Browse Items (90 total)

  • Tags: military ethos

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David Butler, DFC, was born in Cherry Hinton in April 1920 and joined the Royal Air Force on the 11th January 1940, serving in France at Reims as the Germans advanced. After walking some distance, he was evacuated back to England on a Polish boat and…

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George was born at Whitstable and was 17 when war was declared. He joined the local Defence Volunteers which became the Home Guard. When he reached 18 he volunteered for air crew. He was interviewed at Chatham and sat an exam and selection board to…

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He was born in London and worked for some time as a clerk until joined up the Royal Air Force. He did not like the idea of serving in the Army or in the Navy but - as a Londoner - he was keen to take part in the war having experienced the Blitz. He…

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John Norrington was a lorry driver when he volunteered for the Royal Air Force. After initial training, he went to RAF Sandtoft on Lancasters and Halifaxes; he crewed up with Flying Officer James, then was at RAF Hemswell for the Lancaster Finishing…

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Doris Reddish attended Sleaford High School followed by commercial college. She worked at Moore, Cooper and Burkett’s in Market Rasen until she joined the Royal Observer Corps. She trained in Lincoln for aircraft recognition then served as a table…

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Jan Black Stangryciuk was born in Poland but his family emigrated to Argentina in 1934. He volunteered to travel to England to join the Royal Air Force in 1939. He recounts his journey, why he made this decision and how he joined the RAF. He was…

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Harold Kirby joined up the Royal Air Force encouraged by two friends, but ended up training as a flight mechanic at RAF Halton on medical grounds. Harold became them airframe fitter, volunteered as a flight engineer, passed the physical but was then…

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Jim Penny joined the Air Force in July 1940 when he was eighteen. He recounts the training which he undertook before he became a Bomber Command Pathfinder pilot for 97 Squadron at RAF Bourn. He explains the crewing up process and details those who…

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Alun Emlyn-Jones (known as Grem among his RAF colleagues) was raised in Cardiff and attended boarding schools in Oxfordshire. He worked manufacturing office supplies when he volunteered to serve in Bomber Command, hoping to avoid being called up to…

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Harold Gordon Foster (known as Harry) tells of his childhood, passing the eleven plus exam and his enjoyment of learning, and the need for him to earn money for his family rather than going to grammar school. He first worked for CL Equipments,…

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Thomas Charles Arthur Long was born in Quorn, England. He was in the Home Guard and worked at Brush as a draughtsman, also gaining a Higher National Certificate from Loughborough College. He decided to join the RAF being that the only way to get out…

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Ronald Marlow went to Middleton Council School, then worked at Forgrove Engineering. He joined the Air Training Corps, volunteered for the Royal Air Force training in London at St Johns Wood. He became an air gunner ad flew Wellingtons, followed by a…

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Len McNamara was born in Bristol in 1924. An apprentice plumber, he joined the Air Training Corps and volunteered for aircrew. Discusses his initial training at various stations, the gunnery course he passed with merit and honours, an escape and…

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Hugh Parry was born in Oswestry and joined the Air Force in April 1943 and volunteered to be an air gunner. Knowing that there was a height restriction on air gunners of six feet he hid his height by wearing baggy trousers. After training, he was…

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Peter Potter was born in Fobbing where his grandfather had three farms in Shell Haven. He ran away from home at age 15 and got a job before volunteering for aircrew after falsifying his date of birth. He talks about his time in London, visiting…

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Iain was a National Service air gunner in the 1950s and served with 214 Squadron at RAF Upwood in Huntingdonshire after being called up at the age of 18. Upon completion of training, he flew on Wellingtons and fighter affiliation with Spitfires. He…

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Bert Turner was a member of the Air Training Corps before the war. He volunteered for the Air Force and was called up 2 August 1942. After training he became a flight engineer with 196 Squadron. He flew some bombing and mine laying operations before…

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Writes of flying in bad weather and very low temperatures. Says he has not had time to visit relative in Peterborough. Writes of absolute confidence in skipper and crew. Mentions no dates for squadron and no sign of leave until they get to new…

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Harold Allen’s parents travelled to the UK to escape the pogroms in Europe. He lived in London during the Blitz. When Harold volunteered for the RAF he trained as a wireless operator on the ground. He did not want to join aircrew because he was…

AAn00509-160424.mp3
The interviewee was born in Berlin in 1924, his father being a British Army surgeon who was posted there to treat badly wounded soldiers. He went to school in France then attended boarding school in Hertfordshire. He volunteered for the Royal Air…
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