No. 214 (Federated Malay States) Squadron
Royal Air Force

CREWS AND LOSSES

FORTRESS


Model of Flying Fortress  214 Squadron BU-U

NOTE: If the serial number in the aircraft listings on the left is underlined, clicking on the serial number will take you directly to further details. If the serial number is in black, then no further details are available yet. Alternatively, you can scroll down through the Crews section using the scroll bar on your right.

NOTE:
This is not a complete listing of aircraft but is added to as more are identified. Please contact this site if you can add to this list or have any information on the ones that are listed.

NOTE:
In the cases where Fortresses were used on special operations such as radar jamming, the size of the crew, as well as the trade skills required varied considerably.

Fortress Source & Research: John Cripps, K Crawford, Ian Hunt & numerous 214 Squadron veterans & family members


Flying Fortress BATTLE ORDERS 8 APRIL 1945

Note: Fortress  KJ112   "BU.P"  was supposedly lost on the  21/22nd March 1945 which means that the serial has been recorded incorrectly for the aircraft lost on the 22nd.
SOURCE: http://www.retiarius.com    COPYRIGHT Andrew Jeffcock,  papers of Reginald Jeffcock.

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 BU-T

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (7 July 1944) BU-T

Operation to Paris

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (7 July 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (12 August 1944) BU-T

Operation to Brunswick

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (12 August 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010


Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (17 August 1944) BU-T

Operation to German Coast

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (17 August 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (18 August 1944) BU-T

Operation to Bremen

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (18 August 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (28 July 1944) BU-T

Operation to Stuttgart - aborted

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (28 July 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (6 August 1944) BU-T

Operation to Dutch Coast. Aircraft returned to Moreton in Marsh.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (6 August 1944) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB763 (25 August 1944) BU-T

Operation to Stuttgart.

Is listed on Battle Orders for 22 August 1944.

Plane failed to return whilst on a mission to Russelsheim 25 August 1944.

Take off from Oulton at 20:38hrs .

This crew were on a Bomber Support mission.


Date of loss : 25 August 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress
Mark III HB763 (25 August 1944) BU-T consisted of :

FS P Barkess, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 25 August 1944
FS George Boag DFM, 1554282, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 26 August 1944, Aged 23
Sgt Gordon John Joseph Caulfield, 1895558, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 26 August 1944, Aged 23
Sgt P J Curtis, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 25 August 1944
WO Gibbons, Navigator
WO John R Lee, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 25 August 1944
Sgt Anthony John McNamara, 1582886, Special Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 26 August 1944
FS J E M Pitchford, Air Bomber, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 25 August 1944
FS Smith, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 25 August 1944
Sgt Donald Williamson, 1777442, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 26 August 1944, Aged 21

Source : George Mackie and Chorley

Date record last updated : 30 December 2011

Flying Fortress Mark III HB765 BU-R

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB765 BU-R consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward - Great Neice of Ernest Wilfred Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008


Flying Fortress Mark III HB767 BU-A

12th/13th September1944 Fortress III, HB767, BU.A T/O 19:00hrs Oulton. Presumed crashed in the English Channel off Calais.

Sgt Wilson's body was found in Calais Harbour on 19th December 1944 and along with Birkby he is buried in the town's Southern War Cemetery. Nearby, in the Canadian War Cemetery lies P/O Dodds RCAF, while the others who died are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. Sgt Cooper is described as having escaped. Flt/Lt Filleul pilot had served on 214 Sqn during 1940/41 when the Squadron was in 3 Group and equipped with Wellingtons.

NOTE: It was reported by Ian Hunt - Fortress Researcher, that Flt/Lt Filleul's Fortress which crashed 12th/13th September 1944 and is listed as being a/c HB702 may be incorrect. It's listed as such on Page 421of W.R. Chorley's book "Bomber Command Losses 1944", but Ian believes the ORB says it was HB767 (BU-A) ****THIS IS NOW CONFIRMED FROM TWO SOURCES THROUGH THE LOG OF Plt/Off BILL FOSKETT.

Flying Fortress HB767 BU-A
Source & Copyright P/O Bill Foskett

NOTE: The original of the Fortress picture above is held by Plt/Off Bill Foskett. Researcher, Ian Hunt reports that this same photo has already appeared in at least one book, stating it's SR384 (which was also coded BU-A) in which Fg/Off Hockley was lost on 24 May 1944


A partial letter from Mrs Dack with regards to the incident

Date of loss : 13 September 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB767 BU-A consisted of :

Sgt George Henry Benson, 989053, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 23
Sgt Thomas Hornby Billington, 1044838, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 22
Sgt Ronnie Birkby, 1549729, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 22
Sgt R Cooper, Rear Gunner
Fg/Off Kenneth Peter Dack, 154246, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 20
Sgt Edwin Dobson, 1442409, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944
Plt/Off Robert Leslie Dodds, 172519, Navigator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 15 September 1944, Aged 23
Flt/Lt Philip Richard Steuart Filleul, 33383, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 26
Sgt Jean Pierre Hanet, 1819763, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944
Sgt Patrick John Wilson, 1806740, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 13 September 1944, Aged 31

Source : John Cripps and Graham Filleul (son of Flt Lt Phillip Filleul) and Antony Crouch and letter from Mrs Dack (supplied by Jennifer Bottomley) and CWGC and Ian Hunt and Bill Foskett

Date record last updated : 28 December 2011


Flying Fortress Mark III HB773

On 13 February 1944 plane took off at 15.30pm and it is noted in Bryant's logbook that they flew for 50 minutes on "Evasive action". He is noted only as a passenger

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB773 consisted of :

Flt/Lt Tom Bayliss, Pilot
Sgt Sydney Herbert Bryant, 1851276, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 20

Source : John Cripps (nephew of Sgt Bryant)

Date record last updated : 14 October 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB774 BU-G




HB774 - Boeing B17G-40-BO constructed by Boeing Aircraft Co at Dallas, Texas. It departed for the UK on 23 February 1944 via the Azores, where it arrived on 29 February 1944 en-route to Scottish Aviation Ltd at Prestwick. It was gutted and refitted with H2S, 'Mandrel', 'Piperjack' and 'Jostle' in addition to being repainted in Bomber Command colours (it arrived from the USA in natural metal scheme.)

Roland Williams recalls:
"On the night of June 2nd 1944, three of our B17's - those of Sqd/Ldr Bill Day, Johnny Cassan and George Wright - took part in the attack on the marshalling yards of Trappes, about forty miles south-west of Paris. I read in the Daily Express some years later that this was the raid that opened the second front. We were flying in F Freddie and as we approached the target, a huge orange flare was dropped on our tail, so George decided to move off track and fly a parallel course. Immediately alongside us appeared a Halifax in the full glare of the flare, exchanging fire with a Messerschmidt 210. The Halifax went down with engines on fire and the Me. following with the rear gunner firing back, but we saw no chutes from the Halifax. From then on we saw many aircraft shot down, with Fred, our navigator, logging their positions until he had no space to log more. The official report the next morning quoted sixteen of our aircraft were lost. We had been attacked by a Me. 110 and of course, George had taken evasive action by the usual corkscrewing, but we sustained a few holes from bullets which miraculously passed diagonally between the two waist gunners Bob Williams and Don Robson."

23 July 1944 Operation to Kiel. Target was the town and the U-Boat yards.

Is listed on Battle Orders for 22 August 1944.

Is also listed on returning operational aircrew on 31 August 1944

On 9/10 November 1944 it landed at Juvincourt in Belgium, when the port outer engine went u/s. This was repaired by 151 Repair unit by 2 February 1945 and finally on 23 March 1945 it left for 214 Squadron at Oulton but was apparently used by 1699 Flt for training purposes.

On 23 August 1945 the aircraft left for 51 MU at RAF Lichfield (now a well known ATC reporting point) where it was held in storage until 11 March 1947 when it was sold to International Alloys Ltd for scrapping.

The following people were used as occasional replacements for crew members of HB774:
Sgt EJ Barrett
Fg/Off H Blythe
FS AE Brown
Sgt RA James
Fg/Off AFH Milton


Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB774 BU-G consisted of :

FS John 'Johnny' Bates, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner
Sgt Stan E C Bayliss, Special Wireless Operator
Fg/Off Kenneth J Bettles, 133994 / 237644, Pilot
Plt/Off Fred M Mullenger, 1399881, Navigator
WO Don F 'Robbie' Robson, Waist Gunner
Plt/Off J R 'Ricky' Sherbourne, Bomb Aimer, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
FS H J 'Jimmy' Southgate, Rear Gunner
WO Roland 'Ron' Williams '39/45 Aircrew Europe, Clasp, Defence, 1834473, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Robert E 'Taffy' Williams, Mid Upper Gunner
Flt/Lt George Llewelyn Wright DFC, 1320233, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom


Source : David Wright (son of Flt LT George Wright) and George Mackie

Date record last updated : 14 February 2010


Flying Fortress Mark III HB779 BU-K


Photograph setup by Dudley Heal and taken outside Blickling Hall in February 1945.
Standing : Fg/Off Tom H Tate, Flt/Lt John Wynne DFC, Flt/Lt Sidney Clayden Matthews DFC MiD, Flt/Lt Dudley Percy Heal DFM, Fg/Off James William Vinall DFM MiD(twice)
Front Row : Fg/Off Harold Frost DFM, Flt/Lt G P Pow DFC, Fg/Off Gordon Albert Hall MiD

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB779 BU-K consisted of :

FS Norman J Bradley DFM, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 15 March 1945
Fg/Off Harold 'Jack' Frost DFM MiD, Non Com 1475544 Com 169864, Top Turret Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 17 March 1945, Aged 24, POW 15 March 1945
Fg/Off Gordon Albert Hall MiD, Non Com 1258412 Com 149916, Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 17 March 1945, Aged 22, POW 15 March 1945
Flt/Lt Dudley Percy Heal DFM, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 15 March 1945
Flt/Lt Sidney Clayden Matthews DFC MiD, Non Com 1375209 Com 142217, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 17 March 1945, Aged 25, POW 15 March 1945
FS Edward Arthur Percival DFM MiD, 1263001, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 17 March 1945, Aged 30, POW 15 March 1945
Flt/Lt G P 'Tubby' Pow DFC, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 15 March 1945
Fg/Off Tom H Tate, Special Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 15 March 1945
Fg/Off James William Vinall DFM MiD(twice), Non Com 747157 Com 169518, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 18 March 1945, Aged 40, POW 15 March 1945
Wg/Cdr John Wynne DFC, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

MURDERED BY THE MOB
By Trevor Grove Daily Mail
Saturday 21 December 2002


From the cockpit of his B-17 Flying Fortress John Wynne could see through the clear night the oil tanks 22,000ft below him exploding into flames.

Although only 23, Flight Lieutenant Wynne was already a veteran bomber pilot. As he swung the nose of his aircraft towards home, he was confident the mission had been a success: the Nazis had suffered another punishing blow. It looked 'bloody good', Wynne thought. Now his task was to get his nine-man crew safely back to Britain in time for an early breakfast. Although German fighters and anti aircraft fire would harass them much of the way, this was a gauntlet the cool-headed young RAF pilot had run many times before.

On this occasion, however, the return journey was to be brutally interrupted. For five of the men men on board, it was not merely fear that loomed, but death - or more accurately, calculated murder of the most savage kind. Captured by German forces, they were to become the victims of one of World War 2's final atrocities, whose grim details would remain hidden for many years to come, even from their own skipper. Old hatreds and bitter shame conspired to conceal this ugly episode of war. Even in Britain, little was known of it. Only now, thanks to a sequence of coincidences - and a remarkable escape has it become possible to piece together the full story of what happened to the crew of that B-17.

The target that Wednesday night, March 14, 1945, was the oil refinery at Lutzendorf, a few miles south of Leipzig. Although Germany was by now only months away from defeat, the Allied bombing campaign was continuing unabated, in the hope of hastening the end. On this raid, however, Wynne's bomb-bay was empty. His task was not to drop high explosives on the oil refinery but to fly above the main wave of 244 Lancasters, jamming the enemy radar.
The B-17 was specially equipped for this task, with two wireless officers (Gordon Hall & Tom Tate) trained to detect both ground-based and airborne radar transmissions, then knock them out with signals powerful enough, it was said, to silence the BBC itself.

Tom Tate, the 26-year-old survivor of a remarkable 44 sorties and with his 45th almost completed, could not know that his luck was about to be tested once again. He settled himself at his post halfway down the fuselage for the four-hour journey homewards. The crew were at their stations around the very large plane: rear - gunner, top-gunner, two waist-gunners, navigator, flight engineer, wireless operator, the radar jammer and the pilot himself who was now bringing the aircraft down to a lower altitude.

As Wynne well knew, after a raid like this 100 or more enemy night-fighters would have been directed towards the bomber stream, seeking to exact revenge. So the whole force, including the B-17, rapidly dropped to 3,000ft. At such a low level, the echo from the ground confused the German fighters' radar, even though it did make the lumbering bombers easier targets for the ack-ack batteries below. In two hours' time they should be across the Rhine and over territory held by the Allies. Ahead of him, Wynne saw two bombers hit by ground fire. He altered course, dodging the flak that was coming up at them 'like ping-pong balls'. 'We were doing very nicely,' he remembers. 'Then suddenly a shell hit the port landing wheel, ricocheted and exploded. There was a bang and then a flash and some of the hot fragments hit the inner port engine.' For a while it seemed the damage wasn't serious. 'One was used to being hit,' says Wynne, now 81, with a laconic chuckle. Then the oil pressure plummeted in the stricken engine. Even so, they reckoned the aircraft could probably be nursed across the Rhine to the emergency Allied airfield at Rheims.

That hope was short-lived. Fire broke out in the engine, the pistons seized up and soon the whole aircraft was shaking furiously, with gauges and light fittings breaking loose and flying about the plane. They were only 1,000ft above the ground. 'Amazingly, no one shot at us,' says Wynne. 'With that bonfire on the wing they could have hit us with a rifle.'

Once they had crossed the Rhine, he ordered the crew to put on their parachutes and open the escape hatches. When the vibration became so severe it seemed that the whole plane was about to disintegrate, he told them to jump. Tom Tate remembers the order: 'Bale out! Bale out!' He obeyed, hurling himself into the rushing darkness. Above him, the aircraft flew on. With remarkable bravery, Wynne had decided to stay at the controls to the last possible moment, perhaps the aircraft could be saved, he hoped, and his conscience was now clear as far as the safety of his men was concerned. They would be landing in friendly territory, after all. In fact, five of them would never be seen again.

Tom Tate drifted in the inky blackness unsure whether he was even descending. 'Everything was dead still,' he recalls. 'There was no movement, no sensation, no lights. Suddenly there was this mass of earth rushing up towards me.' He landed safely and, after blundering about for half an hour, bumped into a fellow crew-member Norman Bradley. Together they set course west. It proved a short journey. At the very first village they came to, they were surrounded by local people and hauled off to a nearby interrogation centre. Clearly, there had been something dreadfully amiss with the B-17's navigation. They had not crossed the Rhine, it seemed. They were east of Strasbourg rather than north-east, as they had thought, and had dropped straight into enemy hands.

For all of Thursday and most of Friday, Tate was interrogated by German forces in a perfectly acceptable fashion. As well as Bradley, five other crew members had also been captured and the next day the seven men were transported under armed guard en route for a prison camp. The journey was to take them through a town called Pforzheim, which three weeks earlier had been the target of a devastating raid by Bomber Command.

Tom Tate would never forget his first sight of Pforzheim. The town lay in a valley. When the RAF men looked down on what had once been a thriving community of some 70,000 souls, all they could see was ruins. 'It was no more than a pile of rubble,' Tate remembers in awed tones. According to official records, a huge force of Lancasters and Mosquitoes had dropped 1,825 tons of bombs on Pforzheim in just 22 minutes, causing a firestorm that destroyed more than 80 per cent of the town's built-up area and killed at least 17,000 people. Many died in their cellars, when their lungs burst with the intense heat. Although Tom Tate's crew had not taken part in the raid, his shock at this ghastly evidence of the bombers' capacity for destruction was immense. He was certainly not surprised when some of the surviving townsfolk, catching sight of the prisoners' RAF uniforms, began stoning them furiously with the rubble that lay at their feet. If it wasn't for the armed guards defending them from the onslaught, all seven men might have been killed there and then. As it was, they reached the neighbouring viIlage of Huchenfeld, where they were billeted for the night in a boiler room filled with heaps of coal. They were given buckets of water. Tom Tate was exhausted and after he had removed his boots to wash his feet and socks, he lay back on the coal and was instantly asleep.

The next thing he knew, he was being violently dragged up the iron staircase out of the cellar. A gang of young men hauled him and his fellow prisoners along the street. Their captors were dressed in ordinary civilian clothes, but there was a menacing air about them and they were evidently in a state of high excitement. 'Then someone hit me on the head,' Tate says. 'Blood flowed. God, I thought, this is lynching.' The mob now turned right taking their captives toward the church. Increasingly alarmed, Tate noticed a barn with a huge pair of doors. Inside in one of them was a small door, which was open. An electric light burned inside. And it was then that Tate saw something that froze his heart: a stout beam from which hung several heavy ropes. I saw those ropes and that instant my imagination told me we were going to be hanged, he remembers. Driven by fear of his imminent execution at the hands of a baying mob his instinct for survival kicked in.

Bursting free from his captors, he ran like mad in his bare feet, back up the road. It was a spontaneous action, and it saved Tate's life. One shot was fired alter him, but he ducked down past some houses, raced across a field and plunged into the nearby woods.

Luck was with him. Most of the trees in the area were pines, difficult to hide among, but by chance he had found a copse of oaks, whose leaves lay thickly on the ground. With the Instinct of a wild animal, and without even thinking what he was doing, he burrowed under the leaves until he was hidden from sight.

For a while he lay awake, troubled by a sudden burst of gunfire he had heard coming from the village, wondering what had become of his comrades. Then he fell asleep. Tom Tate awoke in his leaf-mould bed at dawn on Sunday. By lunchtime he had been recaptured. But now, at least, he was in the hands of the German Army, not the dangerous youths of the night before.

He spent the remainder of the war as a PoW - much of it in horrendous conditions. For weeks he was on the road with thousands of other, near-starving men, mostly Russians, as the Germans retreated from the advancing Allied forces. But he survived. Amazingly, so did four other members of the Flying Fortress crew who had been on board that fateful night. Norman Bradley had made a successful run for it at Huchenfeld, like himself, and then been recaptured and imprisoned. The navigator, Dudley Heal, also survived a spell as a PoW. The Red Cross had already shipped another man, who had broken his leg when his parachute landed, home.

As for the skipper, John Wynne, he had managed to fly the crippled B-17 all the way back across the Channel single-handed. It was an astonishing feat. Trapped by the pipe supplying oxygen to his mask, he had piloted the plane for much of the journey standing up, and then landed it safely at an unfamiliar aerodrome with his port landing wheel shot away.

Tom Tate knew none of this when he returned to Britain after Germany's defeat. But he was soon to learn the fuIl, horrifying details of what had happened to the other five men who had been marched towards the barn and its dangling ropes, when the Air Ministry asked him to return to Pforzheim to help with a war crimes Investigation.

Four of them, he discovered, had been murdered soon after his own escape. They had not been hanged, as he had feared when he glimpsed the dangling ropes. Instead, they had been shot In the Church Yard In cold blood, at the very moment that a little girl was getting ready for her confirmation service. The fifth man, the night engineer, had made a run for it, but was caught later in a neighbouring village. A mob hauled him out of the police station, beat him half to death, and then shot him in the head.

When Tate walked into the churchyard at Huchenfeld with the investigating team, so very nearly the scene of his own death, he saw the five new graves. The French soldiers who had been the first of General Patten's army to enter the area had Inscribed each cross with simple but telling words: 'British airman, assassinated by the SA, 17/18 March 1945.'

A year later, in June 1946, Tom Tate and Norman Bradley returned to Germany as witnesses in the war crimes trial against 22 men and youths who had taken part in the killings. They helped identify a few of them. Tate was filled with disgust at confronting the killers of his friends. Although some were mere boys, he said: 'I felt no compassion.' In evidence at the trial, it became clear the murders were carried out as a deliberate revenge for the Pforzheim bombing.

Local Nazi leaders had ordered a lynch mob of Hitler Youth to dress in civilian clothes, posing as outraged villagers. They were to assault the schoolhouse where the RAF men were being held, and take them to their deaths. Seventeen were convicted. Three... officials were hanged, others; imprisoned. The youths were given lighter sentences. Tom Tate vowed never to go to Germany again in his life As for the people of Huchenfeld; they hugged their shameful secret to themselves for many years to come.

Then a very remarkable thing happened. A retired pastor from what was then East Germany came to live in the village. Dr Heinemann-Gruder, a former army officer, was a man of immense moral rectitude. When he learned about the murder of the RAF men, he resolved to put up a memorial at the place where they had died. Against strong local opposition, he got his way, contacted relatives of some of the British airmen, and in November 1992 a simple plaque was erected on the wall of the church. It bore the names of the victims and the words 'Father, forgive'.

From this brave act of expiation flowed an extraordinary series of events, beginning with the confession of one of the murderers at the dedication service itself. The by now-elderly man broke into sobs. "I was one of the boys who killed them" he said. The widow of one of the murdered men, Harold Frost, then quite unexpectedly stepped forward to address them with great dignity, assuring them of her forgiveness. The reconciliation process was under way.

Upon hearing this story, a newspaper reporter tracked down John Wynne, now a hill farmer In Wales, and told him of the ceremony in Huchenfeld. Wynne was astonished. Nearly half a century on from that desperate night In March 1945, this was the first he had heard about the dreadful fate of his missing crewmen. Greatly moved, he commissioned a Welsh artist to make a wooden rocking horse that he and his wife Pip donated to the kindergarten at Huchenfeld in 1994. The horse was called Hoffnung, the German word for 'hope', and bore the inscription: "To the children of Huchenfeld, from the mothers of 214 RAF Squadron:" It was the start of a close relationship between the Wynnes and the villagers.

Tom Tate, In turn, then read this story in a magazine, and made contact with his former crewmates. With some reluctance, he forswore his vow never to return to Germany and, in 1995, encouraged by John Wynne, he revisited the village where he had almost lost his life. Since then he has been back ten times. Now a vigorous, golfing 84-year old, he has obviously come to love both the people and the place, as listeners to Radio 4 on Thursday evening heard in a compelling programme, A Rocking Horse, Called Hope.

Out of the horror of Pforzheim and the Inhumanity of Huchenfeld has grown a very personal understanding between these former enemies. The bombs and the blood, the mayhem and the murders are not forgotten. But for these people, at any rate, In the words of the man who piloted the B-17 that fateful night, the future rides on the back of a rocking horse called Hope.

The following account of the incident is taken from "Footprints on the sands of time" by Oliver Clutton-Brock:

B-17 Flying Fortress HB779, 214 (SD) Squadron, was returning from a Jostle patrol in support of the attack on Lutzkendorf on the night of 14/15 March 1945 when, somewhere near Pforzheim, it was hit by light flak. Fire took hold of NO.2 engine. Flight Lieutenant John Wynne, the pilot, ordered the other nine of his crew to bale out. Intending to follow them he became so tangled up in his oxygen tubing that by the time he had extricated himself the fire was out. Alone in the aircraft he flew back to RAF Bassingbourn. The rest of the crew, meanwhile, had baled out and been captured. The navigator and bomb aimer were safely dispatched to a PoW camp, but the other seven were kept in Buhl prison before being transferred to Pforzheim, a few kilometres to the north-east. On 17 March they were being transferred on foot into Luftwaffe custody, but had only reached the village of Huchenfeld at around seven o'clock in the evening. On a cold day, none of the seven airmen minded being locked up in the warm boiler-room of the Neuen Schule (New School). Having had little sleep in the last three days, at least they had the chance to get comfortable. Some dozed off in the warmth. Outside, a solitary Luftwaffe guard was on duty.

Earlier that afternoon, aware that the airmen were on their way to Huchenfeld, the Kreisleiter of Pforzheim, Hans Christian Knab, got hold of his subordinate officers, including Hitler Youth commander Max Kochlin and said to him: 'Now you must get hold of your Hitler Youth people and tonight we shall stage a demonstration.' Knab also spoke to Standartenfuhrer Becker, in command of the SA at Dillweissenstein (locally known just as Dillstein): 'Now you, Becker, must get hold of as many men as you can and march to Huchenfeld from Dillstein, and your men will also take part in the demonstration. We shall all meet then at the paper factory in Huchenfeld. ' Weapons were distributed to the Hitler Youth by Kochlin, whose fiery speech made their 'young blood boil', and the armed men and boys made their way to the rendezvous at Huchenfeld.

Half an hour or so after the Luftwaffe guard had taken up his post outside the boiler-room a crowd of civilians, perhaps fifty in number, arrived and demanded access to the airmen: 'We want to revenge our women and children.' The guard was powerless to stop the mob from bursting in and dragging the prisoners outside on to Forstrasse.
Flight Sergeant Norman Bradley DFM:
'As soon as we got outside the building I realised in all probability we were going to be hung or shot, so I decided to hang back with a view to escaping. I heard a scuffle in front of me as though another member of the crew was trying to escape. It might have been more than one. I tried to hang back and so did Fg/Off Vinall with the two men who were holding him. There was another scuffle in front and it looked as if one of the members of the crew got away. The Germans who were holding us ran forward to give assistance and Vinall and T took the opportunity of hiding between a wall and a car. I heard two screams of pain. Vinall moved forward in the shadow and I followed him. The last thing I heard of him was shouting to me to follow him. I shouted back that he was going the wrong way as he was going in the direction of the shooting, and I heard nothing more. I ran across some fences and wire netting and escaped across a field and into the woods. There were about six shots fired when Vinall shouted to me the last time. Later, while I was crossing the wire fence I heard further shots from automatic weapons, several bursts. I was later captured about 22 miles the other side of Pforzheim. The day after I was captured two of my guards told me that two members of my crew had been shot.'
A third airman, Flg/Off T.H. Tate, had also escaped but had been recaptured. He and Bradley were not to know that the bursts of gunfire that they had heard had signaled the end for four of their crew - Flying Officer G.A. Hall, Flight Lieutenant S.C. Matthews DFC, Flight Sergeant E.A. Percival DFM and Flying Officer H. Frost DFM - who had been taken to the cemetery and shot.
Flying Officer J.W. Vinall DFM MiD (twice), aged 40, was recaptured the next day, and locked up in the police station at Dillstein, only a few yards from the Hitler Youth barracks. Ortsgruppenleiter Paul Ecker ensured that Kreisstabfuhrer Niklas, a Major in the Volkssturm, knew of Vinall's presence. Niklas prepared a warm reception for the prisoner before he went to the police station and ordered Vinall to be released into his custody. Vinall was taken outside, where Wilhelm Maxeiner beat him about the head with a heavy stick until he was felled, probably unconscious, when Hitler Youth Gert Biedermann shot him in the back of the head.

At the Huchenfeld shootings on 17 March and at the Dillstein shooting on 18 March neither Knab or Kochlin was present. The evidence was overwhelming, however, that not only had these two men staged the murders to make them appear to be spontaneous outbursts of mob anger, but also none of those involved were dressed in uniform. It was not clear, though, who fired the first shots at the cemetery at Huchenfeld, but two Hitler Youths, Gerhard Stahl and Rolf Heil, admitted that they had fired some of the shots. Both were sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment, as was Biedermann, whilst a dozen others received sentences ranging from 2 to 12 years. Knab, Kochlin and Niklas were sentenced to death by hanging.


The graves at Huchenfield Germany. Flt/Lt Sidney C Matthews DFC. Fg/Off James Vinall, Fg/Off Harold Frost, Fg/ Off Gordon Hall, FS Edward Percival

The French soldiers who had been the first of General Patten's army to enter the area had Inscribed each cross with simple but telling words: 'British airman, assassinated by the SA, 17/18 March 1945.'

FS Norman Bradley, Flg/Off Tom Tate, Flt/Lt Dudley Heal, Flt/Lt G Pow and Flt/Lt John Wynne survived.

For the complete story, newspaper articles and the original Air Ministry correspondence please see Flt Lt Sidney Clayden Matthews personal page.




Verdicts of those convicted for the murders

The last paragraph considering the devastation to Pforzheim in WW2 is a great irony and sombre pause for thought.





(click on the picture for a larger view)



February 2008
A packed church saw the unveiling of the plaque by the Lutheran pastor of Huchenfeld Herr Pfarrer Jorg Geisler in the presence of the Mayor of Huchenfeld and Members of both communities. The plaque was the final ceremony of the act of the twinning of the village of Llanbedr with that of Huchenfeld and marked the climax of a process of reconciliation and friendship begun in 1992 when a plaque commemorating the names of the British airmen was placed on the wall of Huchenfeld Church and unveiled in the presence of the widow of one of the victims and two of their colleagues who survived.






Dedication of rose in RAFA Memorial Garden Ely


Ely newspaper clipping
(click on the picture for a larger view)


Newspaper clipping about rememberance events


Newspaper clipping of rememberance ceremony at Ely cathedral

Tom Tate (with stick) and family members of those murdered in Huchenfeld March 1945 at the RAF Oulton Memorial

Please click on the following link for the Cross of Nails award by Coventry Cathedral

John & Carol Edwards (family connection to Flt/Lt Sidney C Matthews) and Fred Foskett (Treasurer of St Peters Llanbedr) and Trevor Grove (Daily Mail) and Anton Atonowicz (Daily Mirror) and "Footprints on the sands of time" by Oliver Clutton-Brock and Vivien White and Reg Kemp

Date record last updated : 20 September 2011

Flying Fortress Mark III HB779 (date unknown) BU-P

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB779 (date unknown) BU-P consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008


Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 BU-C

Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (9 September 1944) BU-C

9 September 1944 Operation to Munchen Gladbach. Raid by 5 and 8 Groups.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (9 September 1944) BU-C consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 10 August 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (13 September 1944) BU-C

13 September 1944 Window jamming mission

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (13 September 1944) BU-C consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 10 August 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (6 November 1944) BU-C

On a Window patrol.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB780 (6 November 1944) BU-C consisted of :

FS M 'Bing' Crosbie, Pilot
Sgt Spencer Charles George 'Charlie' Edwards, Mid Upper Gunner
Sgt Alistair McDermid, Waist Gunner

Source : Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 10 August 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB785 BU-A


Flying Fortress Mark III HB785 (21 March 1945) BU-A

Take off was at 23.40hrs on Jostle duties in support of a raid on a Synthetic-Oil Plant at Bohlen (near Leipzig) from which it failed to return.

Date of loss : 21 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB785 (21 March 1945) BU-A consisted of :

Plt/Off Hilton MacKay Carter, J/94203, Air Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 22
Sgt William Denis Dale, 1594366, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 21 March 1945
Fg/Off Douglas Nugent Donald, J/47071, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : American, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 23
Fg/Off Robert Verdun Kingdon, J128299, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 21 March 1945
FS Donald Fraser Miller, 1809260, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 21 March 1945
Sgt Donald Parker, 3040675, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 19
Plt/Off James Walter Pellant, J/95470, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 21
Sgt Walter Perkins, 2223326, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 19
Plt/Off William Arthur Routley, J/93926, Navigator, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 21 March 1945, Aged 31
WO/II Robert George Wilson, R/197780, Air Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 21 March 1945

Source : CWGC and Nightjar Newsletter Spring 2003 and Chorley

Date record last updated : 14 July 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III HB785 (Corke) BU-A

See Pilot Officer William Foskett's personnel entry for much more information.



The crew above was humorously known as Corkescrew after the pilot Fg/Off Corke. In the front line from left to right are: Fred Barber, Len Roose (holding their lucky horse shoe; which Plt/Off Foskett still has) and Jack Podger. At the back are Plt/Off Bill Foskett, Ted Bonner, FS John Stelling, unknown and at the very back FS Ray Delisle.

NOTE: Site researcher Ian Hunt reports that according to the Orbs the crew generally consisted of Corke, Podger, Bonner, Foskett, Roose, Hepton, Barber, Delisle, Gregory and Stelling (with, on another occasion, Boanas and Hoffman instead of two of these), but could not determine crew positions all their crew positions.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB785 (Corke) BU-A consisted of :

FS Fred Barber, Flight Engineer
FS Ted Bonner, Wireless Operator
Fg/Off John R Corke, Pilot
FS Ray Delisle
Plt/Off William G M 'Bill' Foskett, 151372, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force
Sgt Gregory
WO Hepton
FS Jack Podger, Navigator
FS Len Roose, Air Gunner
FS John Hugh Stelling, 1867012, Special Operator

Source : Pilot Officer William Foskett and Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 26 May 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB787 BU-J

Flying Fortress Mark III HB787 (12 August 1944) BU-J

12 August 1944 Operation to Russelsheim. Target was the Opel Motor factory.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB787 (12 August 1944) BU-J consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 16 May 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB787 (16 November 1944) BU-J

Take off from Oulton. The aircraft crashed at 04;40 hrs and burnt out while attempting to land, the Fortress coming down in a wheat stubble field farmed by Mr Seaman of Twyford. This was roughly one mile SW of Foulsham airfield in Norfolk. None of the crew survived. All are buried in various cemeteries throughout the United kingdon annd the three RNZAF members of the crew were taken to Cambridge City Cemetery.

Date of loss : 16 November 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB787 (16 November 1944) BU-J consisted of :

FS Ernest Robert Armstrong, 427084, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 20
FS Colin James Ashworth, 427492, Pilot, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 22
Sgt Peter Edward Durman, 1389300, Air Bomber, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 16 November 1944
Sgt Gilbert Leslie Hislop, 1594952, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 32
Fg/Off Archibald Havill Leitch, J/44328, Navigator, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 21
FS Terence Francis McCormack, 429183, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 24
FS William Alistair McLaren, 1672260, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 21
FS Alexander McLaughlin, 422972, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 27
Sgt Richard Edmond Mooney, R/261225, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 16 November 1944
Sgt Charles Gordon Mackay Ogilvie, 621667, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 16 November 1944, Aged 28

Source : Nightjar Newsletter 2003 and Chorley

Date record last updated : 25 January 2015


Flying Fortress Mark III HB788 BU-B

Flying Fortress Mark III HB788 (12 September 1944) BU-B

12 September 1944 Special duty (Big Ben) Patrol - seeking V2 control signals

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB788 (12 September 1944) BU-B consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 16 May 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB788 (6 November 1944) BU-B

Take off was at 16:25hrs from Oulton. This was a "Jostle" mission in support of an attack by Lancasters and Mosquitoes to cut the Mittelland canal at its junction with the Dortmund Ems canal at Gravenhorst. The aircraft was shot down and all died.

Date of loss : 6 November 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB788 (6 November 1944) BU-B consisted of :

FS Rodney Claude Bartlett, 1850398, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944, Aged 26
WO Keith Mortimer Bright, 426496, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, KIA 6 November 1944, Aged 21
Sgt Kenneth Joseph Fletcher, 1880697, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944
Plt/Off David Hardie, 184768, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944
Plt/Off William Ralph Harding, 184635, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944
Fg/Off John Malcolm Shand Jackson, 171668, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944, Aged 21
Sgt Ernest George Kelly, 1875358, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944, Aged 19
Sgt Norman Victor Madgwick, 1606117, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944, Aged 20
WO/I Raymond Daniel Picciano, R/140622, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 6 November 1944
FS Herbert Clare Pollard, 1109146, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 6 November 1944

Source : Chas Chambers and Matt Baars and Chorley

Date record last updated : 30 January 2017

Flying Fortress HB789 BU-Q

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders
Flt Lt Scantleton DFC & crew



Flying Fortress Mark III HB793 BU-S

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB793 BU-S consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward - Great Neice of Ernest Wilfred Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB793 (17 September 1944) BU-S


17 Sepember 1944 (day) Special duty (Big Ben) Patrol - seeking V2 control signals

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB793 (17 September 1944) BU-S consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 16 May 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB795 BU-S

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB795 BU-S consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB796 BU-T

Flying Fortress Mark III HB796 (09 February 1945) BU-T

Take off was at 03:29hrs from Oulton, tasked to dispense Window west of the Ruhr. Failed to return on 9 February 1945 presumed lost in the North Sea. Only four bodies were ever recovered. (Robertson, Bunyan, Dobson and Banner).

Date of loss : 9 February 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB796 (09 February 1945) BU-T consisted of :

Sgt William Taylor Banner, 2221107, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 37
WO Lionel John Bennett, 42287, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 25
FS Peter George Buckland, 1337316, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945
Sgt William Bunyan, 1118147, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 35
Sgt Robert James Carrott, 1816917, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 20
Sgt Ernest Dobson, 1590215, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 20
FS George Swan Murray Fowler, 442340, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 19
FS Frederick Rossini Olds, 427313, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 31
Plt/Off James Peter Robertson, 422318, Pilot, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 23
Sgt Thomas Wilfred Henry Usher, 3050447, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 9 February 1945, Aged 20

Source : Chorley and Geoff Swallow (Australian researcher)

Date record last updated : 2 February 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III HB796 (Date unknown) BU-T

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB796 (Date unknown) BU-T consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward-Great niece of Fg/Off Ernest Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB799 BU-K / BU-L

Flight lost 15 / 16 March 1945.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB799 (15 March 1945) BU-K BU-L consisted of :

Unknown

Date if loss 15 / 16 March 1945

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB799 (Date unknown) BU-K BU-L consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward-Great niece of Fg/Off Ernest Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008


Flying Fortress HB800 BU-V

31 October 1944 / 1 November 1944
Crash-landed at Ford on 3 engines after a fight with an Fw 190 (F/S J.P. Robertson)


Flying Fortress Mark III HB801 BU-U / BU-T

This aircraft is recoded as being flown by Flg/Off Marc Stainier (aka Flg/Off Mark) and his cew for numerous missions from October 1944 to April 1945.

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders with Flt/Lt Scholes and crew flying the aircraft.

Date record last updated : 17 December 2010


Flying Fortress Mark III HB802 BU-C

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB802 (Date unknown) BU-C consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward-Great niece of Fg/Off Ernest Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB802 BU-O

Fg/Off R W Darracott - Navigator / B for special ops (was listed as part of the crew instead of F S Mackintosh prior to the loss of this flight in March 1945.

All the above except Fg/Off Darracott were taken POW on 14 March 1945.

14 March 1945, The mission was to Lutzkendorf Failed to return. Brought down by light flak at 3,000 ft on way home. All 10 crew taken PoW. Alternatively, may have been shot down by the rear gunner of Hptm Martin Becker's Me 110 of Stab IV./NJG6. Becker claimed 9 "Lancasters" shot down this night - this being the last, at 23.37 hrs, approx 3 miles SE of Baiersbronn (ESE from Strasbourg / SW of Stuttgart)

Flt/Lt John Wynne was the pilot of the other 214 Fortress which was shot down on March 14, 1945 and gives further insight into the loss of HB802. Quote : "The other Fortress accompanying mine was flown by Norman Rix, who became a celebrated architect. His aircraft, some miles further south than mine, was shot down over Stuttgart and Rix was lucky to survive. His parachute opened a few seconds before he crashed into the top branches of a pine tree. As a PoW, Rix saved the Bavarian village of Ettringen from destruction by the advancing U.S. 7th Army. Having been marched to Ettringen, he persuaded his guards to lay down their arms and then took control of the village. The next day, he went forward to meet an American tank patrol and informed the astonlshed commander that Ettringen was already in British hands. A formal handover was arranged for the following day. No shots were fired and no civilians injured. Sadly, Rix's achievement was never recognlsed by the authorities, but the viliagers of Ettringen have not forgotten what he did."

Date of loss : 14 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB802 BU-O consisted of :

Sgt B Burgess, Port Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 14 March 1945
FS J L (or L J) Cuttance, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, POW 14 March 1945
FS R O Douglas, Rear Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, POW 14 March 1945
Sgt R Gamble, Starboard Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 14 September 1945
WO A R Irvine, Wireless Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, POW 14 March 1945
Fg/Off W J Lovell-Smith, Air Bomber, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, POW 14 March 1945
Sgt A D Mackintosh, Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 14 March 1945
Sgt L J Pound, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 14 March 1945
Flt/Lt Norman Rix DFC, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 14 March 1945
Plt/Off H T Sargeant, Navigator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, POW 14 March 1945

Source : Ian Hunt and ORB and John Wynne

Date record last updated : 20 September 2011

Flying Fortress Mark III HB803 BU-L

Crew 6 October 1944:

This crew were on a "Window Patrol".
The crew stayed together for quite a while flying more than one aircraft.
Also see CREWS & LOSSES Fortress HB819 Crew 14 February 1945.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB803 (06 October 1944) BU-L consisted of :

FS Angus L Cameron, Wireless Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Fg/Off Basil Peyton Coates, 424973, Navigator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt D T Hatch, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force
Sgt J M Lando, Flight Engineer
Plt/Off Charles S Miflin, Special Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt J S Scott, Mid Upper Gunner
Fg/Off Marc C J 'Marc Mark' Stainier, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : Belgian
WO Phil N R Troutbeck, Bomb Aimer, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt W Walsh, Air Gunner
Sgt N W Williams, 2226960, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve

Source : Ian Hunt and Angus Cameron

Date record last updated : 18 June 2008


This fortress was attacked by a night fighter flown by Hptm. Ernst-Georg Drünkler of 1./NJG5 at the position 5030N 0740E. Drünkler claimed the fortress as destroyed at 22.46 hrs, 10 km. N.W. Mayen. In fact the badly damaged Fortress managed to make Allied Lines but was shot down in error by US AA fire, crashing 6km south of Kruft, a town on the western side of the Rhine river.

Date of loss : 15 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB803 (15 March 1945) BU-L consisted of :

Fg/Off Peter J Anderson, Pilot
Flt/Lt Jaques Edward 'Ted' Cryer, 141282, Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 15 March 1945, Aged 23
WO Maurice Charles White, 1166191, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 15 March 1945, Aged 25

Source : Nightjar Spring 2003 and Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008


Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 BU-C

On the 24 February 1945 at 7:15 pm Fortress HB805, BU-C piloted by Fg/Off J.M Shorttle DFM took off from Oulton on a window operation over Germany. The purpose of the raid was to make a diversionary sweep over the Ruhr whilst another 74 aircraft (from training squadrons) also lured German night fighters over Northern France to enable 63 Mosquitoes to attack Berlin, another 18 to attack Neuss and a further 3 on "Siren duties".This was no ordinary crew aboard this flight as among the crew could be counted an unbelievable three DFM's and a DFC.

Fortress III HB805 BU-C was shot down at 20.08 hrs - 20-30 km West of Dusseldorf airfield by Oblt. Kurt Matzak of Stab IV/NJG1 - a Luftwaffe night fighter ace with 19 kills to his score.

Fortress HB805 was the first aircraft to be intercepted which was attacked resulting in the starboard inner engine on fire and subsequently crashed into the River Niers near Neersen. The survivors were not aware of a night fighter attack and the squadron O.R.B.'s assessed the loss as being caused by an engine fire and not due to "enemy action".

These were veterans who had seen it all and their loss would have been a severe blow to the squadron.

On 20 August 1946 Mrs Towell received a letter from the Air Ministry explaining exactly what had happened to the crew: "The aircraft crashed at about 9pm on 24 February 1945 in a field on the Viersen-Anrath Road near the Niers Canal. Your husband's body was found on the Viersen side of the canal with two others, and they were all laid to rest in the cemetery at Viersen, which is approximately 4 miles north, north west of Munchen Gladbach. The bodies of the remaining unaccounted for members of the crew were found on the other side of the canal and were buried in the cemetery at Neersen."

Flt/Lt Leslie Fowler and FS Jennings were the only ones to survive the crash. Fowler was wounded and taken to a hospital by the Germans. He died on 15 March 1945 and was buried in Zuidlaren General Cemetery. Jennings spent the rest of the war in PoW camps

Date of loss : 24 February 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 BU-C consisted of :

Fg/Off Kenneth Cecil Allan, 183538, Special Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945
WO Francis Herbert Dix MiD, 411069, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 24 February 1945, Aged 24
Flt/Lt Leslie Gordon Fowler DFC, 126036, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 15 March 1945, Aged 23, POW 24 February 1945
FS Geoffrey James Edward Jennings DFM, 1394514, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 24 February 1945
Fg/Off Allan Milton Jones DFM, 1313858, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945
FS Stanley Llewellyn Jones, 1256275, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945
FS Thomas William James Pollard, 1865782, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945, Aged 19
Fg/Off Joseph Malpass Shorttle DFM, 157422, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British, KIA 24 February 1945, Aged 27
Plt/Off Richard William Towell, Non Com 977635 Com 195111, Air Bomber, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945, Aged 30
Flt/Lt Frank Richard Woodger, 52114, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 24 February 1945, Aged 32

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young) and Ian Hunt and Beryl Hutchinson (daughter of Richard Towell) and www.basher82.nl

Date record last updated : 22 June 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 (date unknown) BU-G

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 (date unknown) BU-G consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 (unknown date) BU-C

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB805 (unknown date) BU-C consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 BU-J

Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (Date unknown) BU-J

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (Date unknown) BU-J consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward - Great Neice of Ernest Wilfred Woodley

Date record last updated : 31 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (7 February 1945) BU-J

On 7th February 1945, This crew went on special duty operations jamming radio and radar while Six Group was bombing the Dortmund Ems Canal. There was heavy flak. They had been jamming for twenty minutes, then gained height slowly. The bombers were busy bombing the canal and dodging a horde of German night fighters.


When it was home time, the crew set course but they got left behind as the other aircraft were a lot faster. In the vicinity of Essen they were coned by a multitude of searchlights. Essen was heavily defended with 400 heavy flak guns. One of the second tour waist gunners told the pilot H Bennett to fly into the thickest of the flak. When Frank Hudson, the tail gunner, asked him "Why?" the next day, he told Frank that the flak was automatically controlled so that the next burst would explode elsewhere.


They got past Essen but were jumped by a Junkers 88 night fighter, which stayed behind them and started shooting. This was a poor manoeuvre on his part, as he should have attacked on a curve pursuit. This though, gave Frank the opportunity to shoot point-blank. Frank's tracers converged on the fighter; knocking silver sparks off him. He had been aiming at the nose of the plane and had even seen the pilot, but Frank switched his gunfire to the fighters tanks, between the nose and the engines, knowing that his explosive incendiaries would penetrate the fighters armoured tanks. The fighter's pilot had stopped firing, presumably killed, when suddenly there was a great yellow flash from his exploding tanks. While Frank continued to fire at the fighter, the fighter's crew fired back with their cannons and machine guns. A tracer appeared to be coming straight towards Frank, so he yelled, "Port go!" The tail of the Fortress came up and the tracer tore through the belly of the plane.


The radar device (H2S), which was fixed under the plane, was blown to bits. Frank lost his bike seat when it was also blown to smithereens. A cannon shell tugged at the crotch of his trousers, scorching his battle-dress pants. Frank also had a few holes in his clothes where bullets just missed him, and his epaulette was shot off. He had a penny in his pocket and a tin of tobacco. A spent bullet hit the tin and squashed the tobacco into a black pulp. It also put a big dent in the penny, which saved his hip joint from severe damage. Jock Murdoch, one of the waist gunners got a bullet through his forearm between the two bones. Being a Scotsman his swearing was magnificent! Bill Church, the other waist gunner, had his ammunition tank blown up. The flash blinded him temporarily. One wireless operator got a hole through his battle-dress, which wrecked his transmitter. The pilot had a heel of his boot shot off. The bottom got shot off the navigators’ compartment, losing the two nose guns. The navigator, Ernest "Paddy" Paddick, sat sideways and a cannon shell penetrated his hip joint, went through his lower belly and out the other hip joint and lay on the seat beside him without exploding. The mid-upper gunner, Leslie, tried to render first aid but Paddy fought back. The bomb aimer wasn’t able to help because he couldn’t cross the great gap in the floor. They resumed course but there then appeared to be a fire under the starboard wing. On throttling back, the glow disappeared and they decided that the turbo supercharger had been shot off one of the engines.


They continued home, heading for a long emergency strip at RAF Manston in Kent as they thought they would have no wheels. The bomb aimer, Frank Hares, navigated them to Manston, with the little remaining navigating equipment and he later received a D.F.M. For his efforts.


It was a pretty ropy landing. They did a few loops as they only had one wheel. The pilot, Harry "Benny" Bennett subsequently received the D.F.C. Frank Hudson was recommended for a D.F.M. By the gunnery leader Flight Lieutenant Phillips, but so many had been issued that month, that Frank was told he would receive his at the end of his tour. Frank never completed his tour so he never received his D.F.M. But the group captain did congratulate him.


Leslie got the unexploded shell from beside the navigator, "Paddy" Paddick, and put it in his pocket, no doubt thinking that if it fell on the concrete it might go off. He threw it into the long grass, but the captain made him go and look for it in case a mower hit it. So he took it to the armourers and they were very interested, as they had never seen one like it before. On x-raying it, they found it to be of a new design. The downing of the Junkers 88 was confirmed by several other crews, and also later by Bomber Command. All of the crew got back safely except Ernest Paddick, the navigator. He died on 8th February 1945, at the age of 23 and was buried in St. Marylebone cemetery in London.

Please see the following link to the BBC website WORLD WAR 2 - PEOPLE'S WAR.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/19/a1073819.shtml

See the chapter named FLYING OPERATIONS

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (7 February 1945) BU-J consisted of :

Fg/Off Harry 'Benny' Bennett DFC, 190245, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 24
WO Bill Church, Waist Gunner
FS Leslie Arnold Hadder, 1804649, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 20
FS Frank Hares DFM, 1581827, Air Bomber, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 21
Frank Hudson, Rear Gunner
'Jock' Murdoch, Waist Gunner
Fg/Off Ernest George 'Paddy' Paddick, 179426, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 8 February 1945, Aged 23

Source : BBC website WORLD WAR 2 - PEOPLE'S WAR "A bomber's story" by Bill Knight and Peter Clarke

Date record last updated : 5 August 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (4 March 1945) BU-J


On arriving back at Oulton, at least one Junkers 88 came back with them, Flying Officer Bennett was on the circuit and about to land but he had to do another circuit as a damaged plane was given priority, (flown by Bob Davies). Almost at the same time as the other plane landed, Bennett, with landing lights on and wheels down, was hit. The plane, on fire, hit some trees and blew up. Bennett
was alive but badly injured when picked up but later died of his injuries and other crew members were killed. Only Alistair McDermid and Bill Church survived.


See further details of the story of this crew at http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/19/a1073819.shtml

See the sections called OULTON AIRBASE


INCIDENT WITH REGARDS TO THE LOSS OF FORTRESS HB 815 BU-J AT RAF OULTON ON
3 - 4 MARCH 1945 WRITTEN BY BOB DAVIES
I will endeavour to recall the events which lead up to my witnessing Bennett being shot down, virtually within the circuit at Oulton, my subsequent visit to the crash site and the lucky escape I experienced (for the second time in two hours) when the intruder shot up the Control Tower and Briefing Room which, incidentally, was crowded by already returned aircrew.
I cannot remember what made me select a different crew from my regular one, which I had brought with me from No 4 Group when we had completed 17 ops flying Halifax aircraft. For that night only Flt Lt Eric Phillips (214 Gunnery Leader) was my tail gunner, Flt Lt Chant (Navigation Leader) occupied the front of the aircraft as Bomb Aimer and 2nd Navigator and Flt Off Jock Fitzsimmonds (Deputy Flight Engineer Leader) was my Flight Engineer who, as usual sat in the right hand 2nd pilot's (not carried) seat. Anyway the operation, so far as I remember, was uneventful but, for some reason I cannot remember, we crossed the English coast and approached Oulton on three engines. Or perhaps we were experiencing some other sort of emergency.
I seem to remember the drill on returning to Oulton was to announce our return to base with an ETA only when we were at a range of 20 miles. I had, of course, been listening out to the RT traffic for some time and had heard Bennett call at 20 miles and receive approval be the first to enter the circuit and land. When I subsequently announced my arrival "on three", I was given priority to continue to approach and also approval to land first. Bennett, who was on long finals, was told to "go round again". I continued my approach, turning left onto finals, as normal, with all navigation and identity lights on. When I looked forward to satisfy myself that Bennett was in fact overshooting and was not in my way, I saw his port, starboard and white light quite clearly but, at the same time, I saw the flash of tracer from an unseen aircraft, hit the Fortress in the port wing root and the wing start to burn. I looked away then to better concentrate on landing my own aircraft on the still fully illuminated runway.
At about the same time I head the tower call "Bandits Bandits" and the runway lights went out just as I came to a quick stop, thus better able to switch off my own lights. I thought my Flight Eng and I did this in double quick time, only to be contradicted by the tail gunner who said that a white light still burnt brightly high above him on the aircraft's vertical fin. By this time I felt very, very exposed and I am sure the remainder of the nine crew felt the same but, despite checking with my Flt Engineer from left to right in the cockpit, we still heard the rear gunner entreating us to turn that "***light off"
I must admit I can still remember the feeling of utter panic, expecting to shot up at any time. Trying to compose myself and, in desperation, I very reluctantly used my torch (feeling naked as the beam went on) to search the entire cockpit for the final elusive key to our survival. After what seemed an eternity, I found what I was looking for, a small unmarked switch that controlled, of all things, a lone white light at the very top of the fin, fitted not for operational use but as an aid for "night formation flying". With this switch in the off position, and in the glow of Bennett's burning aircraft, I was able to clear the runway and taxi back to our normal dispersal.
We were all very relieved to be safely on the ground especially so when we realised we were the last aircraft to make it back to Oulton, The remaining Fortresses and Liberators having the dubious privilege of having to face an extra two hours flying to their diversions at Bawdy and Haverford West in West Wales - some of them with only just enough fuel to reach their destinations.
After getting out of the aircraft and seeing my crew off in the crew bus, Fitzsimmonds and I drove in my Hillman Utility to the site of the still burning Fortress, not very far from Station Sick Quarters. There, wonder of wonders, we saw the two, apparently uninjured, waist gunners who had miraculously walked out of the half shell of the rear fuselage, the only sizeable part of the wreck which looked as it had once been an aeroplane.
We did not hang around the burning wreck. The point five shells and pyrotechnics and what remained of the 110/120-octane fuel, reminded me of a pre-war Guy Fawkes Night (but not the smell). At that time we little realised that, as we returned from de-briefing, our luck would be put to the test once more in the space of an hour.
After crew debriefing and coffee (liberally laced with navy rum which, when mixed with dehydrated milk, turned into something nearly solid which looked like penicillin mould) my crew went their separate ways to their traditional fried eggs and bacon. Fitzsimmons and I left the hut to return to the Squadron Office to meet the Squadron Adjutant to arrange for the post crash procedure to be out in hand.
As we made our way to the door, outside of which I had parked the Hillman, we passed the Station Commander, Group Captain Dickens, coming in. Nothing unusual about this but nothing warned us of the scene which greeted us when we stepped out of the building into what we expected to be darkness. The silly old fool had driven up in his Humber Hawk staff car and parked it in front of the door from which we had just stepped. He had switched off the lights but had forgotten that at some time he had switched on the car's two powerful fog lamps which, with blackness around, illuminated the Tower and Briefing Room as if in broad daylight. Fitz and I each opened a door of the car to find the switch which controlled the offending lights. However, as we searched with our backsides high in the air, we both became aware of the sound of aircraft engines at very high revs, approaching us at speed. We quickly dropped onto the unfriendly concrete in the lee of the staff car as the JU88 (yes, the same one) opened up on the Humber . How he missed I don't know, the cannon shells bounced on the tarmac all around us, some unfortunately finding the corner of the Briefing Room which, fortunately, was fairly empty by then. However, if I remember rightly, the panic inside was considerable but only one or two WAAF Intelligence Officers were slightly injured. And the spotlights? No, we did not go back to find the elusive switch. Jock Fitzsimmonds had a more simple remedy he quickly and expertly kicked both lights into darkness. And no, the Group Captain did not complain, but he was promoted to Air Commodore a few months after the end of the war.
POSTSCRIPT
I have discovered that on Bennett's previous operation, about four days before his last, he was returning from the target when a Junkers 88 night fighter attacked them. Although the rear gunner shot it down, its cannon fire severely damaged Bennett's aircraft, and wounded the navigator so badly that he was not able to carry on with his duties. These were taken over by the bomb aimer who got them back to Manston in Kent , where the navigator died station sick quarters. Bennett was awarded an immediate DFC and his bomb aimer the DFM.
As Bennett was now short of a navigator for his next op, he took with him the navigator of a brand new crew which had just arrived on the Squadron and who, as yet, had not flown on operations. This unfortunate person flew his very first operation sortie, which proved to be his last
Note I have just realised that on that night Johnnie Wynne was detailed for operations described in the Ops Report simply as a "Window Patrol" possibly in the same area as Bennett whose duty that night was also a "Window Patrol". Whereas I was detailed for, and successfully completed, a Jostle Patrol (RT Jamming) in support of a Bomber Command raid on the Dortmund-Ems Canal.

Date of loss : 4 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (4 March 1945) BU-J consisted of:

FS Harry 'Barny' Barnfield, 1059973, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 24
Fg/Off Harry 'Benny' Bennett DFC, 190245, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 24
Sgt Leslie Ernest Billington, 2205644, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 20
FS William Briddon, 1817057, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 27
WO Bill Church, Waist Gunner
FS Leslie Arnold Hadder, 1804649, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 20
FS Frank Hares DFM, 1581827, Air Bomber, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 21
Sgt Patrick James Healy, 1300369, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 24
Sgt Alistair McDermid, Waist Gunner
WO Lindsay Joseph Odgers, 417595, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, KIA 4 March 1945, Aged 21

Source : Nightjar Newsletter Spring 2003, Eunice Davies (Widow of Sqd/Ldr Davies) and BBC website World War 2 - Peoples War and Peter Clarke

Date record last updated : 5 August 2009


Flying Fortress HB816 BU-F

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders
Flt Lt Farrington & crew



Flying Fortress Mark III HB817 BU-G


Crew posing in front of Fortress BU-G HB817
Back Row Left to Right: Herbert "Smithy" Smith, Freddy Langhorn, Ken Kemmett, Horace "Duke" Maddox, Frank "Curly" Herlihy, Steve Spregg
Front Row Left to Right: "Olly" Green, Ted "Lofty" Baumfield, Alan Mercer, Ken "Chalky" White

On the 19 April 1945 Kemmett's crew flew on a Window patrol to Schleswig Holstein

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB817 BU-G consisted of :


Fg/Off Charles Edward 'Lofty' 'Ted' Baumfield, Bomb Aimer, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Plt/Off Oliver William 'Ollie' Green, 183526, Special Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 25 January 1947, Aged 22
FS Frank B 'Curly' Herlihy, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Flt/Lt Kenneth Albert John Kemmett, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Fred C 'Freddy' Langhorn, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Horace C 'Duke' Maddox, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
WO Alan F Mercer, 1626081, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Herbert R B 'Smithy' Smith, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
WO H A 'Steve' Spregg, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Ken W J 'Chalky' White, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Alan Mercer and Jennifer Baumfield and Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 9 March 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 BU-U

VE-45-44-8086 MK111


Taken on Charge at 12 Maintenance Unit Kirkbride from 27 June 1944.
Prestwick from 22 July 1944
51 Maintenance Unit at Lichfield from 17 October 1944
214 Squadron at Oulton as BU-U from 14 January 1945
51 Maintenance Unit at Lichfield from 18 August 1945
Struck of charge on 11 March 1947

The aircraft carried the nose art "Give it to Uncle"

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014


Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (Date unknown) BU-U



FURTHER INFORMATION REQUIRED
HB819 is reported to have been coded BU-U, this is also confirmed by the Battle order found at bottom of page which lists HB819 as a spare aircraft.
The Fortress in the photo is reported to be coded as X by Reginald.
 The ORB's show one entry where SR383 is listed as being BU-X however SR383 had been coded BU-F

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (Date unknown) BU-U consisted of :

Sgt J Burchell
Sgt W C Healey (Heley?)
WO S C Hopkins
F/WO Reginald Jeffcock DFM
Flt/Lt James William Lucas DFC, 125538, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Fg/Off N W Manners
FS J Parkinson
Sgt C W Pearson
Flt/Lt W H Taylor

Source : Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 4 July 2009


Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (14 February 1945) BU-U

This crew were on a "Jostle" jamming raid to Cheminitz.
The crew stayed together for quite a while flying more than one aircraft.
Also see CREWS & LOSSES Fortress HB803 Crew 6 October 1944.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (14 February 1945) BU-U consisted of :

FS Angus L Cameron, Wireless Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Fg/Off Basil Peyton 'Bas' Coates, 424973, Navigator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt D T Hatch, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force
Sgt J M Lando, Flight Engineer
Plt/Off Charles S Miflin, Special Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt J S Scott, Mid Upper Gunner
Fg/Off Marc C J 'Marc Mark' Stainier, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : Belgian
WO Phil N R Troutbeck, Bomb Aimer, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt W Walsh, Air Gunner
Sgt N W Williams, 2226960, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve

Source : Ian Hunt and Angus Cameron

Date record last updated : 23 June 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (2 April 1945) BU-U

Sgt Wilkes recalls:
On 2 April 1945 a hard worked Fortress III clambered off the runway at 1699 CU, RAF Oulton near Norwich.
It was to be a routine trip for both aircraft and crew. The purpose of the Conversion Unit was to bring the skills of the individual crew members together and weld them into a trained team before they were posted to a Squadron.
The aircraft climbed to cruising altitude and commenced the first leg of it's designated route.
After four hours the crew were gaining confidence, aircraft checks on performance, evaluating systems and specialised equipment were carried out. Each crew member relating to each others skills, for in the event of an emergency any member may be forced to take over from a disabled comrade.
Quite suddenly, with no warning, the pilot Flying Officer Henderson, lost his vision and was unable to read instruments. Fortress instrument lighting was activated by spotlights beamed onto instruments, which gave a luminous glow which could become very tiring on the eyes.
Quick decision making ensued as the aircraft was in the viccinity of the Welsh Mountains and the crew had to locate an airfiel capable of accepting 60,000 pounds of Boeing aircraft.
Flying Officer Ferguson finally contacted RAF station Shawbury.
While the pilot maintained radio contact the Flight Engineer, Sgt Wilkes, took the controls and circled the area awaiting emergency services being mobilised.
The flare path was eventually sighted and after a low pass the aircraft was successfully landed. Fortunately the pilot had recoverd some limited vision (probably scared stiff at his co-pilot attempting a solo landing!).
The airfield about to host the B17 was the Empire Air Navigation School (EANS) Shawbury. This airfield was a peacetime station, modelled on and second only to, RAF College Cranwell.
With no lead in vehicle Henderson and Wilkes taxied around the perimeter in compete darkness until a large tarmac area appearded which gave room for manoeuvre.
The aircraft was then neatly parked and secured. Ten weary crewmwn headed across the airfiel to the lights of the Flying Control Tower.
They were duly interrogated and having notified Oulton of their intention to spend the remainder of the night at Shawbury, they found a vacant Nissen hut and retired.
After a few hours rest they were awakened by an irate Duty Officer demanding to know who had authorised the parking of an indescribably dirty, oil leaking aeroplane in the middle of the parade ground, which was being prepared for a passing out parade that morning.
Jack Henderson and his crew collected their gear and scrambled out to the aircraft, which had begun to attract considerable interest from the station regulars.
When Horwell, naviagtor, reached the aircraft he had a moment of panic as he could not recall placing the 'Murex' ground starter adaptor on board (his duty). Without it we had no means of starting the engines, as the B17 was only compatible with USAF starting equipment.
Shawbury waited with baited breath until the adaptor was found. Fortunately all "Cyclones" fired and the dirty old lady taxied out, blowing dust and debris all over the immaculate white painted station.
She did not risk a slow fly pass en route to Oulton.
It would be interesting to see the Duty Log entry for the night in question…

Flying Officer henderson fully recovered and persevered to weld his crew into a team that would appreciate and respect his leadership throughout the remainder of their flying duties with 214 Squadron.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (2 April 1945) BU-U consisted of :

Sgt Pat Clark, Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force
Fg/Off 'Corky' Corkill, Rear Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force
Fg/Off Harold Ferguson, Wireless Operator, Royal Canadian Air Force
Sgt Bert Hardington, Top Turret Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force
Fg/Off Jack Henderson, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force
Fg/Off D Horwell, Navigator, Royal Canadian Air Force
Sgt Richard John 'Jake' Jacob, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force
Fg/Off Chuck Lilley, Observer, Royal Air Force
Fg/Off Roy Smith, Special Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force
Sgt F Alan Wilkes, Co-pilot / Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (26 April 1945) BU-U

Combat manoeuvres

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (26 April 1945) BU-U consisted of :

Fg/Off Jack Henderson, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force
Sgt F Alan Wilkes, Co-pilot / Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014


Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (6 May 1945) BU-U

Air Sea exercise

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (6 May 1945) BU-U consisted of :

Fg/Off Jack Henderson, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force
Sgt F Alan Wilkes, Co-pilot / Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014


Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (11 May 1945) BU-U

Tour of the Ruhr

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (11 May 1945) BU-U consisted of :

H Mark, Pilot
Sgt F Alan Wilkes, Co-pilot / Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (12 May 1945) BU-U

Tour of the Ruhr

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB819 (12 May 1945) BU-U consisted of :

H Mark, Pilot
Sgt F Alan Wilkes, Co-pilot / Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force

Source : F A Wilkes

Date record last updated : 16 January 2014


Flying Fortress Mark III HB820 BU-P


Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III HB820 BU-P consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward - Great Neice of Ernest Wilfred Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008


Flying Fortress Mark III KH999 BU-M

8 April 1945 - Mentioned in Battle Orders being flown by WO Murray and crew

Date record last updated : 17 December 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ101 BU-H

On 23 April 1945 Kemmett's crew flew on a Window patrol to Lubeck (Hamburg).

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ101 BU-H consisted of :

Fg/Off Charles Edward 'Lofty' 'Ted' Baumfield, Bomb Aimer, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Plt/Off Oliver William 'Ollie' Green, 183526, Special Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 25 January 1947, Aged 22
FS Frank B 'Curly' Herlihy, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Flt/Lt Kenneth Albert John Kemmett, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Fred C 'Freddy' Langhorn, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Horace C 'Duke' Maddox, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
WO Alan F Mercer, 1626081, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Herbert R B 'Smithy' Smith, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
WO H A 'Steve' Spregg, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Ken W J 'Chalky' White, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Alan Mercer and Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 9 March 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ103 BU-M

Take off was at 18:00 hrs from Oulton on Jostle duties. On return to the base the aircraft ran out of fuel and hit a tree at 02:40 hrs crashing near the airfield.One member of the crew, Flg Off McKee was killed. Six members of the crew were injured.

Date of loss : 17 January 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ103 BU-M consisted of :

Sgt Cecil 'Bill' Brown, 1892486, Waist Gunner
Fg/Off E T Hardman, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Fg/Off R V Houston, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
FS R J Knickle, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Sgt D V Lewis
Sgt B J Lunn
Fg/Off Terrence Velleau McKee, J/37716, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 17 January 1945, Aged 24
Fg/Off N T Scott, Pilot
FS R Smith
Sgt R J Willing

Source : Chorley

Date record last updated : 31 August 2011


Flying Fortress Mark III KJ103 (date unknown) BU-M

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ103 (date unknown) BU-M consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward (Great neice of Flg Off Ernest Wilfred Woodley).

Date record last updated : 31 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ106 BU-G



On 7 March 1945 Fortress KJ106 coded BU-G lifted off the runway at Oulton at 18:14hrs en-route to Germany. On board the Fortress was pilot Fg/Off George Stewart at the controls, and the usual crew of nine. This was a very cosmopolitan crew aboard KJ106 with members representing four nations. The night’s operation was Jostle Patrol in support of a bombing raid on Hamburg. While there is some dispute as to what happened on arrival over Germany, it is known that KJ106 crashed near Pippensen, 3 km's from Buxtehude, Germany between 22:17 and 22:30 hrs. The official MRES Report states that cause was flak and another source states the cause was night fighter and yet another, that they were shot down by one of their own. Of the 10 crew members 5 were killed and five were taken as Prisoners of War. According to Sgt Ken Phelan the crew's starboard waist gunner, and, based on comments made by Rear Gunner W/O Harry Henderson, they were shot down by a Lancaster.
In one of the books by Theo Boiten, "Night Airwar", Ken Phelan recalls the last moments of KJ106: "Following on from a combat with a night fighter Harry, the rear gunner, came on the intercom: ‘Lancaster dead astern. My God, he's firing at us.’ There was the noise like the sound of pebbles on a tin roof as the .303 bullets tore through the fuselage. One grazed my ankle. The port wing burst into flames. We veered to starboard and started to dive out of control" .... On exiting the plane, Phelan bashed against the starboard tailplane, breaking his left leg and jaw, and dislocating his shoulder. He was taken prisoner but when he returned to the UK at the end of the war he had to go back into an RAF hospital for further treatment or recuperation.

In the spring of 2005, Dieter Pintatis of Neu Wulmstorf Germany located a document in his local church in Elstorf which contained details of four airmen who had been buried in the churchyard cemetery. Elstorf is near Buxtehude, the distance (bee-line) between Elstorf and the crash site near Pippensen is 5 miles. According to Dieter there were about 15 aircraft that crashed around Pippensen during the war. This document Dieter found, dated 9th March 1945, is a record of burial titled "Special Graves" and lists four deceased airmen that were buried in the churchyard the day after the crash. The four are Peters, Stewart, McClymont and an unknown. Together with the names there is recorded various bits of information on each man suggesting that it was extracted from identification found on the bodies.

A copy of the original document is shown below along with a translation that Dieter was kind enough to provide.


Above is the original document from the church in Elstorf Germany, below is a translation provided by Dieter Pintatis.


Note that the document is headed with the description "Four American Fliers." This incorrect heading identifying them as an American crew is a bit of a puzzle particularly since the record correctly noted the personal details from three of the men. This would indicate that three of the four men had identification on them which should also have shown they were RAF not USA.
One thing that stands out about this document, particularly at this point in the war, is that the people of this small German village were kind enough to give the enemy who came to bomb them a quick and proper burial in their own church yard.
Following the war the graves were exhumed and moved to the War Cemetery in Becklingen. In followup to his research, Dieter visited the Cemetry and noted the gravestones of: McClymont, Stewart and Peters all stand side by side and between them is a fourth inscribed "John William Winstone, Pilot Officer, New Zealand, 214 Sqdr. Death 07 March 1945. This almost certainly indicates that the unknown crew member buried at Elstorf was Plt/Off Winstone.
We do not know why W/O H.L Henderson was originally buried at the church cemetery in Moisburg, rather than Elstorf.


Photograh taken at Becklingen War Cemetery where the crew of KJ106 are buried.


Crash site

Diter also provided some information about the crash:
"On this field the aircraft skidded for 400 metres, stratight towards the farmhouse. The bomber lost his engines and halted 200 metres in front of the building. 4 or 5 airmen jumped out of the plane and ran into the field. They feared the aircraft may explode. After waiting a while they went to the farmhouse and were given coffee by the mother of Mr Johannsen, the farmer. One of the crew was injured.
From a near searchlight station soldiers came to the crash. The dead airmen were placed into a shed. During that night soldiers came by cars from Hamburg and picked up the survivors. Two days later a small truck came to pick up the dead airmen to be buried."

The administrators of the site have a map showing the cemeteries where the crew were originally buried. Please contact us if you would like a copy.

Date of loss : 7 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ106 BU-G consisted of :

Sgt A Jim Goldson, Port Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 7 March 1945
WO J Henderson, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 7 March 1945
Plt/Off Harry Leonard Henderson, J/95282, Air Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 7 March 1945, Aged 19
FS J V Mathews, Wireless Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, POW 7 March 1945
FS Hugh McClure McClymont, 1681945, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 7 March 1945
Sgt W P Mulhall, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 7 March 1945
Fg/Off Nicholas Peters, J/45525, Special Operator, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, KIA 7 March 1945, Aged 30
Sgt Ken C Phelan, Starboard Waist Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 7 March 1945
Fg/Off George Stewart, 421849, Pilot, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 7 March 1945, Aged 22
Plt/Off John William Winstone, 429389, Air Bomber, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, KIA 7 March 1945, Aged 25

Dieter Pintatis and Ian Hunt and Rod Mackenzie and Kevin Crawford and "Night Airwar" by Theo Boiten and crew photograph from Patrick Henderson (nephew of Harry L Henderson)

Date record last updated : 27 September 2013

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ107 BU-N

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ107 (8 April 1945) BU-N

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders
Flt/Lt Lucas and crew

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ107 (8 April 1945) BU-N consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lucas, Pilot


Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ107 (Date unknown) BU-N

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ107 (Date unknown) BU-N consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward (Great neice of Flg Off Ernest Wilfred Woodley).

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ109 BU-V

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ109 BU-V consisted of :

Flt/Lt Ernest Wilfred 'Wilf' Woodley DFC, 147989, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British

Source : Emily Ward - Great Neice of Ernest Wilfred Woodley

Date record last updated : 28 August 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ110 BU-B

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ110 BU-B consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ112 BU-P


Crew of Fortress KJ112. Click on the picture to see larger version




Letter from Lady Winford (mother of Flt/Lt William Donald Allies) to all families of the crew.

ORB entry for KJ112



Take off was at 1.30am from Oulton. The operation was to provide Jostle duties in support of the Hamburg raid. The aircraft was lost without trace.

Date of loss : 22 March 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ112 BU-P consisted of :

Flt/Lt William Donald 'Bill' Allies, 41978, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 30
FS Charles Roberts William Braithwaite, 1812034, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945
WO Norman Cooper, 916151, Special Operator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 29
Fg/Off Wilfred James Cunningham, 149252, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 24
Sgt Robert Alan Derek Jones, 1811322, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 20
Fg/Off Brian Francis Kerr DFM, 148842, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945
WO James McFarlane, 994024, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 23
Sgt Peter Newman, 1816804, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 21
Sgt Edward Lionel Punnett, 1606932, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 23 March 1945
Fg/Off Stafford Henry George Sinclair DFM, 178092, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 March 1945, Aged 32

Source : Chorley and Nightjar Newsletter Spring 2003 and Peter Allies (Son of Flt/Lt William Donald Allies) and Catherine Stewart (relative of WO James McFarlane)

Date record last updated : 27 July 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 BU-B

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (2 May 1945) BU-B

On 2 May 1945 Kemmett's crew flew on a Window patrol to Schleswig Holstein.

NOTE: This operation was also Bomber Command's last op of WWII, which was the subject of a recent book: "The Final Fling" by William J Rees. ISBN 1900604 13 2
"With Hitler dead and the German war machine in disarray, there was a euphoria throughout the command with everyone well aware that the end was near. Then why, out of the blue, on the morning of the 2nd May 1945 were orders sent out that aircraft would be required for 'maximum effort' operations that night?
In his book Bill has used his personal knowledge and contacts, accompanied by extensive research, to recount what happened on that fateful night in May 1945."

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (2 May 1945) BU-B consisted of :

Fg/Off Charles Edward 'Lofty' 'Ted' Baumfield, Bomb Aimer, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Plt/Off Oliver William 'Ollie' Green, 183526, Special Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 25 January 1947, Aged 22
FS Frank B 'Curly' Herlihy, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
Flt/Lt Kenneth Albert John Kemmett, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Fred C 'Freddy' Langhorn, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Horace C 'Duke' Maddox, Air Gunner, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand
WO Alan F Mercer, 1626081, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Herbert R B 'Smithy' Smith, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
WO H A 'Steve' Spregg, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Ken W J 'Chalky' White, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young) and Alan Mercer and Ian Hunt

Date record last updated : 9 March 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (8 April 1945) BU-B

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders
FO Cameron & crew

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (8 April 1945) BU-B consisted of :

Fg/Off Cameron

Source : Battle orders

Date record last updated : 9 March 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (date unknown) BU-B

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ114 (date unknown) BU-B consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 9 March 2009

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ119 BU-O

They flew in Fortress KJ119, coded 'BU-O', and the op was a "Window patrol" dropping radar-jamming foil strips (nowadays the stuff called "chaff") in support of a raid on the "Kiel area" of Germany. In the notes of operation of Sgt Clarke, he recorded "" light flak, no searchlights, possible collision 2 Halifax's".This was in fact the last Bomber Command raid of the war and has been described in a book
called "The Final Fling" by William J Rees.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ119 BU-O consisted of :

Sgt K N Butler, Mid Upper Gunner
Sgt P Clarke, Flight Engineer
Sgt Henry Walter 'Nobby' Clarke, 1896292, Rear Gunner
Plt/Off A Dobson, Pilot
FS Frederick Charles Drake, Special Operator
Sgt A E Jones, Waist Gunner
FS C V C Lacey, Wireless Operator
Sgt A R A Morris, Waist Gunner
WO E R F Smith, Air Bomber
FS A E Wallace, Navigator

Source : Ian Hunt and Nic Clarke (son of Sgt Henry Walter Clarke)

Date record last updated : 1 January 2010

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ122 BU-D

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ122 BU-D consisted of :

Flt/Lt Lionel Curtis Young, 148042, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Richard Young (son of Lionel Young)

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ125 BU-J

8 April 1945 - Mentioned on Battle Orders
Squadron Leader Davies & crew

Flying Fortress Mark III KJ125 BU-J

Written-off. Flak-damaged, overshot and crashed on landing at Florennes-Juzaine, Belgium

Date of loss : 17 April 1945

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III KJ125 BU-J consisted of :

Fg/Off M 'Bing' Crosbie, Pilot

Date record last updated : 7 December 2008

Flying Fortress Mark II SR377 BU-M

On 11 April 1944 plane took off at 15.30pm and it is noted in Bryant's logbook that they flew for 1 hr 40 minutes on "Compass swing".

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR377 BU-M consisted of :

Flt/Lt Tom Bayliss, Pilot
Sgt Sydney Herbert Bryant, 1851276, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 20


Source : John Cripps (nephew of Sgt Bryant)

Date record last updated : 14 October 2008

Flying Fortress Mark II SR378 BU-D


George Mackie and crew 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR378 BU-D consisted of :

FS Fell, Waist Gunner
WO John E Flack DFC, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Plt/Off Hoffman, Special Operator
FS 'Honeymoon' Honeyman, Flight Engineer
Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
WO Mooreby, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner
FS Morris, Air Bomber
Fg/Off O'Leary, Navigator
WO Taylor, Waist Gunner
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : George Mackie

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress Mark II SR378 (12 July 1944) BU-D

12 July 1944 Window jamming mission

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR378 (12 July 1944) BU-D consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 16 May 2009


Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 BU-S

Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (23 July 1944) BU-S

Mission to Holland

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (23 July 1944) BU-S consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010


Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (24 July 1944) BU-S

Mission to Holland

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (24 July 1944) BU-S consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (12 September 1944) BU-S

Fg/Off Stainier 'bent' a Fortress in a landing accident on 12 September 1944, while in training with 1699 Flight, 214 Sqn's Fortress conversion unit. He records that there was a problem with the aircraft's flaps (Fortress SR380) on a night training exercise, and the a/c then swung on landing at RAF Woodbridge (one of the emergency landing airfields, in Suffolk) and tipped onto its nose. One air gunner was slightly injured.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR380 (12 September 1944) BU-S consisted of :

Fg/Off Marc C J 'Marc Mark' Stainier, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : Belgian

Source : Lt/Col Jean-Marie Stainier (son of Marc Stainier)

Date record last updated : 14 July 2014

Flying Fortress Mark II SR381 BU-F

D Day (6 June 1944) in F for Freddy 6.5 hours during invasion.

On the night of 21/22 June 1944 the aircraft was badly shot up by two night fighters, the first was an Me 410, the second, which occurred about ten or fifteen minutes after the first was by a Ju 88, over Gelsenkirtchen, where the target was the Nordstern Oil Plant.
Dove from 22,000 feet to 12,000 feet in a straight dive to try to put engine fire out with no effect. Limped home with engine on fire to the emergency airfield at Woodbridge. Landed and crashed into a Lancaster of 61 Squadron with full bomb load.
All crew members survived. However both Stanley and Hembrow were were wounded in the two separate combats not far from the target.
Flight Sergeant Stanley was seriously wounded, with cannon splinters grazing rather deeply into his skull. F/Sgt. Hembrow's wounds were in the back of one shoulder and were relatively light, certainly not as serious as those sustained by Stanley.

This incident is reported fully in Murray Peden's book "A thousand shall fall" Chapter 18 Gelsenkirchen.

Date of loss : 21 June 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR381 BU-F consisted of :

Sgt K William 'Bill' Bailey, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
FS R H Hembrow, Special Wireless Operator, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt A E 'Bert' Lester, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
FS S 'Sam' Mather, Navigator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Flt/Lt D Murray Peden DFC, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
FS Jack Delmont 'Phillipsy' Phillips, 422692, Rear Gunner, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
WO Alfred 'Stan' Stanley DFM, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
FS J W Walker, Waist Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Fg/Off J B Waters, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian

Source : Michael Phillips (son of Jack Phillips) and Nightjar Newsletter Spring 2003 and Roger V Mills (son) and John Tudor Mills and Murray Peden

Date record last updated : 28 December 2011

Flying Fortress Mark II SR382 BU-B

At approximately 23.50hrs on the 21st June 1944, the shortest night of the year, B17 Fortress BU.B lifted from the runway at Oulton and headed east over the North Sea to Holland, then on to the Ruhr Valley. At some time around 01.00 hrs it came under attack by a Messerschitt 110 of NJG3, within minutes the Fortress was in flames and the order was given to bail out. While five of the crew did so the pilot, co-pilot, navigator and an air gunner did not, some years later one of the survivors said that when the order was given "The pilot and co-pilot were struggling with the controls hoping to make a forced landing." It has never been clarified why, the assumption is that some of the crew were badly wounded in the attack and that the only possible way to save them was to attempt a crash landing. Whatever the intentions of the pilot and co-pilot some moments later the aircraft in flames crashed into the ground where it quickly burnt out, by the time German soldiers arrived, some minutes later, four crew lay dead in the wreckage and another lay hidden beneath it. Two days later on the 24th four of the crew were buried at what was then known as the "English Cemetery", in Uden, Holland, (now Uden War Cemetery) attended by a military Guard of Honour made up of Luftwaffe personnel. Only on the 28th when the wreckage of BU.B was being removed was the body of a fifth member of crew found under the remains of the fuselage with an open parachute attached. For reasons unknown he was not taken to Uden to be buried along side his fallen comrades but was buried in the local civilian cemetery at Bergharen where his body remained until the late 1940's at which time he was exhumed and re-interred at Jonkerbos War Cemetery.

In the very early hours of 22nd June 1944 a B17 Flying Fortress of 214 Squadron, RAF Oulton, in Norfolk, was shot down over Holland by a German night fighter while returning from a clandestine mission. Dutch observers reported the aircraft crashing at 1-15am near Aaldert, 2km NW of Bergharen, Netherlands . Of the nine man crew on board five were killed. Aircraft Boeing B17 Flying Fortress SR-382 BU-B of B flight, 214 Squadron, 100 Group. Royal Air Force.The Luftwaffe pilot that shot the aircraft down was Heinz Strunig of NJG1. Heinz subsequently was shot down himself on Christmas Eve 1944 and attempting to bail out collided with the tail-plane assembly of his aircraft and was killed. (Aircraft believed to have been a Messerschmitt 110). This paragraph contributed by Joop Thuring

See BU-B THE FULL STORY by John Cripps

Crash of BU-B
"Courtesy of the Foundation of Uden War Cemetery"


Crew graves Uden, Holland. Believed taken 1946. The two middle markers show "Unknown Airman". Later identified as George Orr (left) and John Cassan. (right). Left and right of these two is Syd Bryant and Alex Sharpe.


Diagram contributed by Nigel Abbott showing how the aircraft was hit and where the crew were situated

Click on the following link to read the diary :
The Diary of an Allied Advanced Guard. Not Defeated, Just Waiting

This diary records FS Harry Whatton's time as a Prisoner of War from June 1944 until his liberation in May 1945. It also includes his time during the 'TheLong March' of January to February 1945. Harry clearly had a fixation for liberation and dwells much on the shortage of food. Perhaps an honest reflection of the monotony of POW camp life.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR382 BU-B consisted of :

Sgt Norman William Stanley Abbott, 1626469, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 19
Sgt Sydney Herbert Bryant, 1851276, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 20
Plt/Off John Douglas 'Johnny' Cassan, 172119, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 21
WO/II Douglas Reid Jennings DFC, R153179, Air Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Fg/Off W Milne, Special Operator, Royal Air Force, POW 22 June 1944
FS George Orr, 1551656, Navigator, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 21
FS Alex Sharpe, 1011102, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 23
FS Tom S Sparks, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 22 June 1944
FS Harry Whatton, 1384559, Wireless Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom, POW 8 July 1944

Source : John Cripps (nephew of Sgt Sydney Bryant) and Keith Stone (nephew of Harry Whatton) and Joop Thuring, War researcher from the Netherlands and Nigel Abbott (Nephew of Sgt Abbott)

Date record last updated : 6 November 2010


Flying Fortress Mark II SR383 BU-F / BU-X

Flying Fortress Mark II SR383 (10 August 1944) BU-F

Operation along English coastline

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR383 (10 August 1944) BU-F consisted of :

Flt/Lt George 'Mac' Mackie DFC, 995866 and 169724, Pilot, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Fg/Off William Wells DFC, 1333704, Rear Gunner

Source : Colin Wells (son of William Wells)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

Flying Fortress Mark II SR383 (24 July 1944) BU-F / BU-X

Mandrel jamming mission
11 August 1944 Mandrel jostling mission

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR383 BU-F / BU-X consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 19 March 2010

 Flying Fortress Mark II SR384 BU-A




Source : Gerhard Heilig





It left RAF Oulton UK on 24th May 1944 at 23.50 hours (23:38 hrs per Ryan Dudley) on an operational mission to Antwerp. The aircraft was shot down by nightfighter, (Oblt Hermann Leube, 4/NJG3) and crashed at 00:57 hours into the Oosterschelde.This was the first loss of a Fortress crew and aircraft for 214 Squadron since it became part of 100 Group back in January 1944.

Date of loss : 24 May 1944

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR384 BU-A consisted of :

FS Thomas Duke 'Tommy' Glenn, 1516790, Navigator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British, POW 24 May 1944
FS Robert Yewen 'Bob' Gundy, Bomb Aimer, Royal New Zealand Air Force, Nationality : New Zealand, POW 24 May 1944
Sgt Walther William Charles 'Bill' Hallett, Flight Engineer, Nationality : British, POW 24 May 1944
Plt/Off Allan James Neville 'Skipper' Hockley, 420197, Pilot, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian, KIA 24 May 1944, Aged 27
Sgt Robert Francis 'Bob' Lloyd-Davies, Wireless Operator, Nationality : British, POW 24 May 1944
Sgt Enoch 'Nick' Lovatt, Rear Gunner, Nationality : British, POW 24 May 1944
FS Raoul Trichon 'Tom' Lyall, Wireless Operator, Nationality : British, POW 24 May 1944
Sgt James Edward 'Jim' McCutchan, Waist Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian, POW 24 May 1944
Sgt Raymond George Victor 'Ray' Simpson, 1805752, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British, KIA 24 May 1944, Aged 20

Source : Ryan Dudley (cousin twice removed of Allan Hockley) and pictures provided by Edward Cantle and Gerhard Heilig and Roz Glenn (daughter-in-law of Thomas Glenn) and Don Lyall (son of Raoul Trichon "Tom" Lyall)

Date record last updated : 13 July 2010

 Flying Fortress Mark II SR386 BU-N


SR386 BU-N 1944






SR386 BU-N Crew and Groundcrew


SR386 BU-N Sculthorpe 1944
All pictures kindly provided by Gerhard Heilig

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR386 BU-N consisted of :

FS 'Paddy' Gilpin, Mid Upper Gunner
Sgt Gerhard 'Harry' Heilig, 1892246, Special Operator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : Austrian
Sgt Hewitt, Waist Gunner
Sgt Jimmy Hollingsworth, Wireless Operator
Plt/Off Ken Hovers, Navigator
Sgt Bill Howard, Flight Engineer
WO Alfred Read, 1492091, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : United Kingdom
Fg/Off 'Tommy' Thomas, Bomb Aimer
Plt/Off Jake Walters, Pilot

Source : Gerhard Heilig

Date record last updated : 7 March 2008


Flying Fortress SR388 BU-H / BU-Z

Flying Fortress Mark II SR388 (2 June 1944) BU-H


Crew of SR388 (2 June 1944) BU-H
Back row : Sgt John Morris, Sgt Ron James, Sgt John Fenn and FS Colin Mitchinson.
Front row : Sgt Jock Fitzsimmons, Sqd/Ldr William Day and Plt/Off Don Beaton.

Roland Williams recalls:
"On the night of June 2nd 1944, three of our B17's - those of Sqd/Ldr Bill Day, Johnny Cassan and George Wright - took part in the attack on the marshalling yards of Trappes, about forty miles south-west of Paris. I read in the Daily Express some years later that this was the raid that opened the second front. The official report the next morning quoted sixteen of our aircraft were lost."

Sqn/Ldr Day noted in his log that "16 aircraft were lost out of total of 100 aircraft", and it also says "7 enemy down".

In the early 1980s Mike Day built a scale model of his B17 SR388-H, which (together with a Stirling model) wound up in the Greenwood, Nova Scotia Air Force Base museum.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR388 (2 June 1944) BU-H consisted of :

Plt/Off Don Beaton, Air Bomber, Nationality : Nyasaland (Malawi)
WO Connley
Sqn/Ldr William Selfridge 'Bill' Day DFC, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Sgt John Fenn, Wireless Operator, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Jock Fitzsimmons, Flight Engineer, Nationality : United Kingdom
Sgt Haveland
Sgt Ron 'Jimmy' James, Mid Upper Gunner
FS Colin Mitchinson, Rear Gunner, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
Sgt Johnny Morris, Navigator, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Catherine Sommer (daughter of Roland Williams) and Mike Day (son of Sqn/Ldr Day)

Date record last updated : 31 August 2011


Flying Fortress Mark II SR388 (7 July 1944) BU-H

Mission to St Leu d'Esserent, north of Paris. Target Underground flying bomb store.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II SR388 (7 July 1944) BU-H consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Kenneth J 'Beetlejuice' Bettles DFC, 133994 / 237644, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Keith Bettles (Son of Kenneth Bettles)

Date record last updated : 16 May 2009

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Archibald BU-H

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Archibald (4 July 1944) BU-H

WO Archibald's crew flew on a daylight raid to St Leu 'Desserent when the gunners shot down FW190.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Archibald (4 July 1944) BU-H consisted of :

WO James W Archibald, 187559, Pilot
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Donald MacGilchrist

Date record last updated : 28 June 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Archibald (15 July 1944)

Roland Williams recalls:
"Warrant Officer Archibald was another of the men who liked to have a bit of fun in the air. I was to go with him on another sortie to Nevers, another town south of Paris, on 15th July 1944. On the afternoon air test we came upon a cricket match taking place at Pakenham. Some joker in the crew suggested to Archie that he beat it up. Down went Archie with quite a clip on, along the full length of the pitch, and the cricketers throwing themselves flat on their faces. As we climbed away, the same joker said, "Round again, Archie!" and the voice of the wireless operator came over the intercom: "Wait a second, Archie, till I wind the trailing aerial in." That aerial was seventy feet long with ¾" lead balls interspaced along its length. He didn't make the second run! We were over the target that night and the rear gunner reported a fighter on each of the quarters (port and starboard). But we had to be prodded by Archie as to their position because the gunner was slow with his commentary. Suddenly it was "Corkscrew starboard go!" and Archie threw the aircraft over into that manoeuvre and we escaped. But as we came out of the corkscrew a Focker Wolf came round our bows almost within touching distance, and I remember saying to Archie, "Bloody hell! Here's another one! Such a near miss!"

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Archibald (15 July 1944) consisted of :

WO James W Archibald, 187559, Pilot
Sgt Roland 'Ron' Williams, Flight Engineer

Source : Catherine Sommer (daughter of Roland Williams)

Date record last updated : 5 August 2009

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Austin BU-O



The bleary appearance of the crew is due in some measure to the fact that the previous night they had flown an eight hour trip to Komotau departing before midnight on the previous evening. Komotau is the German name for Chomutov in the Czech Republic.
The picture was taken as they were due to say their goodbyes to Jimmy Pate and Don Austin on completion of their second tours.
The remaining people (except Abe Levine) were subsequently crewed with Johny Wynne and went on to form RWE, eventually being based ar Watton.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Austin BU-O consisted of :

Flt/Lt William Donald 'Don' Austin DFC & Bar, 129384, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
WO Leslie Les Bostock, 1521003, Bomb Aimer, Nationality : British
Sgt Alfred 'Alfie' Butler, Port Waist Gunner
FS Nelson 'Geoff' Godfrey, Navigator
FS Harry 'Jock' Knox, Flight Engineer
Fg/Off Abe Levine, Special Operator
FS Charlie 'Chas' Lewis, Starboard Waist Gunner
WO Jimmy Pate DFC, 1559950, Rear Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Cyril 'Pip' Piper, Mid Upper Gunner
FS Harry Richardson, Wireless Operator

Source : Les Bostock and Heather Andrews (daughter of Harry Richardson)

Date record last updated : 25 October 2015

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Bayliss

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Bayliss consisted of :

Flt/Lt Tom Bayliss, Pilot
Flt/Lt Gordon Rolfe 'Lofty' or 'Nick' Carter (Aircrew Europe Star (France and Germany clasp)), 1851397, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Tony Carter (son of Gordon Carter)

Date record last updated : 7 July 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Bettles BU-?


From Left to Right: 'Kiwi' Evans, Donald MacGilchrist, Len Kinzett, George Cann, Ken Bettles.

16 November? Poss September 1944

Patrol off the Dutch coast, possibly to support the drop at Arnhem.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) Bettles BU-? consisted of :

George Cann, Flight Engineer
Roger Connolly, Mid Upper Gunner
'Kiwi' Evans, Navigator
Sqn/Ldr Len Kinzett, Wireless Operator
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Paddy Smythe, Rear Gunner


Source : Donald MacGilchrist.

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Bray

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Bray consisted of :

Sqn/Ldr Jeff Bray DFC, Pilot
John Lyall, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Nationality : Australian


Source : Nightjar Newsletter August 2014

Date record last updated : 25 January 2015

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Cassan

Roland Williams recalls:
"On the night of June 2nd 1944, three of our B17's - those of Sqd/Ldr Bill Day, Johnny Cassan and George Wright - took part in the attack on the marshalling yards of Trappes, about forty miles south-west of Paris. I read in the Daily Express some years later that this was the raid that opened the second front. The official report the next morning quoted sixteen of our aircraft were lost."

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Cassan consisted of :

Plt/Off John Douglas 'Johnny' Cassan, 172119, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom, KIA 22 June 1944, Aged 21

Source : Catherine Sommer (daughter of Roland Williams)

Date record last updated : 5 August 2009

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (22 April 1944) BU-F

Target Dusseldorf

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (22 April 1944) BU-F consisted of :

Plt/Off Gilbert, Pilot
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : Britis
h

Source : Donald MacGilchrist

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (24 April 1944) BU-H

Target Karlsruhe

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (24 April 1944) BU-H consisted of :

Plt/Off Gilbert, Pilot
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Donald MacGilchrist

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (8 May 1944) BU-?

Target Haine St Pierre

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (8 May 1944) BU-? consisted of :

Plt/Off Gilbert, Pilot
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Donald MacGilchrist

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (21 May 1944) BU-H

Target the Baltic

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Gilbert (21 May 1944) BU-H consisted of :

Plt/Off Gilbert, Pilot
Flt/Lt Donald 'Mac' MacGilchrist, 169977, Bomb Aimer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British

Source : Donald MacGilchrist

Date record last updated : 20 September 2008

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Haynes BU-H

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Haynes (16 April 1945) BU-H

Mission was to Schwandorf.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Haynes (16 April 1945) BU-H consisted of :

Flt/Lt Bernard J Haynes
Fg/Off John Tudor 'Johnny' Mills, Non Com 1851156 Com 197967, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom


Source : Ian Hunt and Roger Mills (son of John Tudor Mills)

Date record last updated : 28 June 2009


Flying Fortress Mark II ??Ingham BU-


John Ritchie is seventh from the left. The skipper Doug Ingham is wearing the hat.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II ??Ingham BU- consisted of :

FS John Arnot, Bomb Aimer, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Black, Starboard Waist Gunner
FS Brookes, Rear Gunner, Nationality : New Zealand
FS Carter, Special Operator, Nationality : New Zealand
WO Franklin, Wireless Operator, Nationality : New Zealand
Flt/Lt Doug Ingham, Pilot, Nationality : New Zealand
FS Jennings, Port Waist Gunner
FS O'Hara, Flight Engineer
FS Paterson, Navigator, Nationality : New Zealand
Sgt John Ritchie, 1367646, Air Gunner


Source : John Ritchie (son of Sgt John Ritchie)

Date record last updated : 8 June 2009

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Morrison

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Morrison consisted of :

WO Arthur Carr, Flight Engineer
Flt/Lt James Eric Morrison, Pilot, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian


Source : Nightjar Newsletter August 2014

Date record last updated : 25 January 2015


Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Murray BU-Q

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Murray (8 March 1945) BU-Q

Mission was SD Patrol Harburg

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Murray (8 March 1945) BU-Q consisted of :

Fg/Off John Tudor 'Johnny' Mills, 1851156, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
Plt/Off Frank Murray, Pilot, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian

Source : Ian Hunt and Roger Mills (son of John Tudor Mills)

Date record last updated : 28 June 2009

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Peden

This crew is recorded on the Return Of Operational Aircrew Report at 16:00 hrs on 31 August 1944 and is confirmed by Murray Peden as being his main crew, except for Flight Sergeant Hopton.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Peden consisted of :

FS K William 'Bill' Bailey, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
FS Hopton, Waist Gunner
FS A E 'Bert' Lester, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Sgt S 'Sam' Mather, Navigator, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
Flt/Lt David Murray Peden DFC, R134578, Pilot, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
WO Jack Delmont 'Phillipsy' Phillips, 422692, Rear Gunner, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
WO Alfred 'Stan' Stanley DFM, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : British
FS J W 'Johnny' Walker, R.173927, Rear Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Fg/Off J B Waters, Air Bomber, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian

Source : Return of operational Aircrew at 16:00hrs on 31 August 1944 and Murray Peden

Date record last updated : 22 June 2014

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Scantleton(2)

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Scantleton(2) consisted of :

Flt/Lt Vern L Scantleton DFC, Pilot, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian

Source : Vern Scantleton

Date record last updated : 5 August 2009

Flying Fortress Mark II ??Van Den Bok (December 1944) BU-C


The photograph is credited to Sgt Herbert Harker (Waist Gunner) and he lists the assembled personnel in the following order, from left to right ;
FS Jim Blake ; Flt/Lt Len Sheel, or Shiel, DFM ; FS Al Schaeffer RCAF ; Sqd/Ldr Ralph Van Den Bok ; FS "Smithy" Smith RCAF ; FS John Tudor Mills ; Sgt Herbert Harker ; FS Jim Green ; FS Howard Plumber.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark II ??Van Den Bok (December 1944) BU-C consisted of :

FS Blake, Waist Gunner
FS Green, Flight Engineer
Sgt Herbert Harker, Waist Gunner
FS John Tudor 'Johnny' Mills, 1851156, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
FS Plumber, Navigator
FS Al Schaeffer DFC, Rear Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Flt/Lt Shiel DFM, Special Wireless Operator
FS "Smithy" Smith, Mid Upper Gunner, Royal Canadian Air Force, Nationality : Canadian
Sqn/Ldr Ralph Van den Bok DFC and 2 Bars, 83004, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : British


Source : Roger Mills (son of John Tudor Mills) and Mike Ashwell (Son-in-law of Herbert Harker)

Date record last updated : 8 August 2011

Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Wynne


Crew at Foulsham in 1945


Leslie Bostock and Geoff Godfrey

During the dying days of World War II in Europe Don Austin finished his second tour and most of his crew volunteered to remain with John Wynne and pursue their destinies against the Japanese but before that happened the Atom Bomb changed everything.

Things were a little fluid at the time but they became 192 Squadron as a precursor to transferring to Foulsham where they joined in the formation of RWE (Radio Warfare Establishment) eventually locating at Watton.

Crew of Flying Fortress (model unknown) ??Wynne consisted of :

WO Leslie 'Les' Bostock, 1521003, Bomb Aimer, Nationality : British
Sgt Alfred 'Alfie' Butler, Port Waist Gunner
FS Nelson 'Geoff' Godfrey, Navigator
FS Harry 'Jock' Knox, Flight Engineer
FS Charlie 'Chas' Lewis, Starboard Waist Gunner
'Paddy' Moore, Rear Gunner
FS Cyril 'Pip' Piper, Mid Upper Gunner
FS Harry Richardson, Wireless Operator
'Steve' Stevens, Special Operator
Wg/Cdr John Wynne DFC, Pilot, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom

Source : Les Bostock and Heather Andrews (daughter of Harry Richardson)

Date record last updated : 31 December 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver

Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (27 November 1944) BU-U

Target Neuss Jostle, Dinah & Carpet Attacked by Me110 at which Jack Kelly got several shots while Ken Wyver took evasive action (this later turned out to be a Mosquito rather than a Messerschmitt and Keith got a lift from the pilot, who was highly amused by the incident, some days later)

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (27 November 1944) BU-U consisted of :

Plt/Off 'Jack' Kelly, Air Gunner, Royal Air Force, Nationality : American
Plt/Off B A 'Brian' Penhall, 429827, Bomb Aimer, Royal Australian Air Force, Nationality : Australian
'Frank' Waldron, Flight Engineer, Royal Air Force
Flt/Lt Kenneth 'Ken' Wyver DFC, 116006, Pilot, Royal Air Force

Source : John McCall

Date record last updated : 14 July 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (14 January 1945) BU-Q

Fortress III 'Q' Window badly damaged by Ju88 (20mm shell exploded under aircraft, chute opened), abandoned: diverted to Woodbridge

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (14 January 1945) BU-Q consisted of :

'Dan' Finnegan, Waist Gunner
Flt/Lt Kenneth 'Ken' Wyver DFC, 116006, Pilot, Royal Air Force

Source : John McCall

Date record last updated : 14 July 2014


Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (14 February 1945) BU-P

Target Chemnitz Jostle badly damaged by flak (4 direct hits), Wireless Operator (Des) & Special Operator. wounded. Gee, H2S, Loran & i/c u/s, no flaps, diverted to Manston
Following this op Ken was awarded DFC and Des, the wireless operator, DFM

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (14 February 1945) BU-P consisted of :

Des ?? DFM, Wireless Operator
George Cox, Flight Engineer
Flt/Lt Kenneth 'Ken' Wyver DFC, 116006, Pilot, Royal Air Force

Source : John McCall

Date record last updated : 14 July 2014

Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (21 February 1945) BU-N


SD Patrol Dusseldorf area.

From Keith McCall's logbook the entry for this operation was recorded as "Quiet". They were distributing Window.

Crew of Flying Fortress Mark III ??Wyver (21 February 1945) BU-N consisted of :

Fg/Off Keith Martin McCall, 429614, Navigator, Royal Australian Air Force
Fg/Off John Tudor 'Johnny' Mills, Non Com 1851156 Com 197967, Wireless Operator / Air Gunner, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Nationality : United Kingdom
Flt/Lt Kenneth 'Ken' Wyver, 116006, Pilot, Royal Air Force

Source : Ian Hunt and Roger Mills (son of John Tudor Mills) and John McCall (son of Keith McCall)

Date record last updated : 28 December 2011

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