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Post Info TOPIC: 166 Squadron RAF Kirmington help available to researchers


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RE: 166 Squadron RAF Kirmington help available to researchers
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F/Sgt Joseph Manuel R.A.F D.F.M

Thanks PFS. I presume that he flew some operations from the UK before 142 were split, part becoming 166 and the remainder posted overseas? Do you have full details of his ops?

Best Wishes

B



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Goodafternoon Barnsley,

My Father was William Smart Wilkie (Bill or Billy) who was a Wireless Operator with the 166 Squadron flying in Lancaster bombers, any information you have would be appreciated.

I have just found four pages of single side A4 handwrtten notes of a bombing raid to Nordland V2 factory, it decribes his pre flight routine, circling to gain height(with BBC on the radio), getting separated from their Squadron and then being escorted back to their group by American Mustangs.

It gives some details of the raid(how the bombs were not dropped), flying back over France and the Channel Islands whilst looking for targets with them returning safely home.

If you think this is of interest then I can certainly type it up and forward it on.

Best regards

Andrew Wilkie


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A M Wilkie


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Apologies Barnsley, I see one of my siblings has been in touch already - I did not know, if you still have the informaton you e-mailed to MW a copy would be appreciated.

Let me know about the Nordland notes.

 

Regards

 

Andrew

 

Sgt Wilkie was the WOP in the crew of F/Lt Mansfield. The crew arrived on 166 Squadron on the 27/02/1945 and flew at least 11 operations before the end of the war. I will send you an email. B



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A M Wilkie


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William Smart Wilkie Wireless Operator  166 Squadron

Hi, probably best to email me direct on mjc41ukATyahoo.co.uk.



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Anonymous

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Dear John, 

I thought you may be interested to see this, perhaps you have a copy? It is a transcript (created myself) from the original of  Harry's last letter home prior to his plane going missing? 

Harry's letter home.... 25th November 1944

 

My dearest Mother and Father, 

It is hard to believe I think so much of you, and write so little, yet that I do think so very highly of you I'm sure you doubt not and that I write little is a well proven fact. 

Often my excuse for not writing you, has been I am busy doing 'this and that', but during these last two months, I cannot claim to have been too busy. What then, you will be wondering is the excuse this time!

This time, my Dears, there is no excuse, only a few words about the boy your reared. 

I am sure you will know that for sometime past, I have been doing a little to cause death and destruction in the 'Hinterland' indeed, like many "proud" parents, I fear you may be inclined to stick out your chest and say "Ah! Our Harry is knocking Hell out of them' but alas! Don't be proud, say nothing and pray. Yes! Honestly pray to God that such works of man, may be forgiven. 

Never have I failed to carry out any orders indeed, I anxiously await each coming trip, and I don't think I have ever been, what is generally described as being afraid, but sitting high in the air, watching Hell break loose thousands of feet below, I never fail to utter "God forgive us, for we know not what we do!"

Yes they are Germans and no doubt given the chance they would have done it to us, but unfortunately this is little compensation and certainly no satisfaction to my human feelings. 

Somewhere down there, there is a boy who must love his parents, brothers and sisters as I love mine, and somewhere also, is a man and woman married and as much in love as Betty and I. 

Is it right then to expect that besides doing the job as ordered, I should find great delight in it. How well Burns could have answered that!!

Some years ago, no, only a little over a year ago, I remember telling you Father that I could not understand people hating their parents. Your reply was "you don't understand that, because you never had a Mother and Father, only a big Sister and Brother" How often these words come back to me, each time more beautiful and significant, each time proven more true. 

Remembering all that has been, that day I was dragged back to school, the smacks I used to get which hurt the giver more than the receiver, the many trips I had in the 'wood lorry' the time the man 'murdered' David and the million and one other things - can I be expected to feel the glory of causing death and destruction to others who may or may not have enjoyed the comfort of being well loved and cared for. 

Am I soft hearted? Surely one is not soft hearted, merely because he has no desire to kill? 

Writing you, of late, has been a toss up between a lie and the truth. The truth has at last won, but my head is not bowed. 

Many there are who say "kill every man, woman and child in Germany" - how many, I wonder, would take hold of a German child and plunge a dagger into it's heart. Few, I am sure, I wish I could meet some of our handsome and brave types who feel so blood thirsty whilst drinking their nightly pint. 

Whatever people may say, whatever they may think enlighten them not, as to what your 'brave son' is doing. God knows there is too much to be forgiven. 

And why has man the will and power to make his fellows mourn?

God willing I will be going on leave a week come Tuesday, so you will be, at long last, having two more to feed for a few days. Two more did I say? Four more, as Riggs and Curley are coming too for their leave. 

You won't be able to give them a bed, but will you arrange for them to sleep somewhere, say at the Crowne and have their meals, all of them, at home. Now there is no use saying this and that, they know they will have to sleep out for two or three nights, so that is that. 

Betty won't be able to get all the time off so I expect we will arrive about Wednesday and leave again Saturday morning, still that, I'm afraid, will have to be arranged nearer the time. OH! Don't be surprised if we are a week late, Bomber Command have a peculiar habit of doing these things and there's nothing a mere Flying Officer can do about it. 

Betty has been telling me about her correspondence with Jean. I am pleased they write each other, on the one hand you get 'all the news about me or do you? On the other it is so good to think that my wife is so well liked. 

Betty has apparently been hearing from David. The glowing reports I have so far had about my Brother would make him really big headed if he heard them.  Oh! There are some snaps on the way of him - again the work of "her nibs".

I hope you are all well at home and for goodness sake, don't start rushing about because we are coming. Remember me?? I'm still the boy I was 10 years ago and more !

Give my love to Jean and look after yourselves, 

God Bless you Always, Your Loving Son Harry xxxxxx



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Flg. Off. Charles Albert Henri Defraigne
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Flg. Off. Charles Albert Henri Defraigne   125748   - Pilot  k.i.a.

Plt. Off. John Ross Mearns   185171  - Flight Engineer  k.i.a.

Flg. Off. Stephen Pascal   J41525   -  Air Bomber  k.i.a.

Flt. Off. Thomas Henry Howell   55640   -  Navigator  k.i.a.

Sgt. Frederick William Mitchell   1865449   -  Wireless Op.  k.i.a.

Sgt. John Ward Inman   R219755   - Mid Upper Gunner  k.i.a.

Sgt. R. B. R. Kendall   R250704   - Rear Gunner  p.o.w.

missions...

19.3.1945   Hanau             ME446   AS-T  Flt. Sgt. E. R. Drown  Mid Upper gunner

21.3.1945   Bremen           ME446   AS-T  Flt. Sgt. G. Godsman  Mid Upper gunner

24.3.1945   Harpenerwag   NG114   AS-S  missing

If anyone has photographs or further information I would be honoured to place it on the RAF 166 Squadron web site.  http://home.cogeco.ca/~dswallow4/



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Wing Commander

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RE: 166 Squadron RAF Kirmington help available to researchers
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Survivor: Sgt Richard Bertram Ross Kendall (1925 - 2002)

http://passages.winnipegfreepress.com/passage-details/id-71759/Richard_Kendall

MRES reports attached.

Regards,

Dave



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Mike Hughes

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Hello

I am researching  F/O James Doyle who was killed while serving on 166 Squadron in July 1945.

He was a member of the crew of a Lancaster which crashed into the Bristol Channel on a training flight.

I would be extremely grateful for any help you may be able to offer.

Mike Hughes



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RE: HARRY'S FINAL LETTER HOME NOVEMBER 1944

Whoever posted this letter would they please get in touch with me on mjc41uk@yahoo.co.uk 

Is this Harry, Harry Burgoyne? B.



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JAMES DOYLE

Email me on mjc41uk@yahoo.co.uk. I may have a little more information. B



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Anonymous

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Re-Harry Burgoyne last letter.

Good Evening Mark,

Thank you for the copy of my late uncle Harry's last letter to his parents, I have been going through my late mothers letters from various members of her family this letter was not among them. I have been contacted by Ailsa Tavares this letter may have come from her, as her Grandmother was also Harry's younger sister. I hope to get a reply from Ailsa soon. 

Regards,

John 



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David Crawshaw

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Good afternoon, I wonder if you can assist me. I am researching a mantel clock which has the 166 Squadron badge and the following inscription on the back

" Presented by 166 Squadron Association to Jim and Dorothy Wright To express our gratitude for all they have done for us and for ensuring that the SQUADRON

STORY and NAME will never die" Christmas 2003

It is a beautiful clock so they were obviously very well known to the Association.

Any information that you would be happy to pass on would be very much appreciated.

 

Kind regards

 

David (Ex RAF Navigator)

email: dccops@btconnect.com



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166 Squadron Clock

This was presented to Jim Wright, the secretary of the 166 Squadron Association in the early 1990s. His wife also played a large part in the administration of the association and organising the annual reunion. Jim Wright was a Wireless Operator on 166 Squadron in 1944/45.




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Anonymous

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Greetings from southern Georgian Bay, Ontario

I have been researching the crew of Lancaster DV 220 and found your message. Today, I was chatting online with the stepdaughter of James Yelland who was the air bomber on the night they were attacked by a night-fighter. I would very much appreciate any information you could share with me. In the next week or so, I have been invited to meet James' widow who is 95 and still very alert. I would like to share as much information as possible with her. Thank you!  John



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See information on this page http://home.cogeco.ca/~dswallow4/IndividualsPage2.htm near end of page.

If I can be of any further help contact me through e-mail address on 166 Squadron home page.

I attempted to contact James widow in Midland, but did not receive any response.



-- Edited by RAF 166 on Wednesday 19th of April 2017 10:07:07 PM

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                            James Yelland RCAF

Hi, i have sent you an email about James Yelland. Best Wishes, B



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Hello, Barnsley I am new to this forum and I am very grateful for its existence which I only discovered yesterday. I am also grateful for your kind offer of assistance.

I notice that my profile shows me as Aircraftsman 1st Class, but I have no idea how that has been added as I have never served in the RAF. It doesnt appear that I can edit that section of my profile.

 

My father James (Jim) HARLE was with 166 Squadron during the War and I am trying to find out as much about him as I can. He would never discuss anything about the War with me and sadly he died in 1980.

 

His number is 1597027 and I have always understood that he was a Rear Gunner. My sister has recently given me my dad's Flying Log book which unfortunately we had both scribbled in as very young kids and he has shown his "Duty" under the following various different titles, UT/AG, A/G and M.U.G. - none of those suggest Rear gunner to me but I may wrong.

 

As far as I can tell from his Log book he was at 11AGS Isle of Man, the NCO's school at Whitley Bay, 26 OTU at Leighton Buzzard, Sturgate, Lindholme Conversion Unit and then 166 Squadron at Kirmington.

 

One of the photographs I have which includes my dad is a long panoramic picture of the entire 166 Squadron at Kirmington with them all in front of an aeroplane which I have always believed to be a Lancaster Bomber. This picture has the number 29977 at the right hand side and is dated May 1945. I have recently seen that same picture on a Website which quite shook me. That website is http://home.cogeco.ca/~dswallow4/Kirmington.htm

 

I have another picture which is not very good quality but it shows my dad and nine other men standing below the front of a Lancaster Bomber. There is no date on this picture but I can see that on the side of the plane there is a letter B and also the words THE CHOPPER INN

 

(I think the last word is INN but the picture quality is not that good) There is also a joke Swastika with the words SEMPER IN EXCRETUM written below it.

I have no idea when my father joined the RAF, nor when he left the RAF so I would greatly appreciate any information given, especially clarification as to what duty he performed when flying.

 

Many thanks.

 



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SGT J. H. HARLE MID UPPER GUNNER 1597027 RAF

Hi, your father flew 3 operations with 166 Squadron before the wars end;

Plauen 10/04/45 

Potsdam 14/04/45 (mission abandoned-Pilot ill)

Berchtesgaden 25/04/45

He was posted in to 166 squadron on 20/03/45 in the crew of Pilot Officer A. J. Bridge, an Australian. The Plauen and Potsdam ops were flown with Bridge but it appears that after that second op Bridge did not fly again and the crew was broken up. Bridge does not appear on the nominal roll for 04/05/45 but your father does, listed as a spare Gunner. 

Please email me directly on mjc41uk@yahho.co.uk (do not use the wizard, type my email directly into your email provider) and I may well be able to assist you further.

Best Wishes, B.

 



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Hi Barnsley, I sent a reply to your email address on Tuesday 25/04/2017 - Did you receive it?

Cheers, and thanks. 



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SGT HARLE

Hi, sorry I did not receive your email.....I have just checked and I made a typo. it is mjc41uk@yahoo.co.uk. Not yahho! Sorry. Please try again.



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Aircraftsman 1st Class

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Many thanks, I've now sent it your correct address.

Cheers. 



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Hi Barnsley, I'm seeking any information on a Wellington, serial no. HE 922 that I believe crashed near Skegness in June 1943. Many thanks don

 



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Wellington HE922 AS-A

Crew.

Plt. Off. William Bryden McGinn  128888 - Pilot

Sgt. Raymond Hadley   658149 - A/B

Sgt. James Robert Whittaker  1080547 - Nav

Sgt. George T. Turnbull 1131177 - W/Op

Sgt. Ronald Henshaw  1311513 - R/G

Mission abandoned 3 miles north of Skegness 28.6.1943. All made successful parachute landing, except Sgt. Hadley who died.



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Sue Bickerdike

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My father was navigator in SQ 166 on Lancasters during WW2 Alfred Victor White. I had some information a few years ago from someone who had written a book on the 166 Sq. but I know little or nothing else. Any info gratefully received. susi.b46'hotmail.com



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Alf White Wireless Operator

Hi, your father was a Wireless Operator, not a Navigator. I have sent you a PM email. Best wishes, B.



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Barnsley, 

Thank you for your help and reply . 

The crew member I had hoped to find was a (Sgt) Richard James Hadley . He survided the war and died some time in the 1970s.

Thank you again.

Don



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Sgt Hadley

Hi, Sgt Raymond Hadley 658149 RAF was the Navigator in the crew on the 28.06.43. He baled out successfully. He was subsequently killed in action with the same crew on during a minelaying operation off France. I think you might have your Hadleys muddled up. Best Wishes, B.



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Anonymous

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Would you have any information on Sgt James R Whittaker, killed 29/6/43, number 1080547 buried in Widnes Cemetary ? His family was told at the time that he had been killed instantly by anti aircraft fire but subsequently it seems his father was told by a crew member  he had actually died after his parachute failed to open after bailing out. Presumably original version to avoid distressing family.



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SGT JAMES ROBERT WHITTACKER 

Hi Sgt Whittacker was killed when his parachute failed to open after his crew had to bail out 3 miles North of Skegness en route to Cologne (engine failure). The other crew members survived their parachute descents but were all killed on a subsequent operation. Please email me on mjc41uk@yahoo.co.uk for more info. B



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Anonymous

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I am a niece of Thomas Luscombe and my brother, sister and I hope to visit Brittany next year to see the grave of Sergeant Radbourne and to gain an idea of where the crew of HE631 lost their lives. I believe an article was going to be published about the activities during the night the plane was lost. Do you have any idea where we could get a copy of this please? 

Kind regards

Florence Luscombe



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Air Commodore

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Hi Florence,

The link below has some information regarding the loss of HE631

https://translate.google.co.uk/translate?hl=en&sl=fr&u=http://memoiresetphotos.free.fr/Guerre%252039-45/Radbourne/Radbourne1.html&prev=search

 

Regards,

MikeH



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Hi. I'm trying to find out more about my Grandad who was in the 166 Squadron as an Air Gunner.

Francis Howell (1581914). He joined the squadron in June 1944 I believe and his first operation was in the same month (Pilot - P/O Kelsall). His final operation was 26/9/44 (30 ops in total) I,m not sure if he did a second tour or not! He did survive the war but died shortly afterwards.



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Neil


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F/Sgt Francis Howell Air Gunner

email me on mjc41uk@yahoo.co.uk  for further info. Cheers, Bransley.



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Anonymous

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Hi Patrick.i am married to one of joseph manuels daughters and would appreciate any photos /details of his ww2 exploits. ...



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