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Thread: 134000 Squadron Leader Arthur William Varey

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    Default 134000 Squadron Leader Arthur William Varey

    Chaps

    I wonder if anyone can help me with my research into an RAF pilot who served on Malta in 1942.
    His name is Arthur William Varey, born in Hull on 29/3/1920.

    So far Ive found the following in the London Gazette

    Gazette Date Effective Date
    16/02/1943 1058700 Flgt Sgt Arthur William Varey of No. 126 Squadron Award
    of D.F.M.
    29/12/1942 27/10/1942 to be Pilot Officer 134000(on prob)
    04/06/1943 27/04/1943 to be Flying Officer on prob (war subs)
    17/11/1944 27/10/1944 to be Flight Lieutenant (war subs)
    30/06/1959 22/02/1959 Appointment to Commission as Flying Officer for 4 years
    09/04/1963 22/02/1963 Extension of service for one year
    25/02/1964 22/02/1964 Extension of service for four years
    27/02/1968 22/02/1968 Extension of service for four years
    21/03/1972 22/02/1972 Extension of service for four years
    04/05/1976 Extension of service to 21/08/1976
    29/03/1977 22/08/1976 Flying Officers Commission relinquished, retaining rank of Squadron
    Leader.

    I actually knew Arthur. He was the Chief Auditor for Hull City Council when I was a lowly accountancy assistant. He was a really quiet man but always ready to help us junior clerks. On some of the Gazette entries he also has the initials AIMTA after his DFM. That stands for Associate of the Institute of Municipal Treasurers and Accountants. He was also involved in the Air Training Corps being the Squadron Leader of 152 City of Hull Squadron.

    Id like to find out a bit more about his war service. I know hes listed as a Ace and Id like to find out the citation for his DFM and also which squadrons he served in as well as 126. Also, not really understanding RAF ranks that well if he was a Flying Officer why did he retain the rank of Squadron Leader in 1976. Was this due to his involvement in the A.T.C?

    Any help would be gratefully received.

    TIA

    Dave

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    Default

    Hi Dave

    I knew Arthur briefly from his days in the ATC, he was the CO of 152 (City of Hull) Sqn when I was a cadet in 298 (Hornsea) Sqn.

    At that time (1960s) Hull was a very large squadron (over 120 cadets) having been based on the old RAF Sutton site (which is now part of the North Front Shopping Centre) as a result of which he was promoted to Sqn Ldr. Afte the unit unit moved to Holderness Road, it strunk in size but he retained the rank until retiring.

    Malcolm

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    1058700 F/Sgt Arthur William VAREY London Gazette 16 Feb 1943 NA File AIR2/8935

    This airman arrived in Malta on 18 May 1942 and has shown great courage and devotion to duty during the whole of the period inwhich he was operating. He has destroyed five enemy aircraft confirmed, probably destroyed five and damed aircraft on numerous occasions. His determination to attack and destroy the enemy whenever the opportunity arose has been an inspiration to all and his cheerfulness and calm manner when in action has been wothy of the highest praise.

    As to ranks. The highest substantive rank that an RAFVR(Training) Branch officer can reach is flying officer and all other ranks above are 'acting'. RAFVR(T) officers are those who operate the Air Training Corps and the CCF RAF Sections. Varey is shown as a flying officer with seniority of 22 February 1959 in the Air Force List. As a former officer - as you show - he would have entered the RAFVR(T) as a flying officer and his commission in the RAFVR(T) would have been renewed every four years, until 60 when it's renewed annually if still serving. On retirement from the RAFVR(T) he would have been permitted to retain the rank of squadron leader, which he would have held at sometime when with the ATC, as he had completed his service satisfactorily and retention of rank as a courtesy is often highly prized by volunteers. However, his name would not have appeared in the Retired List because that does not include courtesy ranks nor those who are not permanently commissioned.

    Hope these bits help - I'm sure I've missed something but somebody will tell you what it is!

    Colin Cummings

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    Hi Colin

    That's brilliant, thank you so much. Can I just clarify, there appears to be a typo in the sentence below, is it claimed or downed?

    "He has destroyed five enemy aircraft confirmed, probably destroyed five and damed aircraft on numerous occasions"

    Many thanks once again

    Dave

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    Hi Dave,
    I think the word should be damaged

    John
    Last edited by jael438; 5th January 2013 at 13:16.

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    jael438 is absolutely right! It's 'damaged'

    Given that he served in the RAFVR(T) from 1958 to 1976, he should have qualified for the Cadet Forces Medal under the old time period rules.

    Colin Cummings

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    Default 134000 Squadron Leader Arthur William Varey

    A.W. Varey survived the crash of Liberator AL516 on October 31st 1942 when he left Malta.

    He flew with 66 Squadron from August 1943 to July 1944.

    John Engelsted

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    ..... and another survivor was 'Screwball' Beurling.

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    Default A.W. Varey

    Hi

    It's worth buying a copy of SPITFIRES OVER MALTA for more information.

    Cheers
    Brian

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    Default A, W. Varey

    Chaps

    Thanks so much for all the information you have provided. It certainly gives an insight into Arthur that he kept under wraps (like so many of his generation) when I knew him.

    Malcolm - my abding memories of the brief time I spent as a cadet in 152 (City of Hull) Sqdn are the Church Parades in Sutton village. Too much square bashing, not enough flying!

    Brian - which version opf the book is the best one to get? I've found a couple of books with the same title but different authors.

    John - any ideas on how I can find out where he went after 66 Squadron? Will the ORB show postings out?

    Dave

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