Richard Starkey’s flying log book for pilots

LStarkeyR1430566v1.pdf

Title

Richard Starkey’s flying log book for pilots

Description

Flying log book for R Starkey covering the period from 26 January 1942 to 30 March 1944. Detailing his flying training and operations flown, includes certificates, instructional notes, newspaper clipping and a personal account of being shot down. He was stationed at RAF Desford (7 EFTS), RCAF Caron (33 EFTS), RCAF Calgary (37 SFTS), RCAF Swift Current (39 SFTS), RAF Perth (11 EFTS), RAF Weston on the Green (20 (P)AFU), RAF Grantham (1536 BAT), RAF Bitteswell/Bruntingthorpe (29 OTU), RAF Winthorpe (1661 HCU), RAF Syerston/Metheringham (106 Sqdn). Aircraft flown in were DH82, Tiger Moth, Oxford, Wellington, Manchester, Lancaster. He flew 21 night operations with 106 Squadron. Targets were Hanover, Leipzig, Dusseldorf, Berlin, Stettin, Brunswick, Stuttgart, Schweinfurt, Augsberg, Chateauroux, Essen. On his last operation to Nuremburg he was shot down and became a prisoner of war.

Publisher

IBCC Digital Archive

Contributor

Mike French
Anne-Marie Watson

Rights

This content is available under a CC BY-NC 4.0 International license (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0). It has been published ‘as is’ and may contain inaccuracies or culturally inappropriate references that do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the University of Lincoln or the International Bomber Command Centre. For more information, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ and https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/legal.

Format

One booklet

Language

Identifier

LStarkeyR1430566v.1

Temporal Coverage

Transcription

OCT 1943

Weather was atrocious on this our first trip, with cumulo-nimbus clouds rising to 25,000 feet. We were continually flying in and out of these clouds at 23000 feet. About halfway to the target from the Dutch coast, the pitot head iced up with a resultant loss of indicated air speed (nothing on the clock.) We continued to the target without I.A.S. and it wasn’t until I was descending over the North Sea on the return journey that the pitot head thawed out and we regained air speed on the indicator. At the debriefing when we arrived back at Syerston, Air Vice Marshal Cochrane C. in C. 5 Group congratulated me on bringing the aircraft back from what could have been a disastrous operation for us.

[Page break]

OVER LEIPZIG

Cloud blankets German flares

Express Air Reporter

LANCASTERS played a game of hide-and-seek with German flare-dropping fighters and searchlights among thick clouds over Germany on Wednesday night – and won.

The clouds were so thick in places on the 600-mile route to Leipzig that the searchlights could not even light them up from below and flares merely glowed feebly.

But while the weather hampered the German defences it also made difficulties for the raiders which flew through snow, terrifice [sic] hail, and electrical storms.

Great blue flames of lightning glowed round the planes blinding the fliers.

Mosquitoes at Berlin

Most of the planes got through to Leipzig, aircraft building city of 700,00 people, without sighting a single German fighter. They unloaded their bombs through gaps in the clouds.

One Lancaster, however, piloted by Flight-Sergeant F. J. Stuart, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, had to fight off seven air attacks on the round trip. The bomb-release gear was damaged, but the crew delivered their cargo by hand.

At least one German fighter was shot down by the Lancasters.

Mosquitoes bombed Berlin the same night, causing more damage than is usual in their raids, according to Berlin reports.

We lost 17 bombers.

[Page break]

[Underlined] MAR 30 OPERATION – NUREMBERG. [/underlined]

LANCASTER ND.535 SELF CREW NUREMBERG.

Attacked three times by fighters at different times. The ill-fated attack took place 20 mins. off of target. Enemy fighter unseen opened fire with cannon & machine gun fire from starboard quarter down. Bursts hit & killed Jock Jamieson in mid upper turret, I think it killed George also. Set port main plane on fire & both engines, controls were shot away & I gave the order to bale out. Wally jumped, heard Joe say “I can’t get out Dick” I was hit in right ankle by shrapnel. Aircraft must have then exploded. [inserted] with full bomb load [/inserted] I cannot remember anything until a few seconds before I hit the ground.

The parachute was open above me with holes burnt through here & there. When I hit the ground my weakened right ankle was fractured & my left ankle badly sprained. I was captured & taken prisoner. 5 of crew were killed (4 by explosion) why I was not killed I do not know. Wally was taken prisoner.

Jock, George, Johnny, Joe & Colin are laid at rest in Koegnigsberg Church graveyard 60 miles NW of Nuremberg

97 Bombers lost on this operation. (Highest losses of the war)

- 30 Nuremburg mission not completed. Shot down by enemy fighter. Wally baled out. Aircraft exploded killing Colin, George, Johnny, Joe, Jock killed by machine gun cannon fire. I was blown clear must have been unconscious.

Collection

Citation

Great Britain. Royal Air Force, “Richard Starkey’s flying log book for pilots,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed October 28, 2020, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/25716.

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