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Part 4 - Neville Wynne.jpg
Neville Wynne painting a set in the TVW workshop

    TVW Channel 7’s work shop manager Neville Wynne was not only involved in designing and building sets for television productions, but also responsible for building many of the floats for Seven’s first Christmas Pageant in 1972.

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The Gulliver’s Travels Float

    In addition, Neville spent many hours restoring exhibits for TVW’s museum, before it was dispersed during the rein of Robert Holmes à Court. A Tiger Moth was found abandoned at Jandakot with a bee hive in it, which Neville stripped back to its frame and rebuilt in the Channel Seven workshop.

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Tiger Moth restored by Neville Wynne

    Former Seven Supply Officer Ken Kemp advised that the Company Secretary Frank Moss swapped the engine with a chap in return for a cut away version, to illustrate the internal workings.

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Another TVW museum exhibit was a Slingsby Gull glider, that was also restored by Neville.

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Photo taken by Neville Wynne of Richard Ashton in the cockpit of the Slingsby Gull glider

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Richard points to the Gull Glider at the RAAFA Museum

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TVW’s Slingsby Gull glider now located at the RAAFA Museum

    Though the contents of the TVW Museum have long gone, the Tiger Moth and the Glider can now be found displayed at the Royal Australian Air Force Association (WA Division) Aviation Heritage Museum in Bull Creek.

    Sadly Neville lost his life in a glider accident on Sunday 3rd March 1991. It was a glider he had been restoring over many years.

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    The below information was kindly provided by workmates of Neville. Don Woodward was a Seven reporter and fellow pilot, as was Tim Boase, who flew the Seven News helicopter to cover the story.

Don has kindly provided the following background…

Neville was flying a glider called a Kookaburra, a very old wooden trainer. I was gliding the day of the accident at Beverley and believe Neville’s flight was the first after its yearly service. Tim Thunder (Seven audio operator now deceased) was at Cunderdin and he was going to go for a ride with Neville after the test flight. Part of the procedures of doing a yearly test flight in a glider involves a high speed run. I believe Neville was doing this when glue holding a bulkhead in the rear of the fuselage failed. This bulkhead was where the horizontal tail is secured to the fuselage. The tail broke away making the Kookaburra uncontrollable. Neville had a parachute on but was unable to bail out in time due to a safety catch on the front of the canopy.

Contact was then made with Andrew Repton, the gentleman who compiled the accident report and has now kindly added this explanation…

I investigated and worked out the sequence of events that led to the glider crash that involved Neville.

I don’t have a copy anymore that I know off, but I remember exactly what happened. I was on duty instructing that day as well

It seems that Neville had been restoring the glider over a number of years, but the part of the plane that came apart was a section still held together by old glue, which degrades over time.

The tail eventually fell off during a high speed test run.

The unfortunate thing is that the safety strap they used to keep the canopy shut during flight, also prevented Neville from opening the hatch to parachute to safety.

Andrew advised that there was evidence that Neville had made a vain effort to break his way out of the canopy.

Please find attached a copy of the Gliding Federation of Australia’s Airworthiness Directive regarding this model of glider, following the crash.

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    Two years earlier at at TVW’s 30th Anniversary in 1989 it was a time for Seven veterans to celebrate their many achievements over the decades. Three present on that occasion were former TVW Supply Officer Ken Kemp, Workshop Manager Neville Wynne and veteran producer director Brian Williams.

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Ken Kemp, Neville Wynne and Brian Williams

Neville was a skilled craftsman of many disciplines who is sadly missed by all who knew him.

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