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He makes other appearances in the book, most notably as the victim of a debagging prank in the train to London, the day before the 33 aircrew decorated for the Dams Raid received their awards at Buckingham Palace. To preserve his modesty in the presence of several WAAF officers, the partially dressed Goodale was shut in a train lavatory while the adjutant Harry Humphries persuaded the men playing cards in another compartment to return his trousers.

When he left the RAF inhe worked first for Plessey. In the late s he became sales manager of the aircraft and armaments manufacturer, Short Brothers and Harland, who were based in Newtownards, Northern Ireland. This necessitated a family move to this small town, 10 miles from Belfast at the top of the picturesque Strangford Lough.

Before this move took place, Brian Goodale stayed at a small hotel in the town called the Devonshire Arms. At some point in this stay, he lent his signed copy of The Dam Busters to the landlord.

Paul Brickhill

As his son, Simon Goodale, says: The Goodale family — Brian, his wife and their two teenage boys — settled into a house in the town and Simon went to a local school. According to Simon, when his father went back to the hotel to look for his book: The Goodales moved back to England, after five years living in Newtownards, and then in Brian Brickill died xambusters cancer aged just Simon assumed that the book was lost and never thought about it until one day recently a bbrickhill told him that he had seen a TV programme about his father.

He dismissed this information at first, thinking that he was talking about a rerun of The Dam Busters film, or something similar, but the colleague persisted, telling him that his father was mentioned by name.

You could end up on television and with a tidy sum in your pocket. He had left the book behind, she said, when he went off without paying his bill. She had had the book for sometime, but had now decided to sell it. The experts advised her that it was certainly worth several hundred pounds. The book duly went for auction in September last year, as I noted on this blog at the time.


She was sad to see it go, she said, because she had just got to know it.

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When Simon Goodale saw the repeat of the programme, he was greatly concerned that his father was portrayed as someone down on his luck who had left a hotel bill eambusters.

He points out that the family lived in Newtownards for five years, and that Brian Goodale had an important job with a well known local firm. The local press had carried several articles about him, so the idea that he could not be traced about an unpaid bill was absurd. He also knew that his father had been annoyed that his book, which he had lent to the landlord in good faith, had apparently been mislaid.

Simon has now persuaded the BBC to damgusters the Flog It episode from the iPlayer facility and is seeking an apology from the newspapers which ran a similar story about his father. However, he accepts that he is unlikely to get the book back, since brickhlll was bought in good faith by a collector in Deal. I informed Vanessa Farnham that I sambusters publishing this story, and she sent me the following comments: I remember he was returning to collect his family to return to N.

However he did leave and did not take his belongings nor did he settle his bill. I clearly remember admbusters in his room thinking how strange as I had really liked him and I remember thinking how big his shoes were as I packed his stuff… We never saw Brian again! So anyone could have taken it over the years. My Dad was not a literary man, nor a war hero, but he was a well known and respected Businessman in Newtownards, he was President of the local Rugby Club and dambustwrs member of the Lions Club, the book was never secreted.

It was no way implied that Brian was down on his luck, just that it was a Mystery. I am very sad pauo this has happened.

In her earlier email, Mrs Farnham also informed me that her brother is the same age as Simon Goodale, and was in the same form at school.

Simon Goodale has written to me again, commenting on her statement. After all it was during the troubles and my father was in the armoured car business.


The last time my father stayed in the hotel was when I and my mother stayed there while waiting for our furniture to brickhkll from England, not as she is saying. However, as Simon says, his mother and father and himself all stayed there again some time later, when they had moved over to Northern Ireland, but were waiting for the furniture to arrive.

Mrs Farnham has no explanation as to rbickhill happened to the book while the Goodale family were in the hotel on a second visit. This story has caused great distress bbrickhill the Goodale family, and an apology for this would seem to be the least that should be offered.

Well, this is extraordinary! I have to say that I never even knew this existed. I have been scouring the interwebnet for online material about the aircrew who took part in the Dams Raid for a project I will be unveiling shortly, but in the meantime, I thought I would share the fruits of part of my research.

So far, Psul have come across these online postwar obituaries:.

The Dam Busters (book) – Wikipedia

Thanks to a helpful library subscription, I have also come across four other earlier obituaries which are not generally available in online sources, but can be turned up in newspaper archives.

I know the last of these did not take part in the Dams Raid himself, but I thought his obituary might be of dambusyers. I have posted these four obituaries on my other website, and you can see them here. If you can add any further online or offline material to these links then I would be glad to hear from you.

Primary Menu Home About this blog. Vintage Radio Australia Well, this is extraordinary!

So far, I have come across these online postwar obituaries: Ken Brown George Chalmers Edward Johnnie Johnson David Rodger Danny Walker Thanks to a helpful library subscription, I have also come across four other earlier obituaries which are not generally available in online sources, but can be turned up in newspaper archives.

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