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Thread: RAF personnel records insider request

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    Default RAF personnel records insider request

    Would anyone be able to recommend a receptive RAF personnel records clerk willing to at least consider bending the rules? If so, please contact me via private message.

    All I seek is the HAIR COLOR, EYE COLOR, HEIGHT, and WEIGHT of a specific RAF wartime casualty (whose service number and name I have). This vital info was redacted from the pathetic two pages of the airman's RAF personnel file sent to the man's probable daughter..."probable" being a sticky issue that, so far, has not been clarified.

    Yes, many would argue in this case that rules are rules for a good reason. I would argue that they are routinely broken for good reasons, too.

    Three times in the past the strict rules were overlooked at my request – twice by compassionate RAF records clerks, once by an active Air Chief Marshal who volunteered to cut through red tape like butter. In all three cases I obtained extra info that was of great importance to my ongoing investigations.

    Unfortunately, those who so kindly helped me in the past are no longer in positions to assist again.

    I am not looking to debate the "rules are rules" folks who, indeed, have a legitimate point of view. All I am looking for is someone to whom I can make my request…for HAIR COLOR…EYE COLOR…HEIGHT…and WEIGHT of one casualty from 1945.

    Thanks,

    Matt

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    Hi Matt

    I think the problem you will have now is that the records themselves are not stored at RAF Cranwell but in a commercial warehouse operated by TNT so when a request is made the records have to searched for by TNT staff before they are sent to Disclosures at Cranwell who make the necessary copies and then return the originals to TNT

    Malcolm

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    Thanks, Malcolm.

    Yes, the trail is longer than it used to be...but along the way there must be someone who really understands that hair color and eye color (the more important of the four pieces of evidence I seek) is hardly secret info! But then again, rules are RULES, and nobody associated with the MoD should consider otherwise...but there are those who do have a soul!

    Regards,

    Matt
    Last edited by Matt Poole; 10th October 2014 at 02:05.

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    Hello Matt and Malcolm

    In the UK getting access to any information is getting more complex. I've just found the FOI Act did not apply and some other Act applied to the release.

    Some Departments try to restrict release by using the Data Protection Act (DPA), but if the person is deceased they may then try to refuse to release. However, the Data Protection Act only applies to the living and if the person is already dead they cannot use the DPA.

    I've just been told by another Dept., to use an SAR, but a Subject Access Request did not apply either, when I read the accompanying notes, as the person had died.

    The European Privacy and Human Rights, it seems, does allow some privacy restriction, but a person's Genetic and Iris information was not collected in 1945. I should ask on what basis, was the information redacted.

    Mark
    Last edited by Mark Hood; 10th October 2014 at 00:52.

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    Hi Matt and Mark

    The point I was trying to make was that unlike the days at Innsworth the records are not held on site so a tame clerk can't work into the storeroom, have a quick look and make a note of the data. You would now need a tame clerk at TNT not Cranwell.

    Malcolm

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    Hi, Malcolm,

    Oops...time flies. I just wanted to thank you again. And I do understand that the times have changed, making it harder for a good Samaritan to help me out. But it's possible! Human eyes still look at those records. Alas, I have received no personal messages suggesting names.

    Cheers,

    Matt

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    My understanding, and I'm very happy to be corrected on this, is that the files previously held at Innsworth then Cranwell were service records which basically show an individual's postings and movements during their service, but the casualty file contains personal details such as physical features, religion etc. There were/are held by the Air Historical Branch but may have been transferred to the TNA?
    Max
    Max Williams
    www.ordinarycrew.co.uk
    the story of Lancaster ME453

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    Hi Max

    Service records also have a section in them for the recording of personal details and physical features. The problem is that they not held at Cranwell any more but in some warehouse/depository operated by TNT.

    Malcolm

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