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Thread: Bomber Command Clasp

  1. #1
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    Default Bomber Command Clasp

    Hello to everyone,

    Sorry this is my first posting, I promise I'm not just a scandalous advertiser, I do search the forums and read a lot of posts, my particular interests are 624 and 148 Squadrons and I'm currently in the process of writing a book on the SOE, and so use these forums as a (invaluable) source of information.

    Recently I was speaking to a Warrant Officer from 624 Squadron (yes he's still alive, 92 to be exact) when he informed me that his Daughter had applied on his behalf for the Bomber Command Clasp. Three months later BC replied saying that he was not eligible because he did not fly from the UK.

    I have since that time looked into the issue, there appears to be a lot of condemnation concerning the ineligibility. The Bomber Command Association and David Davis have backed the veterans, I wonder then if those of you who are involved with this aspect of the RAF could provide support by signing your name to a petition?

    You can find it at the 38 Degrees website; Link below and many thanks in advance :)

    https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitio...-command-clasp

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    Don't know much about UK eligibility.
    The only criteria for the Canadian "equivalent" Bomber Command Bar (clasp) is that the serviceman had been in Bomber Command for at least one day, air-crew and ground-crew alike.

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    Hi Grounded, Canadians would be eligible for this clasp too :)

    "Eligibility for the Bomber Command Clasp will require prior qualification for the 1939-1945 Star, with the additional requirement that veterans must have flown at least one operational sortie with a Bomber Command operational unit between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945.


    The 1939-1945 Star was awarded for six months service (a completed tour of operations), or 2 months for operational aircrew, under operational command between 3 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. A Battle of Britain clasp was awarded to the aircrew of fighter aircraft engaged in the Battle of Britain between 10 July and 31 October 1940.

    Eligibility for the Bomber Command Clasp is also extended to those aircrew who did not meet the qualifying criteria for the 1939-1945 Star due to service being brought to an end by death, wounds or other service-related disability, service marked by a gallantry award or by being taken as a prisoner of war.

    Like the Arctic Star foreign nationals commissioned or enlisted into the British or, the then, Dominion Air Forces will also be eligible, provided that they did not receive a similar award from their own Government."

    http://www.parliament.uk/briefing-pa...d-how-to-apply

    Lee

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    Note that the rules say nothing about flying from the UK? Unless of course I'm missing something?

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    Surely the important issue is whether 624 or 148 were part of the established strength of BC during the stated dates. I know nothing of the history of these units, but as both Sqns appear to have operated overseas for the duration of their wartime existence, I would suggest that they did not belong to BC, rather MAAF, BAF etc. Whilst they flew bomber aircraft, so did certain units in Transport Command, and these personnel don't qualify for the clasp, UK based or otherwise.

    While I recognise absolutely the part these personnel played during the war, the award of the BC Clasp was intended to right a perceived wrong for BC aircrew and should not, in my opinion, be stretched to a wider audience. It is an unfortunate fact of medallic life that someone who thinks they should qualify for an award, will fall outside the award criteria and as such, will always feel aggrieved.

    I agree that the regs don't mention anything about flying from the UK, but as BC operated in the main from the UK, I think it is virtually a given.

    Rgds

    Jonny
    In fond memory of Corporal James Oakland AGC (RMP), killed in action in Afghanistan on 22 October 2009. Exemplo Ducemus.

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    Could the difficulties now being exposed, have their origins in the title: 'Bomber Command Clasp'?

    This suggests that it is confined to a specific group of geographically collocated people. It does not (and I make no judgement) include people who were employed on bombers outside north west Europe.

    Like so many other things, sloppy staff work and setting of criteria with no thought for precision, has led to great offence being caused to people in the twilight of their years - unforgiveable but predictable, once the decision to award a clasp rather than a medal was taken.

    Colin Cummings

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    Colin,

    Medal or clasp, it was always going to offend someone in the ex-service community. I think that 'precision', i.e. the award of the BC clasp and the Arctic Star, for very specific groups, properly corrects the failure to recognise those people. Unfortunately, it was always going to create a sense of 'why them and not us' from other vets.

    Too little, too late in my opinion.

    Rgds

    Jonny
    In fond memory of Corporal James Oakland AGC (RMP), killed in action in Afghanistan on 22 October 2009. Exemplo Ducemus.

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    BOMBER COMMAND CLASP

    Hi
    I have just received the Bomber Command Clasp awarded to my Brother, he joined 10 Squadron at Melbourne Yorks 4 6 44 and lost his life on
    17 6 44 on his 2nd opperation I applied for the Clasp when It was first Issued, I was amazed It came In two Jiffy Bags and the postage was
    3 35,,
    Regards
    Harold Dummer

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    articlewiki:
    In reply to the eligibility criteria. "... Dominion Air Forces will also be eligible, provided that they did not receive a similar award from their own Government..."
    The RCAF "similar award" is also in the form of a "Clasp" but it is known as a "Bar" in Canada.
    RCAF members who were in Bomber Command are eligible for the "similar award" from the Canadian Gov't.
    I haven't heard of any RCAF members of Bomber Command receiving the UK Bomber Command Clasp.

    Presently, I'm working on the service profile of a (ground-crew) Corporal who finished WW2 in No.415 (Swordfish) Sqdn.
    In the summer of 1944, N0.415 Sqdn was transferred from Coastal Command to Bomber Command.
    I'm waiting for service records from Ottawa which may show that the 415 Sqdn Corporal was transferred to Bomber Command.
    If he was transfered from Coastal Command to Bomber Command then he will be eligible for the Canadian Bomber Command Bar.

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    So far as I can ascertain, 148 and 624 Squadrons were never on the Bomber Command Order of Battle in World War Two. It therefore follows that no-one who served with those squadrons would be eligible for the Bomber Command Clasp.

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