Browse Items (977 total)

  • Tags: air gunner

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Derek Gurney was working at the De Havilland Works before he volunteered for aircrew. While on training he saw one Wellington blow up and another with a broken wing. He was posted to 10 Squadron, RAF Melbourne for his tour. On one operation they…

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Upon leaving school, Ronald was employed first as a pawnbrokers assistant, followed by butchers assistant. In 1943, upon reaching the age of 18 he followed his brothers footsteps and enlisted in the Royal Air Force. After initial training, he…

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Two of Evelyn Paine’s three brothers joined the RAF. She discusses the service of her brothers Philip Jenkinson and Peter Raeburn Jenkinson. Philip Jenkinson trained as an air gunner. He was was shot down on his tenth operation and after evading…

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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 1994, upon completion of training, he went to No. 1 Air Gunnery…

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Margaret Saint was employed by Airworks Limited as a civilian office worker throughout the Second World War, and met her future husband, Trevor, an air gunner, who she married in June 1945.
Daughter of a Welsh miner, the family moved to the…

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In 1936, Dennis went to Dr Challoner’s Grammar School in Amersham, where an Air Training Corps was formed. At seventeen, he got a job with the North British and Mercantile Insurance company. He visited Halton with the Air Training Corps each…

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Clifford Watson at first wanted to join the navy because of a high demand in pilots. After being rejected, he joined the RAF and was sent to Rhodesia for pilot training, but then remustered to become an air gunner. He flew seventy-six ops in total.…

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Clifford Watson remembers his training as a pilot in Salisbury, Zimbabwe, but being scrubbed at the flying test. Tells of when he flew a Ju-88 at RAE Farnborough. Talks about the different wages in various trades. Tells of an emergency landing at RAF…

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Completing school and moving on to work at 20th Century Fox Films, he worked as a fire watcher at the beginning of the war before joining the Royal Air Force. He states that he did that because he always wanted to fly and didn’t want to join the…

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Peter Smith was born in Kent and attended school until he was 14. He started working for a woodwork shop and when the war began, they started building army huts. In 1941 he joined the Air Cadets. He recalls how one Sunday he and a friend saw an…

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Edward served on 90 Squadron as a rear gunner. Born in 1925 on the Isle of Sheppey, he was employed as a butcher’s boy at the outbreak of the war. Evenings were spent fire watching, for which he received a small wage from the council. He became a…

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John Waye grew up in London. He was ten years old when he was hospitalised with diphtheria. When he was discharged he discovered his mother had died while he had been in hospital. John was working in the retail trade and was in the ATC before he…

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Joan King was born in Lincoln and together with her daughter, Linda King, talks about her husband, Eddie King, who served as a mid-upper gunner on Lancasters at RAF Scampton with 57 Squadron. He did two tours of operations. While he was briefly…

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Ron Hemsworth was born in Peterborough and founded a model flying club with a friend. He joined the Royal Air Force in 1941. He flew operations as an air gunner with 76 Squadron from RAF Linton on Ouse. His aircraft was shot down on an operation to…

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Few lines to let her know he is OK. Still near Oxford but should be finished soon. Should get leave before reporting to new station. Writes that he had been crewed up and describes crew as one Rhodesian, an Australian observer, a wireless operator…

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The letter refers to Mr Joseph's son, Flight Sergeant David Joseph who is reported as missing in action. A list of his crew is included. The list does not include Sergeant Louis Makens who joined the crew as mid under gunner and became a prisoner of…

MAllenDJ1880966-150702-04.pdf
Covers air gunners course including sighting, gun ranges, characteristics of machine guns, bullet patterns, harmonisation, firing techniques, use of tracer rounds and gun turret hydraulics. Front Cover captioned '1880966, AQC Allen, Class No 0, Hut…

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From mother of the mid upper gunner on Hedley's aircraft offering sympathy over anxiety for news that they are both suffering. Notes she had met Hedley on a few occasions at Kings Cross and how crew cheered when he arrived as Pilot Officer. Hopes…

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Geoff Golledge volunteered for the Royal Air Force and trained as a wireless operator / air gunner. For a time he served as ground personnel with 44 Squadron at RAF Waddington, on the flare path. One night he brought thirty five aircraft safely in to…

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George ‘Johnny’ Johnson was born in rural Lincolnshire. As a child he won a scholarship to Lord Wandsworth’s Agricultural College in Hampshire. He volunteered for the Royal Air Force at the outbreak of the Second World War and was selected for…

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Robert McClements grew up in Northern Ireland and after working in various jobs he volunteered for the Royal Air Force. He flew a tour of operations as a mid upper gunner with 10 Squadron. He discusses the model of his aircraft that a German…

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Gordon Atkinson lived in Flixborough, Lincolnshire. As a young boy he recalls seeing aircraft gathering over the River Humber in the evenings ready to fly out on bombing operations. In the morning he watched them come back, some with bits dropping…

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Allan McDonald was born in Hull and watched Alan Cobham’s Flying Circus as a child. He worked as an apprentice electrician before joining the Air Force. He served as ground personnel in Northern Ireland until he passed the exams to become aircrew…

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Letter form from David Boldy to his father about settling in with his friend as air gunners on the same crew. He misses his girl friend Babe, who he left in East London five months before. Thanks for the birthday wishes and the subsequent night out…
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