W. 23  First Officer

Dolores Theresa 'Jackie' Sorour

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 b. 1 Mar 1920, Pretoria, South Africa 31 Jul 1940 to 30 Nov 1945 

 dolores surour 1938  RAeC 1938      

 

Father: Emil Sorour (originally French, poss. Arthur Emilien Sureur, naturalised British, d. before Jackie's birth)

5 ft 2½ in tall, dark brown hair

Mother: V [remarried a Mr Helling when Jackie was 6 months old], of 136 Schoeman St, Pretoria, SA

Brought up mostly by her grandmother; first flight at age 15 (and first parachute jump at age 16) in South Africa. Moved to the UK in 1938 and learnt to fly at the Aeronautical College, Witney, Oxon..

She has talked about the shock of meeting a "cultured, educated negro" at Oxford, "I'd never met one before".

prev: WAAF ACW/1 from Sep 1939, stationed at Rye as a radar operator


Postings: 5TFPP, 15FPP, 4FPP, 6FPP

Reprimanded for "inattention to airfield control signals at Cosford", 30 Mar 1945

5 accidents, 1 her fault:

- 30 Jun 1942, she over-ran the runway in a Seafire and hit a fence, after one flap failed to lower

- 27 Jan 1943, she had to land her Spitfire VIII with the tail wheel retracted, after it failed to lower

- 19 Feb 1943, in an Anson; she overshot the landing due to an error of judgement

- 18 Oct 1943, another Spitfire's tail wheel failed to lower and lock

- 10 Jan 1944, her Spitfire was struck by a vehicle following behind her when she turned

 

"Has shown exceptional keenness all the time she has been with this Ferry Pool" ... "A keen, hardworking pilot.; should endeavour to use more common-sense in flying. Discipline, excellent"

King's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air, "for having ferried more aircraft during the war than any other man or woman."


m. 12 Jan 1945, in Taunton, Somerset Capt. Reginald Moggridge RE "the elder son of the well-known Taunton builder" (2 daughters, Veronica (Jill) b. 1946 and Candida b. 1961)

 

 

"A housewife with a hobby that keeps her in the air" - With daughter Jill in 1949 (Coventry Evening Telegraph)

 

Jean Lennox Bird Trophy in 1951

Awarded her RAF 'Wings' in 1954, one of 5 women (all ex-ATA pilots) to do so when serving with the short-lived (1 Feb 1949 - 1954) Women's Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve (WRAFVR). The others were Jean Bird, Benedetta Willis, Freydis Leaf and Joan Hughes 

"When she is at home she takes part in local amateur acting"

 

In 1956, Veronica Volkersz wrote that Jackie was one of only 7 women flying commercially:  "Jackie Moggridge lives in Taunton with her husband and a ten-year-old daughter. For the past year she has been ferrying Spitfires from the Middle East to Burma" and concluded that "The tragedy is that for women, commercial aviation is now - except, possibly, in Russia - a closed field."

Published her autobiography, "Woman Pilot" in 1957: "This autobography of a pretty and distinguished woman is romantic and in places extraordinarily moving, perhaps because Jackie Moggridge shines through her writing as a courageous, honest and really nice, if very determined, personality" - Truth

 Pilot for Channel Airways from 1957-1960, then Meridian Air Maps in Scotand.

 

On 29 April 1994, she flew in Spitfire IX ML407 to Duxford (with Caroline Grace at the controls, it was converted to a two-seater post-war) to deliver it to Johnnie Houlton DFC - exactly 50 years after she had originally delivered it to ... Johnnie Houlton at Duxford.

 Reg d. 1997

d. 7 Jan 2004 - Taunton, Somerset: her ashes were scattered over Dunkeswell Aerodrome by Caroline Grace, flying Spitfire ML407

 

Wikipedia story here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jackie_Moggridge


 Download ATA Pilot Personal Record (.zip file):download grey

Listen to a 1984 interview with Jackie here: https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/80008464

 

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