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Thread: de Havilland Dominies of 2 Radio School Yatesbury

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    Default de Havilland Dominies of 2 Radio School Yatesbury

    I'm currently researching the training of the w/op., Colin Terras, in the crew of Lancaster ME453. He was at Yatesbury in April and May 1944 where I understand most of the training was in Dominies. I'd value any information available on both the training itself and the Domini aircraft. I've found a few bits and pieces including an amusing anecdote about the smell inside their Dominies from previous occupants suffering air sickness and of the biscuit tin kept onboard for such occasions!
    Regards
    Max
    Max Williams
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    the story of Lancaster ME453

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    Recommend Air Britain "The story of the De Havilland Dragon Types".
    As well as a lot about the aircraft, also has a section about Yatesbury and the similar No 1 Radio Operator Training School at Cranwell.
    regards Peter

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    Thank you Peter, funnily enough I became aware of that book this morning and John Hamlin's one on the Rapide family, but can I find a copy of either? Nope!!!! (There's one of Hamlin's on Amazon for £80.00, bit too steep I'm afraid)

    Post script: Just found one on eBay.....bought it!
    Last edited by Galgos; 12th July 2012 at 15:42.
    Max Williams
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    the story of Lancaster ME453

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    Max

    I have a good quality photograph of a Dominie X7398 that came from my fathers collection. The reason he had it, is because he is flying it. The link with your research on Colin Terras is that the photograph was taken either on the 30 April 1944 or the 17 May 1944, the two entries in his log book for X7398, which is very much in the foreground of the photograph, my father clearly recognisable is checking his position through an open side window, as he formates with the photographers Dominie. He had completed a tour on Hampdens at the beginning of 1942. Due to a back problem he did not return to operations. At the time of the photograph he was a staff pilot at Yatesbury, his unit, No.2 Radio School. The photograph has appeared in publications but I have never found it correctly attributed to Yatesbury and No.2 Radio School. At that time my father had stopped listing by name crew members in his log book, simply putting - Crew (6) -etc. If you have the log books of Colin Terras you may be able to place him in one of the three Dominies in the photograph or the fourth Dominie from which the photograph was taken.

    Drop me a private note with your email and I will send you what I have. It may be nice to include the photograph in your research even if only the months April and May 1944 coincide with your research.

    John

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    I was one of a group of RAAF Wags training at Yatesbury in May 1944 and my log book shows 3 flights in Dominies and 5 in Proctors.

    The pilots were :- F/Lt. de Wilde, F/Sgt.Roddie, F/Sgt. Sampson, Sgt. Povey and Sgt. Clayton. The Dominies were X7503 and X7399.
    Last edited by Jack Powers; 18th July 2012 at 01:30.

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    Cor blimey!!!

    Re Post 5, I flew with Captain de Wilde when he was with Cambrian Airways, flying DC3s around places like Manchester, Cardiff and Bristol - Lulsgate Bottom, of course not Whitchurch -. de Wilde was a Jimmy Edwards type character, big and bluff and still really keen on flying. However, he wasn't as attractive as the air hostess; Angela R?????s on whom I had a crush! Last saw her when I was a spotty pilot officer and she was leaving Cardiff airport - she didn't recognise me - broke my heart for at least five minutes!

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    Jack, good morning and thank your information. I hope you have a good memory for the following questions!!!

    1. I'm assuming the undersides of the Dominies were painted trainer yellow, can you confirm?
    2. It appears that the nose "cone" was painted a different colour to the camouflage: also possibly yellow?
    3. The excellent images that John Woodhouse sent me show evidence of an Rx/Tx set up at the aft starboard end of the "classroom", can you confirm and/or elaborate?
    4. Could you explain about the progression from Dominie-based training to Procters please?
    5. What was the target for morse proficiency that had to be achieved?
    6. How many were there on your course, and what was your course number?

    Any other thoughts or recollections about your time there from a trainee's point of view will be very welcomed.
    Regards and thanks
    Max
    Last edited by Galgos; 18th July 2012 at 07:23.
    Max Williams
    www.ordinarycrew.co.uk
    the story of Lancaster ME453

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    When my father was training at Yatesbury he flew with Mr. Hancocks, Mr. Norman and Mr Griffiths who were civilian employees of the Bristol Aircraft Company. These experienced civilian pilots were over age for R.A.F. service and were part of the “Bristol Wireless Flight” contracted by the Air Ministry.

    For morse code training a trainee sitting at a table would strive to achieve a standard set at six words per minute in the sending and receiving of morse code. The students stayed at that table until they met the criteria that was set for that table. They then moved on to another table demanding eight words per minute and so on until reaching the required twelve words per minute.

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    Thank you David, another small piece to fit into the puzzle!
    Regards
    Max
    Max Williams
    www.ordinarycrew.co.uk
    the story of Lancaster ME453

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    Quote Originally Posted by Galgos View Post
    Jack, good morning and thank your information. I hope you have a good memory for the following questions!!!

    1. I'm assuming the undersides of the Dominies were painted trainer yellow, can you confirm?
    2. It appears that the nose "cone" was painted a different colour to the camouflage: also possibly yellow?
    3. The excellent images that John Woodhouse sent me show evidence of an Rx/Tx set up at the aft starboard end of the "classroom", can you confirm and/or elaborate?
    4. Could you explain about the progression from Dominie-based training to Procters please?
    5. What was the target for morse proficiency that had to be achieved?
    6. How many were there on your course, and what was your course number?

    Any other thoughts or recollections about your time there from a trainee's point of view will be very welcomed.
    Regards and thanks
    Max
    Good morning Max. Sadly, I cannot answer any of the above after all this time and approaching 89.

    I can tell you that the Australians were doing a refresher course having graduated Wireless Operators after 6 months training at Maryborough Nth Queensland. We were all proficient with 20-22 words a minute.

    My main memory of Yatesbury was having to front and being admonished by the CO for smoking between the huts.

    Cheers, Jack.

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