Monthly Archives: April 2013

Reginald Arthur Smith RAFVR 1606544 logbook


Many thanks to Kevin for the kind donation of his father’s logbook. Reg and his crew flew with the Squadron between February and July 1945 and in fact, their first flight with the 75(NZ) was on the same day that my father flew his first op with the Squadron, having returned to Mepal for his second tour.

Reg was Rear Gunner with Maurice Adamson’s crew, who were;

Flt Lt. Maurice James Adamson RNZAF. (NZ426904), Pilot
P/O Arthur Edwin Noel Unwin RNZAF. (NZ427347) Navigator
F/O, Kenneth William Rathbride Mitchell RNZAF. (NZ425700) Air Bomber.
W/O John William Fisher RNZAF (NZ4211617) Wireless Operator
F/Sgt J Palmer RAFVR  Flight Engineer
Sgt F Rhodes RAFVR  Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt Reginald Arthur Smith RAFVR (1606544) Rear Gunner.

The crew flew a total of 21 ops before the end of the war and continued to fly a food drop on The Hague, repatriate prisoners of war from Juvincourt and fly a number of observation trips over Germany to view the effects of the bombing campaign by the Allies.

Interestingly Reg’s logbook shows the break-up of the Squadron – whilst his Commonwealth crew mates moved with 75(NZ) to Spilsby in preparation for Tiger Force, Reg stayed at Mepal and joined 44 Squadron.

Read Reg’s logbook here



Those heroes that shed their blood
And lost their lives.
You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.
Therefore rest in peace.
There is no difference between the Johnnies
And the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side
Here in this country of ours.
You, the mothers,
Who sent their sons from far away countries
Wipe away your tears,
Your sons are now lying in our bosom
And are in peace
After having lost their lives on this land they have
Become our sons as well.

 In 1934, Kemal Atatürk delivered these words to the first Australians, New Zealanders and British to visit the Gallipoli battlefields. They were later inscribed on a monolith at Ari Burnu Cemetery (ANZAC Beach) which was unveiled in 1985. The words also appear on the Kemal Atatürk Memorial, Canberra, and the Atatürk Memorial in Wellington.

When war broke out in 1914, Australia had been a federal commonwealth for only 13 years. The new national government was eager to establish its reputation among the nations of the world. In 1915 Australian and New Zealand soldiers formed part of the allied expedition that set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open the Dardanelles to the allied navies. The ultimate objective was to capture Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey), the capital of the Ottoman Empire, an ally of Germany.

The Australian and New Zealand forces landed on Gallipoli on 25 April, meeting fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders. What had been planned as a bold stroke to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months. At the end of 1915 the allied forces were evacuated, after both sides had suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. Thousands lost their lives in the Gallipoli campaign: 87,000 Turks, 44,000 men from France and the British Empire, including 8500 Australians and 2721 New Zealanders.. News of the landing on Gallipoli had made a profound impact on Australians at home, and 25 April soon became the day on which Australians and New Zealanders remembered the sacrifice of those who had died in the war.

Whilst not the only Commonwealth Squadron, 75(NZ) Squadron was the only to carry it’s country of origin. During the period of the Second World War, the Squadron lost 1139 members, of which 469 were New Zealanders and 12 were Australian.


The Victoria Cross Trust

ViCCross Trust cropped and reduced

Not long after I posted the story of Jimmy Ward V.C. and his heroic actions from ‘New Zealanders in the Air’, I noticed a search link from the Victoria Cross Trust. Ever curious, I investigated…..

I was amazed by the story the trust told. Strictly, I am off topic, but I was amazed and appalled to discover the state of the graves of the countries Victoria Cross recipients. What shocked me even more is that there is no official support for the maintenance of the graves of Victoria Cross recipients, if they fall out of what seems a very narrow categorisation.

It is a general misconception that graves of men awarded the Victoria Cross are looked after and protected by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Only those VC’s that were killed on the battlefields during the First and Second World Wars are commemorated either with a grave or a memorial.

The CWGC also looks after the graves of seven other VC recipients including Lieutenant Colonel Herbert ‘H’ Jones and Sergeant Ian McKay, both killed in the Falklands and Corporal Bryan Budd, who lost his life in Afghanistan.

The responsibility for the upkeep of graves belonging to VC recipients, who died in other conflicts or of old age, lies with their relatives.

Many of these burial plots have fallen into disrepair and suffer from neglect. Families and relatives have dwindled or died out and sometimes the descendants are unaware that they exist, or they simply cannot afford to maintain them.

In some cases the burial rights have expired completely meaning families do not have a legal right to replace headstones.

I would not normally use this site to ask for money, but, as a Squadron who is proud to have a Victoria Cross recipient amongst their number, I would ask you, if you read this post to click here

And please, all you fellow bloggers, if you see this post, please re-blog it – I think these guys deserve all the help they can get………….



ANZAC Day and Newmarket Cemetery

Delores banner

Tony has recently posted his plans and wishes for this coming Thursday to mark ANZAC Day at Newmarket Cemetery, but I thought it was worth pushing it up to a post, just in case anybody sees it and wishes to go along. Tony’s original comments on the ‘About’ page is as follows;

Not all forgotten here in Newmarket. Thursday being Anzac Day, at 11 am, I am arranging a placing of Dolores Crosses at the graves of 8 Kiwis resting here. 7 are from this squadron. It would be great to meet any friends.

In case anyone can make it, 11 am on Anzac Day, coming THURSDAY a little ceremony at Newmarket Cemetery where we will remember 8 Kiwis resting here, 7 of them 75 (NZ) Sqdn
Selwyn Clubb
Benjamin Franklin
Robert Harvey
John Johnston
John Walsh
Harold Welch
William Whitcombe

not forgetting the other 75 (NZ) Squadron RAF men
Stankey Curtis RAFVR
Stanley Drayton RAFVR
William Lawrence RCAF
Bertram Moffat RCAF
Francis Reddicliffe RAFVR
Phillip Stuart RCAF

Hopefully a few people might see this and come along to remember these boys with Tony

Operation ‘Manna’

The message 'Many Thanks' spelt out in tulips. released from copyright by Ian Dunster

The message ‘Many Thanks’ spelt out in tulips.
released from copyright by Ian Dunster

Prior to writing the post about the Sinclair crew today, I was already aware of the Operation ‘Manna’ flights that the Squadron flew at the end of the war to drop much needed supplies to the Dutch People, and in particular Delft and the Hague. As I have mentioned at the bottom of that post, whilst searching for information I came across OperationManna a site created by Eric Heijink. For those of you unfamiliar with the RAF’s Operation ‘Manna’ and the equivalent USAF ‘Chowhound’ ops, I refer to our good friend Wikipedia;

By early 1945, the situation was growing desperate for the three million or more Dutch still under German control. Prince Bernhard appealed directly to Allied Supreme Commander Dwight D. Eisenhower, but Eisenhower did not have the authority to negotiate a truce with the Germans. While the prince got permission from Prime Minister Winston Churchill and President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Eisenhower had Air Commodore Andrew Geddes begin planning immediately. On 23 April, authorization was given by the Chief of Staff, George Marshall.

Allied agents negotiated with Reichskommissar Arthur Seyss-Inquart and a team of German officers. Among the participants were the future Canadian writer Farley Mowat and the German commander-in-chief, General Blaskowitz. It was agreed that the participating airplanes would not be fired upon within specified air corridors.

Operation Manna

The British operation started first. It was named after the food which was miraculously provided to the Israelites in the Book of Exodus. The planning of the whole operation was done first by the Royal Air Force.

The first of the two RAF Avro Lancasters chosen for the test flight, the morning of April 29, 1945, was nicknamed “Bad Penny,” as in the expression: “a bad penny always turns up”. This bomber, with a crew of seven young men (five from Ontario, Canada, including pilot Robert Upcott of Windsor, Ontario), took off in bad weather despite the fact that the Germans had not yet agreed to a ceasefire. (Seyss-Inquart would do so the next day.) Bad Penny had to fly low, down to 50 feet (15 m), over German guns, but succeeded in dropping her precious cargo and returned to base.

Operation Manna then began in earnest.British aircraft from Groups 1, 3, and 8, consisting of 145 Mosquitoes and 3,156 Lancaster bombers, took part, flying between them a total of 3,298 sorties. These bombers were used to dropping bombs from 6,000 metres (20,000 ft), but this time they had to do their job from a height of 150 metres (490 ft), some even flying as low as 120 metres (390 ft), as the cargo did not have parachutes. The drop zones, marked by Mosquitoes from Squadrons 105 and 109 using Oboe, were: Leiden (Valkenburg airfield), The Hague (Duindigt horse race course and Ypenburg airfield), Rotterdam (Waalhaven airfield and Kralingsche Plas) and Gouda. Bomber Command delivered a total 6,680 tons of food.

Operation Chowhound

On the American side, ten bomb groups of the US Third Air Division flew 2268 sorties beginning 1 May, delivering a total of 4000 tons. 400 B-17 Flying Fortress bombers of the United States Army Air Forces dropped 800 tons of K-rations during May 1–3, on Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.

Once again, I find myself musing about the irony and timing of things – Bob had left the Squadron before the end of the war and the ‘Manna’ flights, but my wife is an interior designer for a large Swedish furniture company that is predominantly blue and yellow – said company used to have their main planning office in Delft – I spent countless weekends strolling round Delft, ignorant of what my Father had done in the war, ignorant of a Squadron called 75(NZ) and ignorant of the plight of the Dutch people after the war and an operation by the RAF called ‘Manna’…….

Arhur Rhys Williams – Flight Engineer’s notes


As well as Arthur’s logbook, David has kindly sent some pages from ‘Pilots and Flight Engineers Notes – Lancaster’. I have seen reproductions of these manuals, but its nice to see an original – especially as it has Arthur’s name and Squadron written on the top!

The Manual is placed as a pop out menu from Arthur’s logbook in the logbook section of the site – alternatively, view it here

Arthur Rhys Williams RAFVR 1608118 logbook


Many thanks to David for contributing his Father-in-Law’s logbook. I am pleased to say Arthur is still with us and according to David still has a sharp memory for his RAF days and is full of stories of the time.

Arthur was Flight Engineer with Frederick Hubbard’s crew, who arrived at Mepal in April 1944 and completed a tour of 27 ops by the end of July of the same year.

Look through Arthur’s logbook here

Ian Foster, Wireless Operator – Sinclair crew 1945

The Sinclair crew. Brian Foster

The Sinclair crew. Back row L to R: George Painting (Flight Engineer), Leslie Gordon Sinclair (Pilot), Alexander ‘Sandy’/ ‘Slim’ Annandale Sommerville (Navigator), Ian Anderson Foster (Wireless Operator) , Ian Rowe (Bomb Aimer). Front row L to R: Bill Glover (Rear Gunner), Alan McRobert (Mid-upper Gunner) .
© Brian Foster

Its seems as if another series of coincidences have finally played out…….

Early in my research journey, I became aware of ‘another’ Sommerville in the Squadron, present at Mepal During Dad’s 2nd tour with the Squadron in 1945. Alex Sommerville, a New Zealander, was the navigator with Leslie Sinclair’s crew. Ironically, for the raid on Hamm on the 20th March 1945, Alex is actually incorrectly listed instead of Bob as A/B for the Zinzan crew. The story then jumps to the end of last year when I inquired to the New Zealand Aviation Museum about whether, hope against hope, that they might have a crew picture of dad. My heart skipped a beat when I got news back there was a crew photo with a ‘Sommerville’ in it – only, to be honest, to be deflated when I discovered it was that man Alex again!

Last week, I was contacted by Brian, the son of Ian Foster, wireless operator with the Sinclair crew. I sent him a copy of the photo I had and he sent back the image above, which he has carefully colourised. Interestingly, this is an uncropped version and fascinatingly shows in the background a film crew with airmen near another aircraft.

The Sinclair crews history with the Squadron is as follows;

7.3.45. F/O L.G. Sinclair and crew arrived on posting from No. 73 Base.
On arrival, the Sinclair crew were as follows;
F/O Leslie Gordon Sinclair RNZAF. (NZ428917) Pilot
F/O Alexander Annandale Sommerville RNZAF. (NZ425459) Navigator
F/Sgt Ian Dalrymple Rowe RNZAF. (NZ4210043) Air Bomber
F/O Ian Foster RAAF (AUS.423091) Wireless Operator
Sgt G. Painting RAFVR …. Flight Engineer
Sgt A. McRobert RAFVR… Mid Upper Gunner
Sgt W. Glover RAFVR … Rear Gunner

10.3.45. War Ops – Gelsenkirchen Buer. HK593 JN-X
11.3.45. War Ops – Essen. HK593 JN-X
14.3.45. War Ops – Heinrich Hutte. PB820 JN-V
18.3.45. War Ops – Bruchstrasse. HK601 JN-D
21.3.45. War Ops – Munster Viaduct. NG322 JN-F
13/14.4.45. War Ops – Kiel. HK600 JN-K
Flying Officer William Reay as 2nd Pilot

18.4.45. War Ops – Heligoland. HK600 JN-K
Sergeant B. Fletcher replaces Sergeant Painting as Flight Engineer. Additionally, it would appear from the crew details from the 1945 ORB that on this flight HK600 was fitted with a ventral gun turret – Flight Sergeant L. Murphy is listed as the eighth member of the crew, manning the mid under gun.

20.4.45. War Ops – Regensburg. HK600 JN-K
Sergeant. Fletcher still Flight Engineer.

24.4.45. War Ops – Bad Oldesloe. HK600 JN-K
Warrant Officer W. Peplow replaces Sergeant Fletcher as Flight Engineer. The crew was also joined by Pilot Officer William Turnbull as 2nd Pilot.

1.5.45. Operation ‘Manna’ – Supply Dropping, Delft. NG322 JN-F
Sergeant Painting returns to his position as Flight Engineer.

3.5.45. Operation Manna – Supply Dropping, Delft and Hague. HK600 JN-K
Sergeant Painting once again disappears from the crew – this time the role of Flight Engineer is performed by Pilot Officer B. Murphy. Interestingly there is no Mid Upper Gunner listed, as is the case with all the other aircraft that flew on this op. I must assume, that the perceived threat from rogue German units was entirely ground based at this point.

29.5.45. Viewing Effects of the Bombing. no a/c details listed in ORB
At this point, the crew seems to change significantly for what will actually be their penultimate ‘op’ together – I am guessing that the Squadron at this point was being reconfigured around the idea of Tiger Force and to this end, some crew were leaving as they simply were not required further.

Flying Officer Alan Woodcock – Air Bomber. (potentially strange as he was a pilot, so one assumes he was there literally for the ride).
Flight Sergeant W. Clough – Wireless Operator.
Flight Sergeant D. Walker – Flight Engineer.

19.6.45. Viewing Effects of the Bombing. NN747 JN-O (AA-D perhaps)
Flying Officer Lawrence Luxton – Air Bomber.
W/O Edward Spooner – Wireless Operator.
Flight Sergeant D. Walker – Flight Engineer.

Whilst putting this post together I came across the remarkable site of Eric Heijink, that commemorates the RAF ‘Manna’ and USAF ‘Chowhound’   food dropping flights over Holland.
You can view Eric’s site here

Arthur Rhys Williams – paintings


Continuing thanks to David for these 2 paintings.

The paintings are ones that local painter Maurice Gardener painted for Arthur.  The painting of F for Freddy was meant to represent his plane sitting on dispersal at Mepal and was given to him on retirement from British Leyland, the big fella is Arthur with his bike on the ground.  He can always remember being parked by the gate in the background (right) and of the villagers who used to come up to the gate and fence to wave them off when they went on an Op (he says they always knew when they were going off).


The one of the flight engineer was done after Arthur ‘sat’ for him showing how he spent his time while on an op.  He was able to give an accurate placement , size etc of all the switches and dials.

James Law RAFVR 1101018 – Pilot

Sgt James Law 11 May 1942 OTU Cambridge. © Graham Kershaw

Sgt James Law 11 May 1942 OTU Cambridge.
© Graham Kershaw

Many thanks to Graham for providing the following information about his relative James Law, who was tragically lost on the night of 3rd September 1942 during an Op to Emden. I will let Graham tell the story;

Through researching James’s life and career it has made me very proud of what he and thousands of others in Bomber Command did during the second  world war by giving their lives to protect the nation and fight back against evil. This article describes, the yet so short career of Sgt James Law and is a tribute to him and his crew, to be shared by others.

James Law was the son of William and Millicent Law, brother of Herbert, Fred and sisters Eva and Hilda born on the 02.02.1921, living at 53 Linnet Street, Deepdale, Preston, Lancashire, England.

Only until recently have I been fully aware of James, this came about through researching my family tree. This discovery also confirms what my Grandma once told me a number of years ago that there was a pilot in the family who was reported missing during the war.

The trail begins, James joined the RAFRV on the 18.06.40 at No 3 Recruitment Centre Padgate Warrington. On enlistment he was recommended by No 6 Aviation Candidate Selection Board for training as a “Wireless Operator / Air Gunner.

Training began in this role at No 10 (Signals) Recruitment Centre Blackpool, Lancashire.

A picture of James during his training.

A picture of James during his training.
© Graham Kershaw

James was then recommended for pilot training on the 25th Oct 1940 attending the following training units at the early stages of the war :-

No 5 Initial Training Wing  – Torquay 20th Dec 1940.

Attached to No 1 Receiving Wing – Babbacombe 21st Dec 1940 then back to No 5 Initial Training Wing – 04th Jan 1941.

Parachute Training Centre, Central Landing School, Ringway (which is now Manchester Airport ) – 26th Jun 1940.

Attached to the South West Airways, Phoenix Arizona – 17th Jul 1941.

Moving to No 31 Personnel Reception Centre, Mancton, Canada then back to the UK.

Moving to No 3 Personnel Reception Centre, Bournemouth 26th Dec  1941.

No 12 Service Flying Training School, Grantham (Spittalgate) 28th Jan 1942.

James began at the lowest rank of “Aircraftman 2nd class”, which could only be held by qualified air crew. Being promoted to temporary sergeant on his qualification as “Pilot Sergeant”.

On promotion moving to No 1516 Blind Beam Approach Training Flight, Middleton, St George – 23rd Feb 1942.

No 12 Service Flying Training School, Grantham.

No 11 and No 23 Operational Training Units (OTU) at Bassingbourn / Pershore – 05th Jul 1942.

On completion of his training James eventually joined No 75 NZ Squadron at Mildenhall , Suffolk on the 29th Aug  1942. From the 1942 Operational Record Book ,  James’s first operation was on the 1st September 1942 , attacking Saarbrucken, Germany. As was normal practice, this first op was with another, more experienced crew;

Sgt. Richard Stansfield Derek Kearns      Pilot
Sgt. James Law                                            2nd Pilot
Sgt. William John Muir Low Barclay         Observer
Sgt. Morris Watson Egerton                     Wireless Operator
Sgt. Andrew John Moller                           Front Gunner/ Air Bomber
Sgt. Harold Ernest Anzac Price                Rear Gunner

The next operation was on the 03rd Sept 1942 in Wellington III X3396, the target being Emden northern Germany. On this flight James was the pilot. The crew was;

Sgt. James Law                                         Pilot
Sgt. Horace Llewellyn Grant                  Observer
Sgt. Rupert Ernest Renton                     Wireless Operator
Sgt. Richard Alfred William Newman   Front Gunner/ Air Bomber
Sgt. John Trevor Vivian Gill                     Rear Gunner

X3396 took off from RAF Station Mildenhall at 23.28 hours on the 3rd September as part of a bombing raid on Emden, northern Germany. When the aircraft arrived at the target they could only bomb through 10/10 cloud cover on dead reckoning positions. It was later discovered that the aircraft had been shot down by enemy fighter aircraft and crashed at Westermarsch (southwest of Norden) at 0220 hours on the 4th September.

All the crew mentioned above are buried at Sage War Cemetery northern Germany.

Three cousins in 75(NZ) Squadron – another question answered!


AA-A “Seven Sinners”
Photo from Forever strong: The story of 75 Squadron RNZAF, 1916-1990 (1991) by Norman Franks, Random Century.

Chris is like a dog with a bone with this story – his final thoughts and a very well argued conclusion……..

The question about the beer tankard nose art in the previous post led to an almost immediate reply from Ian, who has been helping build the 75 (NZ) Sqdn aircraft database, with a copy of a more detailed photo from Norman Franks’ book, Forever Strong.

AA-A was “Seven Sinners”, a name we had thought to be associated with another, later Lancaster.

Armed with this information I had another go with Google, which fortuitously turned up a wonderful set of photos of AA-A Seven Sinners and her original crew, the Bateman crew, who I think must have dreamed up the name and nose art:

Johnny Bateman, his Navigator and Bomb Aimer were all Australian (hence the kangaroo), and the others were Brits (hence the Lion).

Seven Sinners was also the name of a 1940 movie starring Marlene Dietrich and John Wayne, so no doubt topical at the time.

The Forever Strong photo must have been taken just after she was named and decorated, as there are no op’s markings.

By the time the Elmslie crew’s photo was taken with her in October 44 (below), she had 27 op’s marked, so I figured there had to be a decent record of her in the ORB’s, going back to August 44 or thereabouts.

The Elmslie crew at Mepal, October 1944, in front of AA-A with its Foaming Beer Tankard nose art. Left to Right: Jim Elmslie (Pilot), Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), Peter Dear (W/Op), John Vallender (RG), Gordon Burberry (M/UG) Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

The Elmslie crew at Mepal, October 1944, in front of AA-A with its Foaming Beer Tankard nose art.
Left to Right: Jim Elmslie (Pilot), Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), Peter Dear (W/Op), John Vallender (RG), Gordon Burberry (M/UG)
Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

A quick scan of the ORB’s (Form 541’s) and there she was, LM266, the Bateman crew’s regular Lancaster from mid-August to early November, and the same a/c that the Elmslie crew flew on 7 October!

When we first looked at the Elmslie crew’s op’s, I had incorrectly assumed that LM266, as recorded in the ORB’s for 7 October, was AA-F (which she was re-coded to later in her life), but we have now confirmed that she was AA-A, from 28/29 July to 4 November 44.

Not only did the nose art help us solve the identity of the aircraft, it also allowed us to date the photos of Jim and crew in front of and underneath “Seven Sinners” – they would have been taken on the 7th of October 44, the day of their first op’ together, to Emmerich!

Good work Chris!!

Three cousins in 75(NZ) Squadron – a question answered.

The Elmslie crew showing off the size of the Lancaster's bomb bay, Mepal, October 1944. Left to Right: Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Gordon Burberry (M/UG), Peter Dear (W/Op), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), John Vallender (RG), Jim Elmslie (Pilot). Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

The Elmslie crew showing off the size of the Lancaster’s bomb bay, Mepal, October 1944.
Left to Right: Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Gordon Burberry (M/UG), Peter Dear (W/Op), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), John Vallender (RG), Jim Elmslie (Pilot).
Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

Chris has been doing some digging into the ‘unanswered question’ – here are his thoughts……

One of the questions Andrew wanted to answer from the previous post about first cousins Ewen Elmslie, Jim Elmslie, and Wally Sneddon, was why Jim Elmslie and his crew only completed 2 op’s before leaving the squadron. It turns out the answer was right under my nose.

Peter Wheeler’s excellent book, Kiwis Do Fly, is a collection of personal accounts of New Zealanders in Bomber Command. On the hunt for photos of 75 Lancasters, I was recently thumbing back through it, when one of the crew photos jumped out at me (the photo above). I’d read the book a year ago, but had forgotten about this story, and now I recognised a face – Jim Elmslie.

In The Wrong was written by Alan Wiltshire, and it tells the story of his frustrations with a series of incidents that delayed he and his crews’ efforts to get into frontline operations. One of those incidents was a take-off accident on a bad night at Mepal, which caught the ire of Wing Commander Jack Leslie, a notoriously tough taskmaster.

Alan was Jim Elmslie’s Navigator. Alan and Jim and the crew would have first met up and trained at 11 Operational Training Unit (OTU), RAF Westcott, folowed by 1651 Heavy Conversion Unit, RAF Wratting Common, a week or two at No.3 Lancaster Finishing School (LFS), RAF Feltwell, then finally being posted to 75 (NZ) Squadron based at Mepal in Cambridgeshire, arriving on 30th September 1944.

The Elmslie crew at Mepal, October 1944, in front of AA-A with its Foaming Beer Tankard nose art. Left to Right: Jim Elmslie (Pilot), Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), Peter Dear (W/Op), John Vallender (RG), Gordon Burberry (M/UG) Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

The Elmslie crew at Mepal, October 1944, in front of AA-A with its Foaming Beer Tankard nose art.
Left to Right: Jim Elmslie (Pilot), Alan Wiltshire (Nav), Ken Futter (F/E), Jim McKenzie (B/A), Peter Dear (W/Op), John Vallender (RG), Gordon Burberry (M/UG)
Photo from Alan Wiltshire, courtesy of NZ Bomber Command Association archives.

In Alan’s words:
“It was a gungho group full of press-on types, and they consequently suffered great casualties. I had to fit into this pressure cooker Squadron and our first Op was to Emmerich on the Rhine on October 7, followed by Duisberg on the 14th.

On the night of 15th October our Lancaster was in the take-off queue. There was a pranged Liberator just off the perimeter track and in swinging round it, one Lanc’ ahead of us hit another. There were delays while the wrecks were cleared away but our third Op’ wasn’t destined to be finished.

After further delays and much shouting by the Station Commander at last we hurtled down the runway. Our pilot put one wheel into the grass and started a classic ground loop. 400 yards from the boundary he retracted the undercarriage and pancaked us into the dirt.

We all got out safely but the pilot copped the Commanding Officer’s frustration and he went back to LFS.”

The pilotless crew was then sent on to RAF Ganston to pick up a new skipper, where “as I’d run foul of 75’s Wingco a day or two earlier, they had to look for a new navigator as well!”

– From “In The Wrong”, p.42, Kiwis Do Fly: New Zealanders in RAF Bomber Command, by Peter Wheeler. 2010, New Zealand Bomber Command Association. Reproduced with permission of the author.

Interestingly, the Pilot is only identified in the story as “Jim ‘E'”, indicating that sensitivities remain after all these years.

Interesting also that both Pilot and Navigator separately fell foul of Leslie, and that in another account from Kiwis Do Fly, Pilot F/L Stan Davies mentions W/C Jack Leslie, saying “By all accounts the previous Commanding Officer had been a bastard and had to be replaced“.

So this explains why the whole crew left at the same time, although not together – Jim would have had to find a new crew at another Squadron, and perhaps went on to complete more op’s.

In an intriguing twist, the photos shown were taken in front of, and underneath, Lancaster AA-A (NN745?), whereas the two op’s the crew completed were flown in AA-F and AA-H.

So were these photos taken on 15 October, the day of the accident, with the kite they were due to fly that night? The op was Mining in the Kettegat area, but there is no mention of an accident in the ORB’s, and the crew is not listed for that night so it would be difficult to confirm, unless perhaps damage records are available.

And I would love to see a better shot of that nose art!

Thanks to Andrew, and to Peter Wheeler for his help.

Plane Spotting – what is the identity of this Stirling?

75(NZ) Squadron RAF . Aircrew pose on and around a Stirling Bomber

75(NZ) Squadron RAF . Aircrew pose on and around a Stirling Bomber

Many thanks to Adrian for an email yesterday regarding the aircraft in the well known 1943 Squadron group photograph. I must confess, whilst having wondered myself over it’s identity, clearly Adrian has given it a significant amount of thought!

Adrian explains his thoughts……
“I thought you may be interested in the progress I have made in my investigations regarding the 75 Squadron Stirling photograph and in particular the identification of the aircraft “ P” in the picture.

As you may remember my previous thoughts were that the plane was either EE878 AA-P, lost on the 31/8/43 on the Berlin raid, or BF458 JN-P lost on the Remscheid raid on the 30/7/43.

However, due to an almost unbelievable oversight on my part, especially considering the relevance to the plane in which my uncle Edgar flew in when he was lost on the 22/6/43, I had failed spot that his plane, EF408, was also designated AA-P.

I have gone through the Squadron ORBs and found that both EF408 and EE878 were at the squadron when the photo was taken, in what we now know was June ’43. Clearly something was amiss as both planes could not share the designation of AA-P. Crucially both aircraft were involved in the Mulheim raid of 22/6/43. It was EE878’s first mission and EF408’s last, so not only were the two planes at the squadron at the same time but they were also in service at the same time.

I therefore did some more digging and came up with further details of EE878 which somewhat clarifies the situation. EE878 also flew under the designation of AA-F. It would seem therefore that at the time of the photograph EE878 was AA-F, and therefore cannot be the plane in the picture.

Delivered by Short & Harland between May 43 and Jul 43. Contract No.774677/38. Delivered to No.75(NZ) Sqdn 31 May 43. Also wore the ID AA-F. EE878 was one of five No.75 Sqdn Stirlings lost during this operation. See: EE918; EF491; EF501; EH905. Airborne 2031 31Aug 43 from Mepal. Shot down by a night-fighter. Crashed at Ahrbr_ck, 12 km SW of Ahrweiler. Those killed were buried 4th Sep43 at Mayschoss. Their graves are now located in the Rheinberg war Cemetery P/O D.C.Henley RNZAF KIA Sgt L.P.Parsons PoW F/O C.A.Watson RNZAF KIA F/S I.H.R.Smith RNZAF KIA Sgt R.N.Quelch PoW Sgt D.C.Box PoW Sgt J.S.Grant PoW Sgt D.C.Box was interned in Camps 4B/L3. PoW No.222573. Sgt J.S.Grant in Camp 357, PoW No.43260. Sgt L.P.Parsons in Camp 4B, PoW 222626 with Sgt R.N.Quelch, PoW No.222631. The crash-site is also spelled Aabr_ck. “

The candidates, therefore, are now EF408 AA-P or BF458 JN-P.

Perhaps a further clue can be obtained from another photo I have found entitled 75 Squadron C Flight 1944. This photo was clearly taken either immediately before, or after, the whole squadron photo. The aircraft is the same and some of the personnel haven’t moved positions between the two pictures. It’s unfortunate that it has been referenced to 1944 which I believe must simply be a mistake.

Although the pictures existence doesn’t exclude the possibility that there are individual photos of A and B Flights somewhere, it does make me wonder if it would be logical that C Flight would have posed with one of their own planes, raising the possibility that it is in fact BF458 JN-P.

Apologies if it seems that I am a bit preoccupied with this photo, but since it is the only picture that clearly shows Edgar’s time with 75 Squadron, it does have a particular fascination for me!”

I fully appreciate Adrian’s interest in this aircraft and picture – as with me, its seems these group photographs (albeit for me from 1945) might be the only photographs we have  of our relatives in 75(NZ) Squadron.

As always, if anybody comes across this photograph and knows anything about either the aircraft in it, or the aircrew, please contact me……

New aircraft profiles for the database pages

Wellington Ic, Stirling Mk.III and Lancaster Mk.III from 75(NZ) Squadron RAF.
artwork produced by Clavework Graphics © Bill Dady.

I have just received 3 fantastic examples of aircraft profile artwork to add to the relevant sections of the aircraft database section of the blog. A very big thanks to Bill Dady of Clavework Graphics for creating the custom artwork so quickly and to such a high quality.

If you are interested in perhaps getting a profile illustration of a relative’s aircraft, you can look through the Clavework website here and find out more about the costs of getting your own profile artwork produced here

Some more information on Malcolm Harris

Page 11  (3)

From L to R: Sgt. Frederick Read, Sgt. Malcolm Harris and Sgt. Broad. © Nick Harris

After a previous post this week regarding Malcolm Harris, I am pleased to post a couple of recollections from Nick , his son, about Malcolm’s time with 75(NZ) Squadron. In addition to these stores Nick has also very generously passed on some photographs of Malcolm, taken while he was with the Squadron.

Nick picks up the stories about his father;

“My Old Man was quite a strong willed character even as a young Sergeant in 1940 . .  apparently. It’s something that doesn’t really come across in most of the written works about Bomber Command and Pathfinders in particular, in that you quite often see photographs from the time stating ”  . . . Sqn/Ldr Soandso and crew”. The pilot usually got the credit for everything the whole crew did, and usually the higher award.
This was something that vexed my Dad right up until his last moments, he often used to say that the whole crew shared the same dangers and there was no way that a pilot would see or know where he was over a blacked out Continent, even in decent weather. The Navigator was in his opinion the “brains” of the crew getting them over the target even if they were not able to see it, and back.
There is a 10 hour trip he did to Turin in his log book, which was later on in his tour with 75(NZ) Sqn, this was routed over the Alps which the Wellington struggled to get over with a full bomb load. During this trip the radio caught fire which resulted in the loss of any Radio Direction Finding (RDF) capability, so out came the night sextant and he got them back to base using the stars.
In Pathfinder squadrons there was a fiercely strong “Navigators’ Union”, often relegating the pilots to “taxi driver” status. This apparently was the case in 139(J) Sqn. I recall my Father telling me about a small Irishman who was a Navigator there, he used to walk out from the Ops room with a pencil and a clip board towards the aircraft. His pilot used to call after him
“What about your Nav. bag (containing plotted route maps and rulers etc.) ?” The reply would come, “Sure, I know where I’m going, I don’t need all that c**p”, the bemused pilot would then heft the bag out to the waiting aircraft himself . . . he fell for that one a few times apparently.
I’m proud of what my Father did, and am very happy that some of the documentation and pictures which have gathered dust for years, are now able to be seen by many more people than I could have hoped to show them to in my lifetime.”

and on the bombing of the German battle cruiser the Gneisenau……..

“You’ll note in my Fathers’ log book, two raids on Brest on the nights of the 3rd and 6th of April 1940. This was actually part of a concerted attack on the battle-cruiser Gneisenau, which was in dock at the time. The brief was apparently to attack at “medium” height with armour piercing bombs (the German ships had steel decks, unlike the British).

Unfortunately the physics of bombing was still a dark art at the time, and a complete unknown to a great many pilots. On the first night, all the pilots insisted on getting “down on the deck” to make sure of hits, despite them being night raids, causing some alarm to the rest of the crews.
The result was although many of the aircraft (tail gunner) could see that their sticks of bombs were hitting the target, they were skipping off and failing to explode. The bombs were still falling in a horizontal position on impact, failing to detonate the percussion caps in the nose.
The arguments that ensued back at Feltwell were apparently very emotional, with all of the pilots being berated for their apparent lunacy in attacking so low, and being a predominantly New Zealand squadron, the language was something to be heard.
On the night of the 6th, a chastened group of pilots with crews watching them like hawks, attacked the same target from a more rational height, but with poor accuracy results. This prompted the “See ? I told you !” altercations back at Feltwell. Life was anything but dull on the Squadron.
The Gneisenau was continually attacked from the air with some damage resulting in a fairly major re-fit of the vessel, which kept it in dry dock until the following year, when it ran up the channel to the North German ports with the Scharnhorst and Prinz Eugen.”

More images from Nick

From L to R: Sgt. Frederick Read - second from left Sgt. Malcolm Harris and Sgt. Broad.

From L to R: Sgt. Frederick Read – second from left Sgt. Malcolm Harris and Sgt. Broad. © Nick Harris

Second from left, Malcolm Harris.

Second from left, Malcolm Harris. © Nick Harris

A group shot of 75(NZ) Squadron, taken at Feltwell. Malcolm Harris is on the left of the front row.

A group shot of 75(NZ) Squadron, taken at Feltwell. Malcolm Harris is on the left of the front row. © Nick Harris

Malcolm George Harris RAFVR 755984/ 102977 logbook

Harris - M G Flying Log 012

Many thanks to Nick, through Noel, for the donation of his father’s logbook. Malcolm was a navigator, and was in the crew of Noel’s uncle, Colin Gilbert, when they were together in 75 Squadron.

Sergeant (later Squadron Leader) Malcolm George Harris D.F.C., D.F.M ,completed a full tour with 75 (NZ) Sqn, having joined it in 1940, and was then sent to Canada where he became a Navigation Instructor. On repatriation back to the UK, he joined 35 Sqn which was already a Pathfinder Force Squadron (Halifaxes and Lancasters). He did not complete a tour with that squadron, rather, he transferred to 139 (Jamaica) Sqn and finished off the tour started with 35 Sqn there. He continued with 139 (J) Sqn completing yet another tour of “Ops”.

I am particularity pleased to receive Nicks kind donation, as it currently represents the oldest logbook from the Squadron that is held on the blog.

once again, many thanks Nick.

view Malcolm’s logbook in its entirety here

Colin (third from left) and his crew

Malcolm Harris, stood first left, with Colin Gilbert (third from left), with the rest of the crew in front of Wellington T2835 AA-C.
© Noel Baker

Francis Edward McGregor, Williams crew 1943 – an amazing story.

crew and Frank composite

Left hand image: The Williams crew – back row middle Gordon Williams – Pilot, front row left Frank McGregor – Air Bomber. Right hand image: Sgt. Frank Edward McGregor.
© Estate of FE McGregor

Many thanks to Pete for letting me share with you the amazing story of his father and his crew, who flew with 75(NZ) Squadron in 1943. I originally came across a post Pete had made on his blog about the incredible story of his father’s escape through Denmark after being shot down on the 4th of November 1943, only to be handed over to the Germans, resulting in his incarceration in Stalag IV-B. The post of the story is here

Pete describes the events of that night as follows;
On the night of 4 November 1943, four Stirling bombers from 75 Squadron took off from an RAF airbase at Mepal in England on a mission to lay mines in the Baltic Sea. Near Kallerup in Denmark a German JU88 night fighter piloted by Leutnant Karl Rechberger attacked Stirling BF461. Some of the fighter’s fire hit home, but Rechberger was wounded in the thigh by return fire from the bomber. Despite the injury he landed safely.

The Stirling wasn’t so lucky. The exact nature of the damage will never be known, but it was sufficient to cripple the bomber. Unable to control the doomed plane, pilot Gordon Williams gave the command to bail out.

On hearing the order, the front gunner spun his turret to align it so he could climb back into the bulkhead to retrieve his parachute. Unfortunately, he misaligned the turret; the wind caught and wrenched it and strained the hinges and he found himself trapped in the turret. Fighting panic, he ripped off his helmet and managed to squeeze his head and shoulders through the gap. Suddenly, the plane lurched and he was thrown through the gap into the bulkhead. He reached for his parachute and tried to clip it on, but by now his fingers were numb and he couldn’t tell if the clips had buckled securely. Time was running out. He opened the hatch and lowered his legs into space, then, with a terrific effort of will, released his hold and tumbled into the night sky, away from the crippled bomber. He waited several seconds, free-falling through the night until he was sure his parachute would clear the plane, then pulled the ripcord. A moment later he felt the impact as the parachute opened. The clips were secure.

With help from local Danes he evaded capture for two days but was finally turned over to the Germans. He spent the remainder of World War II as a Prisoner of War in the huge Stalag IV-B at Mühlburg, about 50 km north of Dresden.

He was my father.”

The crew arrived from 1657 Conversion Unit at RAF Stradishall on the 10th July 1943 – a day before my Father and his crew. On the 24th of July Gordon Williams flew a ‘2nd dickie’ op with Squadron Leader Jack Joll’s crew, as was normal practice for a new pilot arriving for operational duty. The crew then began their tour – strangely, they seem to complete only a relatively short number before arriving and being shot down on the 4/5th of November………

25/7/43 Essen Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B
27/7/43 Hamburg Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B
29/7/43 Hamburg Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B
30/7/43 Remscheld Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B
2/8/43 Hamburg Stirling Mk.III EH936 JN-W
15/9/43 Montlucon Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B. F/S Willian Kell replaces William Champion as Wop.
16/9/43 Modene Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B. F/S Willian Kell replaces William Champion as Wop.
22/9/43 Hanover Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B. F/S Willian Kell replaces William Champion as Wop.
23/9/43 Mannheim Stirling Mk.III EF512 AA-A. F/S Willian Kell replaces William Champion as Wop.
4/11/43 Mining in Baltic Sea Stirling Mk.III BF461 AA-B. William Champion returns to the crew as Wop. Failed to Return

Like many of the aircraft BF-461 encountered German night fighters over Denmark, in this instance two Ju.88’s. The damage caused to the Stirling in the ensuing confrontation forced it to jettison its mines and attempt to return early to base. The Stirling crashed at Kallerup in Jutland, Denmark. P/O Champion’s body was found and taken to the German morgue, the Nordre Mole, in Fredrikshavn by a German lorry. Official German documents record the death ‘from burns’. However in a report compiled by a Danish policeman a Danish undertaker questioned this verdict. If Pilot Officer Champion died had died from burns the body would have been taken to the undertaker in a coffin. As this was not the case it may be that P/O Champion was killed in the crash. P/O Champion was buried at Fredrikshavn on 13th November, together with seven other British airmen. No military honours were given and the ceremony was performed by a German field padre. A group of Danes attending the funeral and laid wreaths and flowers on each of the coffins, at done at other funerals.

Frank McGregor’s story of that night can be read here as the first of 2 viewable, or downloadable pdf files. The story is incredibly detailed and covers the period from take off, literally to his liberation by Russian soldiers (part 2 here) in 1945.

The remaining members of the crew were taken prisoner. Five of them were sent to Germany, but F/S Morice was sent to hospital at Thisyten for treatment for damaged ankles after a heavy parachute landing. Whilst at the hospital, his captors, thinking he was immobilized because of a feigned broken leg,  left him unguarded. He escaped and walked for 5 days before making contact with the Danish Underground Movement. He returned to England via Sweden being commissioned for outstanding bravery and awarded a Mention in Despatches, On his return to England MI-9 recorded:

I was a member of the crew of a Stirling aircraft which took off from Ely about 1600 hrs on 4 November 1943 on mining operations in t Skagerrack. About 1916 hrs we were attacked by night fighters over Denmark and we were ordered to bale out. I was the first to leave the aircraft. I came down in the neighbourhood of Hundborg in marshy ground. I hid my parachute, mae west and harness in the swamp, along with a wallet I had been carrying. I had my wallet with me as we were returning to Lossiemouth and expected to be there for a week before going back to our station. I began immediately to walk away from the aircraft which was burning furiously about two miles away. I do not know which direction I took as there were no stars and I had lost my aids box and purse which I had inside by battle-dress before leaving the aircraft, Before starting to walk I removed all the badges from my uniform. I had sprained both ankles in landing and thought my right ankle might be broken. I kept on walking all that night (4-5 Nov) making slow progress as my right leg was almost useless. At dawn I rested for two hours and continue walking, this time East by the sun as I decided to make for the East coast. At 1100 hrs I was unable to carry on and sought shelter in a farm in the Hundborg area where I was given food and rested, At 1300 hrs, however, a Danish policeman arrived with an ambulance and explained I was to be taken to a Danish hospital at Tisted and that I would then have to be handed to the Germans. The farmer, though friendly, must have informed the police, probably being afraid of the German search. Wepassed many German search parties looking for me on the road. The Danish policeman was very anxious that they should not see me. He was also very friendly. At the hospital in Tisted the doctors treated my ankles, x-rayed my right foot and then said that there has been two British machines crashed, many had been captured, four more were dead (of this they were not certain and thought that I was the only one at large). They said that Flying Officer Black had been at the hospital with an injure foot. He had been captured by the Danish police and the Germans had taken him away from the hospital. Three Danish policemen arrived. I asked them to let me go, but they refused saying it was impossible to get to Sweden and that the Germans would recapture me. At 1600 hrs I was left in a ground floor room in the hospital by myself for a few minutes, but a porter came in and with his assistance I escaped through a window and made my way out of the town, dressed in battledress and flying boots. I walked East by the stars all night, along the shores of the lake (Tisted Bredning). It was bitterly cold, so I could not rest. I crossed a dike in the vicinity of Hovsor. About 1000 hrs on Saturday. 6th May, I was stopped on a track by a Danish peasant who saw I was in pretty bad condition. He took me to his house, gave me food and allowed me to rest until midday. An English-speaking Dane came in and gave me a map, an old map, and an old cap and showed me the main road to Aalborg. This road follows the railway line. He also said that it was impossible to get out of Denmark, but the people would help me. He advised me to avoid Pjersitslev, as there were many German soldiers there. I continued walking to 1900 hrs when I went to a farm where I was given food and a bed for the night. They spoke no English but managed to understand they were not to tell the police about me. I was given a better map which showed I was at Vust. On Sunday, 7 Nov, I was awaken at 0500 hrs and given food. I then set out along the road. About 0600 hrs I was stopped at a crossroads by two German guards but seeing my hat and coat they allowed me to pass. I did not speak a word. I walked all that day along that road passing several Germans. I was limping badly and my flying boots made walking a torture. At 1800 hrs I stopped at a farm near Birkekse. The people took me into a house, the owner of which, his wife and nephew all spoke English. They welcomed me with open arms, said they would help me, but were very pessimistic as to my chances, as the Germans were on the watch for me everywhere and many people were stopped on the roads. My host said he would try to put me in touch with an underground organization. I stayed there that night. On Monday. Nov 8, I rested all day at this hose and was treated very well. After making several plans my host decided to send me next morning to a friend at Birsted. I was given trousers and boots, retaining only my underclothes, socks and sweater from which I had removed all tabs. Next day (Tuesday 9 Nov) I was taken to Birsted where I was put in touch with an organization which arranged my journey to Sweden.”

He was repatriated to Britain in accordance with the Geneva Convention.

The crew of BF461 AA-B on the 4th of November 1943 were;
P/O Gordon Kenneth Williams RNZAF. (NZ401796) Pilot
PoW # 1454. PoW camps – Stalag Luft I. Promoted to F/Lt while a PoW. Safe UK – 12 May 1945.

F/Sgt Walter Frank Morice RNZAF. (NZ415708) Navigator.
evaded capture. Mentioned in Despatches: 8 Jun 1944:
“In recognition of distinguished service and devotion to duty’ 

Sgt Francis Edward McGregor RNZAF. (NZ415338) Air Bomber.
PoW # 263492, PoW Camps – Dulag Luft, Stalags Luft III, IVB and IVG. Promoted to W/O while a PoW. Safe U.K 31 May 1945.

Plt Off. William James Champion RAFVR. (624043, 53774) Wireless Operator.
Died Thursday 4th November 1943, age 25, during a mine-laying sortie to the Baltic Sea. Buried Frederickshavn Cemetery, Denmark.

Sgt Horace N Moffat RAFVR (1682621) Flight Engineer.
PoW #261523, PoW Camps – Dulag Luft and Stalag IVB. Safe U.K. NK.

F/O John Arthur Black RAAF. (AUS.425420), Mid Upper Gunner.
PoW# 1766. PoW camps – Dulag Luft, Stalags Luft 1 and Luft III. Safe UK NK.

Sgt Reginald Ingrey RAFVR (1504520) Rear Gunner.
PoW # 261509. PoW camps – Dulag Luft, Stalag IVB. Safe UK NK.

Having read  Frank’s account, I think its safe to say that H.Moffat, nicknamed Horay, might well be Horace and Reggie, pretty obviously Reginald Ingrey – so we can perhaps add a little more to the Nominal Roll information as a much belated result of this incredible story

75(NZ) Squadron Aircraft Database

I am incredibly pleased to announce a significant expansion to the site – a database of the aircraft that the Squadron flew during the war. I feel this is a fantastic addition to the site and represents a unique opportunity to gather together all of the individual efforts that have been made to identify and record the histories of each aircraft.

I am immensely grateful to Ian for the incredibly generous donation of his ongoing research data base regarding the aircraft that 75(NZ) Squadron operated between 1940 and 1945. Over this period of time the Squadron flew first Wellingtons, then Stirlings and then in March 1944, finally converted to Lancasters.

Direct links to the 3 respective database pages are here;

This database is obviously very much an ongoing project, but, as with the rest of this blog, if people can find it, they may well be able to add to it. Ian, Chris and I have already spent this first day passing information between ourselves and the database will refine, correct and grow as we merge the information we already have and hopefully as people find it and offer more.

The publishing of this database is only the first step – there will now be ongoing ‘ordering’ of the information contained within it, which will attempt to correctly credit/ recognise all individuals that have contributed to it and all sources that have been used to add to it. At the same time we welcome the identification of sources, which we might have overlooked. I think Ian, Chris and I see this database as a resource for everybody, so it’s only fitting therefore, that everybody who can possibly be credited will be, within the aircraft lists.

If anybody can add a reference or wishes a source to be attributed, just mail me and we will add or correct as necessary.

The database has been created based on the careful research of Ian and others. In places, existing sources have been used, which include;
Forever Strong – The Story of 75 Squadron RNZAF 1916-1990, by Norman Franks – Random Century New Zealand Ltd.
Luck and a Lancaster – Chance Survival in World War II, by Harry Yates – Airlife Publications.
Avro Lancaster – A Definitive Record, by Harry Holmes –  Airlife Publications.
3 Group Bomber Command – An Operational Record, by Chris Ward and Steve Smith – Pen & Sword Aviation.
The Stirling Story, by Michael JF Bowyer – Crecy Publishing Ltd.
Royal Air Force Bomber Command Losses of the second World War 1943, by W.R. Chorley – Midland Publishing

In addition to these published texts, the work of others are duly recognised from the following websites; and specifically the page related to 75(NZ) Squadron.
Lancaster Archive Forum (LAF) and its contributing members.
Wings Over New Zealand Forum (WONZ) and its contributing members. In particular, Dave Homewood, who started a Wellington list, almost 2 years ago on the forum