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Thread: ORB's for OTU

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    Default ORB's for OTU

    I have a great uncle that attended OTU 19 (Kinloss) between October 27, 1941 to February 25, 1942. I submitted an estimate for both AIR 29/662 (the ORB) and AIR 29/663 (Photos of pilots, observers, and air gunners). I was quoted 10 units at 3.50 for the latter and 20 units at 3.50 for the former. This is the first time I've had to get an estimate and had a couple of questions. Is a unit an image? How much information am I going to glean from the ORB? When filling out the estimate form it asked for particulars. I used these dates because that's all I had. Can the search be narrowed down further? I don't mind spending the money for photos because 3 of his crew members graduated at the same time, but 75 pounds is about $150.00 Canadian and I'm wondering how relelvant the information will be?

    Thanks for any help you can provide.

    P.S. I was under the impression that most aircrews where formed at the OTU's. From the squadron ORB (214), it only lists four of the six crewmembers as arriving from Kinloss. No mention was made of the other two. What would have been a likely scenario then? Two members of an existing crew being asked to leave? Just wondering...

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    Mike,
    Do not accept the estimate, as i have a copy of the ORB in question. I will have a look through it later, when i get in from wok, but i must warn you, that it's very unlikely that it will mention you great uncle by name, as only Course numbers are mentioned usually, and about the only time that an individual would be mentioned, is if he was killed or injured. Can you let me have his name though, just in case.
    Alan.
    Last edited by AlanW; 6th August 2014 at 06:40.

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    Mike
    With regard to your P.S. The two men not at OTU should be the Flight Engineer and an Air Gunner who joined the crew at the Conversion stage, either at a Con Unit or a Squadron Con Flight I would guess in your man's case. This was the result of going through training in a five man aircraft, eg a Wellington or Whitley that had neither an F/E nor a Mid Upper Gunner position. When the 4 engined heavy bombers came into being it was decided they needed a Flight Engineer to manage the engines for the pilot and an extra gunner for the Mid Upper turret. So when the five were posted to a heavy squadron or a heavy Conversion Unit they had to pick up the two extra men, the F/E would have done his training at a School of Technical Training and the Gunner could come from a Gunnery School or he might already be on the squadron strength but without a crew for one reason or another.
    Rgds

    Pete

    Edit, Just realised you say 4 out of 6 crew not 5 out of 7, so my interpretation may be incorrect
    Last edited by pete102; 6th August 2014 at 08:42.

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    Alan,

    Thanks for the offer. My great uncle was Sgt William Robert "Bob" West. He and his crew were part of 14 Wellingtons detailed to bomb the Hanau area on April 1st, 1942. His plane along with six others were shot down during the mission (only one man out of the 42 survived). I’m primarily interested in my Uncle, but would also like to know a little about rest of the crew. Here is the listing of the crew from the detailed ORB:


    Sgt A.A. Ferguson 1110578 Pilot Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Sgt William Robert "Bob" West R/76959 Pilot Royal Canadian Air Force
    Sgt V.P.W. Wheaton 933154 Observer Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Sgt D.O. George 1164451 Wireless Operator/Air Gunner Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Sgt H. Chilvers 1112050 Wireless Operator/Air Gunner Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Sgt N. Ramsbottom 1115867 Air Gunner Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    West, Wheaton, Chilvers, and Ramsbottom all came from the 19th OTU together. Ferguson and George were already on station.
    I do have one other request. He and his brother, Donald Edward “Ted” West, R/15732, Pilot, were in the same flying school graduating class (No. 15 SFTS, Claresholm) together. I don’t have Donald’s service records yet so I’m wondering what the chances are of them sailing to England together and being assigned the same PRC and OTU.

    Pete,

    Thanks for your input. I went back to both the detailed and summary ORB and paid a little more attention. It turns out that Sgt. Ferguson was the co-pilot/flight engineer (?) for the squadron leader’s crew. He must have been asked to take the ‘freshmen’ under his wing. I would assume that this was a promotion to be given his own plane but how would he have felt having to fly with a “green” crew? Sgt. George also turned out to be a transfer from another aircrew. There were about two weeks of rainy weather prior to their first flight together, so I think George’s original crew were in hospital with the cold/flu.

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    Hi Mike

    My fault, I'd assumed he would have gone on to heavies after OTU but in early 42 there were obviously still plenty of Wellington squadrons around.
    I'm confused about who did what in a Wellington tbh, such as bomb aiming, navigating, manning the front turret etc and not forgetting that the Mk Ic had a waist gun too, although six crew members seems to be the norm for that type.

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    Guys,

    I know someone who may have details (they are now aware of this post) on this and l also have quite a few photo's of 19 OTU so l need to have a looksee. Prior to these dates, 2SFTS was a regular supplier to 19 OTU.

    It was quite normal for an experienced pilot to take on a new crew and give them some experience before let then go flying on their own and this usually meant another member joining them to to serve one of the other functions. Bit of a poisoner chalice in hindsight.

    Regards,

    Nick
    KenFentonsWar.com

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    Default ORB records - details contained in

    Hello

    I have some images of the 27 OTU ORB from 1943 that includes a nominal roll of No.38 course.
    Details include service number, rank , name, [form]1250 number (I.D. document I presume), previous unit and RELIGION.
    Disclosure of the last must surely breach data protection laws.
    I struggle to get RAF Personnel records to disclose an airman's trade!

    Cheers

    Mike

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    mikesmith4397 if you still haven't located photographs from the 19 OTU course your men were on drop me an e-mail (e-mail address is available if you click on my user name at the top of this post - or something along those lines!) I have more or less all the course photographs from 19 OTU. I thought I had them all but have recently realised that there are one or two missing.

    I'm happy to have a look for the men you are looking for. If you know the course number they were on all the better if not the start and end date of their time at Kinloss would help heaps.

    Thanks to Nick Fenton for pointing me in the direction of this post and apologies for not getting to it sooner.......been away, there are still some places in the world that you can go and not have the internet thank goodness!

    Linzee

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    Can anyone tell me where I can locate ORBs for OTUs. I am specifically looking for ORBs for the 4th OTU from January 1942 to June 1942.

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