Below are a few words from Stuart Wakefield who joined the MV in 2010.
I was often amazed during the fifty years I spent having tremendous fun in aviation that somebody was also willing to pay me; (as were many of my colleagues). However, I understood that life would change significantly after my wife and I retired to Kuala Lumpur, and in quick succession I accepted four new challenges as a volunteer. Whilst I willingly accepted that each organisation valued my contribution just a fraction short of actually paying a salary, I did wonder if the fun element would remain as compensation. After scoring a `satisfaction index’ of 10% in one organisation, 50% in another and 90% in the third, I joined the Museum Volunteers, and only my engineering heritage prevents me from giving it a score of over 100%.
Throughout my career I have invariably strived when moving on from an organisation to leave it in a better condition than when I joined, and then left others to judge my success or otherwise. In common with any other volunteer organisation, our value is first and last in our people, and our organisation
has a number of enthusiastic and competent members that will ensure its future. From my perspective, my time with the Museum Volunteers has provided many interesting and worthwhile challenges, whilst undoubtedly satisfying my endless thirst for fun. I trust that you will understand when I say that I was humbled
earlier this week (during the farewell lunch on 6 Mar 2013) to receive accolades merely for enjoying myself, and also to receive a beautiful `betel nut’ gift set that will remind me of you and which I shall always treasure.
Stuart was an active member of the MV before returning for good to the UK in March 2013. He served for 2 years as the secretary but still found time to prepare and present two focus talks (Charter Companies and Undeclared Wars), assist in focus activities, school programmes, research activities as well as participate in the training of new recruits. In spite of all these responsibilities, he remained an active guide and was on hand to take the President of Fiji on a 90 minute tour when the President made an unexpected visit to the museum in Aug 2012. Stuart will be missed by the museum volunteers.