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293 Sqn and Sgt J Lewis

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293 Sqn and Sgt J Lewis

Old 11th Apr 2013, 00:40
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DuoSi,

Do you know which Warwick was involved in the beach landing in your previous post ???


QP
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Old 11th Apr 2013, 12:08
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I've afraid not. He had to hand his logbook in when he was demobbed and only found out he could reapply for it too late - it had been destroyed by then.

Next time I see Harry I'll have a close look at the original photo and see if I can make anything out.
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Old 20th Apr 2013, 07:50
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Back Again

Hi all,

Apologies for the delay getting back but it's been an insanely busy few weeks.

Had a word with my Dad but he did say that it was a long time ago and his memory is hazy beyond the info already provided. However, he did say that he has a book that contained a lot of info that would be of interest as it is based on the official squadron records with the limitation that it only covers ASR and only mentions pilots that were recorded as actually having rescued someone, i.e. it's very Walrus-centric.

Beyond Courage: Air Sea Rescue by Walrus Squadrons in the Adriatic, Mediterranean and Tyrrhenian Seas 1942-1945: Amazon.co.uk: Norman L. R. Franks: Books Beyond Courage: Air Sea Rescue by Walrus Squadrons in the Adriatic, Mediterranean and Tyrrhenian Seas 1942-1945: Amazon.co.uk: Norman L. R. Franks: Books

I also have some hand written notes from him but there in storage so I'll have to recover them first.

Will be back when I find stuff,

All the best,


Julian
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Old 20th Apr 2013, 07:50
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Peter Hill

re Warwick fire; Cpl Johnny Colston was the armourer. I was on board and left aircraft very quickly!
Pancake Warwick occurred daylight flight test. P/O Lawson-Tancred was pilot.
S/Ldr Pye was CO. No Sgt. Pye.
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Old 21st Apr 2013, 20:56
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Peter Hill

Peter,

This just keeps getting better. Many thanks for taking the time to join the forum and provide your valuable pieces of info, they all help to complete the picture.

As for Mr Pye,it was a little difficult to read my fathers hand writing in one or two places in his diaries and it certainly looked like his rank was Sgt. However thinking about it I bet there were not many pilots of Sgt rank that had their own "personal" Hurricane so a Sqn Ldr certainly fits the bill better.


Many thanks for pointing this out.

QP
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Old 22nd Apr 2013, 00:20
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Hi again!
I was with 293 from formation at Blida to end at Pomigliano.
Bases: Bone, Pomigliano, Foggia and back to Pomigliano. Various Walrus detachments including Pisa and Udine. Will look up and post pics.
GREETING TO ALL 293ers, Peter.
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Old 30th Apr 2013, 00:35
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DuoSi,

I have just obtained some of the Form 540 and 541 records for 293 Sqn for the year 1944 (I will have to get the rest asap) and I see that the crew you listed in your earlier post seemed to have stayed together for most of that year at least. They certainly flew a large number of sorties but a only a very small percentage resulted in anything being seen let alone anyone being rescued. I guess thats the way it is with ASR work.

Let me know if you are interested in any details of any of your father in law operations and I will see if I can help.

Regards

QP
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Old 30th Apr 2013, 03:47
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I have just obtained some of the Form 540 and 541 records for 293 Sqn for the year 1944 (I will have to get the rest asap)
Available from the PRO at Kew. You've been there QP ?
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Old 30th Apr 2013, 16:10
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Cyflyer,

No unfortunately its a rather long way from where I am now in fact about 4000 miles. Actually I found that they are available online for a relatively small fee. Its a wonderful resource, however as the charge is per month it is all to easy to get carried away and find out that you have spent rather too much.

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Old 30th Apr 2013, 19:02
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QP

You bet I'm interested! PM on its way.

Your observations bear out what Harry told us - there was a lot more search than rescue! The many hours of searching and patrolling tend to be glossed over.

Harry said he never used his guns in anger, though there were times when they were shot at by German AA when searching near to the coast.
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Old 10th Aug 2013, 18:30
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The "un-named armourer"

Hi
My dad was visiting today and we were watching a dvd about the history of the airforce. Whilst watching, I though I'd do a bit of searching on the internet and low and behold, your pictures turned up. We were both SO amazed to see the photos of my dad the "un-named armoured" who set the plane on fire! He also has a much smaller picture of the plane, nowhere near as good as yours. My dad is Jack Colston, now 91 years of age, living in Hampshire. He was so thrilled to see all the pictures and remembered many of the faces, but not many names! ..... just one or two. If anyone out there remembers him, it would be lovely to hear from you. He remembers very fondly his time in the RAF and as children, we often heard the story about the plane. Fortunately, as it wasn't his fault he wasn't severely reprimanded, maybe also due to the fact that he was a very good sportsman. He said today that he used to be ferried around in a plane to get to the football matches! When I took him home, we found all his old photos from that time, so I will scan and post some of the better ones. A lot are very small, one of which is the whole squadron which you also posted. By the way, he is fourth from left in the bottom row on the photo in front of the plane. Fantastic!
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Old 12th Aug 2013, 15:59
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Beachy1956,

This thread continues to amaze me. Its been running for quite some time now and although it seemed to have received only a luke warm reception at the time it has brought me numerous additional photographs and also put me in touch with many 293 Sqn members. Of course they are getting fewer each year but its always good to know that some are still around.

I have been trying to put as many names to the faces in my Dads photos as possible and if your father can remember the names of any I would be extremely grateful to hear of them. As far as photos are concerned, most of the ones I have been scanned from small prints, some only about 1.5 inches square or so. Modern scanners can do wonderful things with these pictures and I am always available to scan them for you if you would like.

Of course I would love the chance to see some more pictures from 293 so I look forward to your next post.


Please give my best regards to your father, I just wish I was in the UK so that we could arrange to meet up.....


QP
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Old 28th Nov 2014, 00:30
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Vickers Warwick and Airborne Lifeboats

I've been researching airborne lifeboats for several years and was surprised that I had not found this thread before. I have really enjoyed reading the various posts and the photographs are especially interesting. Magazine articles and other forums usually include the same stock-standard shots of Warwick and lifeboats. Would appreciate seeing anything else anyone can post. Thanks again for past contributions.
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Old 28th Nov 2014, 15:16
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Aeronavale2009, Please see your PMs. I have responded.

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Old 1st Dec 2014, 20:06
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Aeronavale2009 you have another PM.

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Old 19th May 2020, 19:52
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Hi i have just discovered this thread whilst trying to research my late grandfather F/Lt Brian Hayward's RAF history. I dont know much but I have a few bits referencing 293 squadron. I have a few photos that I am sorting through and will upload soon. I have enjoyed reading your stories and now feel I'm heading in the right direction with my research
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Old 16th Oct 2021, 14:25
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George william Blackwell

Hi all I was looking in to my family tree and I found out my great great uncle was in 293 squadron, I donít have much info so would appreciate it if anyone knows anything about him? Thank you in advance.
below is what I haveÖ..


Warrant Officer 1206552 George William BLACKWELL. Royal Air Force VR of 293 Squadron (air-sea rescue) at Pomigliano, Italy. Son of Frederick William and Annie Blackwell, of Wootton Bassett, Wiltshire husband of Dorothy Margaret Blackwell, of Wootton Bassett. (Memorial has George B Blackwell) On the 20 November 1944 he was flying along with Flight Sergeant 1582607Geoffrey Cooper in a (Flying Boat) Supermarine Walrus II X9565 when it disappeared (no cause of death was found) He was aged 35 years. At rest in Bolsena War Cemetery, Italy.
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Old 19th Oct 2021, 09:26
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Walrus Accident

My father was in 293 Sqn for most of his time in N Africa and Italy (I started this thread many years ago). and I have just reviewed his diary entries for the period around the 20th November 1944, nothing is recorded on the actual day of the accident that is of any relevance, but his complete entry for Saturday 25th November 1944 is as follows;


The news was confirmed today that the four members of the Walrus which crashed off Pianosa on the 20th lost their lives. The aircraft was taking off towards the island but it struck the beach and overturned. The crew comprised of two members of the Squadron, an RNVR sub lieutenant and an army Captain belonging to the Intelligence Corp. Serviceability still poor, 2 out of seven Warwick. Station CO should have inspected the billets this morning but evidently he didnít turn up. No mail. Still keeping up my daily letter writing.

There is no mention of your relartive by name unfortunately.

Hope this helps a little.

QP
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Old 19th Oct 2021, 09:31
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Walrus accident

Further to my last posting, another entry in my fathers diary dated Monday 27th November 1944 indicates that:

Mr. Chesney received a Signal this morning requesting his attendance at Borgo aerodrome tomorrow for the Court of Inquiry into the loss of Walrus X9565.

I only posted the relevant part of the diary entry, the rest being personal and lastly Mr Chesney was the Squadron Engineering Officer at the time.

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Old 19th Oct 2021, 09:47
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Walrus accident

I keep finding more snippets. The following are the entries in the Squadron ORBs.








I hope these help your research.

Thats likely to be all I have on this accident.

QP

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