Beaufighter T4746 – “Failed to Return” 12 April 1942

By Stephen Adler   – 12 August 2015    Addess01  Max Addess in RAF uniform, and his sister Nina in 1941               

My uncle Max Addess, a pilot with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, went missing in action on 12 April 1942 together with his observer Sergeant B.A.T. Lane when their Beaufighter T4746 failed to return to its base. It was only Max’s second operational flight. Until now, no one has been able to determine what happened during the mission, and all that has been known remained the matter-of-fact comment in the Operations Record Book for RAF North Coates, mentions the loss from 236 Squadron that, “The machine failed to return from the Operation”.


However, following research not only in the RAF records here, but also looking into the German flak and coastal defence records in the Bundesarchiv in Berlin, I believe the plane was probably shot down over Stavanger by a German flak unit and crashed into the fjord where presumably it remains to this day.

Here is the story.   Continue reading Beaufighter T4746 – “Failed to Return” 12 April 1942

Pending Review : Commanding Far Eastern Skies

Commanding Far Eastern Skies Received this book recently – to add to the  RAF in SEAC field.

The book takes an academic approach to analyzing the RAF’s operation in India and Burma. – its based on a PhD dissertation that the author had worked on.

First impressions: It may not work for everyone but for the  hardcore SEAC buffs.  It is packed with lots of interesting data points, extensive references to archival documents , details of Radar Units and Observer Corps usage etc.

But its not light reading. I will post a detailed review once completed.  In the meantime you can check out the publisher’s page on this book here.

70 Years ago today – The crash of Mosquito KB416

Seventy Years ago, Today, 3rd July 1945, De Havilland Mosquito KB416 , of No.627 Squadron crashed at RAF Woodhall Spa. The pilot Flt Lt D N Johnson was attempting to forceland after the misfiring of one of the engines.. A series of events caused it to stall and crash. Johnson perished.  But his navigator, Pilot Officer J  D Finlayson survived, thanks to a  remarkable attempt by one of the Crash Crew members on site, Corporal Stephen J Cogger, and a civilian who arrived at the site.  Finlayson was initially trapped trying to extricate himself and was ultimately helped by Cogger and others on the site.  During the rescue attempt, Cpl Cogger received burns on his face and body.

J D Finlayson Continue reading 70 Years ago today – The crash of Mosquito KB416

70 Years ago … Today…

By Matt Poole

Today is the 70th anniversary of the downing of 355 Sqn Liberator KH250, hit by AA fire during an attack on Port Blair, S. Andaman Island (the westernmost point of Japanese expansion, I believe) on 17 May 1945.

Of the eleven-man crew, only one was able to bale out: 1516012 F/Sgt Harold WYNNE. After three months of incarceration in Japanese hands in Port Blair, Wynne was executed by lethal injection on 17 August 1945 — after Hirohito’s surrender radio broadcast. Wynne and four of his crewmates, including their skipper, 177155 F/O Rowland TOTHAM, were on their first op in the Far East after completing a tour on Lancasters of 101 Sqn. Totham was awarded a DFC for his 101 Sqn tour. Continue reading 70 Years ago … Today…

Fighter Pilot: The Life of Battle of Britain Ace Bob Doe

Fighter Pilot: The Life of Battle of Britain Ace Bob Doe  by Helen DoeBook-FighterPilot

Published by Amberley Books, hardback, 288 pages, 70 photos, £25

The  book tells story of Wg Cdr Bob Doe’s RAF career. From humble beginnings he joined the RAFVR  in 1938 and then became fighter pilot. But it was not that easy and his success in the Battle of Britain was against the odds as he thought he was the worst pilot in the squadron.   Continue reading Fighter Pilot: The Life of Battle of Britain Ace Bob Doe

Corporal Felice Helga Poser – The only women Caterpillar Club member in WW2

Only one airwoman received the coveted Caterpillar badge during the war – Corporal F.H. Poser, who jumped from 600 feet while serving with a meteorological unit in the Middle East.  This is Corporal Felice Helga Poser 2025650 who was originally from Austria.

She was pax in Anson NX592 which developed problems at (or near) Deversoir. Another airwoman in the same aircraft was  2992592 LACW Lili Bankier  who also had to jump from the a/c.  Continue reading Corporal Felice Helga Poser – The only women Caterpillar Club member in WW2

The Kalahari Killings

Book-Kalahari-KillingsWritten by Jonathan Laverick, this book is about  a  true-life murder mystery of two British airmen in Bostwana–and the extraordinary trial that followed that changed the lives of an entire people.  Jonathan started this book after first learning about an incident in a 2011 post on the RAF Commands Forum.

On October 4, 1943, two RAF pupil pilots, Walter Adamson and Gordon Edwards, took off from RAF Kumalo in what is now Zimbabwe. Some time later they were forced to land their aircraft in the northern salt pans of British Protectorate of Bechuanaland. Continue reading The Kalahari Killings

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