Home' Aerogram : Aerogram 2018 4 December Contents President’s Welcome
Howard Franks, The Friends of the RAAF Museum Inc.
Each edition of the Aerogram takes pains to mention those who have contributed to that particular issue. In this case those
who have contributed articles have a byline; where possible photos are credited to the photographer but a number of photos
included are from long ago where it is difficult to provide attribution – and some of the very earliest material to do with the
formation of the Friends must be attributed to Mr Gary Walsh, a contributing editor. If your name has not been specifically
mentioned it’s because the Aerogram archive has been the basis upon which this issue has been compiled. To everyone who
has played a part in the Friends over the past 25 years – and that is all of you – thank you for making this issue so special.
The last quarter of 2018 marks the 25th anniversary of our
Throughout this issue of the Aerogram are a number of articles
by current and former members of the Friends. In their articles,
they reflect on the Friends from inception in 1993 until today.
Today’s Friends is very different to the organisation originally
formed by the founders. However, the one thing that has not
changed is our commitment to support the RAAF Museum at
In my relatively short time as a member, there have been a
number of major projects that demonstrate that support. For
me, the project I feel we can be most proud of is the Spitfire
Replica UP-B which stands guard outside the RAAF Museum
Over the last 25 years, the composition of the Friends has
changed dramatically. In the beginning, most members were
also volunteers. Twenty-five years later, our total membership
has grown to over 300, but the percentage of volunteers has
declined to less than twenty five percent of the total.
To cater for the change, the Committee is always looking for
ways to add value for our members who are not able to visit
The Merz Lecture video is one of the changes we are trialling.
Merz Lecture and Video
The Merz Lecture on October 27th, featured two outstanding
speakers describing their experiences with the RAAF’s
Lockheed C130 Hercules. To mark the occasion, we engaged
a video production company to record their presentation.
The video is now in post-production and our plan is to make
the video available online to members and subscribers. We will
contact you via email when it is available, and advise you how
it can be accessed.
Please ensure we have your current email address because
your registered email will be required to gain access to the
Three years ago, we introduced the digital version of the
Aerogram. This has been a steep learning process for those of
us involved in the rollout.
For those of you who read the Aerogram online or via an app,
you may have noticed that all emails and website links actually
work if you click on them. The next step in the evolution of the
digital Aerogram is to embed videos and extra features. You
should start seeing them next year.
Other technology changes we are working on
Membership Management System
This is currently under test. The plan is to go live with this
before the 2019 membership renewals are sent out. The major
benefit of the system will be the ability to record all interactions
with our members and subscribers in one location. This will
help share the load of administering the Friends across more
of the committee.
Digital Publication Platform
At the moment the Aerogram is hosted with Realview (who
also host the Air Force News). Until now we have had to
register every member on their platform, and update it
manually, one member at a time, each year. This is an
onerous and time consuming task.
We have been researching and trialling an alternative to
Realview. The new system, which includes hosting the
Aerogram elsewhere, is combined with an integrated
membership access process. Another benefit is that the
digital Aerogram will then work on any device, without the
need to have an app installed on mobile devices. In the trials
conducted to date, it works faster than the present system.
The Friends Committee
While the Committee has worked well over the last year, there
are some members that are not seeking re-election at the
next AGM. One of these is the Treasurer and we are actively
seeking someone who has the knowledge and skill to act in
I do urge you to take an active role in an organisation that
does, and will into the future, support the RAAF Museum in its
Please enjoy this special edition of our Aerogram.
Aerogram 25th Anniversary Edition December 2018
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