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Thread: 2 Group Reconnaissance Flight

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    Default 2 Group Reconnaissance Flight

    Hello,

    What do we know about this unit which seems to have existed for a couple of months only on Mitchells. What was its purpose and does exist any ORB? I tried to check in the NA with no success so far.

    Thanks

    Phil

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    Phil, Hi,
    Sturtivant (FT&SU 1912+) says:

    "Existed by 8/43 (appears to have been a top secret unit, possibly based at Dunsfold, or Lasham, or Swanton Morley). Aircraft: Mitchell II (FV913); Boston IIIa (BZ221)."

    Chasing that Unit through all those Stations (if it ever went to any of them?!!) and the a/c should keep you off the streets for some time!!!!!!!!!!!! Good hunting!!!

    HTH

    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hi Phil

    Taking Peters' BZ221 reference, Air Britain BZ thingies says "2 Gp Rec Flt"; so far so good.

    However there are another 29 Boston IIIa in the BZ range with the same entry. A check of the movement cards for these aircraft shows all going to "2 Group Rec Flt" from 12 MU during the 8.43 onwards period most to Hartford Bridge but some to Foulsham..........subsequently all moving on fairly quickly to operational Boston units. None of them seem to have had serious accidents or been lost during this period. So was this a paper exercise that didn't actually happen, or was "2 Gp Rec Flt" some kind of holding unit like the later 2 GSU.

    MJF Bowyer in "2 Group RAF" makes a slightly off the wall comment about BZ221 belonging to "2 Group Recce Flight". although doesn't seem to mention the unit anywhere else in the book, unlike him..........is this the source of 2 Group Reconaissance Flt ? In the same comment he refers to Mitchell FV913 as also being of this unit but says nothing further, FV913 being mentioned only as one of the most flown of its type.

    Anyone have the record cards or A/B F serials..........does it say 2 Gp Rec Flt against FV913 and FV928 ?

    The only special duty Mitchells that i can think of were the so called Ginger Flight but that was a year later.

    Interesting, good luck
    Peter
    Last edited by PeterColwill; 31st May 2016 at 16:12.

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    Peter,

    A/B FA100 - FZ999 lists the following Mitchell II's as having been first allocated to 2 Gp Rec Flt ; FV908, FV911, FV913, FV914, FV918, FV923, FV927, FV928, FV929, FV931, FV934, FV936, FV943, FV944, FV948, FV958, FV963, FV967, FV976, FW115, FW116.

    All went on to other units - a great variety of other units including operational squadrons, OTU and even the RAE / A&AEE.

    J.

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    Peter,
    Forget BZ221, its cards shows a 2 GRF between 22.08.43 and 28.08.43 before being issued to 88 Sqn. Not significative. The other Bostons are similar, BZ213 (15.10.43/07.11.43 then to 107 Sqn), BZ234 (31.08.43/09.09.43 then to 107 Sqn), BZ252 (16.08.43/30.08.43 then 107 Sqn), BZ261 (somewhere in August date not given but ACFA 29.08 to 04.09.43 then 12 MU 05.10.43), BZ264 (17.08.43/24.08.43 then 88 Sqn), BZ269 (21.10.43/07.11.43 then 342 Sqn), BZ285 (somewherein October at 2 Gpr Re Flight Hartford until 05.11.43 then 107 Sqn), BZ301 (20.09.43/02.10.43 then 342 Sqn), BZ302 (13.09.43/25.09.43 then 342 Sqn), BZ307 (20.09.43/15.10.43 then 88 Sqn), BZ312 (17.08.43/30.08.43 then 88), BZ322 (30.08.43/08.09.43 then 88 Sqn)...I checked all the others and all are like those ones, they seem to have been issued to this unit for one to four weeks no more. They are too many for so short period of time to consider 'secret' missions, so difficult to figure out what it was for.
    For the Mitchells, I've got only FR206, which served with 2 GRF between 25.12.43 and 24.03.44 then issued to 320 Sqn.

    HTH a little!!!

    Phil

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    Might not No.2 Group Reconnaissance Flight (No.2 Gp Rec Flt) actually be No.2 Group Receiving Flight or some such. The information above seems to indicate that it received aircraft before they were quickly sent to other units, a kind of GSU like suggested by Peter. What is the source for its designation No.2 Group Reconnaissance Flight?

    Best Regards

    Andy Fletcher
    Per Speculationem Impellor ad Intelligendum

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    Sturtivant (FT&SU 1912+, 2007, p.161(of my printing)) definitely has an Entry Header of:-

    No.2 GROUP RECONNAISSANCE FLIGHT

    HTH

    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    But regarding Sturtivant's book, that could be a wrong interpretation for 'REC'. I checked again the relevant Boston cards, and the transcription given is most of the time '2 Gp Rec Flt', sometimes only '2 GRF' or '2 Gp Flt' followed for the latter by a name of a station which varies. Nowhere 'Rec' is given as 'Reconnaissance'.

    Phil

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    I like the look of Andy's suggestion, as this would make a lot more sense, and would explain why so many aircraft were allotted to it in such a short time. One can only speculate what a Reception Unit (if that is indeed what it stands for) what might actually do, as many aircraft of American original had to have a large number of modifications incorporated to make them fit for TAF service, or to modify them for a new role. However this sort of work was often done by civilian contractors, or MU's even. I have seen other instances where even people in the service have misunderstood abbreviated forms of unit names. I am not really a fan of people making guesses as to what an unknown abbreviation is actually referring to, but sometimes a little bit of speculation or sideways thinking might be required to break a logjam, even if we have to continue the hunt to finally confirm the speculative unit.
    David D

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    I like the look of Andy's suggestion, as this would make a lot more sense, and would explain why so many aircraft were allotted to it in such a short time. One can only speculate what a Reception Unit (if that is indeed what it stands for) what might actually do, as many aircraft of American original had to have a large number of modifications incorporated to make them fit for TAF service, or to modify them for a new role. However this sort of work was often done by civilian contractors, or MU's even. I have seen other instances where even people in the service have misunderstood abbreviated forms of unit names. I am not really a fan of people making guesses as to what an unknown abbreviation is actually referring to, but sometimes a little bit of speculation or sideways thinking might be required to break a logjam, even if we have to continue the hunt to finally confirm the speculative unit.
    David D

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