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Air Gunnery Schools

Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
09:33:24 19 September 2006
Post:
Does anyone have details of the Air Gunnery Schools operating during the middle part of WWII? Information I have so far is:

No.1 AGS - Pembrey

No.2 AGS - Dalcross

No.3 AGS - Castle Kennedy/Mona

No.7 AGS - Stormy Down

No.8 AGS - Evanton

No.9 AGS - Llanwrog

No.10 AGS - Castle Kennedy ?

No.11 AGS - Andreas IOM

No.12 AGS Bishops Court.

I have a note which says in July 1944 there were 10 Air Gunnery Schools with 4 having a peak pupil population of 360, 5 of 240 and 1 of 120.

Which was/were the other(s)? And which were the major ones?

Grateful for any help.

Tom


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Mike4898
Time Stamp:
09:54:13 19 September 2006
Post:
My Father's rear gunner, Bob Routledge, attended No 4 AGS at Morpeth between 20th June 1943 and 31st July 1943.

See the relevant logbook entries at http://members.lycos.co.uk/mwainw4898/lancaster%20me699%20logbook.htm

Good luck,

Mike

http://members.lycos.co.uk/mwainw4898/


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
13:06:07 19 September 2006
Post:
Mike - thanks for your response. What a wonderful web site! I've not looked at it all but I did look at the logbook entries for the No. 4 AGS at Morpeth. Most interesting.

The reason behind my request for info is to do with a book I am writing about my late uncle who was the Chief Instructor at the No.1 AGS at Pembrey 6/43 to 12/44. Unfortunately his logbook and medals are missing, and so I have had to research all of his war years. It's amazing what is available and what willing help is given - in particular by members of this list.

Thanks again, and good luck with your further research.

Tom


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Peter Davies (Guest)
Time Stamp:
12:50:05 19 September 2006
Post:
Tom,

10 AGS was at RAF Walney Island (nr Barrow-in-Furness) at some stage in 1944.

Rgds

Peter Davies


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: EddieFell
Time Stamp:
12:51:21 19 September 2006
Post:
Tom

You can add

4 AGS Morpeth

5 AGS did not form and 6 AGS disbanded in Nov 42 having only formed in Oct

13 AGS was in Egypt (El Ballah)

Hope this helps

Eddie


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Peter Whitaker (Guest)
Time Stamp:
12:23:30 20 September 2006
Post:

Hello Tom,

No. 11 AGS on the IOM was commanded by Cp Capt E P Mackay, I know as I have one of his uniforms!

The IOM Aviation Museum are well worth a contact they also have one of his uniforms and much details about the schools activities during WW2, I got much information from them when researching Mackay.

Hope that helps,

Peter.


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
19:51:15 20 September 2006
Post:
Thanks gentlemen - most helpful.

Tom


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: David Layne (Guest)
Time Stamp:
18:51:12 28 September 2006
Post:
My Father was at No.9 B&G.(Bombing and Gunnery) School Penrhos from 25/12/40 to 2/2/41.


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
18:56:05 10 October 2006
Post:
Larry - I'm not sure who attended B&G schools? Were they observers/navigators whose duties were also to be bomb aimer and, when needed, to man one of the turrets or beam guns?

Tom


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
18:57:22 10 October 2006
Post:
Sorry - David (not Larry).


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Larry Button (Guest)
Time Stamp:
13:57:06 07 October 2006
Post:
According to my late father's Pilot's Flying Log Book there was also #4 AGS at Morpeth, Northumberland where he was stationed in mid 1944. After a brief period at the Sr. NCO's Course at Whitley Bay he served at #11 AGS I.O.M. for several months until June 1945. While at #4 AGS he flew Martinets - towing targets. He was always listed as "Pilot or 1st Pilot" with another listed as "2nd Pilot, Pupil or Passenger". On occassion at #4 AGS he also few a Master II on numerous occassions the duty was listed as CINE' - but I'm not sure what that is so would appreciate any comments. In my dad's log for Sept 6 / 44 the passenger is listed as F/S Tranmer with a notation "He bought it Oct 6 in Anson 1" - so it appears operating at a AGS was not without its dangers. It appears that those stationed at AGS also went to other nearby airbases as my dad has several entries on flying to Acklington from Morpeth - usually in either an Anson or Oxford where 'formation flying' is listed as the duty. While he was at #11 AGS again it was mostly Martinets & towing but again there were other duties - for example a flight to Barrow and return in Wimpy III. It appears that flying at #11 AGS Isle of Man entailed some weather problems - there are several notations of bad weather and being diverted to RNAS Ronalaldsway (where my dad also has a note "Whiz...good food for a change"). Towing was apparently not the most enjoyable duty as there's an entry "1 yr drogue towing - WHAT A RACKET!!" Unfortunately prior to his death my father didn't speak too much about his 3 years service overseas in the RCAF during the war - what I've gathered has been from his Log Book and various web searches. So I too am interested in any info on Air Gunnery Schools in general and #11 and #4 in particular...Larry Button (Dundas, Canada)


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
19:01:42 10 October 2006
Post:
Larry - I'm happy to help with info on Air Gunners' Schools as far as I can. Perhaps the best I can do immediately is to let you have a copy of the draft I have just written about my uncle at the No.1 AGS at RAF Pembrey. But ...

Could someone kindly let me know how we can do this 'off line' without addresses and e-mail addresses appearing on the list?

Thanks

Tom


RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: Peter Davies (Guest)
Time Stamp:
19:07:40 10 October 2006
Post:
Tom,

You should also be aware that the Meteorological Air Observers (MAO), before they were given their own "M" Aircrew half-brevet, had to go and qualify as AGs in order to gain Aircrew status. Much time and effort taken in acquring a skill that was hardly ever used before the Air Ministry saw sense.

Nothing ever changes!

Rgds

Peter Davies



RE: Air Gunnery Schools
Author: kinkchaser (Guest)
Time Stamp:
23:46:46 10 October 2006
Post:
Here's a bit of information on one chap that I'm getting information on,

Flight Sergeant Prentice, RCAF, Service Number R123271, attached to #4 Bombing and Gunnery School Fingal Ontario.

Flight Sergeant Prentice died while flying in a Westland Lysander aircraft which was towing a drogue for air-to-air firing. The aircraft broke off at completion of the exercise and about 15 minutes later went into a dive and hit the ground north-west of Shedden Ontario.


RE: Air Gunners' Schools
Author: Tom Williams (Guest)
Time Stamp:
19:04:21 12 October 2006
Post:
Sadly there were many training accidents and AGSs were not exempt. In Middlebrook & Everitt's The Bomber Command War Diaries (page 708) about 15% of casualties were suffered in training.

Tom