February 1945

MEPAL
1.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with slight intermittent drizzle during early morning and late afternoon. Visibility 4 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Seventeen aircraft bombed Munchen-Gladbach, carrying 4,000 H.C., 500anm, 500 M.C, 250G.P. 500 No. 17 and No 14 clusters. No results were observed owing to cloud being ten tenths over the target.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out. Formation viewing was carried out by Air Commodore H.J. Kirkpatrick, D.F.C. and W/C C.F. Baigent, D.F.C. GHPractice bombing at Rushford Range.

2.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with intermittent drizzle around 03.00 hrs., 10.00 hrs and 13.00 hrs. , becoming fair then fine late afternoon. Visibility 4 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Nil. .
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.
Administration. 1124508 F/S Watson, S.G. , Wireless Operator, arrived on posting from No 31 Base. NZ 424493 A/F/L.I.D. Mckenna, Pilot., arrived on posting from No. 3 LFS

2/3.2.45
Operational Flying.
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack Wiesbaden, carrying 4,000 H.C. 500Anm. , 250 G.P. Two aircraft, however, failed to take off as they unfortunately became “bogged” when leaving the dispersal. Crews bombed on navigational aids in ten tenths cloud with the tops up to 21,000 ft. A scattered raid was the report of most crews generally. Slight H/F was the only opposition. JN”Y” captained by F/L L.W. Hannan landed at Woodbridge on returning owing to damage received over the target.

3.2.45
Weather.
Fine with intermittent slight rain at end of period. Visibility 4 – 7 miles.
Operational Flying. Sixteen aircraft attacked Dortmund in clear weather, carrying 4,000HC 500MC, 500ANM, 250 G.P and Munro bombs. Bombing was very accurate and fires were going well when aircraft left the target. One large explosion was seen. Searchlights were numerous in the target area, but flak was negligible. Fighters were active. AN”M” captained by S/L J.L. Wright, had three combats and claims one M.E. 110 destroyed. JN”X” captained by F/O R.B.Crawford crashed on landing, fortunately there were no fatal casualties among the crew. Four were taken to hospital.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests, and G.H. bombing exercises were carried out at Rushford.
Administration. 1312079 F/S Brooks, P. Wireless Operator and 169159 F/O.J.Wakerley, Wireless Operator, arrived on posting from No. 84 O.T.U.

4.2.45
Weather.
Continuous rain at first, becoming fair with short period of showers at mid-day. Visibility 3 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests, Fighter Affiliation, Height and load tests were carried out. G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out at Rushford Range.

5.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with intermittent slight rain during early morning, becoming fair or cloudy. Slight thunder storms in late afternoon. Becoming finer later. Visibility 6 – 7 miles.

Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests, G.H. Photo and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out, the latter at Rushford Range.
Administration. NZ 416529 W/O Ohlson E.M. and crew arrived on posting from No. 73 Base.

6.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with rain and drizzle during most of the day. Visibility 2 – 3 miles, generally.
Operational Flying. Seventeen aircraft were detailed to attack Leipzig. The operation was cancelled before the second briefing had taken place.
Non-Operational Flying. G.H. bombing exercises were carried out at Rushford Range.
Administration. 2221435 Sgt. Hollins, K.A/G arrived on posting from No. 33 Base.

7.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy at first with slight intermittent drizzle, becoming fair then fine. Visibility 3,000 yds. at first, improving to 1 – 5 miles or more.
Operational Flying. Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack Wanne – Eickel in daylight. The operation was however cancelled.
Non-Operational Flying. Fighter Affiliation exercises were carried out together with G.H. Bombing and Photo exercises. The G.H. Bombing took place at Rushford Range.
Administration. NZ 42451 F/L Plummer, J.Pilot, arrived on posting from No. 33 Base.

8.2.45
Weather.
Fair at first, with intermittent slight rain in the morning becoming fair after dusk. Visibility 6 – 10 miles falling to 2 – 3000 yds in rain and improving later to 8 miles or more.
Operational Flying. Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack in close support of the Army, but the operation was cancelled.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out

9.2.45
Weather.
Slight showers from early in period becoming fine then cloudy with rain commencing and continuing after night fall. Visibility 6 – 10 miles for greater part of period, deteriorating to 3 miles in rain.
Operational Flying. Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack Lutskendorf, but the target was changed during the afternoon of the 8th Feb., to Hohenbudberg. This operation was carried out in the early hours of 9th Feb. Aircraft carried 4,000 HC., 500 ANM., 250 GP Markers and Munro bombs. The raid took place in 8/10ths cloud with tops about 10,000ft. Flak was slight to moderate and S/L effective. A scattered raid was reported.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out
Administration. NZ416437 F/L Barks, R.A. and crew arrived on posting from Feltwell. 1330747 W/O Webber A.N. arrived on posting from No. 138 Squadron.

10.2.45
Weather.
Fair. Generally over 10 miles visibility.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Fighter Affiliation, G.H. Bombing and Photo exercises were carried out.
Administration. 174378 F/O A.F. Woodcock and crew arrived on posting from No. 31 Base.

11.2.45
Weather.
Fine with slight frost then intermittent rain and drizzle early afternoon becoming cloudy. Visibility generally 6 miles, deteriorating to 2,000yds in precipitation and 3,500 yds by end of period.
Operational Flying. Gelsenkirchen was the target for the early day attack by 21 aircraft. The operation was cancelled just before take off.
Non-Operational Flying. G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out at Rushford Range.
Administration. F/S Good, T. (1330401) and crew arrived on posting from No. 31 Base.

12.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with continuous slight rain and drizzle during the morning, becoming fair during the afternoon. Visibility 1-2,000yds in rain, increasing to 4-6 miles.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out the later at Rushford.
Administration. NZ425914 F/O Layton, J.R. and crew arrived on posting from No. 7 Sqdn.

13.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy light rain and drizzle commencing around dawn and clearing in afternoon, becoming fine. Visibility 5 -10 miles, falling to 4 miles in rain improving later to 8 – 12 miles.
Operational Flying. Gelsenkirchen was again the target given for 21 aircraft but was, however, cancelled.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.G.H. Bombing took place at Rushford Range.
Administration. 1586733 F/S Lukins, B.L. and crew arrived on posting from 1669, C.U.

14.2.45
Weather.
Fine. Visibility 6 -15 miles.

13/14.2.45
Operational Flying.
Twenty aircraft attacked Dresden as detailed carrying 4000 HC No. 15 cluster, No 17 cluster and Munro bombs. Very slight H/F was the only opposition. The first aircraft over the target reported thin cloud which cleared for later aircraft. Some aircraft were able to bomb visually. Crews reported the whole town well alight and could see the glow of fires when a 100 miles away on the return route. A highly successful raid.

14.2.45
Operational Flying.
Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out (Rushford Range)
Administration. 189682 P/O Shaw, J. and crew arrived on posting from No. 73 Base. 1596125 Sgt. Robson, G Air Gunner arrived on posting from No. 33 Base.

14/15.2.45
Operational Flying.
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack Chemnitz. Nineteen attacked primary, carrying 4000 HC 500 ANM. No 15 clusters. No 17 clusters, No 14 clusters. AA”J” captained by F/O E Pearson returned early through engine failure. Cloud was ten tenths with tops 16-17000 ft. over the target. Aircraft bombed with the aid of special equipment. No results were observed and very slight H/F was met over the target. AA ”D” captained by NZ427262 F/L G.Davies failed to return from this operation.

15.2.45
Weather.
Fair at first. Fog developing  early morning, persisting for rest of day. Vis. 6 miles at first, deteriorating 80-1500 yds.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. G.H. Training and air tests were carried out.

16.2.45
Weather.
Fog earlier in day, lifting to ten tenths cloud. Visibility 700 – 2500 yds.
Operational Flying. Twenty one aircraft attacked Wesel as detailed carrying 4000 HC., 500 ANM, 500 MC 250 GP bombs. Slight accurate H/F was encountered over the target but no fighters were seen. A concentrated raid was reported.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.
Administration. 157882 F/O J. Craven, Wireless Operator, arrived on posting from No. 73 Base. NZ416193 F/O T.C. Cox and crew arrived on posting from No. 1653 C.U. 135702 F/L L.I.Taylor and AUS 429990 W/O Opie, C and crews on posting from Feltwell.

17.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with slight rain after dawn and dusk. Visibility 2000 – 3000 yds becoming 3 miles in afternoon, but deteriorating again to 3000 yds later.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.
Administration. NZ405608 F/L J.Palmer, Pilot, arrived on posting from Woodbridge. Crew arrived on posting from No. 195 Squadron on 16.2.45.

18.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with slight fog and drizzle during early morning, becoming fair. Visibility 3000 yds deteriorating in fog and drizzle to  7 – 900 yds., improving to 4-6 miles, but deteriorating before midnight.
Operational Flying. Twenty aircraft attacked Wesel, carrying 1×8000 HC 4000 HC 500 ANM 500 GP 250 GP bombs. Twenty one aircraft were detailed, but AA”R” F/S Scott, L. Returned early through a technical failure. Aircraft bombed on special equipment in ten tenths cloud with tops about 10,000 ft. Leaders were satisfied that it was a good raid. Very slight H/F was the only opposition.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.

19.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy. Visibility 2 – 3000 yds.
Operational Flying. Twenty one aircraft were again detailed to attack, carrying 4000 HC 500 ANM 250 GP and Munro bombing. AA”J” returned early, captain F/S Lukins, B.L. through engine trouble. Cloud was 7-10/10ths with some haze. A few crews were able to identify the river bend. Bombing appeared to be accurate. Very slight H/F was the only opposition.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.

20.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy at first, becoming fair. Visibility 2500 yds at first improving to 4-10 miles deteriorating after dusk to 3900 yds.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Cross country, Fighter Affiliation, Photo and Bombing exercises were carried out.  (Bombing – Rushford Range)

20/21.2.45
Operational Flying.
Ten aircraft detailed for an attack on Chemnitz, but the operation was cancelled before briefing and another target laid on. Dortmund was the second target. The ten aircraft detailed for the previous target carried out the operation carrying 1×8000 HC 4000HC 2000 HC 750 Ib clusters and 500 Ib clusters. AA”E” Captain F/L.L.E.Abraham, returned early through engine failure. Cloud was 9-10/10ths tops 5-6000 ft. Some moderate H/F was met over the target. No fighters were seen. Crews reported many small fires. A successful raid was reported.

21.2.45
Weather.
Fine during darkness, otherwise cloudy. Visibility 2–3000 yds at first falling around dawn to 1500 yds improving 4- 5 miles in afternoon. After dusk deteriorating to 3500 yds.
Operational Flying. Nil.
Non-Operational Flying. Fighter Affiliation and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out (Rushford)
Administration. NZ421313 F/L N.H.Bawden, Navigator, arrived on posting from No. 33 Base.

22.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy. Visibility 2–4 miles, decreasing to 2500 yds in late evening.
Operational Flying. Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack Osterfeld, carrying 4000 HC 500 ANM 250 GP bombs, JN”O” F/L Jones, K. returned early through engine failure. There was no cloud over the target, but some haze. Crews found it difficult to identify the target visually owing to smoke and difficult formation flying conditions in flak, but the impression is that the concentration of bombing was excellent and the target well “pranged”. Flak was moderate to intense and several aircraft were damaged.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Photo exercises were carried out (Rushford Range)
Administration. NZ404711 F/O H.G. Horton, Air Gunner, arrived on posting from Feltwell.

23.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy at first, with intermittent rain commencing about midday and continuous drizzle later. Fine after dark. Visibility generally 2–4 miles at first falling to 25-3500 yds in precipitation to less than 2000 yds by end of day.
Operational Flying. Sixteen aircraft attacked Gelsenkirchen as detailed, carrying 4000 HC 500 ANM 250 GP and Munro bombs. There was ten tenths thin cloud over the target with horizontal visibility between 500/1000 yds. Formation keeping was very difficult in these conditions, but crews reported quite a good bombing concentration on special equipment and leaders. Opposition from flak was very slight, no fighters were seen. Weather conditions at Base when aircraft returned was very bad and all crews had great difficulty in getting down. However this was accomplished without incident. JN”F” F/S Barr. D. Landed at Warboys.
Non-Operational Flying. air tests and G.H. exercises were carried out.

24.2.45
Weather.
Fine becoming cloudy. Visibility 700 – 1500 yds at first improving to 6-8 miles.
Operational Flying. Fourteen aircraft detailed to attack Kamen, but the operation was cancelled after the first briefing.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests and G.H. Bombing exercises were carried out. (Rushford Rge)

24/25.2.45
Operational Flying.
Two aircraft laid mines in the Oslo Fiord area. Both crews reported a good trip without opposition. Cloud 8 – 10/10ths.

25.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy with slight rain at noon. Visibility 4 – 6 miles early, improving to 8 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Eighteen aircraft detailed to attack Kamen, carrying 4000 HC 500 anm, 250 GP and Munro bombs. Thin stratus cloud in layers covered the target area,but at times crews were able to make out the target and report considerable white smoke followed by thick black smoke rising to a good height. Accurate H/F was experienced. AA “B” captained by NZ415262 F/S Klitscher, L is missing from this operation.
Non-Operational Flying. G.H. Bombing exercises and Air Firing exercises were carried out. (Rushford)
Administration. NZ404136 F/S Hamilton E.J. and crew arrived on posting from 72 Base.

26.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy becoming fair. Visibility 6 – 15 miles.
Operational Flying. Eighteen aircraft attacked Dortmund as detailed. Cloud was 10/10ths over the target with tops 5-6000 ft. No results were seen but bombing is thought to be concentrated. Bombs carried were 1 x 8000 HC , 4000 HC 500 anm 500 MC and Munroes.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.

27.2.45
Weather.
Fair. Visibility 5 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack Gelsenkirchen, carrying 4000 HC 500 ANM 500 MC bombs. NZ426904 F/O M.Adamson and NZ425292 F/L D.Sadgrove returned early through engine trouble. Cloud was ten tenths. Leaders met slight to moderate H/F. No results were seen.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.
Administration. NZ44211608 F/S Bone A.G. and crew arrived on posting from 72 Base.

28.2.45
Weather.
Cloudy becoming fair. Visibility 6 – 10 miles.
Operational Flying. Fifteen aircraft attacked Nordstern (Gelsenkirchen) as detailed carrying 1 x 8000 HC 4000 HC 500 ANM 500 GP bombs. Accurate slight H/F was met over the target. Cloud was ten tenths. No results were seen.
Non-Operational Flying. Air tests were carried out.
Administration. NZ429379 F/S H.J. Trewheels, NZ4210512 F/S Shearer, D.B. and NZ4212768 F/S McLernon, J.S. and crews arrived on posting from 72 Base.

MONTHLY SUMMARY OF EVENTS

Operational Flying. During this month continuous heavy attacks were made against Oil Refineries in Germany, Dortmund receiving special attention. Other attacks were carried out in support of the allied armies.  In all 292 sorties were made including minelaying in Oslo Fiord.

From these operations two aircraft failed to return captained by NZ4272262 F/L G.S.Davies and NZ415262 F/S klitscher, L.E.B. The aircraft captained by NZ428168 F/O N,H. Thorpe crashed near base returning from an operation, the pilot and three members of the crew were unfortunately killed.

Non-Operational Flying. A good deal of training has been carried out this month, special attention being paid to G.H. Exercises. Air Commodore H.Kirkpatrick, DFC and NZ411973 W/Cdr.C.H.Baigent DFC carried out a formation check on 1st February 1945.

Awards. Nil.

Appointments to Commisions:-
The undermentioned were commissioned during the month with effect from the date stated against their names:-

NZ42998 F/S Egglestone V.R. – 30.12.44                                     1063761 W/O Rogers, C – 17.12.44
NZ428168 F/S Thorpe, N.H. – 9. 1.45                                           NZ37220 F/S Russell, R.W. – 9.1.45
NZ427319 F/S Rangiuaia, W – 14.12.44                                       1584666 Sgt. Wilson, N.F. – 4.1.45
1558692 F/S Semple, W. – 4.1.45                                                  1825953 Sgt. Johnstone, J. – 21.1.45
AUS28834 F/S Segnit, A. – 22.1.45                                                 NZ425946 F/S Sim, D. 4.1.45
1432941 F/S Robinson, S – 18.1.45                                               NZ421741 F/S Macks, I – 18.12.44
NZ422008 W/O Switzer, L. 15.1.45                                                1175876 W/O Williams, J. – 15.1.45
NZ421686 F/S Dawson, R – 22.11.44                                            NZ4212783 F/S Wood, K. – 22.11.44
1628335 Sgt. Mahoney, B. – 18.1.45                                             1394583 F/S Barr, D – 5.2.45

Flying Hours.
Operational:-                                                                       1,633 hours 50 mins.
Non-operational:-                                                                  174 hours 25 mins.

Sorties:-                                                                                   292

Monthly total of bombs dropped:-                                   1,184 tons.

Cumulative total of bombs dropped:-                            26,478 tons.

Strength as at 28th February, 1945 :-                             Officers:- 102
W/Os & N.C.Os:- 279

Appendices:-
Forms 541 – A39 – A90
Combat Report – B.2 only
P.O.Rs Officers – C6 -36
Airm4n –   D8 – 36

                               Officers.                                   Airmen.
R.A.F.                      C6 – 17                                     D8 – 19
R.A.A.F.                 C18 – 23                                  D23– 25
R.C.A.F.                 C24 – 25                                  D26– 29
R.N.Z.A.F.             C26 – 36                                  D30-  36

(Sgd.)
Wing Commander, Commanding,
No. 75 (NZ) Squadron. R.A.F.

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