No. 50 Squadron Royal Air Force In World War Two - PDF

Please download to get full document.

View again

of 171
All materials on our website are shared by users. If you have any questions about copyright issues, please report us to resolve them. We are always happy to assist you.
Information Report
Category:

Economy & Finance

Published:

Views: 17 | Pages: 171

Extension: PDF | Download: 0

Share
Related documents
Description
INTRODUCTION This document is a pastiche of copied information; it does not purport to be original in any way. It is therefore without copyright. It simply chronicles certain events from the Squadron s
Transcript
INTRODUCTION This document is a pastiche of copied information; it does not purport to be original in any way. It is therefore without copyright. It simply chronicles certain events from the Squadron s formation in 1939 onward. The basic concept began with extracts from official documents titled AIR/ 485, 486 & 487, the Squadron Operational Record Books (Form 540 and Appendices Form 541) held by the National Archives at Kew, London which were originally available only for personal viewing at the Archives at Kew, London but which are now available on-line (for a fee). These records very briefly summarise each operational mission. Overlaid on this was information on the human losses suffered by 50 Squadron taken from the painstakingly researched and meticulously produced document by Flt. Lt. P.C. Jacobs, RAF and the No. 50 and No. 61 Squadron Association, the Roll Of Honour Finally, further information garnered from Internet and journal sources has been over-laid to expand on some of the incidents recorded briefly, by necessity, in these Operational Record Books. Wherever possible, first hand accounts have been referenced. Such is the nature of a document such as this, written some 70 years after the event, that accounts published by some authoritative, and some not so authoritative, sources have had to be taken at face value. Responsibility for any inaccuracies is accepted by the author but I have tried to cross reference as much information as possible within the constraints of budget (i.e. zero) and time (i.e. not much). The bottom line is that no account such as this can be taken as 100% accurate. It is hoped this document may help anyone curious in the events that followed the declaration of war in Europe in 1939 with particular relevance to No. 50 Squadron, Bomber Command, Royal Air Force. Plain text is the authors interpretation. Text in Italics is a quotation taken verbatim from the original source or record. Sources are listed at the end of this document. These were very brave men indeed. We will remember them. TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE 1 PAGE 1 PAGE 2-15 PAGE PAGE PAGE PAGE172 INTRODUCTION TABLE OF CONTENTS PART 1, EXPANSION AND CONSOLIDATION PART 2, WAR PART 3, THE PHONEY WAR PART 4, CONFLICT REFERENCES 1 Part 1: Expansion and Consolidation 1937 On 3 May 1937, No. 50 (Bomber) Squadron was re-formed under the RAF Expansion Scheme 1936/ 37, at RAF Waddington. As of the 14 May, Establishment No. BC/528 authorised 12 Blenheim aircraft fitted with Bristol Mercury Engines for Initial Equipment (I.E.) and 4 for Immediate Reserve (I.R.). Personnel allowed under this establishment 10 Officers; 114 other Ranks. On the 18 May this establishment was amended to HIND aircraft with Kestrel V 540 HP Power Plant: 12 IE and 4 IR. Personnel allowed under amended establishment: 10 Officers; 80 other ranks. 21 May (Hawker) HIND aircraft K6739, K6740, K6741 and K6747 delivered from No. 90 (Bomber) Squadron BICESTER. 22 May Pilot Officers (P/O.) J.J. Bennett and C.A. Vernieux reported for Flying Duties from 11 F.T.S. Wittering. P/O H.C.M. Pollard reported for Flying Duties from 2 F.T.S. Digby. 23 May (Sergeant s) Sgt.'s W. Brodie, G.H. Wild and J. Winsor, Direct Entry Airman Pilots reported for Flying Duties from 11 F.T.S. Wittering. The following day, 24 May Sgt.'s E.R. Abbott, G.B. Smith and C.D. Stenner, all Pilots/ Fitters A.E. reported for Flying Duties from 6 F.T.S. Netheravon. 3 June June 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington HIND aircraft K6742 and K6744 were delivered from No. 90 (Bomber) Squadron, Bicester followed by two more, K6738 and K6743 on 7 June. 11 June Squadron Leader R.B. Sutherland, D.F.C. took over command of the Squadron. 16 June P/O J.J. Bennett appointed Adjutant to the Squadron. 2 20 June June 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington HIND aircraft K6746, K6748, K6749 and K6750 were delivered from 90 (Bomber) Squadron Bicester. 25 June Sgt. W. Brodie posted to 88 (B) Squadron, Waddington. 30 June P/O s R.J. Cosgrove and D.C.F. Good reported for Flying Duties from No. 7 F.T.S. Peterborough. 2 July July 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington Sgt. F.W. Batchelor, Pilot/ F. Arm. reported for Flying Duties from 9 F.T.S. Thornaby. 16 August August 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington Whilst flying in Box formation near WOODHALL SPA, in a formation of five aircraft, two of the aircraft (Hind K.6748 piloted by P/O RJ Cosgrove and Hind K.6746 piloted by Sgt. Windsor) collided in mid-air. Both aircraft crashed (where is NOT specified). No AC2 J. Crawford, (passenger) descended safely by parachute from K6748. Neither of the pilots, or the passenger in K6746, received serious injuries. The Lincolnshire Echo reported on the 17th August 1937 that the two aircraft touched wings while performing aerobatics over Woodhall Spa at 3000 feet (but probably more correctly formation flying) and subsequently both force landed, with one aircraft overturning and the other nosing in. The pilots and passengers including the one who jumped for it were indeed not seriously injured. 3 4 September September 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington P/O P.C.S. Bagley reported from 11 F.T.S. Wittering, for Flying Duties. 8 September A and B Flights formed. P/O RJ Cosgrove assumed command of A Flight and P/O CA Vernieux B Flight. 28 September Two new Hind aircraft collected from the makers, L7195 and L7196, by two of the Squadron pilots. 23 October October 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington P/O.J.W.G. Wellham reported for Flying Duties from 5 F.T.S. Sealand. P/O R.E. Smissen reported for Flying Duties from 7 F.T.S. Peterborough. P/O s A.F. Russel and V.H. Ayres reported for Flying Duties from 9 F.T.S. Hullavington. 14 December December 1937 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington At 12.10hrs Hind K.6744 (Dual Control) aircraft crashed at NEW OLLERTON, Nottinghamshire while on a training flight. P/O R.E. Smissen (Pilot) and P/O J.W.G. Wellham (Safety Pilot) were admitted to Mansfield General Hospital, Notts, at hours, and transferred to R.A.F. Hospital, Cranwell on the 18th. The Lincolnshire Echo of this day records the crash site as a field adjacent the New Ollerton Colliery Sports Ground. Representative aircraft- Hind: K6738, K6739, K6740, K6741, K6742, K6743, K6744, (Dual Control) K6746, K6747, K6748, K6749, K6750, L7195, L 8 January 1938 BASED RAF STATION WADDINGTON January 1938 A/P/O. P.W. Ackroyd-Simpson reported for Flying Duties from 6 F.T.S. 14 January Hind aircraft K6750 made a forced landing near Waddington after the engine cut resulting in the undercarriage collapsing. (From bcar.org). 17 January F/Lt. H.M. Cox reported for Flying Duties from No. 1 Anti-Aircraft Co-Operation Unit (Biggin Hill) and took over command of B Flight from P/O C.A. Vernieux. 31 January 1938 Long distance bombing (!) was carried out by the Squadron to North Coates Fitties from 31 January to 5 February May May 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington F/Lt. H.M. Cox and Cpl. L.C. Noon, F.A.E. /AG carried out a Photographic Flight in the competition for the Sassoon Photographic Challenge Trophy. 20 May P/O Cosgrove granted the Acting Rank of Flying Officer. 31 May A/PO R.E. Smissen posted to No.1 Balloon Training Unit, Cardington for Kite balloon training. (Nothing in the ORB). June 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington 5 July 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington 1 July The Squadron s Commanding Officer, S/Ldr. R.B. Sutherland, D.F.C. promoted to rank of Wing Commander. 4 July W/Cdr. Sutherland D.F.C. posted to Headquarters No. 3 Bomber Group Mildenhall. 9 July A/PO s R.L.H. Harris and J.A. Meads posted to the Squadron from No. 8 F.T.S. to gain Squadron experience (Class A Reserve officers). P/O D.J. French posted from No. 10 F.T.S. and P/O G.R. Taylor posted in from N0. 3 F.T.S. Both attached to No. 4 E. & R.F.T.S. w.e.f. 11 July July S/Ldr. L. Young reported from C.F.S. to take over command of the Squadron. 22 July Sgt. F.W. Batchelor hit the Chance Landing Light when landing (at Waddington) during Night Flying. Hind K6738 hit a fire tender on approach to land at Waddington and overturned. Injuries are unknown.. 5 August August 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington HOME DEFENCE EXERCISES - A Flight took part in the Exercises from 5th to 8th August 1938, owing to very bad weather conditions prevailing during the period of the exercises, of the three raids attempted only one was carried out successfully. (No. 50 Squadron was one of 36 Bomber Squadrons acting as an attacking force to test the air and ground defences of Great Britain. The exercise ran from 10.00hrs 5th August to 09.00hrs Sunday 7th August with a foul weather extension of 24hrs if needed (and it was, naturally). A total of 900 aircraft were involved). 10 August B Flight commanded by F/Lt. H.M. Cox attached to R.A.F. Station CATTERICK until the 31 August and carried out General Service Training organised by H.Q. 22 (AC) Group, South Farnborough in co-operation with the Northern Command of the Army. Also P/O R. Lloyd posted to the Squadron for Flying Duties and duty of Navigation Officer. 6 11 August August 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington Information received from Air Ministry that the Sassoon Photographic Challenge Trophy had been won by this Squadron for the year 1938, the Squadron had not previously competed. 19 August HIND aircraft K.6671 ( A Flight) collected by P/O Cosgrove from 108 (B) Squadron, Bassingbourne. 20 August Postings IN for Flying Duties were: A/PO R.A. McAlister from the School of Air navigation, A/PO F.B. Gabb from 2 F.T.S. and A/PO S.G. Esson from 6 F.T.S. on completion of Flying Training. 21 August P/O s H.C.M. Pollard and P.C.S. Bagley proceeded to Gosport on appointment to H.M.S. VICTORY transferred to the Air Branch of the Royal Navy. 10 September September 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington HIND aircraft K6695 delivered to the Squadron from No. 107 (B) Squadron, Harwell, by a pilot of that Squadron. 15 September F/Lt. H.M. Cox attached to No. 61 (B) Squadron, Hemswell w.e.f. 12 September. 23 September A/PO s R.L.H. Harris and J.A. Meads relegated to the Reserve on completion of Squadron Training. 7 6 October October 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington P/O s G.R. Taylor and D.J. French arrived from No. 4 Elementary and Reserve Flying Training School (E & R.F.T.S.) Brough. 9 October Affiliation exercises with No. 46 (Fighter) Squadron, from 9th to 21st October October P/O D.C.F. Good promoted to the rank of Flying Officer w.e.f. 19 September October F/Lt. H.M. Cox posted to No. 61 (B) Squadron Hemswell w.e.f. today. P/O A.F. Russell proceeded to Gosport, H.M.S. Victory on appointment to the Air Branch Of The Royal Navy. 20 October P/O F.B. Gabb crashed when landing during Night Flying. (Injuries, if any are not known, however the next day P/O Gabb is given a desk job. This is thought to be Hind aircraft K6740 which undershot on landing at night at Waddington.. 21 October P/O R.L.H. Harris posted to the Squadron on appointment to a Short Service Commission. P/O F.B. Gabb took over duties of Adjutant vice P/O J.J. Bennett. 29 October 1938 A/PO s K.A. Cockerell and G.B. Treasure posted to the Squadron from No. 8 F.T.S. to gain..?(due to the poor quality of the copying process by the National Archive, this portion of the On-line document is unreadable). 8 29 November November 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington A/P/O. C.A. Vernieux granted the rank of Pilot Officer w.e.f. 13 October December December 1938 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington F/O R.J. Cosgrove collected (The first?) HAMPDEN aircraft from Radlett (Handley-Page s factory) Scampton Pilot. (Possibly L4064, information via P/O Stenner/ 50 & 61 Sqdn. Association or L4062 via Chaz Bowyer). 15 December F/O Cosgrove collected a HAMPDEN aircraft from Radlett. Representative aircraft- Hind: K6671, K6695, K6739, K6741, K6742, K6743, K6746, K6747, K6748, K6749, K6750, L7195, L7196. Hampden L4064, L 1 January BASED RAF STATION WADDINGTON January P/O W.G. Wellham transferred to Air Branch of the Royal Navy. 2 January S/Ldr. J.R. Fleming (RAAF) posted for Flying Duties, and assumes command of B Flight. P/O C.A. Vernieux relinquishes the Acting rank of Flying Officer. 15 January Hampden L4076 QX-D delivered to the squadron. 17 January A/PO s G.B. Treasure and K.A. Cockerell relegated to Reserve on Completion of Squadron training. 28 January P/O J.B. Bull posted for Flying Duties. Representative Aircraft: Hampden Serial Numbers L4064, L4076 QX-D, L4078, L February February 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington P/O C.A. Vernieux promoted to the rank of Flying Officer. 14 February 1939 P/O K.A. Cockerell posted (in) for Flying Duties on appointment to Short Service Commission. 15 February P/O H.J. Winch granted Permanent Commission. 25 February P/O A.S. Luxmoore posted from School of Air Navigation on completion of Navigation Course. 10 27 February February 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington B Flight attached to 8 Armament Training Station (A.T.S.), Evanton, Scotland, until 9 March March P/O H.G. Winch posted for Flying Duties. 2 March March 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington F/O s D.C.F. Good, C.A. Vernieux and R.J. Cosgrove granted the Acting rank of Flight Lieutenant. 8 March P/O G.B. Treasure posted for Flying Duties on appointment to Short Service Commission, after relinquishing his commission in the Air Force Reserve. 9 March B Flight returns from 8 A.T.S. Evanton, A Flight leaves for Evanton returning 29 March. 11 March 1939 A/P/O A.A.G. Trueman posted for Flying Duties; P/O W.D.B. Ruth posted from School of Air Navigation and A/P/O F.D. Middleton posted for Flying Duties on completion of Navigation Course. 11 20 March 1939 March 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington This is possibly the first Hampden Loss for 50 Squadron. P/O R. A. McAlister and crew of three killed in an air accident whilst returning from 8 A.T.S. Evanton. P/O McAlister and crew crashed in Hampden L4082 at Boultham Baths, Lincoln, on this date; the aircraft apparently went out of control and dived at high speed into open ground immediately between Boultham Baths and the bowling green, some 30 yards from the old water Works Cottages and Boultham Allotments. The aircraft hit the ground almost vertically and according to the Lincolnshire Echo the fuselage was buried in the ground. Miraculously no-one on the ground was killed or even injured. The crew were: P/O Robert Alexander McAlister, Sgt. Walter Harry Freestone, Aircraftman Norman Vincent Newsham and Aircraftman Frederick Roy Greensill. Their final resting places have yet to be established as this date lies outside the periods recorded by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (but they are not in Waddington St. Michaels). (Ref. the Lincolnshire Echo.) 27 March A/PO A.D. Pilcher posted for Flying Duties 1 April April Based R.A.F. Station Waddington S/Ldr. L. Young promoted to the rank of Wing Commander. (Squadron C. O.) 6 April P/O J.J. Bennett promoted to the rank of Flying Officer April Squadron engaged in the Minor Air Exercises April Squadron engaged in Fighter Affiliation Exercises. 17 April P/O S.G. Esson posted to No. 4 Air Observer School, Acklington. 22 April B Flight attached to 8 A.T.S. Evanton for Armament Training. 12 May 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington 4 May Station Defence Test. 8 May 1939 S/Ldr. C.V.J. Pratt posted from No. 2 group for Flying Duties and assumes command of A Flight; F/O C.A. Vernieux relinquishes the acting rank of Flight Lieutenant; A Flight attached to 8 A.T.S. Evanton for Armament Training. 9 May B Flight returns from 8 A.T.S. Evanton. 13 May P/O P.W.M. West posted for Flying Duties and P/O P.W. Ackroyd-Simpson posted to No. 57 Squadron. 20 May B Flight participated in the Flying Programme on Empire Air Day at Waddington. 21 May A Flight return from No. 8 A.T.S. Evanton on completion of Armament Training and after taking part in the Flying Programme on EMPIRE AIR DAY 20 May 1939; the flight carried out High and low-level bombing. The Squadron took part in Group Tactical Exercises 20 May to 23 May. 22 June June 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington F/Sgt. A.E. Rudkin promoted to the rank of Warrant Officer. 24 June Several pilots and air observers attached to Manby for an Automatic Bomb sight Course. 30 June 1939 The Squadron took part in Regional Air Exercises ending 2 July July 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington 11 July A formation from the Squadron took part in a long distance flight to France, the route covered was Tangmere Bordeaux Base. (Hampden aircraft). 13 July The Squadron took part in the Regional Air Exercises from 13 to 14 July. 18 July W.O. A. Watson posted from No. 502 Squadron (Coastal Command) to fill vacancy of Squadron Engineering Officer. 22 July A/PO R.D. Dawn posted for Flying Duties. 25 July The Squadron participated in further long distance flight to France, the route followed Tangmere Paris via Rhone valley Avignon and return over same route. 6 August August 1939 Based R.A.F. Station Waddington The Squadron took part in Home Defence Exercises, from 5 August to 11 August. 7 August While taking part in the Home Defence Exercises, the propeller and reduction gear on Hampden L4075, piloted by P/O A.S. Luxmoore, sheared and broke away whilst the aircraft was in flight about 45 miles off the English Southern coast. P/O A.S. Luxmoore successfully landed the aircraft at Martlesham Heath. 9 August Arrangements were made for a number of pilots to visit the Anti-Aircraft Brigade Camps at Weybourne and Stiffkey, where they were able to gain first hand information on Anti-Aircraft Organisation. 14 10 August August 1939 Based R.A.F. Waddington P/O s D.J. French, P.W.M. West, Sgt. K.W. Wright, Ac1 W. Marshall, A.C.1 J.F. Burge, A.C.1 G. Barras and Ac1 B. Parry attached to Ferrying Flight for the purpose of ferrying two Blenheim aircraft to H.Q.M.E. and took off this same day. 18 August W.O. A.E. Rudkin posted to 4 Wing, No. 2 E & W School. Yatesbury. 19 August The Squadron is attached to No. 8 A.T.S. Evanton for Armament Training. SQUADRON RECALLED ON THE 25 AUGUST. (To Waddington). 15 1 September 1939 Part 2- WAR At the commencement of the war period, number 50 Squadron was located at Royal Air Force Waddington. Squadron Strength: Officers, 26; Airmen: 235 Commanding Officer: Wing Commander L. Young Equipment: Handley Page Hampden B.Mk.1; Power Plant Twin Pegasus XVIII Summary: The Operations Order to mobilise the Squadron Mobilisation Scheme was brought into effect. The first months of the war s activities were confined to flying training. Affiliation exercises were arranged with No. 12 (F) Group, air firing was carried out at Number 1 Armament Training Station, Catfoss at Carlisle, and over the sea near Blackpool and bombing at Misson. Night Flying was cancelled more often than not owing to unfavourable weather. On occasion the Squadron was detailed to Stand-by to Carry Out raids against the German Navy, but these flights were cancelled, and on one occasion a few minutes before the machines were due to take off for Wilhelmshaven. Whenever possible during the periods when the Squadron was standing-down serviceable aircraft were sent to the rearward aerodrome at Tollerton, thereby affording rest to the crews and lessening the danger of aircraft dispersed round the base being located and destroyed by enemy air attack. Operation Order No. B2 received from Headquarters, No. 5 group providing for the attack of enemy warships. Squadron Op. Order No. 15 dated issued to cover the period 48 Hours from Signal received from No. 5 Group stating that Squadron should be prepared to take off at 45 minutes notice from first light September 1939 Squadron strength was 23 officers, 20 Airmen pilots, 42 aircrew and 184 non-flying staff. 8 September Sgt. Woon, W.H.T. posted for Senior Armament Instructor. 9 September Sgt. Green attached to No. 1 AAS, Manby for Senior Armament Instructors Course. 11 September 1939 Squadron participated in air firing at Squires Gate, Blackpool. Air Vice-Mars
We Need Your Support
Thank you for visiting our website and your interest in our free products and services. We are nonprofit website to share and download documents. To the running of this website, we need your help to support us.

Thanks to everyone for your continued support.

No, Thanks
SAVE OUR EARTH

We need your sign to support Project to invent "SMART AND CONTROLLABLE REFLECTIVE BALLOONS" to cover the Sun and Save Our Earth.

More details...

Sign Now!

We are very appreciated for your Prompt Action!

x