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Don Armour



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 654


Location: Wiltshire

PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:20 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote

Indeed he did Jack, he was a Navigator/Wireless Op/Air Gunner/Observer on Beaufighters and saw service in Egypt and Malta with 252 Sqn, as well as UK bases before moving across to the Avro Anson as Navigator to the C in C Flying Training Command, Sir William Laurie Welsh and later Sir Philip Babbington.

He also flew with several other officers of Air rank, Air Marshalls, Air Vice Marshalls and Air Commodores although not on such a permanent basis as the two mentioned above - I still have his log book and medals.

Didn't see the programme though, unfortunately Quest don't have an online catchup facility so I'll have to wait for it to come around again.

On a similar topic, did you see the Channel 4 programme about the RAF's role at Dunkirk and how their participation was misrepresented for so many years?

If not, it should still be available at:

http://www.channel4.com/programme...-new-evidence/on-demand/66091-001

Very interesting.

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Jack Edwards



Joined: 05 Jul 2007
Posts: 884


Location: Cheshire U.K.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes Don,I did see that R.A.F. Prog. Very good. Sorry you missed the beaufighter item. The team were hoping to find a nearly complete aircraft as access to the site had been restricted as it was beside a railway line. The beauighter was shot down by friendly A.A. fire over Rye while on night patrol in 1943.  Luckily the crew escaped.  Is it usual for crew to  escape from an aircraft hit by A.A. fire? When they started to dig the site they only found scraps of fuselage and loads of cannon shells. Somebody had been there before them! The Prog. finished with a history of the beaufighter. Hope you see it soon. What about this change of name etc for the Forum?  Be good.Jack.
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Don Armour



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 654


Location: Wiltshire

PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Raises the question "how friendly is friendly fire?", in fact one Beaufighter my father flew in returned to Malta with a big hole in the tail fin courtesy of the Royal Navy!!

It certainly wasn't unheard of for crew members to escape from an aircraft that had been hit, hence the number of Bomber Command crews in German PoW camps, it largely depended on how badly the aircraft was damaged and where it was hit.

I know from the history of the time that many of the pilots did their level best to keep the aircraft airborne to allow their crews a chance of getting out, obviously those who weren't already dead but sometimes the damage was so great that it just wasn't possible.

However, the statistics make grim reading, 55,573 killed out of a total of 125,000 aircrew (a 44.4 percent death rate), a further 8,403 were wounded in action and 9,838 became prisoners of war, some, of course, escaped and made it back home but they were very much in the minority.

In fact a Bomber Command crew member had a worse chance of survival than an infantry officer in World War I! And more people were killed serving in Bomber Command than in the Blitz, or the bombings of Hamburg or Dresden.

Also, of course, it was only recently that their sacrifice was officially remembered with the Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park, Lincoln and the award of a specific Bomber Command Medal, I'm not sure if my father would be entitled to that medal posthumously and I have no intention of enquiring.

Mind you, much the same can be said of the sailors of the Arctic Convoys, it took a long time for their contribution to be formally recognised, gosh it was bad enough when I sailed those waters and nobody was trying to bomb, torpedo, shoot me or put mines in my path!

As to the changes to the Forum, "que sera, sera", we'll just have to wait and see what the impact, if any, turns out to be, mind you it's only likely to affect the two of us!!

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Jack Edwards



Joined: 05 Jul 2007
Posts: 884


Location: Cheshire U.K.

PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2017 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don,I was just wondering what the following have in common  Wisdom,Sedge,Bazaar and Mischief? Gotcha methinks!
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Jack Edwards



Joined: 05 Jul 2007
Posts: 884


Location: Cheshire U.K.

PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did you catch that amazing programme on BBC4, 'Operation Crossbow'?   Just another example of what we owe to the R.A.F. and in this case some Yankee pillots!

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