8/3/45 ATTACK AGAINST DATTELN – Emscher Lippe benzol plant

8 mar dattlenCrew
F/S Vernon John Zinzan. Pilot
W/O James Sydney George Coote. Navigator
F/O Robert Douglas Sommerville. Air Bomber
Sgt. Miles Parr. Wireless Operator
Sgt. A. Ackroyd. Flight Engineer
Sgt. H. Hutchinson. Mid Upper Gunner
Sgt. J. Tutty. Rear Gunner*

* This appears to be the beginning of a steady turnover in Rear Gunners – I have no explanation as to why Herbert Steele ceases to be the crew’s regular R/Gnr.

Lancaster Mk.I RF127
“W” for William

Bomb Load 1 x 4,000 H.C., 11 x 500 ANM,. 2 x 500 M.C. 2x 500 G.P.
Fairly good concentration – blue puffs seen.

Up 10.35 8th March
Down 16.05 8th March
Total Flight Time 5 hours 30 minutes

75 (NZ) Sqn RAF Operations Record Book (ORB)
Twenty one aircraft attacked Datteln as detailed. A good concentration of aircraft and bombing reported. Cloud ten tenths. No opposition was encountered. A mushroom of smoke was seen penetrating cloud.

Page 132, 1945. Form 540/ 541 AIR27/ 647  75(NZ) Squadron RAF, Mepal. National Archives.

Bomber Command War Diary
8 March 1945
159 Lancasters of No 3 Group bombed the North and South plants of the Emscher Lippe benzol plant near Datteln. The target area was cloud-covered and G-H was used. The bombing appeared to be accurate but no results were seen. 1 Lancaster lost.
21 Lancasters and 2 Mosquitos of No 5 Group set out to bomb the Bielefeld Viaduct but the raid was abandoned because of low cloud.

Page 677, The Bomber Command War Diaries. 2011. Everitt Middlebrook. Midland publishing.

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