Nevil Shute Norway Foundation

Newsletter dated April 2008


John Anderson writes:

The UK2009 Nevil Shute Conference will be in York, UK from 26th to 31st July 2009.

In addition to presentations and discussions of our favourite author, there will be excursions to Sherburn-in-Elmet Aero Club where Shute was a director and to the Yorkshire Air Museum for the opening of the Nevil Shute Exhibition.

The venue is located in the heart of historic York with its many attractions.

So come and renew friendships and make new ones in the location where Shute spent seven formative years and where Airspeed began.

Further details will posted on the website in due course.


In the long run, it is intended to create a museum of Nevil Shute artefacts. The location has yet to be decided, but planning is already underway.

To complement it, a Virtual Museum of photographs of items relating to Nevil Shute's life is being constructed on the web site.

We are looking for more items and are asking anyone who may have photographs of items relating to Nevil Shute and wishes to share them with a larger audience, to please send them to: the Webmaster and Laura Schneider

If you wish to be credited or be anonymous, we will honour your request.

If you could share a bit of information about your photograph, please feel free to share it!


Alison Jenner writes:

Plans are coming together for the weekend mini-conference at Dartmouth, Devon, UK on 10-11 May. An international group of 16 Shutists are meeting there, the location of two of his novels, Lonely Road and Most Secret.

Salcombe, the next estuary along the coast also features in Marazan and Pilotage.

We plan to visit Slapton Sands on the Saturday morning, tour the Royal Naval College in the afternoon, and dine at the Royal Castle Hotel in the evening - disguised as the "Royal Sovereign" in one of the books (which one? answers by email please).

The following day there will be some presentations and an update on the plans for York 2009. The event will culminate in a trip upriver to Dittisham.

Early arrivals on Friday will dine at one of Dartmouth's oldest venues, the Cherub Inn.

Many of the group will stay at the Townstal Farmhouse Hotel but as there are plenty of good hotels and B & B in Dartmouth - to cater for every pocket - late bookings should not be a problem.

Anyone who has not yet booked and wants to join us, please contact Alison Jenner at: without delay.

Editor's Comment: I visited Dartmouth several years ago and it is a very picturesque and atmospheric place. I wish I could be there this time.


Tom Wenham writes:

I have just seen that are selling the DVD of the "On The Beach", with G Peck Esq, Ava G, Fred Astaire et al, for £5.99 with free postage (in the UK at least).


Richard Kidd has sent a paperback cover of The Far Country for our website. Richard writes:

The illustration of (presumably) Jennifer Morton is as unlike how I picture her character as it is possible to be.

I have always thought that the cover illustrators of books should be made to read the book before doing the illustrations........(however the kneeling picture of Carl looks much as I pictured him)

See the cover at: Richard's cover is the last of the 3 Far Country Covers. I never saw Jennifer as that sultry either.


If you have a book cover not featured at: please scan it and email it

This is not a mistake. David, our UK Librarian, is also our webmaster.


John Anderson writes:

In Slide Rule, Shute writes that in the winter of 1932-33 Airspeed built an aircraft to the design of WS Shackleton and Lee Murray. This is described as a high wing monoplane 2 seater with a pusher engine. Only one was built. It was designed for the private flyer market that was disappearing in the recession.

It was registered as G-ACBP. Thanks to research by Phil Nixon we know that it is listed in as being owned by AA Bathurst (Lord Apsley) & Miss D Miles-Yate and broken up in 1937.

It was also apparently featured in "The Aeroplane" magazine in May 1933.

Can anyone locate a copy of this magazine ?

It would be nice to have more information on this aircraft which would have been built in the bus garage in York probably between the Ferries and the Courier as something to keep work going in the shop.

Remarkably, there are contemporary photographs of this unique aircraft still available and we hope to have one on the website soon.


John Anderson has been part of the team arranging a Nevil Shute exhibit, which will eventually be on display at Yorkshire Air Museum at Elvington near York in The UK.

John Anderson writes:

My wife and I were invited guests yesterday, representing the Foundation, at the formal opening of the "Against the Odds" exhibition.

This was at the Yorkshire Air Museum at Elvington and was formally opened by Sir David Jason, a well known British actor and himself an aviation enthusiast and pilot.

The guests ranged from local dignitaries, Trustees and associates of the Museum and a good number of Bomber Command veterans.

The exhibition tells the story of Bomber Command in World War 2 and has been adapted from the original put on by the Imperial War Museum.

We were able to have a preview of the exhibition prior to the public opening after lunch. The Museum was fuller than I've ever seen it and the opening was covered by local press, radio and television.

Our Nevil Shute exhibit will be mounted in the next few months. The display boards are made and on site - yesterday was not the occasion to look at them, that will be on 10th April when we visit YAM to discuss our exhibiltion with Ian Reed.

I was standing looking at the exhibits alongside another guest. He glanced at my lapel badge and said "I didn't know Nevil Shute had a Foundation!" He knew and loved the books and asked what the Foundation did, so I filled him in a bit and gave him our website address.

It was rather moving to see the veterans, mostly now in their late 80's and 90's chatting and enjoying the day - the contemporaries, if you like, of the Jerry Chambers's and Peter Marshall's of NSNs wartime novels.

Elvington is not only a Museum but is the Allied Air Forces Memorial in the UK. I cannot think of a more appropriate place for an exhibition about Shute's life and work.


2 Pairs of binoculars, said to be owned by Nevil Shute, are coming up for auction. Those interested can contact Ben Martin

The binoculars are inscribed "N. Shute" which originally made me suspicious that they may be fakes as Shute did not use his pen name privately and his daughter Shirley says that he was not one to put his name on things.

On the other hand the binoculars fit Shirley's description of her father having 2 pairs. Shirley wrote to me that: "He did have two pairs of binoculars, the old pair and the flashy, new pair which were larger and stronger than the original pair. As a yachtsman, it was important to him to have good binoculars."

Also, they are said to have come from the Aero Club and if Shute had donated them to the Aero Club or to friends, the recipients may well have made the inscription just for labelling purposes. Having been suspicious at first, I now think the binoculars may well be genuine but I really have no idea and any potential buyers must make their own fully informed decisions.

The binoculars are coming up for auction very soon on 9th April.

Details can be viewed here:

To see images of the binoculars contact Ben Martin Dominic Winter Book Auctions, Broadway Lane, South Cerney, Gloucestershire GL7 5UQ Tel: +44 (0)1285 860006


Laura Schneider writes:

Shutists from The Tri-State Area are welcome !

The Nevil Shute Society book group has grown from a local New Jersey Chapter to one that also includes members from New York and Pennsylvania. Our next meeting on 27 April is in a beautiful part of our area. We're reading The Seafarers and all are welcome.

If anyone is interested in joining us, please contact me for the details. Laura Schneider

P.S. Our group may end up at the Jersey Shore this summer !


After four and a half years I am retiring as newsletter editor and this is my last newsletter.

I have really enjoyed my time as the newsletter editor and hope the next editor has as much fun as I did.

Please wait a week for the changeover of the editors and resetting of the email address
and then reply to:

The weather remains fine in Sydney with dry and sunny autumn days with deep blue skies.

The nights are cool and perfect for sleeping and the days are perfect for being alive.

I hope you are all well.

Richard Michalak


Write in if you want your name listed and would like to get together with other Shutists in your vicinity.


Jim Wells lives in Lindfield, Sydney
Richard Michalak lives in Paddington, Sydney
Ruth Pearson lives in Adelaide
Neil Wynes Morse lives in Canberra


Julian Stargardt


Bruce A Clarke lives in Bangkok


Jim & Kristi Woodward live in Broken Arrow (east of Tulsa), Oklahoma, USA.
Priscilla Pruitt lives near Bellingham, Washington State
Bill McCandless lives in Joliet near Chicago.
Joy Hogg, Harrietta Michigan (northern lower Michigan, near Traverse City and Cadillac)
David B. Horvath, dhorvath in the domain, near Philadelphia Pennsylvania, USA.
Al Benkelman Warrenton, Virginia