Pilot's Log Book September 1944 - 233 Sqdn - Question

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Milee Humble, Jun 29, 2020.

  1. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Hello and I hope someone can provide answers for me since my father died decades ago. He was Australian.
    My father's Log Book indicates that in September 1944 he was based with the RAF at Blakehill Farm, Wiltshire, England. Entries show he was second pilot flying Dakotas. In the "Duty" column, he has entered various destinations but part of these entries I do not understand, i.e. references to B14, B6, B58. Are they codes for a location? Examples:
    • B - Northolt - B6, RB Freight.
    • Base - B14 - B6 - Base. Freight-Casualties.
    • B60 - Base - B58 - R.B. Freight
    • Base - B6 - R.B. Freight & Casualties.
    "B" and "RB" I assume is Base and return to base. The last entry on my list above, was on 19 Sept. 1944 and was the entry following an entry on 17 Sept. 1944 when my father was second pilot in a Dakota "Operation - Gilder to Holland" which must have been Operation Market. Therefore, I am thinking "B6" is a code for a location in the Netherlands?
    I would greatly appreciate obtaining a reply with the information. Thanking you in advance.
     
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  2. Kiwi REd One

    Kiwi REd One Junior Member

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  3. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    FANTASTIC! Thank you so much!
     
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  4. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    Hello Milee,

    Did your father take part in Operation Varsity on 24th March 1945? His squadron was one of those involved in towing gliders over the Rhine. It would be great if you could share scans of your father's logbook here. I'm sure many of us would be interested to see the entries and may be able to help you further your own research.

    Jenny
     
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  5. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Hello Jenny
    The log books are not with me, but with my son on the opposite side of Australia and he does shift work. I would be happy to upload copies of my father's log book entries - when I can co-ordinate it with my son. Some time ago he discovered an entry in the log books indicating my father did take part in Operation Varsity. Despite our distance, my son has sent me a couple of photographs of entries and it has been very interesting to put ideas together in retracing my father's history. He never talked about WWII other than to say he was in transport. The discovery of his participation in Operations Varsity and Market was quite a surprise.
    As I am new to the workings of this web site, I would appreciate guidance as to the correct steps of uploading material.
    Cheers
    Lee
     
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  6. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Hello Jenny
    The log books are not with me, but with my son on the opposite side of Australia and he does shift work. I would be happy to upload copies of my father's log book entries - when I can co-ordinate it with my son. Some time ago he discovered an entry in the log books indicating my father did take part in Operation Varsity. Despite our distance, my son has sent me a couple of photographs of entries and it has been very interesting to put ideas together in retracing my father's history. He never talked about WWII other than to say he was in transport. The discovery of his participation in Operations Varsity and Market was quite a surprise.
    As I am new to the workings of this web site, I would appreciate guidance as to the correct steps of uploading material.
    Cheers
    Lee
     
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  7. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    Hello Lee,

    Uploading to this site is relatively straightforward. It's best to scan the pictures as .jpg files and then save them to your computer. Start a reply to this thread and then you'll see a button "Upload a File" below the reply box. Click on this and follow the instructions, locate the file on your computer and when you post your reply the files will be uploaded.

    I have details of the 233 Squadron crews who took part in Operation Varsity and will be able to confirm your father's fellow crew members. I just need his name if you can supply that please. Others may then be able to provide you with even more information.

    Jenny
     
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  8. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Thank you Jenny. I'm not sure when I will be able to get the info from my son, but as soon as I have it I will upload it.

    I have a copy of Dad's log book for September 1944 headed "233 SQDN - 437 SQDN Blakehill Farm, Wiltshire, England. I do not know if he was with 233 later in Op Varsity as I haven't got that log entry. I haven't even got his enlistment number with me.

    His name was Harold Summerfield, from Australia. He signed the log in September 1944 "F/SGT".
    Cheers
    Lee
     
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  9. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Picture uploaded
     

    Attached Files:

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  10. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    That's great Lee.

    I can confirm your father was indeed one of those who took part in Operation Varsity as follows:-

    233 Squadron
    Dakota KN252
    Crew: F/Lt MS Maas, DFM, F/Sgt H Summerfield, F/O BM Wallington, F/O HPC Wech

    Details are from the National Archives file AIR 27/1434/6 which can be found at Squadron Number: 233 Records of Events: Y | The National Archives You can preview this record or download a copy (it's free at the moment). You can also search the archive for other time periods.

    They were one of 24 Dakotas of 233 Squadron towing a Horsa glider containing troops of 2 Ox & Bucks from their temporary base RAF Birch in Essex to Landing Zone "O" at Hamminkeln, Germany. All 24 aircraft reported successful releases of their gliders over the LZ. Take off started at 06:18 with last tug leaving Birch at 07:00. Individual take off times are unfortunately not given in the above record but your father's log book should show this and confirm aircraft and 1st pilot's details among other things.

    Thanks for posting the logbook picture. I look forward to seeing the page for this operation when you are able to post it.

    Jenny
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
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  11. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Hello Jenny. My son sent some photos - uploaded now. Picture Log Book March 1-27 1945 (L).jpg Picture Log Book Feb 4-28 1945 (L-R).jpg
     

    Attached Files:

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  12. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    Hello Lee,

    Great to see the logbook entries which confirm his participation in Operation Varsity. The entry on 21st March shows the transfer to base "X". This will be RAF Birch from where his squadron took off for the operation. After completing their duty, 233 Squadron landed at B75 (Nivelles, France) hence the reference to B75 on the following two days.

    From the National Archives file AIR 27/1434/6 referenced in my post #10 above, it appears your father's service number was A436350.

    Not sure if I can add anything further at this point but hope this helps.

    Jenny
     
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  13. Milee Humble

    Milee Humble Member

    Thank you Jenny!
     
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