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Thread: What is this object from a bomber?

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    Default What is this object from a bomber?

    I'm hoping someone may be able to identify this piece of wreckage spotted by 41 Squadron whilst on an ASR patrol on 26 March 1944 looking for a bomber that had ditched 17-20 miles south of Beachy Head. It was described in the ORB as "a white bottle shaped object about the size of a 45 gallon drop tank" at the location assumed to be where the bomber went in, and described in an Intelligence Report for the same patrol as a "large white object shaped like a petrol capsule 2/3 ft out of water and 14'' in diam[etre]".

    Any suggestions on what this object may have been?

    A longshot bonus question: Any idea which bomber it *may* have been at this location and on this date?

    Thanks
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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    Hi Steve
    As you asked for the a/c with a longshot I'll reply with one!
    From Chorley Bomber Command Losses Vol 5 there is an outside chance that the a/c could have been a Lancaster of 97 Sqn. ND440 is reported to have been hit by flak whilst attacking Berlin on the night of 24/25 Mar '44 and to have been obliged to ditch betwen Calais and Cap Gris Nez.The F/E died but the remainder of the crew were picked up by a German vessel and became POW. It seems just about possible for floatable items of wreckage to have drifted to about 20 mls S of Beachy head and it would not be unreasonable for SAR ops to have still been going on 24 hrs after the ditching.The ops for 25/26 Mar seem to have been into N France but the 3 recorded losses crashed in the UK or in France,all over land. The period covered the attacks on German transport and military targets in N France and Belgium in the run up to D-Day, as well as attacks on Germany, and these also involved tha USAAF.
    Regards
    Dick

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    Thanks Dick, I appreciate that.

    Earlier that morning, the pilots had also noted, "1 TO 2 MILES OFF THE COAST AT DIEPPE STRETCHING A DISTANCE OF 15 MLS WERE SMALL AREAS OF WRECKAGE AND POSSIBLY BODIES FLOATING ON THE SEA", although on that occasion they stated they were looking for a Marauder.

    If not the same aircraft, it certainly lends weight to your suggestion that the wreckage could have floated that far.

    Regards
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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