Browse Items (90 total)

  • Tags: military ethos

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From Headquarters 54 Base Coningsby. Letter covering Group Captain Christie's letter concerning Squadron Leader Campbell and Flight Lieutenant Fleming.

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An air gunner who has completed two tours. Requests advice on how to get back on operations.

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David Leicester grew up in Australia and worked as an office boy before he volunteered for the Royal Australian Air Force. He completed 68 operations as a pilot with 35, 158 and 640 Squadrons and as a Master Bomber with Pathfinders. He describes how…

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Charles left school with no formal qualifications and was undertaking further education when the Second World War commenced. Being too young to enlist, he joined the Air Defence Cadet Corps and - upon reaching 18 - he eventually was able to join. He…

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Letter in which Andrew describes how he feels about life in the squadron and how Isabel has now left the WAAF and is looking after uncle and his son.

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Letter in which Andrew describes life on the squadron, including the comradeship of his crew and appreciation of Isabel. Includes envelope.

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He discusses a mid-air collision during an operation with 101 Squadron. to Hasselt. He describes what it was like prior to a operation and the feelings experienced by the crew, from seeing the battle orders on the notice board, the pre-flight meal,…

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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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David Fellowes tells of how he used to build model airplanes and fly them in the fields when he was a boy. The son of an engineer, he first joined the Air Training Corps and then volunteered for the Royal Air Force at the age of 17. Describes his…

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Beginning the war in a reserved occupation, Jack eventually volunteered for the Royal Air Force, however, it would take the majority of the war before he joined. Eventually being called up for Bomber Command in 1944, Jack trained as a wireless…

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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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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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Relates an incident at an officers’ mess ball which contrasts the attitude of peacetime station commander to those found on operational stations. Describes events surrounding a station ball at a training base in the midlands. Includes general…

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Starts with suggestion that a recent news film of daylight operation to Le Havre, which he was on, gives a good idea of what bombing is like. However as most of his operations were at night he goes on to describe these. Describes emotions and…

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A poem sent to Betty Turner's friend Billy to celebrate their 80th. Betty describes the wartime hardships she endured, hint at the bereavement after the loss of the men she loved, stresses the sense of duty toward her country, friendship and…

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A poem written in December 1942 after her first love was shot down over France. After his death Betty resolved to join the Royal Air Force and became a wireless operator. According to a note, she later found out that some of what she wrote down went…

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Geoff Payne has his first experience of the Royal Air Force with the Air Training Corps, at RAF Wyton in Cambridgeshire, where he had one of his first experiences of military humour. He joined in 1943 at the age of 17 and a half hoping to become a…

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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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Born on 27 December 1924 in Aigburth Liverpool, James was 15 when war broke out in Europe. He intended to join as a pilot, navigator, bomber aimer in 1943 but due to shorter waiting list and training time he trained to become a wireless operator at…

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Charles Gallagher was born in a small village outside Nottingham where his father was rector of the local church. At the age of six the family moved to South Brent on Dartmoor where Charles enjoyed country sports and helped with the local hunt. At…

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Describes the role played by the air gunner and his attitude toward danger. In the afterlife, the air gunner goes straight through the Heavens's gate as his wartime suffering is considered equivalent to expiation.

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Charlie Darby joined the Royal Air Force in September 1943 and recounts in great detail, his training as an air gunner/wireless operator on Wellingtons and Ansons at RAF Bridlington, RAF Bridgnorth, RAF Castle Kennedy, RAF Acaster Malbis and RAF…

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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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