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Thread: Engineering (?) Assistant - 283 Squadron (Air-Sea Rescue)

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    Default Engineering (?) Assistant - 283 Squadron (Air-Sea Rescue)

    Hi,

    I have recently acquired my grandfather's RAF service record and found that his trade was E/Asst in 283 Squadron during WWII. I assume this means Engineering Assistant - but can anyone shed some light on what this would have involved as part of the Air-Sea Rescue service in North Africa, Sicily and Malta?
    Would he have been back at base all of the time, or would he have flown to rescue sites too? Would it be worth me looking into the Operations Records Books, or unlikely that he would have been mentioned?

    For those interested, his name is Ronald Ball (984193) and he joined 283 Squadron on 23/3/43 and was with them until they disbanded in April 1946.

    Any help/info much appreciated.

    Ed

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    As a start point, the only E/Asst trade(s) that I can find are "Embarkation Assistant" (which I think is unlikely in this case) and "Equipment Assistant" (a Group IV trade).

    War time literature suggests that "a bright and intelligent type is required" for the trade of Equipment Assistant.

    Based on my experiences, the Operations Record Books very rarely name individuals, other than officers, unless the individual is involved in a major incident.

    Regards

    Pete
    Last edited by PeteT; 8th February 2015 at 23:14.
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

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    I think 'Equipment Assistant' is more likely. The trade subsequently became 'Clerk - Equipment Accounting'.

    Colin Cummings

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldduffer View Post
    I think 'Equipment Assistant' is more likely. The trade subsequently became 'Clerk - Equipment Accounting'.

    Colin Cummings
    This would make sense as his civilian occupation was listed as 'Clerk'. So does anyone know anything about the day-to-day work of an Equipment Assistant?

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    Ed

    The wartime literature that I have suggests that "would be" Equipment Assistants should be "men whose occupation in civil life is that of storekeeper, shopkeeper, stores clerk, warehouseman".

    This would suggest that the day to day role would be the control and management of the stock and equipment utilised by the squadron and its personnel, which I imagine ranged from paper and pencils through to aircraft parts.

    Regards

    Pete
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

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