W.S. Masters crew 30.8.43 †

17/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Peenemunde
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 2,000lb., 1,000lb., 500lb. and incendiaries of 30lb., and 4lb. One aircraft returned early owing to the rear turret being unserviceable, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This attack to be well concentrated, large fires and huge explosions being seen. Moderate heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered, but caused no trouble. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was good and visibility was clear except for a smoke screen which partially obscured the target. Navigation was excellent. On the return journey the fires could be seen 50 miles from the target.

Stirling Mk.III EE893 JN-N

P/O Clifford Charles Pownall Logan, RAAF AUS.405918 – Pilot.
F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Geoffrey Phillips Sowerby, RNZAF NZ417243 – Navigator.
F/O John Paul Ingham, RAFVR 132331 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Terence James Hegarty, RAFVR 1030026 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Stewart, RAFVR 1117389 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Frederick Edward William Crowther, RAFVR 1339159 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Albert John Knox, RNZAF NZ416006 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:50 – Landed 04:45
Flight Time 07:55

27/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Nuremburg
Nineteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs. and 4lbs. One aircraft failed to return, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Good concentrated fires and heavy explosions were seen. A moderate barrage consisting of light and heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered, and two aircraft received slight damage. Some enemy aircraft were seen, one short combat took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. The weather was cloudy on the outward journey but clear over the target and visibility was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling Mk.III EE955 captained by F/Sgt. Higham.

Stirling Mk.III EE878 AA-P

P/O Arthur William Burley, RAFVR 1315375/ 147201 – Pilot.
F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Reginald Hill, RNZAF NZ413216 – Navigator.
F/S Ewen McGregor Elmslie, RNZAF NZ417200 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R.W. Wilson, RAFVR 1035365 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. R. Risbridger, RAFVR 577918 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Hubbock, RAFVR 1601799 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. A.F. Peters, RAFVR 1154968 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:40 – Landed 04:45
Flight Time 07:05

30/08/1943 – Mining in the Frisian Islands
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1,500., which were successfully dropped in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. No A.A. fire, searchlights or enemy aircraft were encountered. There was 4/10ths. Cloud in the mining area, although visibility was good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III BF518 AA-E

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. H.N. Moffatt, RAFVR 1682621 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:50 – Landed 23:50
Flight Time 03:00

02/09/1943 – Mining off Ille-De-Re
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500lb., which were successfully dropped in the allotted area, and the majority of the parachutes were seen to open. No A.A. fire, searchlights or enemy aircraft were encountered. There was 7-8/10th. Cloud in the mining area, although visibility was very good. Navigation was excellent

Stirling Mk.III EE881 JN-G

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. W. Thompson, RAFVR 1581930 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:10 – Landed 01:50
Flight Time 05:40

05/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim
Nineteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4lb. One aircraft had trouble shortly after take-off and was forced to jettison its bombs four miles north of CAMBRIDGE. The attack was well concentrated and large fires together with heavy explosions were seen. Moderate heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered, which were ineffective. One aircraft on the return journey when near the FRENCH Coast was hit by A.A. fire. It received considerable damage and two of its engines were made unserviceable. The ENGLISH Coast was reached however, it belly-landed at Hunsden. Many fighters were seen and some combats took, place. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. H.BATGER sighted an enemy aircraft on the port quarter which opened fire on them and our aircraft corkscrewed. The Mid-upper and Rear Gunner then opened fire and the enemy aircraft was seen to dive to the ground in flames. It was claimed as destroyed. Our aircraft received considerable damage and the Flight Engineer Sgt. R. DALKINS was seriously wounded. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. R. WHITMORE sighted an enemy aircraft 100yds. astern, the Mid-upper and Rear Gunners opened fire, the enemy aircraft was seen to turn over and spin into the ground afire. It was claimed as destroyed. This was flowed by another enemy aircraft approaching from starboard to port astern, the Mid-upper and Rear Gunners again fired and the enemy aircraft broke away. One minute later an unidentified aircraft was seen firing at a Lancaster aircraft, which was afire. F/Sgt. WHITMORE’s Mid-Upper and Rear Gunners opened fire on the enemy aircraft, which disappeared. The Lancaster was then seen to break up. Some cloud was encountered on the way to the target, but there was a clear sky and visibility was good in the target area. Navigation was very good. One aircraft failed to return, it was captained by F/Sgt. WILKINSON, E.S.

Stirling Mk.III BK778 JN-U

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. W. Thompson, RAFVR 1581930 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:50 – Landed 02:50
Flight Time 07:00

08/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Boulogne
Seventeen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets. The carried their maximum bomb load in bombs of 1,000lb., and 500lb.. One aircraft crashed whilst taking off and two returned early. The remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Not many fires were seen but numerous huge explosions were observed. Some heavy and light predicted A.A. Fire and a few searchlights were encountered but caused no trouble. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was good and visibility was clear  except for slight ground haze. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III EH901 JN-O

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
F/S Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. W. Thompson, RAFVR 1581930 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:45 – Landed 00:00
Flight Time 02:15

15/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Montlucon
Seventeen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lb and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb..One aircraft failed to take-off, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was a good concentrated attack, large fires and heavy explosions being observed, smoke from fires and heavy explosions being observed, smoke from fires was rising to a height of 12,000ft.. Inaccurate A.A. fire from a few guns was the only opposition, no enemy aircraft were encountered. There was 5/10th cloud over the target but visibility was nevertheless good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III EH901 JN-O

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Charles Arthur Smith, RAFVR 917722 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:40 – Landed 03:10
Flight Time 06:30

16/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Modane
Nineteen aircraft wee detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of  1,000lb.,and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb. One aircraft returned early, but the remainder dropped their bombs in the target area. This was a very successful and well concentrated attack. Large fires which appeared to be spreading and heavy explosions were seen. Some A.A.fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered, they were ineffective except for one aircraft which received damage. The port inner engine caught fire but what put out with the aid of a fire extinguisher, the propeller was then feathered and the aircraft continued its journey on three engines. A few enemy aircraft were seen, the aircraft captained by P/O. G.K.WILLIAMS had a combat with a JU 88 which was claimed as destroyed. One other short combat took place, but no damage was sustained to our aircraft. It was clear over the target and visibility was good. Navigation was good.

Stirling Mk.III EH901 JN-O

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Charles Arthur Smith, RAFVR 917722 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:10 – Landed 03:30
Flight Time 07:20

27/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hanover
Sixteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4 lb. Two aircraft failed to return and one returned early owing to its rear turret being unserviceable. The remainder dropped their bombs in the target area. This was an exceedingly successful and well concentrated attack, considered to be even better than the previous one. Numerous large fires and columns of smoke rising to 12,000ft., were seen and the fires were again visible at the DUTCH coast. Very moderate, ineffective heavy A.A. Fire numerous searchlights and flares were encountered. Many enemy aircraft were seen and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by F.Sgt. HORGAN, D. had a combat with a JU88 which was claimed to be destroyed. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. BURTON, H., sighted a JU88 and the Rear Gunner fired, it was then seen to fall in flames and was claimed as destroyed. Two other short combats took place and one of our aircraft received slight damage. The weather was poor on the outward and return journeys, but good with clear visibility over the target. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.III, EF515 captained by Sgt. Martin, R., and EH877 captained by F/Sgt. WHITMORE, R.

Stirling Mk.III BF461 JN-B

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Ivor George Holbrook, RAFVR 937367 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:00 – Landed 01:20
Flight Time 05:20

02/10/1943 – Mining in the Baltic Sea
Six aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with Mines of 1,500lbs., one, however, failed to take off. The remainder successfully dropped their Mines in the allotted area and the majority of the parachutes were seen to open. No A.A. Fire, Searchlights or Enemy aircraft were encountered. The trip was uneventful except for a storm and lightening which were met on the return journey. Navigation was very good

Stirling Mk.III EH901 JN-O

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Ivor George Holbrook, RAFVR 937367 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:50 – Landed 01:50
Flight Time 08:00

03/10/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Kassel
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs. and 4lbs. One aircraft returned early as the Navigator was ill, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was a good concentrated attack, large fires and heavy explosions being seen. Moderate A.A. Fire was encountered, which was ineffective except for one aircraft which received damage. This aircraft was captained by F/Sgt. N. PARKER, damage was received to the starboard elevator , starboard tail plane and the rear turret war partly shot away. The rear gunner Sgt. S.W. RIDDLER was lost over the target when the rear turret was damaged. It is considered that he may have baled out as the escape hatch was found to be open. The aircraft successfully landed at WING. Very few enemy aircraft were seen. It was clear at the target, but slight haze was encountered on the return journey. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III IK378? ??-?

F/S William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Sgt. Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Ivor George Holbrook, RAFVR 937367 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:05 – Landed 00:55
Flight Time 05:50

08/10/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Bremen
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000 lbs., 500lbs., and incendiaries of 30lbs. and 4lbs. All of the aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Results were rather disappointing as owing to thick cloud, it was not possible to assess damage. Very few fires were seen and only one large explosion was observed. Slight ineffective A.A, Fire was encountered. Searchlights were active but hampered by cloud. Several combats with enemy aircraft took place. The aircraft captained by F/SGT. SPIERS, R. claimed a M.E. 109 as probably destroyed and a M.E. 110 as damaged. Another M.E. 109 was claimed as damaged by the aircraft captained by P/O o. WHITE. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III ES901? ??-?
Possibly EH901

P/O William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
F/S George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
F/S Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Ivor George Holbrook, RAFVR 937367 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 23:05 – Landed 04:05
Flight Time 05:00

04/11/1943 – Mining in the Baltic Sea
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, with mines of 1500lbs. This was an unfortunate night as three aircraft failed to return and the other aircraft returned early having jettisoned its mines. This aircraft met an enemy night fighter and sustained damage to the port wing, starboard flap, rear turret and many large holes in the fuselage, the rear gunner, Sgt.W. HURDIE, was killed during the combat. The weather was bad and ten tenths cloud made visibility poor. Navigation was good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings MKIII BF461, Captained by P/O.G.K.WILLIAMS, BK&&* Captained by P/O.W.S.MASTERS and XXXXX Captained by F/O. N.WILSON.

Stirling Mk.III BK778 JN-U

P/O William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
F/O George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
F/S Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Arthur Alfred Copeland, RAFVR 1166829 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off – – Landed –
Flight Time – Missing

Stirling Mk.III BK778 JN-U was shot down by a night-fighter, crashing at Berstedgaard, near Thisted, Denmark. There were no survivors. All but the flight engineer were buried at Frederickshaven Cemetery. Sgt Copeland is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial

P/O William Stuart Masters, RNZAF NZ421077 – Pilot.
Killed age 21.
Son of Clifford Arundel Masters and Daisy Caroline Masters, of Waiuku, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 52.

F/S George Burns Imrie, RNZAF NZ422676 – Navigator.
Killed age 22.
Son of David and Kathleen Margaret Imrie, of Auckland City, New Zealand.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 51.

F/S Charles James, RNZAF NZ426333 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 34.
Son of Isaac James and of Elizabeth James (Nee Richardson), of Haydock, Lancashire; Husband of Joan C. James, of Balclutha, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 56.

Sgt. Reginald James Thomas, RAFVR 1316730 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 21.
Son of John H. and Gladys Thomas, of Reading, Berkshire.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 53.
‘At the going down
Of the sun
And in the morning
We will remember them’

Sgt. Arthur Alfred Copeland, RAFVR 1166829 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 23.
Son of Alfred Henry and Edith Ellen Copeland; Husband of H. T. Copeland, of Derby.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 146.

Sgt. Leslie Grimwood, RAFVR 1438024 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 20.
Son of Alfred S. S. and Emma Grimwood, of Dagenham, Essex.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 49.
‘At rest.
In loving memory
Of my dear son.
God be with you
Till we meet again’

F/S Lewis Stanley Crawford-Watson, RNZAF NZ42734 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 21.
Son of Lewis and Elsie Ruth Crawford-Watson, of Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Allied Plot. grave 50.