Letters from Perkins to Dr. Friedman and enquiries in 1975 states he helped to set up new Regional Air Traffic Control Centre at Lakenheath in SM 53, but the CPS 5 radar installed was found not to be suitable. Also the height finding equipment was switched off after a few months. Perkins goes on to say, Because I had no vector scanning or elevation data I could not see the target circle behind the interception aircraft. I was also busy relaying information to higher f??? which had been patched in by telephone.
So, this wonderkid was not only speaking to him [the pilot? - DC], controlling the aircraft but doing a running commentary and carrying out an interception he had never before done in his life! All this without the necessary radar equipment!
About 3 months after the Lakenheath incident I joined the RAF school of Fighter Control as an instructor where I remained for about three years. It took about 3 months to train someone to become a fighter controller and the failure rate was significant, yet Perkins alleged he controlled the Venom without ever having controlled an interception before.
As a matter of fact a researcher I know spoke to Perkins in the late 70s and Perkins admitted - after being confronted with the facts- he had not controlled the fighter but had listened on radio to the whole event , and wrote out his report based entirely on what he had overheard on radio.
Moreover, in his letter Perkins admitted the whole watch team working with him were off duty so there was some confusion as to who did what in between the different watch times.
Let me make it clear the pilot had at no time uttered the words Ive got my guns locked on him. What he did say was a code word which was understood by me and my interception team.
The USAF people would have no inkling at all what it meant, the thing is that Perkins heard this word, hadnt a clue what it meant, asked his team mates if anybody knew . One bright [airman?] suggested it might mean Ive got my guns locked on him so from that moment it became set in concrete and that is what the report said the pilot said.
Another piece of their imagination is the statement that no 2 pilot asked no 1 pilot Did you see anything? No 1 pilot is alleged to have something like it was the damnedest thing I ever saw. What he actually said it was well discuss at debriefing
He was also confused by mistaking Sculthorpe for Bentwaters, and thought the fighters came from somewhere near London but did not know how it had arrived.
In his 1975 letter Perkins also stated that there was probably a difference in phraseology used by the pilot and that written down in the formal report later. This is where too much watching of American movies probably took over. One has only to read what the Venom pilots allegedly said to know that RAF pilots dont speak like that. Also the bit about Ive got my guns locked on him was sheer imagination, as that type of Venom night fighter did not have that facility*. Also, if it had, the pilot would not use those words but a simple code word. Can anyone imagine a British pilot saying It was the damnedest thing I ever saw?
I have a copy of a letter from Dr Thayer to Dr Friedman in which considerable doubts are cast on the Blue Book Report*. There were several inaccuracies, parts and names deleted and a rather hurried complete account in 1968
*Poor quality of Blue Book reports and investigations. *Dr MacDonald, Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona, one of Americas leading scientists ??? criticised the Condon Report and entries in the Blue Book.
In the mag called Pilot of November 1988 it was stated that the editor had been informed officially that the pilots report had been lost, probably destroyed. In answer to a question from the floor at a discussion on UFOs the speaker [from the MOD] said the reports and photographs had been accidentally destroyed. However Ralph Noyes etc
Dr Thayer in his investigation describe the original reports as confusing especially some of the telegraph reports submitted immediately after the incident. Dr Thayer himself tried to contact Royal Radar Establishment (RRE) in 1971, but they said they had no knowledge of the Lakenheath incident. This is the exact reply to any other people seeking information though, for example US, ????? contacting British Air Attaché(?).
One telegraphic report stated that the Venom was a single seater and the pilot was trying to watch the radar and fly the aircraft at the same time. Another suggested the pilot had taken off without his radar operator/navigator!
A map produced by Perkins and accepted without question by Blue Book and the Condon report was completely inaccurate, some places as Sculthorpe being some 50 miles fro their true position.