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Thread: Air Gunner training 1943

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    Default Air Gunner training 1943

    An uncle of mine trained for Bomber Command in 1943, beforejoining 61 Sqdn as mid-upper gunner (KIA 20/2/44). His training covered ARC London – ITWBridlington – AGS Morpeth – OTU Upper Heyford – HCU Swinderby.
    Some details are lost (intermediatedates, etc), so I’m left with a few queries…
    1. Training looks brief at 6½mths /28wks total? (Started 8 Feb, joined Sqdn on 26 Aug). Where might the training have beencut back?
    2. A list of postingshas Morton Hall between OTU and HCU. What might that have been about? I gather it was 5 Grp HQ - was this to sign in with that group?
    3. After Morton Hall came RAFFulbeck, probably around July 1943. I’mnot entirely clear what was done here, before (it seems) going to HCU.
    4. When would he have joined his crew? If 7-man crews didn’t form until HCU, where woulda mid-upper fit in at OTU (on 5-man Wellingtons etc)?
    5. When did a gunner get his AGbrevet?
    Any answers / clues would be reallyappreciated. Many thanks.
    Last edited by Jagan; 29th June 2014 at 23:13. Reason: Removed all the Font formatting

  2. #2
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    Just a quick 'opener' Tall-boy'. Do you have your uncle's Record of Service and is that what you are quoting from regarding dates etc?

    If you don't have the service record, it will answer most or all of your questions and will prove to be a valuable document for all other research you want to do about your uncle.

    Don't get too hung up on mid upper or rear gunners, as the two often sorted themselves out when going to an operational sqn. The flight engineer - who probably had very little actual flying experience during his training - joined at HCU as did (usually) a second gunner.

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    The vast majority of your questions concerning Air Gunner training will be answered in the book 'Glorious in Solitude' the story of rear gunners and Air Gunnery. If you look at the web site you can find out much more information. www.colinpateman.com/books as OldDuffer says many rear and mid upper gunners worked together.

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