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Thread: 100 Sqn code letters

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    Default 100 Sqn code letters

    Hello.
    Is it possible that 100 Sqn could have used Lancasters with other code letters than HW?
    "Lancaster Squadrons" by Mark Postletwaithe gives an information that some aircraft were assigned with JA code letters (the C Flight ??).

    My question stems from a certain photo of a 100 Sqn crew that depicted them standing by a Lancaster with individual letter U and the second of the code letters - A, while the first one is only partially visible thus resembling the J letter. The mentioned crew flew mostly on ED583, so perhaps it should be identified as JA-U instead of HW-U, as I thought before?

    Any clues are welcome,
    Regards,
    Greg

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    Hi Greg,
    'Combat Codes' (Flintham & Thomas) has 100 Sqn Lanc III R5702 as 'JA-V' of 'C' Flt.
    Ian

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    Thanks Ian for your prompt reply.
    The interesting thing is that according the Log-Book of the Air Gunner of that crew, they flew in the '"B" Flight.
    So their Lancaster ED583 should be HW-U not JA-U. But the photo does not confirm it...
    Perhaps 100 Sqn had just a mixture of Lancs with code letters HW & JA that were not assigned to particular Flight?

    Greg

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    Combat codes gives both JA and FZ as carried by 100 Sq C Flight.

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    Greg,
    Did the crew just fly one or two ops in this a/c, or was it their usual mount? If the former, I suppose it could be an a/c borrowed from ‘C’ Flt for some reason. The 'FZ' example given in ‘Combat Codes’ is EE140 ‘FZ-C’ of ‘C’ Flt. It must have been one of the rare duplication of allotted unit letters since it was also used by the Wellingtons of 23 OTU, or did 100 Sqn take over the combination following the OTU’s disbandment in March '44?

    Ian

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    Ian, out of 20 sorties completed by the crew of F/Lt McGrath of ""B" Flight of 100 Sqn, 17 were flown in ED583 "U" and the last three in: ED705 "P", ED536 "O", ED786 "P". So it seems that ED583 must have been their regular aircraft.

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    Swift to Attack by Patrick Otter has a photo of ED 988 with the 100 Sqn crew of F/Sgt Leslie Naile RAAF, taken at Waltham May 1943, with FZ code

    Peter

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    In the 2nd edition of "Lancaster Squadron in Focus" by Pete Potlewaithe I have just found my Lancaster ED583 as JA-U with a nose-art of "Vinged Victory"!
    This is a really nice surprise for me as the 1st edition which I have, doesn`t have this photo included.

    Greg

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    Hi all,

    On reforming as a heavy bomber unit in 1 group in late 1942, 100 Squadron were allocated the codes "JA-" for all aircraft, with these codes first appearing in early 1943 when the reformed squadron received it's first aircraft. They were carried until late April 1943 when the codes were changed to "HW-" for "A" and "B" Flight aircraft, and ""FZ-" for "C" Flight aircraft. However, the "FZ-" codes did not last long, and were phased out in the summer of 1943 when "HW-" exclusively was used for all flights until the end of the war.

    Hope that helps :)

    Greg
    "You can take the boy out of Wales,
    But you can't take Wales out of the boy!!"

    Greg Harrison
    100 Squadron and 100 Squadron Association Historian
    100 Squadron Researcher 1917 - present day
    1 Group Researcher 1940 - 1945

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