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CHIT-CHAT ~ 2022

CLICK HERE FOR NEWSLETTER No 1 of 2022

Life & Work in Nyasaland:
With kind permission of Mpemba Books, owners of the copyright, we are able to reproduce articles included in Colin Baker's books 'Expatriate Experience of Life and Work in Nyasaland'. These will be added to the website from time to time in no set order.
To access those now included
click here.

Covid Memorial – St Paul's Cathedral, London
In his message of July last year, Ken mentioned that the Association had made a donation towards an appeal which had been launched for a memorial to be erected at St Pauls Cathedral to commemorate those who had died from Covid, which included two of our members. The appeal achieved its due target and the memorial is now in place.
Further,
Click here to view the book of remembrance or to submit names of those who have died of the pandemic.

Sheila Bevan ~ RIP
Sheila Bevan died peacefully on Thursday 23rd June 2022, aged 91. She was the wife of Trevor Bevan, MBE, QPM, who served in Nyasaland from 1954 with previous service in the BSAP and Malaya. A Memorial Service will be held on Wednesday 20th July 2022 at 2.30 pm at St Mary’s Priory Church, Abergavenny. Enquiries to Ted Williams & Sons. Tel: 01873 853942.
    See also:
Sheila Bevan – A Police Officer’s Family Life, 1954 to 1965
    See also: Sheila Bevan – The Parting Years

  Air/Sea Rescue
The first of the Nyasaland Police flyers was John Wilkes who initially flew aircraft in support of the Police from the Luchenza Flying Club. However, South Africa provided a Cessna 172 which John took over and flew on a regular basis. The picture is an extract from his flying log which registers use on 23rd June 1968 in search for a missing person on the Lake. The individual (Supt Neville Williams) was found, safe and well, after drfting all night, when having entered the lake from the Shire river north of Fort Johnston, his boat ran out of fuel.

Margaret Bacon ~ RIP
It is sad to learn that Margaret Bacon passed away in late May of this year, her husband Malcolm, who was in the Signals branch, died in January last year. Margaret, who was a good supporter of the Association, was in her late seventies and was diagnosed with end stage cancer less than two weeks before she died. Her funeral is on Tuesday 21st June at 11.45 -
Click here to view the on-line service.

A Hstory of the Malawi Police, Celebrating a Centenary 1921-2021
This book, researched and compiled by Mr Victor Sibale, was produced under the authority of the Inspector General of the Malawi Police, Dr George Kainja, who has been kind enough to provide us with a copy. We extend our thanks to the IG and to Victor who has particularly asked me to pass on his thanks to those Association members who assisted him with information and material during the time he was compiling it. I will be bringing this quite substantial and informative book with me to the Reunion on 14th July 2022.

How's your Chinyanja?
During his work in putting together the publication "A History of the Malawi Poice - 1921-2021", there was a great deal of necessary research carried out by Victor Sibale. He sought infomation where he could, including reference to this website and from members of our Association. Further, he interviewed a number of former police officers gaining valuable and useful information. By way of a record he filmed much of his work to make an interesting documentary - recorded in Chinyanja (Chichewa), including those interviews with the veterans, a good knowledge of the language is needed to fully appreciate it.

Click here to view this documentary film

Dr Sam Bhima ~ RIP
It is sad to learn the passing of Dr Samuel Bhima wo died on 8th April 2022 at the age of 97. The first African-trained Malawian to practice medicine in Nyasaland he was highly regarded and known to so many of us. He worked variously throughout the country including Zomba, Ncheu, Nkhata Bay and Blantyre from 1953.
    For further information, posted by his daughter Sophie
Click here.
    For a copy of the Times obituary Click here.

PAT MAHONEY ~ RIP
It is sad to learn that Pat Mahoney passed away in January this year, just short of 92. He joined the Nyasaland Police in November 1959 following previous Police service in Cardiff, Cyprus and London. He went on to serve in the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary and following which he joined the Foreign Office as a Security Officer serving in many different countries.

Jackie Morgan reminds us of her late husband, Ian, and others in the attached pictures. Ian a native Nyasa, fluent in the language, joined the Police in August 1953 and served variously throughout the country. A calm, level-headed Officer he commanded much respect from both seniors and juniors in every section of the force.
Click here to view

Mary's first visit to the Nyika Plateau
Mary, well into her nineties and widow of Reg Brill, is one of our senior members, a valuable supporter of the Association and a leading contributer to the website - this is her 18th piece (see
index). Prior to joining the Police in 1953 husband Reg had been in the Agriculture Dept since 1949 and it was in the early 1950s, when then stationed at Rumpi, that they took the opportunity to spent time on the Nyika Plateau.
Click here to view

Must be something interesting
Yes, it's just another Police job. Many of us remember “Ufiti”, the female chimpanzee which, first reported in 1959, was often seen, particularly at a road construction site near Nkata Bay. With her seeming curiosity she largely lost her fear of humans and could be closely approached, often appearing at the door of the engineer's hut. How she got there remains a mystery, extensive research by zoologists identified her as more akin to the species found in West Africa rather than in the east and there was speculation that she was an escaped pet or circus animal originating in Zaire. The Pathe videos here show (a) Ufiti enjoying life free in the bush and (b) the more disturbing display of Game Department staff assisted by Police, in March 1964, placing her in a cage for transport to UK. She was sent to Chester Zoo, where, unhappily, her health was found to be deteriorating rapidly and on 23 April 1964, to prevent further suffering the zoo had no option but to put her down.
(a) Click for Ufiti and freedom
(b) Click for Ufiti trapped


John Wilkes, at the age of 90 (left), looks back on his duties in Nyasaland which, among many others, included OC PMF, deployment to Northern Rhodesia and the first, as a qualified pilot, to provide the Nyasaland Police with an air support capacity.

Volume 7 ~ Let's look forward to something good - for a change!
During his life, in addition to a variety of other publications, Colin Baker produced six volumes of 'Expatriate Experience of Life and Work in Nyasaland'. They consisted of a vast array of articles, memoirs and anecdotes of experiences submitted by individuals covering just about all areas of work and leisure in Nyasaland - many, as we know, submitted by Nypol members. However, he also had material for a seventh volume but passed on before it was put together. This considerable task was taken on by Nypol members Vanessa Farmery and Michael Hunt. After much hard work Vanessa now reports that good progress has been made with the proof/reading and editing and that it will be returned to Colin's family by the end of January for a decision with regard to publication.

            Nyasaland/Malawi Police Centenary 1921-2021
Celebrations to mark this occasion took place at Police Headquarers, Lilongwe, on 30th November 2021 with an impressive parade and march-past in the presence of President Chakwera. A selection of pictures, video recordings as well as a youtube video coverage of the full event is available.
Click here to view

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