Teenager Elizabeth Scott-Paine looked again at the
message and couldn’t believe her eyes. Life for her
was wonderful at the moment, she was involved with
what was to become her life long passion,.. Horses.
The young lady had to immediately remove herself
from the Riding School of Major Cave-Humphroy,
(for Advanced Riders and Teachers), where she was
taking her exams to take her, I:O:H ( Institute of
Horse). She had never dreamt of disobeying any of
her Father’s wishes, and so with a heavy heart she
left Imber Court and within a few hours presented
herself at the Flying Boat Dock in Poole, Dorset. She
had Ten Pounds in her Pocket.
Elizabeth jumped into the 30ft Sea Plane Tender which
took her to the enormous Flying Boat, the engines
roared and the plane eventually took off into the bright
morning sky. Four hours later she landed in Spain, the
craft re-fuelled and quickly took off again towards
Gibraltar, re-fuelled again and stayed for the night at
the South of France. The Flying Boat of the day, could
fly less than four hours before landing for fuel, then as
now, passengers have to disembark for this purpose, then
continue their journey, thus Elizabeth had to endure not
less than twelve take-offs and twelve landings as well as
four nights in Hotels on the route. All of these movements
requiring one of Father’s Sea plane Tenders to move the
passengers and crew, the Royal Mail, freight and baggage.
Eventually they arrived at Mombasa in Kenya where she
was transferred to a six-seat plane which took her to Umtali.
Then one last stage in the Mail Plane where she sat next to
the Pilot in this very small Aircraft; Bulawayo was reached
as the dusk crept over the horizon. This Town in Rhodesia
was to be her new home for the next Ten Years.
The cost of this flight:- a little over six hundred pounds.
Elizabeth Scott- Paine with her savings bought a little motor car
for sixty pounds and a Pony for another sixty pounds. From this
small beginning, she built her life as a horse woman, built her
own stables and made her living from them, joined the RAF as a
Driver, drove Ambulances, Busses and Three Ton Lorries…..
Found time to court and marry a ‘Wellington’ Pilot, have two kids
and live happily ever after.
Elizabeth lives on in Salisbury (England), where I visit her at least
once a week, our main topic of conversation? Hubert Scott-Paine
and my Campaign to have the Woolston Bridge named after him.
1940 prices, 10 cigarettes, 10pence (4p)
War Widows Pension, £22 per annum
Average council Rent 8 shillings per week (40p)
Children’s pocket money 3 to 6d (1 to 3p)