search and Rescue Flight, an RAF Regiment Field Squadron and an RAF Regiment Auxiliary Squadron, as well as an extensive range of operational, logistic and administrative support functions.

There are 2800 military and civilian personnel working on the base which is situated in a beautiful part of Scotland surrounded by some spectacular scenery.

Sgt Carlin adds: “If any of your readers are up here on holiday they will be very welcome if they want to drop in for a visit.”

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