Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: 37348 Wing Commander Peter Alexander Gilchrist DFC - 51, 35, 405 and 59 Sqns

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    329
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default 37348 Wing Commander Peter Alexander Gilchrist DFC - 51, 35, 405 and 59 Sqns

    Gilchrist was a Canadian in the RAF, and began the war with 51 Squadron winning a DFC with them in May 1940, before moving on to 35 Squadron in November 1940. He became the first Commanding Officer of 405 Squadron, being shot down on, I believe his second op with them. After evading capture and returning to the UK in July 1942, he apparently joined Ferry Command, and served with them September to december 1942. Around the end of 1943 I believe he joined 59 Squadron as Commanding Officer until about the end of the war.

    I am trying to find out what he was doing in April 1943, the time that seems to be missing. Can anyone help?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    1
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    1943 I do not know

    1967 to 1975(at least) he was the bursar at Stockport Grammar School. As a pupil there I was only vaguely aware of his existence. Now that the internet has made such info easy to find I have been amazed to read of his exploits. He must have been a very modest man , or perhaps tired of telling the stories, because the school had , until the late 1970's when a new regime swept it away, one of the very best Air Training Corps squadrons anywhere. We would have pestered him to death for his stories if we had known . I met him properly only once. He must have been involved in vetting me and the other senior NCO in the unit at the time for RAF and FAA service . After he asked a series of odd questions, like ''are you patriotic'' and ''is there anything you would not do for your country?'' (reply was ''what exactly do you have in mind, Sir?'' which got another laugh), he concluded with ''do you have any questions for me?''. I am most frustrated now to have missed an opportunity to quiz him.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Lanildut, north west Finistère, France
    Posts
    124
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Hello,

    Sorry not be able to help you with your querry. I may have the same source as you, apart for the squadron number…” He then took a role in Ferry Command before commanding 53 Squadron in 1944. He transferred to the RCAF in February 1945 and remained in the RCAF until 1962 rising to Air Commodor. (from http://www.yorkshire-aircraft.co.uk/aircraft/yorkshire/york39/k9021.html)

    I do not know what is your particular interest in W/C GILCHRIST Peter Alexander. Mine is that we investigated this loss as all those we can find in the Finistère department (Brittany), France.
    According to Roland Bohn books “raids aériens sur la Bretagne” and tome III of his “chronique d’hier”, Peter Gilchrist would have landed in some apple trees 200 meters from the crash site, then driven to a wood.
    Where you able to read his escape report, and does it give the names of the people who helped him ?. I did find a lady who had some pictures of the burial of his rear gunner, F/O Whigham.
    His coffin was covered with many many flowers, and a lot of people attended this German ceremony.
    Living in this area, Roland Bohn also did easily find back the landing place of all those who bailed out.
    I recently took aerial shots of each place, and last month, we unearthed at two meters deep, one propeller hub of Wellington W5551, and many little other parts of course.
    I do have a picture of F/O Whigham grave, if you need, but your interest may only be in W/C Gilchrist.

    Would you have ever find any picture of him or of this crew ?

    Regards
    Gildas

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •