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Thread: Vickers Wellington - checking some units which flew them

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    Default Vickers Wellington - checking some units which flew them

    Hi there,

    I am currently trying to build a month-by-month unit-by-unit table of units which operated Vickers Wellingtons. I have compiled what I think is a reasonably solid table using (mainly) the Air Britain publications and Jefford's book on RAF Squadrons backed up by web resources.

    However, I have now found more information which indirectly indicates a few others which are not on my main list, and I wonder if anyone can confirm that the following units flew (or did not fly) Wellingtons, and over which period they operated with the unit:
    138 Squadron (I think this squadron did not operate Wellingtons)
    161 Squadron (may have used at least one Wellington)
    782 Squadron Fleet Air Arm (Communications squadron, so may have had one or more Wellingtons)
    785 Squadron Fleet Air Arm (Torpedo Training Unit, so Wellingtons unlikely?)
    1 OTU
    24 OTU
    25 OTU
    61 OTU
    62 OTU
    78 OTU (almost certainly flew Wellingtons in the Middle East, but dates unknown)
    111 OTU (Bahamas based, mainly Liberators, use of Wellingtons probably unlikely)

    Thanks for any confirmation of the above.

    Also, does anyone have a reliable printed resource on OTUs? The only information I can find on them is online, with considerably poorer coverage than for operational units.

    Many thanks for any help you can offer - and Merry Christmas to all!

    Regards,


    Iain.
    Last edited by irmurray; 21st December 2011 at 16:37.

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    Iain,
    Can confirm 138 did not use Wellingtons, will get back later on 161, but can you tell me the approx period you think they used a Wellington
    Last edited by AlanW; 21st December 2011 at 18:11.

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    Hello,

    No.138 Sqn used Wellington IA P2521 (which was also used by No.161 Sqn., as MA-P). No.161 Sqn also used Wellington I L7772.

    For more on No.138 Sqn and Wellington P2521, see: Flights of the Forgotten/Merrick. pp.26,33 & 45.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 21st December 2011 at 23:23.

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    Hi chaps,

    Many thanks for the prompt replies.

    The web source I found (a forum post) merely mentioned that 161 Squadron "briefly" flew an ex-DWI Wellington - and P2521 was certainly one of the DWI types, so that's seems more than a coincidence. I have no more information on dates, though.

    I note that 138 and 161 Squadrons both operated from Tempsford, another notable coincidence.

    Will check out the Merrick book - I see they have it in my local library.

    Thanks for any more details anyone can uncover for the others in my original post.

    Regards,


    Iain.

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    Col,
    Thanks for the serials, but it's like looking for a needle in a haystack trying to locate this Wellington in the 138 ORB, hand written and not the usual format as other ORB's.

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    Iain
    There is or was a Wellington Museum/Gallery in Moreton in Marsh , Gloucestershire .
    This is my limited information -104 sqdn RAF in Italy flew Wellingtons until ,I think, mid Summer 1944 ?

    These books about RAF squadrons based in Italy might be worth a look ---
    Maurice Lihou's books " It's Dicey flying Wimpies around Italian Skies" & "Out of the Italian Night -Wellington Bomber Operations 1944-45"
    "Wellington At War " & "The Wellington Bomber " by Chas Bowyer
    "Sweeping the Skies " by David Gunby
    "Through Darkness to Light " by Patrick Macdonald

    Anne

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    Hi all,

    Thanks for the further information. Now have Merrick's book in my hand, and it has a photo of ex-DWI P2521 in 161 Squadron markings as MA-V, stating it's first SIS sortie was 8th April 1942.

    No index for aircraft types, so guess I have to read the book to get all the Wellington references!

    I have the Bowyer books, and it was a list in one of those that got me started on this quest ... though the list is not complete nor without error, from what I've found elsewhere.

    Thanks again.

    Regards,


    Iain.

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    Hi Ian,
    Even with the latest information given, i cannot find any trace of this aircraft on or around 8th April 42. The 161 ORB records only the following ops/aircraft for April 42......

    1/2nd, "Easter" Lysander.
    1/2nd, "Mackeral" Whitley.
    24/25th, "Nelson" Whitley.
    24/25th, "Whitsun" Whitley.
    26/27th, "Nelson" Whitley.
    26/27th, "Jellyfish" Lysander.
    27/28th, "Bridge" Lysander.

    Alan.

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    as far as I know No. 111 OTU was using only B-25 Mitchells and B-24 Liberators

    see for example:
    http://www.aircrew-saltire.org/lib140.htm

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Iain,
    Assuming that you wish to include non-operational and post war units in your list I suggest checking with your library to see if they can supply a copy of RAF FLYING TRAINING AND SUPPORT UNITS SINCE 1912 (Sturtivant and Hamlin), preferably the second edition.
    All sorts of users of the Wellington, for example on opening the book at random, I see 216 Group Communications Flight operated NA738. And, yes, 111 OTU did have Wellingtons, after they returned to the UK.
    As you mention,the Royal Navy also operated Wellingtons; only a few but they served with host of units, look for a copy of FLEET AIR ARM AIRCRAFT 1939 TO 1945 (Sturtivant and Burrow) for details.
    Ian

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