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Thread: Gloucester Gauntlet Mk II

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    Default Gloucester Gauntlet Mk II

    i am trying to trace which Squadron the Gloucester Gauntlet MkII serial number K5313 belonged to. I have film of a display in 1937 with this aircraft in it. I think it could be 19 Squadron from Duxford as the display was for the opening of Marshall's Airfield in Cambridge.

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    Gloster (the name had changed by then) Gauntlet K5313 was delivered to 54 Sq 20.6.36, then to 66 Sq 24.5.37. At what date in 1937 did Marshall's open? It did not serve with 92 Sq.

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    K5313 was issued to 55/66/615/ & 616 Sqdn before going to Finland in December 1939. 54 Sqdn swopped their Gauntlets for Gladiators in April 1937 whilst 615 & 616 sqdn were after the time frame for 1937
    No 66 Sqdn were based at Duxford with the Gauntlet from 26/6/36 to August 1938 so I would say 66 sqdn was your best bet. However are you mistaken with the date of the photograph. Marshalls airport didnt open until 1938

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    It was definitely 66 Squadron because of the snake insignia (66 Sqn symbol) on the tail of the aircraft. Also in 1937 Sir Kingsley Wood Secretary of State for Air opened Marshall's Airport (I have him doing it on movie film). However in 1938 a major flying trainIng school for the RAFVR was established by Marshall and over 600 RAF pilots were trained before the battle of Britain and Marshall had trained over 20,000 aircrew by the end of WW2.

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    Further in formation re 66 Sqn: I was not far off thinking the Gauntlet K5313 belonged to 19 Sqn as 'C' Flight of 19 Sqn was used to re-form 66 Sqn at Duxford on 20 July 1936 as it had been disbanded on 25 October 1919. They were expanded to full strength and were flying Gauntlets until they started to be re-equipped with Spitfires from October 1938. However they received their first Spitfire K9790 in August 1938

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    I now have the serial numbers of two other Gauntlets in the display which are K7847 and K7845.

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    K7845 Delivered to 46 Sq 4.11.36; 24MU 24.3.39
    K7847 Delivered to 66 Sq 9.11.36. Collided with K7871 near Duxford 3.8.37, SOC 11.10.37
    However,
    K7849 Delivered to 66 Sq 13.11.36. Collided with K7871 and crashed Royston Herts 24.11.37 SOC 24.11.37
    K7871 66 Sq 22.4.37 Collided with K7849 near Duxford and crashed 24.11.37 SOC 3.1.38

    Something wrong with the listing for K7847, I suspect.

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    Further to my original post, here is a link http://www.archivealive.org/video/index/id/88 to part of the film made by my Father and Grandfather in 1937. A lot has been cut out, but it does show the 66 Squadron Gauntlets and interestingly as my father was really concerned about gas attacks. He filmed the gas dropping mechanism on a Handley Page Heyford and shown taking off and in flight an old Handley Page ww1 0/400 as well as the Heyford. Not all the film is shown and much of the gas attack sequence is missing.

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    I presume this means an old film clip of an 0/400 rather than it appearing in the same frame? It might be worth checking if a Hinaidi survived that long, though I doubt it. (OK, I'll go check the Air Britain serials.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Boak View Post
    I presume this means an old film clip of an 0/400 rather than it appearing in the same frame? It might be worth checking if a Hinaidi survived that long, though I doubt it. (OK, I'll go check the Air Britain serials.)
    You are right it is not a Handley Page 0/400 I made a mistake, but it is a Vickers Virginia with the lowered front gunner position. These aeroplanes were still being used by the RAF at this time, mainly for parachute training. You can make out the parachute symbol on the nose. The film was all shot on the same day, I was mainly concentrating on the Gaunlets. See the following link: http://historyofwar.org/articles/wea..._virginia.html
    Last edited by Researchingreg; 11th May 2015 at 10:56. Reason: Additional information

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