Lancaster Bomber Squadron

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Ferndale, Mar 2, 2021.

  1. Ferndale

    Ferndale New Member

    Hi I’m new to the forum and am trying to find out any information appertaining to a John Reginald Burton . DOB 27/7/1915. He was in the RAF possibly a Navigator on the coastal command Lancaster’s? I believe his service number was 1325615. Any help re information on his squadron, wartime activity etc would be great?
  2. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    Welcome. Others will be along to help, if you have anything else add that it could help. Plus request the man's service records; details on the PM sent and it will be a long wait. Researching Other Ranks can be difficult.
  3. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    This does not narrow things down much, but he is on the 1939 Register in Leicester as an "M/S Sewer - Boots & Shoes", so a war time recruit to the RAF.
  4. CL1

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

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  5. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007
    Name: John Reginald Burton
    Death Age: 56
    Birth Date: 27 Jul 1915
    Registration Date: Oct 1971
    [Nov 1971]
    [Dec 1971]
    Registration Quarter: Oct-Nov-Dec
    Registration District: Leicester
    Inferred County: Leicestershire
    Volume: 3a
    Page: 1449

    You will need a copy of his death certificate when applying to the MOD for his service records

  6. Ferndale

    Ferndale New Member

    Many thanks for your help I have passed your comments on to the person I was helping to find out his service number.
    Regards Ferndale
  7. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

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  8. alieneyes

    alieneyes Senior Member

    john reginald burton.png reginald john burton.png

    The Flying Officer in 1946 was commissioned from the ranks. Original number 745039. When commissioned that number was changed to 184882.

    Had the OP's chap been commissioned the London Gazette would show his full name with 1325615 to the left of his name and his new number to the right. As it turns he is shown with full name and service number provided by OP. Not commissioned.

    The number given on enlistment was issued at Blackpool in the summer of 1940.

    Not aware of the Lancaster being used for Coastal Command purposes. Perhaps the Liberator?


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  9. Ewen Scott

    Ewen Scott Well-Known Member

    From 1946 the Coastal Command Lend lease Liberators were scrapped and were replaced by Lancaster GR.III (later redesignated MR.3). There was also an ASR.III version with an airborne lifeboat that had been planned right at the end of WW2 and scheduled for Tiger Force to support the bombing of Japan.

    These began to be replaced from 1951 by US built Lockheed Neptunes and British built Avro Shackletons. IIRC the last Coastal Command Lancasters lingered in service until around 1956.

    RAF Coastal Command existed between 1936 and 1969 and not just WW2.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2021
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  10. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    The Lancaster was used on a lend basis, as detachments to Coastal Command during the war much to the dissatisfaction of Harris. The first detachment was made by No 44 Squadron, the RAF's first recipient of the Lancaster in June 1942.

    The use of Bomber Command aircraft either temporarily or permanent for Coastal Command goes back to February 1942 when the Admiralty made demands via Portal to transfer what amounted to be 6 and a half Wellington squadrons to meet the ever increasing problem of dealing with the Atlantic U Boat fleet. Harris was reluctant to see his aircraft transferred and above all in his augments with Portal, he saw valuable trained aircrew being lost to his command. Additionally he stressed that B.C was having greater success hitting the German war economy than the success of C.C had at sea.

    Harris conceded to some extent when the opportunity came to transfer two Whitley equipped squadrons, No 51 and No 77 Squadrons temporarily to C.C. Accommodation of this transfer came about when No 4 Group had finally converted to Halifaxes and the Whitley was withdrawn as a B.C front line bomber from the end of April 1942 (the Whitley took part in further B.C ops but from within the OTU training structure.)

    Permanent transfers to C.C were No 58 Whitley and No 144 Hampden squadrons together with the Wellingtons of No 304 (Polish) and No 311 (Czech).Harris thought he had managed the change well, minimising any disadvantage to B.C and although Portal had given assurances on 13 May 1942 that B.C aircrew manpower would not be allowed to be drawn on by any other command, but that was not the end of it.

    The delivery rate of the Liberator to C.C was to raise another request to B.C, this time for Lancasters to cover the unexpected slow rate delivery of Liberators to C.C. This was at a time when Harris was planning his 1000 bomber raids but while he did not have to accept the diversion of Lancaster squadrons, he was ordered to lend squadrons to meet certain maritime threats and help out C.C at sea. Still Harris was unhappy that his crew did not fit into the maritime role because they had received no training in anti submarine warfare.

    However Harris had to concede and the first detachment of Lancasters made their debut with C.C in the middle of June 1942.This was a detachment was a flight of No 44 Squadron, ex Waddington which was deployed to Nutts Corner. In the time the flight was there, patrols encountered two U Boats without success and patrols were concluded on 6 July 1942.
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