Air Gunner

Flight Engineer

Landing Zone


With Effect

Wireless Operator



Month and year: March 1945


21st March 1945

Place: Rivenhall


Weather was fine with no cloud.  Visibility good 8-10 miles.  Light and variable winds.  Two mass lifts were carried out by P/O Hicks in LK.364, F/O Houlgate in LK.190, F/O Downing in LJ.615, F/O Parkinson in LJ.633, F/O Burr in LJ.636, P/O Young in LJ.615, F/O Mombrun in LK.364, F/O Jennings in LK.292.  Fighter Affiliation by W/C Bangay in LJ.640, F/L Spafford in PK.234.  Eleven air tests were carried out.  No night flying.  Total flying: 15 hrs 20 mins.  Preliminary preparations were commenced for operation "VARSITY".


22nd March 1945

Place: Rivenhall


Weather was again fine with clear skies and light winds.  Five air tests were carried out.  Total flying: 2 hrs 25 mins.  Briefing for operation "VARSITY" occupied all the day.  The camp was sealed during the morning.


23rd March 1945

Place: Rivenhall


Briefing and marshalling of aircraft was the only activity of the day.  There was no flying.  Weather was again fine, with clear skies and good visibility.


24th March 1945

Place: Rivenhall


Weather was fine and clear with moderate winds.  Operation "VARSITY" being the airborne part of Operation "PLUNDER" involving the crossing of the Rhine at WESEL, was successfully carried out by 30 crews from the Squadron as detailed in attached Form 541.  No losses were sustained and no casualties to personnel.  Aircrew standing by for re-supply if necessary.  Camp unsealed at 10.00 hrs.  Total flying: 150 hrs 20 mins day.


OPERATION "VARSITY" - Crossing of the Rhine.


The First Airborne Army were given the task of assisting the British 2nd and American 9th Armies to establish a bridgehead across the Rhine between Emmerich and Wesel.  This was to be carried out by dropping in advance of the assault troops, who were to cross the Rhine some 6 or 8 hours earlier, and capture various bridges over the Yssel river, and several important road junction towns.  The whole operation was to be carried out in one lift.  30 aircraft were detailed from this Squadron to carry out Horsa tows to the assault area in conjunction with other units of 38 Group, 46th Group and 9th Troop Carrier Command.  Four of these aircraft Nos.27-30 were to work with 295 Squadron releasing at Hamminkeln (5 miles N of Wesel).  The other 26 led by W/Cdr Bangay were carrying the H.Q. staff (commanded by General Bols), with supporting defence troops, to L.Z. P on the main railway 4 miles N.W. of Wesel.  All aircraft were airborne successfully and after forming up into loose pairs at 10 second intervals, proceeded at 2,500 ft over the route Base - Folkestone - Cape Grisnez - Bethune - Wavre - R.V. Weeze - to L.Z. returning the same way at 5000 ft.  Some ineffective light flak opposition was experienced East of the Rhine but all gliders were released successfully and appeared to be making reasonable landings, although exact results could not be accurately observed owing to battle smoke on the ground.  All our aircraft returning safely to Base and there were no casualties to crews.  The weather throughout was perfect with a cloudless sky, visibility 10-15 miles and winds generally southerly at 25 m.p.h.  No enemy aircraft were reported, fighter support was good over the battle zone, and several crews reported seeing the launching of a V.2 from N.W. Germany.  Altogether a very successful operation with a bouquet to the ground crews for 100% serviceability.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.640 V8B.  Crew:  W/C R.J.M. BANGAY 33215 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/L C.O. EVANS 141807 R.A.F (Navigator), F/L E.C. WOOD 127106 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S WHEATLEY S. 1565788 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/L J.M. FROST 69430 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), P/O H.H. BAILEY 186375 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.37.  Time Down:  12.37.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.150 V8H.  Crew:  S/L A. HUDSON 48759 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O N.R. TOWN A.425382 R.A.A.F (Navigator), W/O KENNEDY J. 1099732 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), P/O T.N.G. LINTON 176970 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S THOMSON P.A. 1626509 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), P/O McCLELLAND HOPE 190745 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.37.  Time Down:  12.38.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.199 V8L.  Crew:  F/L D.S.C. BRIERLY 47460 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O F. FOSTER 147120 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O G.D. FOURIE 160074 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S HUMPHREY J.G. 1313053 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O LOW J.R. R.124210 R.C.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT HUMPHREYS J.M. 1593584 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  13.10.


Aircraft Type & Number:  PK.234 V8E.  Crew:  F/L F.R. SPAFFORD R.C.A.F. (PILOT), W/O LUND H. 1537367 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O E.F. DUNN J.29661 R.C.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S McAULAY J. 1511701 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/O HILLEBRANDT R.C. 179874 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT AMBROSE R.A. 1896535 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  13.00.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.622 V8M.  Crew:  F/O R.P. MERRITT 151203 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O E.L. MACK A.418966 R.A.A.F (Navigator), F/O H.G.W. BROWN 178998 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), P/O E. WRIGHT J.90767 R.C.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O SEDMAN T.W. 546460 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT HEANEY A. 1798059 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.616 V8D.  Crew:  F/O J.A.G. RODGERS A.425056 R.A.A.F. (PILOT), F/L T.W. CASS 135921 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O R. MARSHALL J.86628 R.C.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), W/O WRIGHT E. 1128834 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S LEON A.H. 1892611 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT HYMAS T.B. 1623089 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.559 V8Q.  Crew:  F/O B.S. MURPHY 151692 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S BAGNALL R.J. 1246709 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O A.N. HILBORN J.87106 R.C.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S JOHN G. 1314318 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S SPAIN D.G. 925873 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT WILLIAMS J. 1239818 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  13.00.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.280 V8F.  Crew:  F/O D.M. CAMPBELL 152030 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O D.F. HARRIS 141557 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S DIXON F. 1453914 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S DAVIS E. 1217617 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/O LORD DECIES 153902 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT VASS C.H. 1875956 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.47.  Time Down:  12.52.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.156 V8I.  Crew:  F/O P.J. SHUTER 152257 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S OGDEN A.H. 1544884 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S PIKE I.S. 1432743 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S BURNS S. 1566867 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/O F.W. WALLIS 162799 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT COLE A.W. 1345796 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.37.  Time Down:  12.47.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.190 V8J.  Crew:  F/O F.V. HOULGATE 54598 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O W.G.G. HUDSON 178814 R.A.F (Navigator), F/L R. WALDRON 135900 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), W/O WHITTLE E.G. 1082510 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S MERCH H.T. 502108 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT CLEWS T. 1868397 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  12.40.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.289 V8G.  Crew:  F/O N.R. HICKS A.425440 R.A.A.F. (PILOT), F/S FROST H.G. 1321776 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S BIRCH A.K. 1430872 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), P/O R.F. TURNER A.422768 R.A.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S HUNT J.R. 2221123 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), F/S WATT D. 1824477 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.50.  Time Down:  13.10.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.291 V8A.  Crew:  W/O NARRAMORE R.W.H. 1319148 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S GILES J.L. 1458792 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S POYNTON N.H. 1577492 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S JAQUES H. 1432107 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S WOOTTON B.C. 938023 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), F/S GALLEAR G.R 1868185 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  12.50.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.596 V8K.  Crew:  W/O BENTLEY W. 1549633 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S WRIGHT T.H. 1458085 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S BARBER R.J. 1622023 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S WEED K.W. 1698191 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O DALRYMPPLE J. 1382463 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT WYATT J.D. 1824477 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.40.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.615 V8P.  Crew:  F/O J.F. DOWNING 147625 R.A.F. (PILOT), W/O MacLEAN D. 1452341 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O R. CAIRNS 153472 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S ZEUN S. 1682607 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S TRITTON C. 1896764 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT CODLING W.S. 1898646 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  12.50.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.992 V8N.  Crew:  F/O V.G. PARKINSON 172961 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O G.N. KITCHEN 153634 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O D.C. SLADE 154670 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S MACDONALD R. 1147699 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), SGT DEIGHAN J.E. 1898407 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT ROBERTSON R.J. 1595306 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.45.  Time Down:  13.00.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.555 E7S.  Crew:  S/L J. STEWART 45068 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O E.G.D. WILKINSON 103225 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O J.A. WESTON 147127 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/O R.F. CLARKE 173106 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O GRICE A.G. 1544477 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT JONES M.A.H. 1099269 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.53.  Time Down:  13.08.


Aircraft Type & Number:  PW.255 E7K.  Crew:  W/O MARSHALL R.D. 1212373 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S STRATFORD A.A. 1396579 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S CHADWICK J.W. 133879 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S EGERTON J. 1581292 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S WARD E.W. 1895038 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT BURROWS E. 1022955 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.06.  Time Down:  12.54.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.650 E7W.  Crew:  P/O R.D. DRIVE 189917 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S POYNTER D.A. 1399937 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O D.R.F. COLMAN 138378 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S SHARPE J. 1580123 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/O W.H. MAINWARING 171787 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT BAMBROUGH G.R. 1594316 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.50.  Time Down:  13.00.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.286 E7T.  Crew:  F/O H.W. McDONALD J.25007 R.C.A.F. (PILOT), W/O FRIEMAN M. R.171414 R.C.A.F (Navigator), F/O E.A. OXFORD 54136 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/O F.A.J. GORE 157525 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O HULL R.W.C. R.199267 R.C.A.F (AIR GUNNER), P/O R.G. GIBSON 190745 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.55.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.612 E7L.  Crew:  F/O R.E. DAVISON J.26789 R.C.A.F. (PILOT), F/S WESTHEAD J. 1516658 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S CHERRINGTON H.D. 1581525 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S HALES R.G. 1432847 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S McCANN P. 1481055 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT CRAWFORD T. 1798213 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.55.  Time Down:  13.00.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.645 E7M.  Crew:  F/O G.J.H. BURKBY 132335 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O M.J.L. MURAY J.27476 R.C.A.F (Navigator), F/L E.F. SIEGEL J.23634 R.C.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S BOND R.F. 1600042 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S GREEN R.E. 1819859 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), F/S HOLLOWAY V. 1199507 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.56.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.636 E7N.  Crew:  F/O A.R. BURR 152164 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O G.H.C. NEWMAN 55207 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O D.S.W. HARRISON 130604 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/O J.R. DOLBY 145437 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O MILLERSHIP D.G. 132059 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT KEARNEY M.D. 1864251 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.15.  Time Down:  12.35.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.292 E7V.  Crew:  F/O W. JENNINGS NZ.422058 N.Z.A.F. (PILOT), F/S JAMESON H.L. 1684143 R.A.F (Navigator), P/O J.S. HENDERSON NZ.428319 N.Z.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S MEATEN W.D. 1566821 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), W/O TODOROFF R.206211 R.C.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT HILL J.W. 1897522 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.01.  Time Down:  12.46.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.620 E7O.  Crew:  P/O E.D. HINCKS 182729 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S HUCKFIELD R.L. 1466278 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S FLETCHER H. 1450104 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S SMITH J.P. 1336884 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S GARNHAM N.J. 3005226 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT BAKER C.L. 1645474 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.02.  Time Down:  12.40.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.154 E7P.  Crew:  F/L G.F. NULLEN 127906 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O C.T.V. FORGAN 53820 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O W. LEARY 153609 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S FRASER J.N. 1681755 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S GRAHAM J. 2206979 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT SOUTHCOTT R. 1653112 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.05.  Time Down:  12.45.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.154 E7P [Note: This number is the same as the previous aircraft and should probably be disregarded].  Crew:  F/LT G.E. SHARP 127493 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S ROWLAND B.P. 1456221 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O D.W. ANDERSON 153231 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S HOLLICK G.D. 1583264 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S BELL W.H. 1595202 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT JOHNSTON C.R. 1045331 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  08.05.  Time Down:  13.05.


Aircraft Type & Number:  PW.406 E7I.  Crew:  P/O J. YOUNG 178796 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O P.A.G. WITHERS 145095 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S FLINT J.R. 1446131 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/O J. BRAND 175890 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S GARDNER W.F. 1274674 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), F/S BROWN A.A. 1541414 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.20.  Time Down:  12.05.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.202 E7X.  Crew:  W/O PRITCHARD A.S. 1476181 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S SALMON P. 1449123 R.A.F (Navigator), W/O CRAIG S. 1795057 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), W/O HERON H.D. 1112801 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S McNALLY J. 3010506 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT MILES G. 640614 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.20.  Time Down:  12.30.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LK.549 E7J.  Crew:  W/O KIRKMAN N.J. 811197 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/S HUME J.G. 1561634 R.A.F (Navigator), F/O N.T. WHITEHOUSE A.420321 R.A.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/O W.H. LASH J.86669 R.C.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), P/O D.E. HEWLINGS 184301 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT COE G.C. 1896536 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.24.  Time Down:  12.29.


Aircraft Type & Number:  LJ.620 E7O [Note: This number is the same as P/O Hinck's aircraft].  Crew:  F/O G.A. MOMBRUN 152348 R.A.F. (PILOT), F/O A.L. LODDE 145390 R.A.F (Navigator), F/S FLANNIGAN C. 1553357 R.A.F. (AIR BOMBER), F/S RAWLINGS R.F. 1292945 R.A.F. (W/OPERATOR), F/S JOHNSON K.E. 1853631 R.A.F (AIR GUNNER), SGT HAMILTON J.H. 1796564 R.A.F (F/ENGINEER).  Time Up:  07.25.  Time Down:  12.12.


25th March 1945

Place: Rivenhall


Weather was poor with low cloud and cold frontal conditions persisting.  Flying cancelled but crews standing by for any re-supply.  Briefing carried out in the afternoon.  All re-supply cancelled as the Army was doing well.  S.O.E. missions to Holland and Norway cancelled.  183327 F/S Marsh V.H. F.E. and 1270144 W/O Mitchell S. W/Op posted to Squadron as spares.  1626509 F/S Thomson P.A. A/G granted a commission No.191928 w.e.f. 31.1.45.