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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

Old 10th Mar 2018, 13:13
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Originally Posted by Danny42C
Tr.9er (#11869),
Tr.9 - That dates you! I gather that you are one of the Navigating fraternity: I'm sure we were on the four-stud VHFs when I crawled back in under the wire in '49. Let's have a bit of CV. Meanwhile, this is absolutely the right place for your Dad's story; the name does not ring a bell with me (but sometimes that holds true of my own name!)
Danny.
Sorry Danny but I must disappoint you. After his demob my dad trained as a Chartered Accountant and I followed his example in due course. I met my wife during my training and she too is a Chartered Accountant.
I've flirted around the edges of flying. My wife and I lived in Perth, Australia shortly after we married on a two year work exchange and I started flying lessons there. My first instructor in 1982 was a former Vulcan pilot by the name of Adrian Lamborne "a bit of rudder and they're like a fighter", my TIF was in a Cessna C172 and all my lessons were in Piper PA38 Tomahawks. From what you have all said earlier it looks like I'd have been scrubbed in WW2 as it was 12.3 hours before I went solo. I'm sure like all others before me, I remember thinking "Well this is easy" as I took off and climbed to circuit height; at which point the less welcome thought entered the mind "Oh bugger, I've got to get this thing back on the ground myself this time!". And the talking check list has disappeared. I made a nice landing and we went for a cuppa. By the time we came home to UK I had 29.9 hours total and 9.2 hours solo in my logbook and was on the cusp of starting cross countries but hadn't taken any of the exams. Then in the UK we started a family and that was that until in 2007 I decided to start again only this time with the theory first. I passed all the exams at evening classes and then allowed myself to become side tracked with tallship sailing and motor racing. All a bit of a waste of time? No, not a bit of it!

And my user name is a reference to those funny Mk9 Spitfires you're not quite sure about!
I had a 30 minute flight in ML407 in 2011. Would you like to hear about it?

Last edited by Tr.9er; 11th Mar 2018 at 12:27. Reason: Remove duff gen
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 13:36
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Danny42C
I've now read further into this thread and come across the discussion of RAFVR numbers being 7 digits (your post #5765 page 289).
The envelope containing my dad's "A Message of Welcome" is addressed to 1850386 A.C.2. Hibbert, N.F., (R.A.F.V.R.).
From this I assume he would have volunteered at the earliest opportunity, would that have been on his 18th birthday in August 1942? And what does A.C.2 signify? Lowest of the low I presume!

Best wished
Jeremy
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 13:38
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Welcome Tr.9er

"my TIF was in a Cessna C172 and all my lessons were in Piper PA28 Tomahawks."

Never heard of a TIF - please enlighten me.

Just a quick nit-pick if I may (this readership don't take kindly to "duff gen").
So for the record - a PA28 is the Cherokee - the Tomahawk is a PA38.

Delighted to see a new contributor 'tho!

Ian BB
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 15:28
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Tim00


"Rhodesian Air Trg Gp" from 13-Aug '43 and then from 2/2/44 "26 Elementary Flg Trg Sch" as a Staff Nav (with RATG in the GRP. column - not sure what this means?).
MPN11 has pointed out what RATG is in his #11876. As regards "26 Elementary Flg Trg Sch" (26 EFTS) this was located at Guinea Fowl not far from Thornhill, Gwelo (Gweru), in the "Midlands" of S. Rhodesia during WW2.
Later Guinea Fowl was used as a relief landing ground for 5 FTS (RAF Thornhill) aircraft doing circuits and bumps whilst I was based at RAF Thornhill between 1951-53.
WT
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 15:41
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Originally Posted by Ian Burgess-Barber
Welcome Tr.9er

"my TIF was in a Cessna C172 and all my lessons were in Piper PA28 Tomahawks."

Never heard of a TIF - please enlighten me.

Just a quick nit-pick if I may (this readership don't take kindly to "duff gen").
So for the record - a PA28 is the Cherokee - the Tomahawk is a PA38.

Delighted to see a new contributor 'tho!

Ian BB
Got me bang to rights there!
Drat. And that was after looking it up to make sure I didn’t give out ‘duff gen’ too. Double drat.
TIF was Aussie for, now then, was it “trial instructional flight” or “ trial introduction flight”? Can’t remember. Anyway, you get the idea.
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 15:47
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Danny42C
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Tr.9er (#11882),

An A.C.2. is an "Aircraftman, Second Class". or "erk", and as you surmise, the lowest form of life in the RAF and general dogsbody. Prewar and in the early part of the war, they were using up the last of the six-figure numbers. When I came in in Dec 1940, they'd got up to 1132877.

The six-figure men mocked our numbers (" that's not a number - it's the population of China! - "Get some in!" - and "when I joined, we didn't have numbers, we all knew each other!".

Of course, if you were commissioned, you got a new number.

Both numbers will stay with you till you die. (Is that true for Alzheimers sufferers, btw?)

Danny.
 
Old 10th Mar 2018, 18:11
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Originally Posted by Danny42C
Tr.9er (#11882),
An A.C.2. is an "Aircraftman, Second Class". or "erk", and as you surmise, the lowest form of life in the RAF and general dogsbody. Prewar and in the early part of the war, they were using up the last of the six-figure numbers. When I came in in Dec 1940, they'd got up to 1132877.
The six-figure men mocked our numbers (" that's not a number - it's the population of China! - "Get some in!" - and "when I joined, we didn't have numbers, we all knew each other!".
Of course, if you were commissioned, you got a new number.
Both numbers will stay with you till you die. (Is that true for Alzheimers sufferers, btw?)
Danny.
Here's a handy list of RAF service numbers from the year dot
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 19:00
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Finding out what my Aunt did in the war

A question if I may be so bold.

My Mother's youngest Sister was in the WAAF during the war. I would like to find out what she actually did, where she was stationed and anything else that is available. I believe, although I'm not certain, she had something to do with photography. She certainly had a great interest, which she said she'd gained during the war.

I have no idea what her service number was, although I do know her D.O.B., where she was born, parents and such. After the war, she settled in Epsom, Surrey, and became a nurse, then Sister, in a mental hospital there. She died of cancer in 1973.

Do you think I have any chance of finding out anything?
Where do I start?

Any help much appreciated.
OSLF
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 10:16
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OffshoreSLF ... we have a Thread on the subject, which led us to this >>> https://www.gov.uk/get-copy-military...-elses-records
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 11:56
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Just wondering what was the shortest time a Bomber Pilot became the Captain from joining up?

My Uncle was in A Flight Ninth Course Photo No 1 Squadron RAF Aberystwyth 25th Feb 1941 ( presumably photo was at the end of the Course?? ) I presume this was an ITW course?

On the 10th Jan 1942 some Eleven months after Course Photo he was a Wellington Captain with 40 Squadron as a Flying Officer with a Sgt Co pilot and came down off Wilhelmshaven and spent the rest of the war a POW.

PS Clearly if trained overseas it would have taken longer especially as according to books I have read the vast majority returning to the UK required further training due to weather in UK being so different.??

PPS As a retired Pilot myself I am amazed how these young pilots with so little experience suddenly were expected to launch of in charge of a 2/4 engine heavily laden bomber in the middle of the night.

Last edited by thegypsy; 11th Mar 2018 at 15:38.
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 16:57
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Whilst scanning "The Sprog" I've been counting up the base personnel, it is quite a number.

Lead by Group Captain P.G. Chichester there was a large base contingent of
SHQ (Station Head Quarters?) 33
SHQ Signals 21
Sick Quarters 18
Dental Section 3
Pilots 50
Bombing Flight 38
Flying Squadron HQ and Wireless Operators 42
Equipment Section 30
Fire Section 6 plus 11 locals
Maintenance Wing HQ 11
Communications Flight 26
MT Section 19
Maintenance Wing - A. Major Repairs 36
Maintenance Wing - B. Electrical Section 30
Maintenance Wing - C. Instrument Section 20
Maintenance Wing - D. Minor Inspections Riggers 34
Maintenance Wing - E. Station Workshops 26
Maintenance Wing - F. Minor Inspections Fitters 29
Maintenance Wing - G. Major Inspections Fitters 40
Maintenance Wing - H. Major Inspections Riggers 34
Photographic Section 8
SAWAS Canteen Committee 14
Navigation Flight - Snags 29
Navigation Flight - Blue 29 -2 duplicates = 27
Navigation Flight - Red 28 -2 duplicates = 26
Armory 42
Native Military Corps 4 plus 37 locals
Canteen Staff 8
Safety Equipment Section 8
Technical Reference Library 4
Service Police 16
Cooks and Caterers 20
Meteorological Section 7
Pigeon Section 4 plus 1 local
Which gives a total complement of 785

From October 1940 to publication in March 1945 3,000 pupils had been trained and more (including my dad) would complete their courses before closure.
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 17:24
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Originally Posted by MPN11
OffshoreSLF ... we have a Thread on the subject, which led us to this >>> https://www.gov.uk/get-copy-military...-elses-records
MPN11 - Thanks very much for the link.

However, when I go there it says I need the person's full name, date of birth and service number. I have her full name, date and place of birth and her parents names, but not her service number.

Her surname is not all that common, and her father's first name is even more uncommon, so I don't know if this would help find her service number.

Where should I start looking?
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 21:13
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many RAF pilots who, with very limited experience, will have been coping with a pair of powerful Bristols in the middle of the night
a nice way of putting it
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Old 12th Mar 2018, 09:23
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OffshoreSLF
I suggest you complete the form with as much information that you can glean and send it off, the worst would be no answer but you may strike lucky. Be prepared for a wait, my request took about 2mths. Good luck
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Old 12th Mar 2018, 21:47
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Originally Posted by FantomZorbin
OffshoreSLF
I suggest you complete the form with as much information that you can glean and send it off, the worst would be no answer but you may strike lucky. Be prepared for a wait, my request took about 2mths. Good luck

Thanks FZ.
I'll try and see what happens.

OSLF
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 15:25
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Roving - many thanks. Sorry for delay, been laid low by a virulent tummy bug.


My friend has the year books, and he brother has Father's log books. The Record of Service was in a format indecipherable unless one had a bit of knowledge.


To cap it all, went to see friends in Devon on the way back to France, and my mate suddenly suggested as I was ex RAF I might like to see his Grandfather's logbook.


Chilling to see for the first time the red closing stamp "killed in action". His Grandfather was one Plt Off Robb, observer/bomb aimer to Wg Cdr HG Malcolm and died with him and the gunner on the operation that won Malcolm the VC. more research to do!
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 20:51
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Starter for 10
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugh_Malcolm

http://ww2today.com/4th-december-194...-in-v-c-attack

and
http://sussexhistoryforum.co.uk/inde...ic=6293.0;wap2
(Yes, my neck of the woods)
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 07:49
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an interesting comparison photo. Same basic design with variations to suit role, manufacturer, etc.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
Wirraway and Harvard.jpg (59.0 KB, 56 views)
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 09:44
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Icare - many thanks. Had seen Wiki article but not the others
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 12:51
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seafury45 (#11900),

To my shame, I have to ask: What are they? ... Basically, Harvards, of course, but......

Interesting to see that in the "fighting" version ("D"), the gunners found the last (curved) sections of the "glasshouse" a nuisance, took them out and dumped them.

In our Vultee Vengeance in Burma we had the same problem .... Same solution!

Last edited by Danny42C; 14th Mar 2018 at 12:52. Reason: Typo.
 

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