Browse Items (107 total)

  • Spatial Coverage is exactly "England--Bedfordshire"

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Philip Winter worked in the civil service before he volunteered for the Air Force. He trained as a pilot and flew three operations with 102 Squadron before he was wounded in the ankle. After recuperating he flew towing targets for air gunnery…

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Peter Bellingham worked as a post office engineer before volunteering for the Royal Air Force. He trained in Rhodesia and South Africa and completed a tour of operations as a bomb aimer, dropping supplies with 138 Squadron from RAF Tempsford. He…

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Percival Robert Court joined the Air Training Corps in March 1941, volunteering for the Royal Air Force at the earliest age of seventeen and a half. Training at RAF Cardington, he became a flight mechanic. He then moved to Skegness to continue into…

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Len Harper registered for the air force in April 1939, influenced by the positive experience of his brother who had joined in January. Upon completing training at the Wireless Training School, RAF Yatesbury, he was posted to RAF Wittering, where he…

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Lawrence di Placito served as a second-class coxswain on the RAF Air Sea Rescue launches during the Second World War. He was born in Chertsey and attended Egham grammar school where he was a member of the cadet force. Upon leaving school in 1936 he…

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Laurie Harbutt was born in Edmonton, London. Before he volunteered he worked as a wireless telegraphist which was a Reserved Occupation. He wanted to join the Navy but because of his occupation his only option was RAF aircrew. He was posted to 77…

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Ken was a 456 Squadron Mosquito navigator. He initially joined the Army’s Victorian Scottish regiment but changed to the Royal Air force. He was selected to be a navigator and sailed to Canada. Ken did a course at Edmonton and was made an officer.…

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Ken Neve served as a runner with the Home Guard before joining the Fleet Air Arm. He was posted to RAF Henlow as an engineer.

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John Beeching was born in London and joined the RAF in 1941. His initial training was in Canada. After several escapades John joined 169 Squadron as a night fighter pilot and worked in electronic countermeasures as well as training crews in air…

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John Watkins was working in retail in Rotherham and in 1939 he joined 218 Squadron ATC. He joined the RAF in February 1942 at RAF Cardington, and did his initial training at Blackpool. In December 1942 he did his wireless training at RAF Yatesbury.…

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Jim was born in July 1923 in Burton on Trent and was the eldest of six children. His father served in the First World War. When Jim left school aged 14, he joined the Boys Brigade which had a Royal Air Force section and he had the chance to fly in…

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Jane Carrington joined the Women's Auxiliary Air Force in 1942 at the age of 18. She served as a cook, and volunteered to join the band as a drummer. She discusses her time in the kitchens, the menus and the equipment they used.

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James was born in Gorton, attended Catholic schools, and became an apprentice plumber. In November 1942 he joined the Royal Air Force. He then trained as a mechanic at RAF St Athan before being posted to RAF Henlow to assemble Hurricanes. He then…

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Harry Hodgson was ground crew during the war. He was based with 10 Squadron, working on Halifax Bombers at RAF Melbourne. Harry said it was a very busy time patching up the holes from both anti-aircraft fire and bullets on the Halifax. He remembers…

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Harrison Cammish was born in Scarborough in 1923, and when he was fourteen, he became an apprentice carpenter and joiner, and when war broke out, he joined the Air Training Corps, and the Home Guard, who gave him a rifle and forty rounds of…

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Harold Gardner was a navigator on 106 Squadron based at RAF Metheringham during the final months of World War 2. Known throughout his RAF career as Stan, he was born in Brighton. In 1937 when 14-years-old, his father arranged employment for him with…

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Gerald’s father, Wilfred, joined the Royal Air Force in January 1920 and stayed until about 1927 training as an aircraft fitter. He re-joined in June 1940 at RAF Cardington. In 1944, upon completion of training, he went to No. 1 Air Gunnery School…

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Geoffrey Spencer grew up in Birmingham and worked with his father in tool making, carrying out fire watching as a youngster. He joined the Air Force aged 18 in August 1943. After training he served as a flight mechanic and fitter with 49 Squadron at…

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Frederick Bowman was born in Sydney in 1924. He was a member of the Air Training Corps, and when he was eighteen he joined the Air Force. He went to Kingaroy for basic training, and did his wireless course at Maryborough, and Evans Head for bombing…

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Ernie Groeger volunteered for the RAF in 1940 while working at a textile firm. He undertook training to be an armourer and was posted to 97 Squadron at RAF Woodhall Spa. Over time he developed ill health and he was discharged from the RAF on health…

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Cyril was born in London in 1921 and lived in Battersea with his relatives; he met his wife in 1940 while working at Harrods. His family were killed by bombing after he joined up. Cyril enlisted at RAF Cardington in 1941 and was trained to be a…

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Bill Moore joined the Royal Air Force after spending time in the Air Defence Cadet Corps, qualifying as an observer. He tells of his family history in wartime and his transatlantic trip, landing in New York before heading to Canada for his training.…

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William Moore was born in Dunoon, Scotland in August 1924 and joined the Royal Air Force after spending some time in the Air Cadet Defence Corps and in the Air Training Corps. He volunteered for the Royal Air Force at the age of 17 and completed his…
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