This is SKYRACK 40, published on 6th December1961 by Ron Bennett, 13  West Cliffe Grove, Harrogate, Yorkshire,  England. 6d per copy, 2/6d for six  issues. 35cents for 6 issues in USA (six issues sent by air for 65cents) where subscriptions should be sent to Bob Pavlat, 6001-43rd Avenue, Hyattsville, Md.  News of interest to sf fans, whether professional, faanish or just social,  is always welcome. Heading and cartoon are this issue by Liverpool’s Eddie  Jones.


It’s just ten years since the formation of the Liverpool Science Fiction Association, whose members have been so actively engaged in many social pursuits, whose members have been so prominent at so many national conventions and whose members gave us several excellent issues of SPACE DIVERSIONS. On 11th/12th November the Society, now known as the, Liverpool Group, celebrated its entry into double figures with a party and slap-up-beano. Some thirty fans representing the country’s major groups gathered at the Higher Bebington home of Ina and Norman Shorrock where coal tea was served before guests piled into cars and on to scooters for a rousing motorcade journey into the metropolis at the Lancashire end of the Mersey Tunnel. A Chinese restaurant was invaded, and subjected to the full treatment. Hats and coats wore exchanged as souvenirs and the party moved on to the Group’s recently redecorated clubroooms. An auction was held, dances were danced and smooth, smooth drinks (Shorrocks 69’s) were served. More and more fans arrived and the pressure was relieved by frequent excursions to the nearby Jacaranda club. The party included sleep on its programme with a move back to Arnot Way, where a more energetic programme was continued on the Sunday morning. The Harrogate contingent returned east by the grace of Phil Rogers who returned to Scunthorpe via Harrogate, Manchester (with Eric Bentcliffe & Beryl) and a safari across the Wirral Peninsula.

ATTENDEES AT THE LIVERPOOL 10th ANNIVERSARY PARTY WERE: Norman & Ina Shorrock, Bruce Burn, Ethel Lindsay, Eric & Margaret Jones, Archie Mercer, Jimmy Groves, Pat Kearney, Al Ajax Hoch, Mike Moorcock, Dave Barber, Geoff Winterman, John Humph Humphries, Peter Mabey, Wally & Joy Johnson, Audrey Eversfield, Ron Bennett, Elizabeth Humbey, Eddie Jones, Norman Weedall, Bob Richardson, Joe Navin, John Roles, Eric Bentoliffe & Beryl, Phil Rogers, Pat & Frank Milnes, Stan & Marjorie Nuttall, Pat & Peggy Denton, John Owen, Les Johnson, Ted and Geoff Collins and a dozen sophisticated beatniks who gatecrashed early ayem.  

BUT IT WASN’T IN SKYRACK, they said when they saw the ring, so to put the records straight condolences are offered Miss Elizbeth Humbey, one time guest attendee of the Washington Science Fiction Association, on the occasion of her enagement to one time guest attendee of the Westminster Salvation Army Hostel, Ron Bennett.  

YOU’RE NOT LOSING A DAUGHTER BUT GAINING A FANCLUB, Jimmy Groves told Bill Temple when on 25th November, Bill’s daughter Anne married BSFA Secretary Joe Patrizio. Fifty people attended the Congregational Church, Wembley. The bride was in white and the four bridesmaids in yellow. Fans present were Ted Forsyth, Jimmy Groves, Ethel Lindsay, Brian Burgess, Fred Parker, Bruce Burn, Alan Rispin, Diane Goulding, Pat Kearney, Betty & Ian Peters, Ken & Irene Potter, Don Geldart, Al Ajax Hoch and of course Joe Patrizio. From Edinburgh came Joe’s parents, brother Michael (The Best Man at 16), brother Victor with wife and son, and Victor’s mother-in-law. Gus Poll, a friend from Joe’s work (Leo Computers) was there and has been inveigled into coming to the next SFCoL meeting. In Church the SFCoL choir was obviously out of practice and Ken Potter reluctantly decided not to overwhelm everyone with his bass profundo, though Victor’s son spent most of the time tuning his voice. Outside the church the photographer spent so long taking pictures that the bride almost froze solid. After this ordeal guests made their way to a nearby hotel where the assembled multitude filed past the bride and groom to offer condolences and/or congratulations where appropriate. It was soon obvious which were Joe’s friends as they filled the spots at the bar. When everyone was well lubricated the wedding breakfast was served.: Champagne followed and Bill Temple began his speech, “Unaccustomed as I am to speaking in public......, however.....”. He said that he was under orders not to say anything as when he opened his mouth he put his foot in it. Disregarding this, however, he sailed gaily on, naturally. He said that Joe combined serveral of his own interests. Bill had served with an Edinburgh regiment, he liked Italy and hoped to go back again and thirdly there was science fiction. He liked selling science fiction and certainly he likes Scotch (a fact most of us know). In fact, he said, Joe is something like a combination of Rabbie Burns, Michelangelo and William F. Temple. When someone asked further about SF, Bill turned to the SFCoL saying, “‘The Science Fiction Group is over there..chained to the table, of course.” In view of Joe’s job, the best congratulatory telegram read, “May your future programme be well calculated.” Joe made a short speech and then the fans drifted back to the bar. Joe and Anne circulated amongst the guests and Bruce Burn and Ken Potter started an impromptu glee club, helped at times by Fred Parker and Irene.
(Ted Forsyth)

Ethel Lindsay adds that after the departure of bride and groom for their secret honeymoon in Golders Green, the majority of SFCoL members went off to see The Day The Earth Caught Fire.  

THE 62 EASTERCON. A statement was promised for this issue of Skyrack, but unfortunately it is not the statement I had hoped to make. A month ago, at the time of the last issue, negotiations were pending with what was quoted as being “an excelIent North Western Hotel.” This was the Kendal Hotel in Kendal, Westmorland, on the edge of the Lake District. I had spent a day travelling up to the city and looking over the hotel and at that time only final terms had to be arranged. Sad to relate, however, negotiations broke down dramatically and suddenly. We are currently without a convention site - a sad state of affairs, but one which it is hoped will changed.  

LAP OF HONOUR. Last issue we left our wandering Orion Editrix on the last lap of her Stateside tour, all ready to leave New York on 10th November. Ella was eventually persuaded to extend her stay for a further fortnight in order to attend the Philcon (Philadelphia, 18/19 Nov) at which gatherng she was looking forward to meeting Harry Warner once again. The only others news to hand about Ella’s return trip is that she sailed from New York 24th Nov, on Cunard’s 'Sylvania’ and that she should be back in the U.K. by the time you read this.  

THE AUCTION. The file of Lee Hoffman’s EXCELSIOR went to Walter Breen for $3. The two issues of PSYCHOTIC were taken by Darroll Pardoe for 8/-. Dick Schultz paid 6/- for THE SELECTED WRITINGS OF RICK SNEARY. The Three Tattooed Dragon booklets went to Lenny Kaye for $2.50 per. And the 20 consecutive FAPA mailings are right now in the process of being parcelled off to Dick Bergeron who bid $40 on as bulky an auction lot as has ever been sold in fandom. Bidding closes 1st Jan on the remaining items, - half cash to Bennett and half to the buyers favourite fannish charity. Lot l2. Dick.Schultz has bid 10/-  on the first issue of Ray Bradbury’s FUTURIA FANTASIA. Lot 13 the aforementioned Richard Schultz has also bid on the original TATTOOED DRAGON publication by Bill Rotsler, to the tune of 14/-. John Foyster has bid 25/- for the 100 page anthology THE INCOMPLEAT BURBEE. Lot 15. Vic Ryan is currently high with a bid of $2 on DAG’s GRUE 29.

All fans except creditors are asked to note that 7 Southway has now ceased to exist as an alternative address. My parents have moved and any mail sent to Southway will possibly not be seen. Other news on the Harrogate scene - my, how the joint is jumping - is that since the last issue we have been visited by two fans. Keith Freeman, now stationed at nearby (sic) Dishforth, but at present on a short leave, has dropped in for a couple of stencil and flat-minding sessions and Phil Rogers dropped Liz and me off after the Liverpool party, staying long enough to try to convince us to buy a caravan. I hope to see them again here soon, and I’ll also take the opportunity of inviting any fan to drop in; If you have your own bedding (li-lo etc) or don’t mind trying the armchairs, you can stay over any night. Er, no, despite the first paragraph on this page, the Easter Con will not be held at 13 West Cliffe Grove.....  

IT HAS BEEN A BLANK MONTH on the British zinescene but notable from the US have been CRY 154 (Box 92, 507 3rd Ave., Seattle 4, Washington) with lots of interesting chitchat, PANIC BUTTON 6 (Les Nirenberg, 1217 Weston Rd., Toronto 15, Ontario, Canada) with some snide comments on the world in which we live, and a very thick WARHOON 13 (Dick Bergeron, 110 Bank St., New.York 14) with Walt Willis’ Harp outstanding and well backed up by Lowndes, Berry and Blish. From the home fringe quarters comes another roaring SCRIBBLE from Colin Freeman, Ward 3, Scotton Banks Hospital, Knaresborough,Yorks., which is well worth a try for 6d.  

TAFF - somewhere around you’ll probably notice a TAFF voting form. Use it now, while you remember. It’s not too much trouble to fill the form in and address an envelope, at the same time marking on your shopping list a reminder to buy a postal order. The TAFF treasury is, as is well, known, in a fairly healthy state, but the more votes (and cash) the better. The present campaign between Ethel and Eddie looks like being such a close one that EVERY VOTE WILL COUNT.   Use yours! Now!

STOP PRESS!! Wandering Ella Parker is back with us. Ella docked early Saturday morning (2nd Dec) in Liverpool and rushed over to Arnot Way to drag the Shorrocks out of bed. She says that she had a restful but near boring voyage across the Pond home, that she wonders who arranged the bad spell of weather for her, that everything looks small and that she thinks our English policemen are wonderful. She’ll be back at 151 Canterbury Rd., West Kilburn, NW 6 very shortly and the suspended Friday meetings at the Penitentiary will be starting up again 15th December. Any BSFA members who live in London or who will be visiting will be welcome to drop in then.  

Congratulations are due to honorary Britfen Dave & Ruth Kyle who have us produced a.near 9lb matzoball in the shape of Arthur Chester Kyle III --- From Ken Slater; Rushed reprint of the Aldiss Penguin SF out tomorrow. Tolkein's, “The Silmarillion”out by Allen & Unwin next autumn. --- Melbourne SF Club has had to move – may be contacted by writing Mervyn Binns, 90 Spring St. Preston, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. --- London summary: Klaus Eylman spent a week in London recently. Visited SFCol members and Alan Dodd...Ian & Betty Peters held a well-attended party Hallowe'en ...Don Geldart now back in Britain..Arthur Clarke visited Globe 2nd Nov .:::: Fan gathering 4/5th Nov at Stourbridge where Dave Hale and Ken Cheslin hosted Jhim Linwood, Archie Mercer, Bruce Burn, Ajax and Al and Nell Rispin. Thanks for the card, peoples. ::: Rolf Gindorf was in London recently too. Attended the above-mentioned Hallowe’en party. ::: Ted White’s NULL-F 23 retracts all “crude remarks” he may have at any time uttered in regard to Chris Moskowitz thereby evidently saving New York fandom from another lawsuit. Hey ho. :::: BUG EYE 9 in from Hel Klemm, 16 Uhland Str., Utfort/Eick, (22a) Krs Moers, Germany. :::: CoAs - Don Geldart, Sgts Mess, 3rd Carabiniers, (POWDG), Aliwal Barracks, Tidworth, Hants. --- Ivor Mayne, Anchorage Farm Caravan Site, Bronllys, S. Wales. :::: HAVERINGS 8 in from Ethel Lindsay. :::: The Times of 18th Nov reported the discovery of fossilised organic matter in a meteorite, giving rise to another life on other planets theory.


The following sheet was carried as a flyer with SKYRACK 40, December 1961


WHEN “DOC” WEIR died earlier this year, SF and fantasy enthusiasts lost one of the most learned of their number. Only having been in touch with fandom at large for a comparatively short time, he had already made his mark amongst us as a critic and commentator of considerable erudition in divers fields, whilst remaining an exceptionally easy person for the less-erudite to talk with. Himself a scientist, he had a particular love for freefantasy, and during his lifetime accumulated a notable collection of fantastic literature of all kinds.

At the Easter convention, the suggestion was made that it would be a worthwhile offering to purchase the relevant portion of Doc’s collection, thus saving it from probable dispersal. Accordingly, a fund was launched with the object of raising sufficient money to offer Mrs Weir a fair price for the  items required. These would then be administered by the British Science Fiction Association’s library as a special Memorial Collection. If for  any reason the scheme proved impossible, the money would be otherwise used to commemorate Doc in appropriate fashion, probably by the purchase of books from outside sources.

It is estimated that at least £50 (fifty pounds) will be required to bring the project to fruition. Some of this is already in hand, and more has been offered, but further donations are still needed. It cannot be too strongly emphasised that the object of the Fund is to provide something of lasting benefit to lovers of the fantastic in literature, if possible by preventing the dissipation of an important collection of the genre.

Archie Mercer, until recently Hon. Treasurer of the B.S.F.A., is now acting in the same capacity for the Fund. Donations should be sent to him at:

434/4 Newark Road. North Hykeham LINCOLN

Cheques should be made payable to A.H. Mercer, and crossed. Thank you.

Circular produced by Ken Cheslin and distributed though the good offices of sundry worthies. Decorations by Jim Cawthorn.       AM              December 1961