So it Began.....Their Finest Hour

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Gage, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    PEEL, CHARLES DAVID
    Rank:
    Flying Officer
    Service No:
    90199
    Date of Death:
    17/07/1940
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force (Auxiliary Air Force)
    603 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 6.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

    [​IMG]
     
  2. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Tactics changed on the 23rd, as the Channel was almost free of all shipping movements. Dowding had earlier suggested that convoys use the east coast route, go around the top of Scotland and head out into the Atlantic from there. The reason was that convoys were becoming to easy a target for the Luftwaffe conveniently positioned all along the French coast. The other advantage of this, was that any attacking bombers would not have the luxury of fighter escort as the distance would be too great from any of their bases. Although a number of convoys did enter the Atlantic via the Shetlands, convoys still navigated the Channel.July 2nd - July24th 1940
     
  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    [​IMG]
    HAMAR, JACK ROYSTON
    Rank:
    Pilot Officer
    Trade:
    Pilot
    Service No:
    70898
    Date of Death:
    24/07/1940
    Age:
    25
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force
    151 Sqdn.
    Awards:
    D F C
    Grave Reference:
    Row K. Grave 9.
    Cemetery:
    KNIGHTON CEMETERY
    Additional Information:
    Son of Arthur T. Hamer and Sarah A. Hamar, of Knighton.
     
  4. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    No. 59 Squadron RAF - Battle of Britain - The Flying Moustaches


    At noon on the 25th July enemy bombers protected by fighters launched a large-scale operation against Dover. Waves of as many as fifty aircraft continued to attack for seven and a half hours. Severe damage was prevented by our fighters who successfully intercepted and inflicted casualties of twenty-one aircraft confirmed, with a further twelve probable. Seven of our fighters were lost. Three additional enemy casualties are claimed from anti-aircraft fire.

    About 1630 on the 25th July, British aircraft on patrol sighted nine or ten enemy E-boats near Cape Gris Nez which were proceeding to attack the westbound Coastal Convoy, then approaching Dungeness and already being repeatedly attacked by enemy aircraft.

    H.M. Destroyers Brilliant and Boreas and two British M.T.Bs. were sent to intercept and engage the enemy. On sighting our destroyers the enemy retired under cover of a smoke screen. They were engaged for 15 minutes, but with unknown results. The destroyers came under the fire of enemy shore batteries, and were also twice heavily attacked by dive-bombers while withdrawing.

    The Boreas was damaged in both bombing attacks, and had 15 killed and 29 wounded, 16 seriously. The Brilliant received a direct hit on the quarter deck in the second attack, but had no casualties. Both ships were towed by tugs back to Dover.

    25th July 1940: Air attacks still aimed at convoys off Britain
     
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  5. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Friday, 26th July 1940 D328
    A Spitfire from 616 Squadron based at Leconfield airfield near Beverley, Yorkshire, made a heavy landing and wrecked the undercarriage following a dawn practice flight. PO W.I.B. Walker was unhurt, the aircraft, repairable.

    German E Boats attacked shipping off Shoreham, sinking:- 'SS Lulonga' (821t) steamer, Humber to Shoreham. 'SS Broadhurst' (1,013t) cargo ship, travelling from Seaham to Shoreham. 'SS London Trader' (646t) steamer, sailing to Shoreham from the Tyne. 'SS Haytor' (1,189t) cargo ship, London to Blyth, sunk by a mine in North Sea.

    Day 328. All times BST. Blackout ends: 04.34, begins: 21.50
    NE Diary 1939-45; Incidents 26th July 1940 to 14th August 1940
     
  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    SATURDAY JULY 27th 1940


    The summer of 1940 was as unpredictable as ever, as again by July 27th 1940 the weather partially cleared although the cloud base remained over the English Channel. Fliegerkorps VIII again made attacks along the southern coast. Radar had detected them over the Channel 0925hrs and 609 Squadron was ordered to the Portland area to cover a medium convoy (Codenamed Bacon) off the coast at Swanage. One enemy aircraft was destroyed and another limped away to the south trailing smoke. 609 Squadron lost one aircraft in the combat off the coast at Weymouth. Other attacks were made on convoys off the east coast near Harwich and later in the afternoon, Dover Harbour again came under attack as German raiders bombed naval destroyers and the barracks.


    With the navy losing three destroyers this day, the Admiralty decided to withdraw all naval ships from Dover and cease using the harbour as an advanced base. This was to place a further burden on the RAF as they would have to provide additional protection of the Channel convoys, something that Dowding and Park did not want to do, but with convoys having no destroyer protection the task was presented to the RAF.July 25th - July 31st 1940
     
  7. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

  8. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

  9. Gage

    Gage The Battle of Barking Creek MOD

    29th July - 798 RAF Fighters fly 205 patrols

    41 Sqn Spitfire N3038 F/O D R Gamblen - Missing after flying Green Three rear section and engaging with Me109s near Dover.
     
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  10. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    WEDNESDAY JULY 31st 1940


    On July 31st, the day dawned as a typical summers day with clear skies and higher temperatures and even a number of people braved the consequences and a number of seaside resorts reported bathers on many of their beaches. The first combat operation of the day was at Plymouth at 0855hrs when it not Fighter Command that were involved, but a Short Sunderland flying boat of the 10 Squadron Royal Australian Air Force based at Mount Batten. It was flying escort to the merchant cruiser Mooltan that was departing Plymouth after a refit. Three and a half hours out of Plymouth the Sunderland sights a Ju 88 and intercepts and providing the necessary cover for the Mooltan. The German bomber breaks off the engagement and departed the scene.The only other morning combat was over the Channel at 1100hrs, when Ju87's attacked small convoys and soon after midday, a number of German reconnaissance aircraft were detected just off the south coast. No aircraft on either side were shot down.


    At 1530hrs, a formation was detected off the coast off Dover. Fighter Command despatched 74 Squadron Hornchurch (Spitfires) to intercept. The raiders turned out to be a small formation of Bf109's and a dogfight ensued over the Dover area. Four Bf109's were damaged in the combat and were believed to have crashed on their way back to their bases. 74 Squadron lost two aircraft, with one badly damaged and crashed on landing, but the pilot was unhurt.
    CASUALTIES:
    July 27th 1940.F/O P.A.N. Cox. 501 Sqn Gravesend. Hurricane P3808. Shot down over Dover. Killed.
    July 27th 1940.P/O J.R. Buchanan. 609 Sqn Warmwell. Spitfire N3023. Shot down Weymouth. Missing.
    July 28th 1940.P/O J.H.R. Young. 74 Sqn Hornchurch. Spitfire P9547. Crashed in Channel off Ramsgate.
    July 29th 1940.F/O D.R. Gamblen. 41 Sqn Manston. Spitfire N3038. Disappeared over Dover. Missing.
    July 29th 1940.P/O K.C. Campbell. 43 Sqn Northolt. Hurricane L1955. Crashed and burnt out. Killed.
    July 29th 1940.F/Sgt C.J. Cooney. 56 Sqn Nth Weald. Hurricane P3879. Exploded in Channel off Dover.
    July 31st 1940.Sgt F.W. Eley. 74 Sqn Hornchurch. Spitfire P9398. Shot down off Folkestone.
    July 31st 1940.P/O H.R. Gunn. 74 Sqn Hornchurch. Spitfire P9379. Shot down off Folkestone.

    [1] Richard Hough and Denis Richards Battle of Britain - A Jublilee History 1989 Hodder & Staughton
    [2] Vincent Orange Sir Keith Park 1984 Methuen pp96-97
    July 25th - July 31st 1940
     
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  11. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    The Battle of Britain - 1940 / August 1st - August 10th 1940
    THURSDAY AUGUST 1st 1940



    WEATHER: Although it was fine in the west and in the north, there was 8/10ths low cloud over the Channel and in the Thames Estuary regions during the morning, but this was to clear by afternoon and becoming warm.
    OPERATIONS IN DETAIL:

    The morning period was exceptionally quiet, but thick overnight mist in low lying regions aborted most of the minelaying that the Luftwaffe usually carried out during the hours of darkness. But a Spitfire from one of the Photographic Reconnaissance Units, on patrol over the north of France notices heavy aircraft concentration at Cherbourg. He circles round capturing the airfield on film and heads back to base. Fighter Command are notified at once of the build up, and they decide that the German held airfield should be bombed before they are committed in any offence against Britain.

    THE CASUALTIES:
    1500hrs. Hastings. Hurricane P3155. 145 Squadron Westhampnett (Lost at sea)
    Sub/Lt I.H. Kestin. Missing. (Shot down by gunfire from Hs126 and crashed into Channel)
    1715hrs. Querqueville (France). Blenheim IV. N3601. 236 Squadron Thorney Island (Aircraft destroyed)
    S/L P.E. Drew. F/O B.Nokes-Cooper. Both killed. (Shot down on bomber escort by ground fire)
    1715hrs. Querqueville (France). Blenheim IV. R2774. 236 Squadron Thorney Island (Aircraft destroyed)
    P/O B.M. McDonough. Sgt F.A.P.Head. Both killed. (Shot down on bomber escort by ground fire)
     
  12. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron


    SUNDAY AUGUST 4th 1940
    Even though the weather was fine early and the could was higher with sunny breaks, there were no recorded incidents. It was a very quiet day for both sides.

    THE CASUALTIES:
    Time N/A. Kirton-on-Lindsay. Spitfire N3271. 616 Squadron Leconfield. (Aircraft destroyed)
    Sgt J.P. Walsh. Killed. (Spun out of control from 5,000ft during combat practice)


    WALSH, JOHN PATRICK

    Rank:
    Sergeant
    Trade:
    Pilot
    Service No:
    754138
    Date of Death:
    04/08/1940
    Age:
    20
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    616 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference:
    Sec. 13. Grave 1909.
    Cemetery:
    HARROW CEMETERY
    Additional Information:
    Son of Harry Patrick Walsh, and of Nellie Walsh, of Harrow.
    upload_2017-8-4_16-35-0.png
     
  13. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    TUESDAY AUGUST 6th 1940
    Still reasonably quiet. This day was almost a repeat performance of the previous day. The weather was of strong winds, and fairly heavy low cloud that even the Luftwaffe decided to stay at home.

    THE CASUALTIES:
    1015hrs. Debden. Hurricane N2456. 17 Squadron Debden. (Aircraft destroyed)
    P/O H.W.A Britton. Killed. (Crashed after taking off from Debden and burnt out)The Battle of Britain - 1940 / August 1st - August 10th 1940

    Battle of Britain Timeline: 10 July 1940 - 31 October 1940 | Bentley Priory Museum
     
  14. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    WEDNESDAY AUGUST 7th 1940
    More German patrols in the Channel, Hornchurch engaged a Heinkel formation attacking a convoys off the east coast. It is reported that four Heinkel 115s were shot down.

    THE CASUALTIES:
    0245hrs. Leconfield. Spitfire R6696. 616 Squadron Leconfield. (Aircraft destroyed)
    P/O D.S. Smith Killed. (Crashed and exploded during night flying exercise)





    The quiet of the last few days was an uncanny quiet. Pilots roamed about their dispersal huts doing nothing in particular, reading papers and magazines or playing the odd game of chess or draughts. Occasionally they welcomed a new arrival, as the lull in combat operations allowed Fighter Command to stock squadrons with fresh aircraft and pilots. Three new squadrons are formed, 302 and 303 which were Polish squadrons and 310 which was a Czech squadron and it is this lull in operations that allows Fighter Command to build up its strength. 720 fighter aircraft were now available to squadrons compared with 587 on July 30th and aircrew was now 1,465 compared with 1,200 on July 30th.


    In Germany, Goering was busy preparing for the planned air attacks on England. This could be the reason for limited activity, as more and more squadrons were moved closer to the French coastal airfields. Already on August 6th at Goering's Prussia mansion Karinhall, he had set out plans in the presence of his three Luftflotte commanders and Milch the inspector general of the Luftwaffe. Goering explained that the main thrust would come from Kesselring's Luftflotte 2 operating from bases in north-eastern France, Belgium and Holland. The task of Luftflotte 2 was to concentrate the attacks on the eastern coast of England, the Estuary ports and the south coast. Sperle's Luftflotte 3 would concentrate its activities on an area west of Portsmouth and up into Bristol and South Wales. Goering knew that Fighter Command had bases in the north and in Scotland and that these should not be given any rest. Stumpff's Luftflotte 5 operating from Norwegian bases would attack targets in the north of England, Scotland and in and around the area of Scapa Flow. All Luftflotte's were to attack targets further inland during night operations.


    He explained to his commanders that the bombing of targets was only the second priority, the first priority was still to draw the RAF fighters out into combat and destroy them. "It is imperative that the RAF be destroyed" he told them, "the invasion of England cannot go ahead until England is without its air force, and for this reason, all fighter escorts will be doubled in number and will fly at staggering levels of height." Adlerangriff was beginning to take shape.The Battle of Britain - 1940 / August 1st - August 10th 1940
     
  15. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    THURSDAY AUGUST 8th 1940
    ORDER OF BATTLE - AUGUST 8th 1940 [ Document-28 ]

    It was back on August 1st that Hitler had issued his Directive No.17 stating that the Luftwaffe shall use all its forces to destroy the British air force, the exact date being left to the Luftwaffe who shall take preparations and the weather into consideration. The word that was given to the operation of destroying the Royal Air Force was Adlerangriffmeaning "Attack of the Eagles" and the day that the operation would commence was to be known as Adler Tag meaning "Eagle Day."


    As soon as Goering received word that he had been placed in charge of Adlerangriff all the necessary arrangements were made at once, meetings were called to plan operations, and more and more Bf 109's were moved closer to the Calais region. The final meeting of the Generals took place on August 6th where they were informed of Goering's plans, and it was on this day, August 8th 1940 that he issued the official order that the first phase of the invasion of Britain was about to begin. All our Gruppes are ready, all our attacking and defence forces are in place, "The Day of the Eagle" has come. The following order was issued to all commanders and officers.The Battle of Britain - 1940 / August 1st - August 10th 1940
     
  16. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    FRIDAY AUGUST 9th and SATURDAY AUGUST 10th 1940

    and bad weather caused the postponement of many planned operations, there was just the odd reconnaissance flight by both sides but as the days wore on it was decided that getting back to base and enjoying a few good ales would be more constructive.
    THE CASUALTIES: (August 9th 1940)
    1645hrs.
    Dunbar Coast (Scotland). Hurricane L2103. 605 Squadron Drem. (Crashed into sea)
    Sgt R.D. Ritchie Killed. (Crashed into sea after aircraft had glycol leak. Rescued by boat, pilot dead)

    The were no listed casualties on August 10th 1940
    The Battle of Britain - 1940 / August 1st - August 10th 1940
     
  17. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

  18. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Tuesday August 13th 1940
    Adler Tag (Eagle Day) Begins

    We had been briefed the day previous to Adler Tag that we would be going across the Channel in strong formations to attack England. At last, we would be concentrating in large bomber formations with a fighter escort. For so long, we had been flying our individual missions on simple operations like photographic reconnaissance or minelaying duties. Some, like us, had not even seen a British fighter or even fired a shot in anger and it hardly seemed as if a war was on at all. Now, our airfields had many bombers at the ready, many had been flown in from inland airfields, and I could see that now our great Luftwaffe would be at last attacking England.
    Feldwebel Karl Hoffmann 1/KG30


    August 13th 1940
     
  19. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    BOWEN, NIGEL GREENSTREET
    Rank:
    Pilot Officer
    Trade:
    Pilot
    Service No:
    41984
    Date of Death:
    16/08/1940
    Age:
    20
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force
    266 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference:
    Sec. R. Grave 60.
    Cemetery:
    WALLINGFORD CEMETERY
    Additional Information:
    Son of the Revd. Herbert Patrick Bowen and Stella Maud Bowen, of St. Mary's Rectory, Wallingford.




    August 16th - August 17th 1940
     

    Attached Files:

  20. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

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