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Thread: 1404 Met Flight, St Eval

  1. #21
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    Col,

    I doubt many people know about the on-line St Eval Book of Remembrance, so thanks for posting the link. The quote I gave was written by Stephens in 1997, at which time he did not have a PC or access to the Internet - his documents are either typewritten or in longhand.

    As the preface to the document says it includes names that were missing from the original.

    All,

    The St Eval Book of Remembrance records the loss of two aircraft in 1943, but can anyone identify the 23 July incident please?

    23 July: P/O A E Tribbeck, Flt Sgt B P Hall, Sgt C W Privett and Sgt A T Wright
    All are buried in the UK which suggests a take-off/landing accident. Tribbeck, piloting X/1404 had been attacked by a Ju88 on 23 December 1942

    The other loss, on 2 August was Hampden AT182/1404, shot down by Ju88s at 0840 hours - crew: P/O W C Liebermann, P/O A A Pottinger, Sgt W M Crosbie and Sgt J Cunningham. (Source ETBWW from Goss's Bloody Biscay)


    Raymond

    1. Amazon has four copies of ETBWW at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Even-Birds-W.../dp/075242016X , the cheapest is 40 plus p&p.

    2. The St Eval Book of Remembrance includes at least one error; Sgt Samuel C Glover (1029322) is recorded as dying on 10 February 1943, he actually died on the 12th. I'll recount the basic facts as they demonstrate the dangers faced by the crews.

    On 10 February 1943 Hudson X/1404 (Sgt Charlie Glover (Pilot), F/O Maurice W Buttler (Nav), and WOPs/AG, Sgts Ernest Winfield and Roy Gilbert) was returning from an EPICURE. Most of the return had been in cloud and, being unable to obtain a fix, the navigator was unsure of its position. Unaware the wind had carried the Hudson well east of track Glover let down very slowly on a dead-reckoning position, only to find he was over a German coastal convoy, escorted by flak-ships near Brest. Hit by the flak-ships, the port engine and then the wing caught fire. Buttler takes up the story:

    We crash-landed on the beach at Camaret-sur-Mer, and two very brave Frenchmen saved our lives by entering the blazing plane and dragging all four of us out, while the Germans stood by, just watching. Three of us survived but sadly the pilot died from his injuries and burns 36 hours later, in Brest Naval Hospital to which we were taken. Charlie Glover was buried in the local cemetery.

    The three surviors remained in hospital for three weeks before being transferred to prison camps. Buttler had been so severely burnt that he was repatriated in September 1944 and became a member of the Guinea Pig Club. (Source: Even the Birds Were Walking)

    3. The book's title Even the Birds Were Walking reflects the fact that while operatonal squadrons were grounded if the weather was very bad, Met Flights would operate when 'even the birds were walking'.

    4. If you can take some photos an email attachment would be fine by me, although I wonder if other forumites would like to see a photo of the stained glass window in the gallery. My email is monbrythATaolDOTcom.

    Brian
    Last edited by Lyffe; 2nd August 2014 at 18:18.

  2. #22
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    Brian,

    The 23 July 1943, 1404 Met Flt loss, was Hampden I P1293. The aircraft crashed in bad weather on a met flight one-and-half miles E of St. Mawgan, Cornwall.

    Air-Britain P1000-R9999 Serials/p.8

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 2nd August 2014 at 14:09.

  3. #23
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    Many thanks, Col.

    As a final comment the 2 August loss was one of the last sorties by 1404 Met Flight as it became 517 Squadron on 11 August.

    Brian

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    Brian

    Have you seen this link?

    http://www.202-sqn-assoc.co.uk/meter...-briefing.html

    From what it says in 202 Squadron's details 1404 Met Flight appears to heve been affiliated at the time of the 21 July 1942 Hudson crash.

    Raymond

  5. #25
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    Yup, I'm aware of the link, Raymond, but I'm not sure what point you are making. My Post 18 notes that 1404 Met Flight became operational during April 1941 (although trial sorties had been made the previous month before navigators joined the unit).

    The paragraph referring to the U-boat incident in August 1942 is completely wrong. Wykeham-Martin had left the unit by this time (in February 1942), and the incident was actually on 12 August 1941.

    None of the claims in respect of U-boat sinkings by 1404 Met Flight was ever verified. In fact there were no U-boat losses in Biscay in 1941 (http://www.uboat.net/fates/losses/1941.htm), whilst the four lost in 1942 were unconnected with the unit (http://www.uboat.net/fates/losses/1942.htm).

    Brian

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    I have a photo of the flight crew of Flight 1404 that crashed July 4 1942. Tom Finlay was my dads 1st cousin. I would be happy to share the photo if there is a way to insert it here. I am new to the forum. I would like to build some history about the crash and Toms military service. I have read all your posts and responses here and have learned a great deal but it appears the discussion is more directed towards another squadron. Look forward to hearing from anyone.
    Last edited by argardner; 17th October 2014 at 04:27. Reason: trying to insert a photo

  7. #27
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    the photo is now in the gallery.

    Last edited by Jagan; 17th October 2014 at 23:28.

  8. #28
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    Welcome to the forum, argardner, and thanks for posting the photo.

    Details as to how to obtain Tom's service record can be found at https://www.gov.uk/requests-for-pers...onnel-records; the very minimum the document will tell you is a list of the units with which he trained and served - we could help you decipher any abbreviations should the need arise. I'm unable to find a reference to the loss of Tom's aircraft in Even The Birds Were Walking, but I do have a four-page account of life with 1404 Met Flight between April 1941 and November 1942, written by one of the unit's navigators. Again, there's no mention of this loss (it was written 50 years after this period) but I'd be happy to copy it to you should you be interested.

    Brian

  9. #29
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    The crash on 4th July 1942 was Hudson V9111.

    Sgt M M Hazell
    F/Sgt T B G Finlay RCAF
    Sgt L Wagstaffe
    Sgt A F Bolton

    Flew into the ground in bad visibility at St.Eval, Cornwall, 14:35 hrs. Sgt Hazell rests in St.Columb Major Cemetery, Cornwall.

    Regards
    Ross
    The Intellectual Property contained in this message has been assigned specifically to this web site.
    Copyright Ross McNeill 2015/2018 - All rights reserved.

  10. #30
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    Thanks Brian. Very strange there is no account of it. I would like the 4 pager if you dont mind. I would like to know what his squadron # was. We are trying to put together a story for the Canadian Legion for Remembrance Day. Many thanks. I have a photo of his grave stone now and Steve has promised to send a photo of the Cemetery Entrance showing the Cemetery name. Many thanks
    Roy

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