This January, Flare Path opened up Worthing Theatres programme for the New Year, and there was a great history of Worthing and the Theatre that tied into the show.
One of the lead actors in Flare Path, Daniel Fraser, who played RAF Officer Teddy Graham, is the Grandson of Bill Fraser – The first acting manager of The Connaught Theatre! Bill’s contribution to the theatre was astronomical, and when we were a repertory company many years ago, Bill would be a regular star in productions. Not only that, but Bill Fraser also served as an RAF officer during the Second World War, a role that Daniel Fraser brought to life in this production.
We also had 93 year old local war veteran Flight Lieutenant Roy Hastings attend a matinee performance on Saturday 30th January, a day before this 94th birthday. He and his family met the cast after the show in the Frasers Bar.
During WWII he was a navigator in Short Stirlings for 199 Squadron and later he flew for 100 Group. In the former he was involved on missions over Germany as well as running guns and supplies to the Free French. For 100 Group he and his crew were involved in jamming German radar as well as acting as decoys to draw German fighters away from the paths of the Lancasters. We interviewed him at Worthing Museum & Art gallery and he had some hair raising stories, completing 43 operations, which was a rarity as most officers averaged just over 10.