Browse Items (105 total)

  • Tags: military ethos

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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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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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W E (Bill) Lucas joined the Royal Air Force in 1940, where he trained as a fighter pilot flying Miles Magisters and Miles Masters, before being posted to RAF Lossiemouth and moving into Bomber Command, flying the Vickers Wellington 1C.
Flew 14…

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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 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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Horace Burchett joined the Royal Air Force at the age of 17 and rose to the rank of Flight Engineer, serving in an all Austrailian Squadron at 1654 Conversion Unit in Wiglsely in Northamptonshire.
Posted to 463 Squadron at Waddington, still with the…

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During 1939 Stuart left grammar school and joined the Air Training Corps. After about half a year he volunteered for air crew and was accepted. He and his girlfriend were married in February 1943. Stuart was posted to South Africa working on Ansons…

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Graham Allen joined the Royal Air Force aged 19. He trained as a mechanic and worked on inspection and recovery of Spitfire aircraft. He later volunteered to be a flight engineer, and flew a tour of operations with 106 Squadron. His first operation…

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A card signed by Air Marshal Arthur Coningham, thanking the friends and relatives of the Second Tactical Air Force for sustaining them in their part in the victory in Europe.

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Arthur Spencer joined the Royal Air Force after leaving school. He began pilot training in Florida but then re-mustered as a navigator and trained in Pensacola. He completed two tours of operations as a navigator with 97 Squadron at RAF Woodhall Spa…

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Ralph Wild grew up in Yorkshire. He originally served as ground personnel with Fighter Command but he later remustered and became a navigator and flew operations with Bomber Command.

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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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Peter Watson was born in South Wales and joined the Royal Air Force in 1943. He wanted to be a pilot but there was a surplus of pilots so he became an air gunner. He crewed-up and flew with 101 Squadron initially, a special duties squadron, and he…

AMooreR160727.mp3
Raymond Moore flew 31 operations as a flight engineer with 408 Squadron. He describes initial training at Skegness and then further training at Cosford, Halton and St Athan. He describes the crewing-up procedure at Eastmoor and describes the…

AMawdsleyT150507.mp3
Ted grew up in Essex. Before the war he worked for the Marconi Wireless and Telegraph Company. He joined the Royal Air Force in 1940 and became an instrument mechanic. He was posted to RAF Elsham Wolds in 1942 and overseas the following year. After…

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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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Harold Kirby grew up in London and worked in an accounts department before joining the Royal Air Force. He served as a fitter with 460 Squadron at RAF Binbrook before remustering as a flight engineer. He flew two tours of operations with 467, 97 and…

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Ian Denver grew up in Australia and joined the Royal Australian Air Force as soon as he was old enough. After training he completed 60 operations with 625 Squadron and 156 Squadron. He met and married his wife, Pat who was an intelligence officer at…

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Philip Blackham became an apprentice engineer at Diesel engine company Mirrlees, Bickerton & Day, of which he became a sales manager post war. He served in the Home Guard becoming a driver, then he enrolled in summer 1940 with initial training at…

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Bob Frost recounts experiencing the London Blitz as a member of the Auxiliary Fire Service. He volunteered for the Royal Air Force and trained at the Air Gunnery School at Evanton, Scotland. He was then posted to the Operational Training Unit at RAF…

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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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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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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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