Abbreviations

A/B

A/G

Aus

Br

Can

F/E

LZ

Nav

NZ

Posn

W/Op

Air Bomber

Air Gunner
Australia

British

Canada
Flight Engineer

Landing Zone

Navigator

New Zealand

Position

Wireless Operator

 

 

Month and year: March 1945

 

23rd March 1945

Place: Earls Colne

 

There was no flying today.  All aircraft were marshalled and crews attended various briefings throughout the day.  J.91128 P/O S.I. Smith posted to RCAF "R" Depot (pending repatriation).  1869664 Sgt Barwell posted from 6 [?] Unit.  169778 F/S Wooliscroft posted from 21 (P) AFU.

 

24th March 1945

Place: Earls Colne

 

Thirty aircraft took part in Operation "VARSITY".  The take off was marred by only one slight 'hitch' when a glider pilot released the tow rope because he saw one of the tug aircraft's engines spluttering.  Despite this incident the Squadron took off thirty Halifax-Horsa combinations in thirty minutes, a creditable performance as the combinations were not pre-hitched.  The take off was witnessed by the Secretary of State for Air, Sir Archibald Sinclair, the Deputy Supreme Commander, Air Chief Marshal, Sir Arthur Tedder, and the A.C.C. No.38 Group, Air Vice Marshal, J.R. Scarlett-Streatfield.  The Squadron was led by Wing Commander E.G. Dean, D.F.C., the Squadron Commander.  Four of the Squadron's aircraft landed away from Base, three at Gosfield with hydraulic trouble, and one at Woodbridge with lack of brake pressure.  There were no casualties.  For an account of the operation, see Form 541.

 

Operation "VARSITY".  This operation consisted of landing the British Sixth Airborne Division East of the Rhine between REES and WESEL in advance of the British 2nd Army which had begun the crossing of the Rhine in the early hours of the morning.  The Squadron contributed thirty Halifax-Horsa combinations to this highly successful operation.  The take off was completed in thirty minutes, a creditable performance since the combinations were not pre-hitched.  The L.Z. "P" for the Squadron was in posn 514230N 063330E.  All the combinations reached the release point and cast off their gliders.  The L.Z. was covered with smoke which prevented observation of glider landings.  The tug aircraft encountered a very small amount of enemy opposition; two aircraft receiving one .303 bullet hole each from ground defences East of the Rhine and one Pilot (W/O Baker) reported a JU 188 or ME 410 near Brussels on the return journey.  On returning to the UK three aircraft were diverted to Gosfield with hydraulic trouble which prevented them raising their under-carriages, and one to Woodbridge with no brake pressure.  There were no other incidents.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 297.  Crew:  W/C E.C. Dean DFC (Br) (Pilot), F/S Bray C.R. (Aus) (2nd Pilot), F/L J. Feathers (Br) (Nav), F/L L.B. Everett (Br) (W/Op), F/L P.J.R. Lee (Br) (A/G), F/L H.W. Hill (Br) (A/B), F/L G.T. Bailey DFC (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.34.  Time Down:  12.32.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 635.  Crew:  S/L H.G. Hannah (Br) (Pilot), F/O D. MacKay (Br) (Nav), Sgt Hindle C. (Br) (W/Op), P/O D. Worsley (Br) (A/G), F/O J. Irvine (Br) (A/B), F/S Gettings G. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.35.  Time Down:  12.40.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 301.  Crew:  P/O D. Hart (Can) (Pilot), F/O T.L. Webster (Can) (Nav), F/S Todd D. (Br) (W/Op), W/O Keough R. (Can) (A/G), F/O R. Devlin (Can) (A/B), Sgt Derrington J. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.35.  Time Down:  12.35.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 635.  Crew:  F/L C.S. Brott (NZ) (Pilot), F/S Davies W. (Br) (Nav), F/S Mills L. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Griffith R. (Br) (A/G), F/S Pearson J. (Br) (A/B), F/S Caldwell J. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.38.  Time Down:  12.36.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 126.  Crew:  W/O Baker R.J. (Br) (Pilot), Sgt Ketley K. (Br) (Nav), F/S McCleod K. (Br) (W/Op), W/O Johnson R. (Br) (A/G), F/S Legg R.E. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Poulter W.C. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  12.30.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax MZ 673.  Crew:  F/L K.T. Garnett (Br) (Pilot), F/O A.R. Roddan (Br) (Nav), F/S Peacock H.C. (Br) (W/Op), F/O C.A. Shaw (Br) (A/G), P/O F.C. Hinksman (Br) (A/B), Sgt McPhail W.H. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  13.07.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 659.  Crew:  F/O J. Gidley (Aus) (Pilot), Sgt Gardiner J. (Br) (Nav), Sgt Binnie B. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Brignall R. (Br) (A/G), W/O King P. (Can) (A/B), Sgt Brooks A. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.41.  Time Down:  12.37.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax MZ 650.  Crew:  F/L W. Wallace (Br) (Pilot), F/S Keeton G. (Br) (Nav), F/S Hann D. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Clift L. (Br) (A/G), W/O Bellingham (NZ) (A/B), F/S Russell A. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.42.  Time Down:  12.40.  Landed at Gosfield with hydraulic trouble.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 305.  Crew:  F/S Auton A.C. (Aus) (Pilot), Sgt Moon A.G. (Br) (Nav), Sgt Anderson J. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Brear K. (Br) (A/G), Sgt Hawkes W. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Anderson L. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.42.  Time Down:  13.06.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 125.  Crew:  F/O J.C. Garnett (Br) (Pilot), F/S Porteous T. (Br) (Nav), F/S Morris D. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Clarke L. (Br) (A/G), F/S Bromley D. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Faulkner A. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.43.  Time Down:  12.20.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax MZ 637.  Crew:  F/S Taylor D.J. (Br) (Pilot), F/O Ormesher G. (Br) (Nav), F/S Lee R.W. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Akers C.W. (Br) (A/G), F/O P.S. Briggs (Br) (A/B), Sgt Milner F.T. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  12.50.  Landed as Gosfield with hydraulic trouble.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 292.  Crew:  F/L L.S. Price (Br) (Pilot), F/O E. Trevana (Br) (Nav), F/S Skinner P. (Br) (W/Op), W/O Moss B.P. (Br) (A/G), P/O R. Harrison (Br) (A/B), Sgt Mitchell F. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  12.37.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax LK 848.  Crew:  Sgt Rusling G. (Br) (Pilot), Sgt Auty E. (Br) (Nav), Sgt Tottman J.H. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Davies D. (Br) (A/G), F/O Hannigar H. (Can) (A/B), Sgt Beaney G. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.46.  Time Down:  12.36.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax MZ 745.  Crew:  F/L R. Wharmby (Br) (Pilot), P/O R. Cooper (Br) (Nav), P/O F. Marsh (Br) (W/Op), F/S Smith J. (Br) (A/G), F/S Waters E. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Smith A. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.47.  Time Down:  12.50.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 299.  Crew:  F/L A.W. Milroy (Br) (Pilot), P/O H.W. Kidd (Br) (Nav), P/O G.C. Curtis (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Smith L.B. (Br) (A/G), F/S Richards H. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Thomas W. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.48.  Time Down:  12.50.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax LW 467.  Crew:  S/L A.R. Pitt (Br) (Pilot), F/L L. Close (Br) (Nav), F/S Duncan R. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Watton E. (Br) (A/G), F/S Martin H. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Emelie J. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.50.  Time Down:  12.42.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 307.  Crew:  P/O R.J. Flavell (Br) (Pilot), W/O Lane (Br) (Nav), Sgt Layden J. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Clancy J. (Br) (A/G), F/S Edwards R. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Smith L. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.50.  Time Down:  12.50.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 134.  Crew:  F/O J.G. Hodge (Br) (Pilot), F/S King D.A. (Br) (Nav), F/S Yorks J. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Stephenson L. (Br) (A/G), F/S Jenkins J. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Wright D. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.51.  Time Down:  12.45.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax N 639.  Crew:  F/O J.A. McCann (Can) (Pilot), F/O D. Hibberd (Br) (Nav), Sgt Bowler W.R. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Kelly J. (Br) (A/G), W/O Bozowsky P. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Brooks R. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.53.  Time Down:  12.53.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 300.  Crew:  F/L E.D. Halpin (Br) (Pilot), W/O Sloan C.H. (Br) (Nav), Sgt Smith J. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Miskimmin S. (Br) (A/G), P/O P. Taylor (Br) (A/B), F/S Major D. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.54.  Time Down:  13.24.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 688.  Crew:  F/O J. Coxell (Br) (Pilot), F/O J. Challis (Br) (Nav), F/S Jones D.T. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Wiles L.E. (Br) (A/G), F/S Coley R. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Wright R. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.56.  Time Down:  13.50.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax MZ 973.  Crew:  F/O J.M. Price (Br) (Pilot), F/O Paddon J. (Br) (Nav), W/O Stone G.H. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Eckersley B. (Br) (A/G), F/S Gunner R. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Meads D.A. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.57.  Time Down:  13.29.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 643.  Crew:  P/O J.T. Flavell (Br) (Pilot), W/O Campbell J. (Br) (Nav), F/S Graynoth R. (Br) (W/Op), W/O Black C. (Br) (A/G), F/S Breingan M. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Lang W. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.57.  Time Down:  12.45.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 637.  Crew:  W/O Wilkinson H. (Aus) (Pilot), F/S Marsden H. (Br) (Nav), F/S Coulson R. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Dobbyn F/L/ (Br) (A/G), F/S Wood R.J. (Br) (A/B), F/S Wykes G. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.58.  Time Down:  13.18.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax LL 547.  Crew:  P/O M.C.C. Wallis (Br) (Pilot), F/O A.E. Doyle (Br) (Nav), Sgt Pursell W. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Francis J.R. (Br) (A/G), P/O J. Wilson (Can) (A/B), F/S Clinton J. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  07.59.  Time Down:  12.40.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 523.  Crew:  W/O Norbury M.F. (Br) (Pilot), Sgt Milner F. (Br) (Nav), F/S Bowhill G. (Br) (W/Op), F/S Lutz K. (Br) (A/G), F/S Hancox J. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Elliott R. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  08.00.  Time Down:  13.24.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 293.  Crew:  F/O R.V. Langtry (Br) (Pilot), F/O V.M. Nixon (Br) (Nav), Sgt Tipper J.A. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Shannon J. (Br) (A/G), F/S Vickery D. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Dolan F. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  08.02.  Time Down:  13.17.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax NA 128.  Crew:  W/O Dyer E.C. (Br) (Pilot), F/O J.C. Williams (Br) (Nav), Sgt Mathias W.H. (Br) (W/Op), Sgt Thomas S. (Br) (A/G), F/S Game D. (Br) (A/B), Sgt Hunter J. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  08.03.  Time Down:  13.13.

 

Aircraft Type & Number:  Halifax L 5H.  Crew:  F/O H. Cairn (Br) (Pilot), F/O W. Nibice (Br) (Nav), Sgt Ashworth H.C. (Br) (W/Op), F/O D. Bennett (Br) (A/G), F/O W. Jamieson (Br) (A/B), Sgt Coe F. (Br) (F/E).  Time Up:  08.03.  Time Down:  12.48.

 

25th March 1945

Place: Earls Colne

 

Three aircraft returned from Gosfield.  There was no other flying.  Twenty crews stood by at two hours notice for Re-supply operations.  945315 F/S Shannon R.A. posted from 42 O.T.U.  655079 W/O Dixon posted from 43 O.T.U.