Travel plan

This is an accurate copy of the original, no corrections have been carried out. NUCLEAR-TESTS -CHRISTMAS ISLAND With reference to last months article, the bombs detonated in the Xmas Island area were in fact Hydrogen bombs in the megaton range, not as stated Atomic bombs. The Atomic tests took place in the Australian desert Maralinga and the Montebello islands. The first 'H' bomb was detonated at 8,000 feet and one and a half nautical miles from Malden island, it was dropped from a Valiant V bomber flying at 45,000 feet on the 15th May 1957, this was followed by two more drops on the 31st May and the 19th June. Blast gauges, high speed cameras and other instraments had been set up on Malden to monitor effects and the explosions were witnessed by the control ships H.M.S Narvick and H.M.S Warrior. The accuracy and effects of these tests allowed for the next series of tests to be conducted one and a half miles off the south east tip of Xmas island which is four hundred miles north of Malden and was inhabited by 3,000 service personnel and some Gilbert islanders at the time. Four bombs were detonated at xmas island by the same method as at MaIden, the point of ground zero being twenty miles from the Airfield and Main Camp and twenty five miles from the Port Camp, these drops took place on the 8th November 1957, 28th April and the 2nd and 11th September 1958, two smaller devices were also detonated from cages slung beneath balloons to complete the tests. Xmas island was discovered by Captain James Cook on Xmas eve 1777 in H.M. ships Resolution and Discovery, it is the largest coral atoll in the Pacific and lies 20 north of the equator and is part of Line islands, it isthiry five miles long by twenty four miles at its widest point roughly forming the shape of a lobsters claw. MaIden island was discovered by Captain the Rt. Hon Lord Byron of H.M.S Blonde on 29th July 1825, it is a flat triangular coral island 20 square miles in area. My draft to Xmas island enabled me to fly around the world east to west by leaving U.K by R .A. F Comet from Colerne, Dorset with stopovers at El Adem, Libya, Bahrain, Negombo, Ceylon, Singapore, Darwin and Ipswick nr. Brisbane. Here we switched to a Hastings 4 engine plane, unfortunately I got left behind (have you ever been alone in the great unknown with only what you stood up in?) and a very large hangover. Within a couple of days I'd managed to hitch a lift on one of three Dakota's en-route to xmas island stopping over at Noumea, Fiji and Canton island finally arriving at Xmas isle several days after my fellow travellers - big rollickings did follow. My return journey to U.K. a year later was by Hastings to Honolulu, San Francisco, Omaha, Goose Bay, Labrador, Reykjavik and finally Lyneham. The Naval party onshore at Xmas island was designated NP25l2 until December 1957 when the Port area was commissioned as H.M.S. Resolution. Dave Rogers.