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Thread: Leipzig 19th Feb 1944

  1. #1
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    Default Leipzig 19th Feb 1944

    Gents,

    Can someone please tell me what squadrons the following groups dispatched on the Leipzig operation.

    No.1
    No.4
    No.5
    No.100

    Thanks in advance

    Steve
    No.218 (Gold Coast) Squadron Association Historian
    No.623 squadron Research

    ~~IN TIME ~~

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    Steve

    I can give figures for 78 Sqn and 35 Sqn, 76 were not operating, can't comment on the other 4 Gp Sqns.

    78 Sqn sent 23 aircraft. 3 Aircraft lost. Early returns include - one returned early with Gee failure, one returned due to failure of port outer, one with starboard inner u/s, one with starboard outer u/s, one with oxygen failure.

    35 Sqn sent 17 aircraft but had 2 early returns and lost 4 aircraft

    76 Sqn - not on operations

    Regards

    Daz

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    Steve

    From BC Losses 44 (Chorley), the following squadrons lost aircraft on that raid;
    7,9,10,12,15,35,49,51,57,61,77,78,83,100,101,102,103,106,156,158,166,207,408,419,426,427,428,429,431,433,434,460,463,4 66,514,550,576,625,626,630 and 640.
    I've underlined those that I know of from the groups you mentioned.

    Wasn't this the heaviest BC loss up to that point of the war?

    regards

    Mike

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    Hi Steve,

    From my notes - for 1 Group, aircraft were detailed as follows:

    460 - 24; 103 - 14; 101 - 22; 625 - 17; 576 - 14; 12 - 15; 100 - 17; 550 - 16; 626 - 12; 166 - 22 (Total - 173)

    The Group Summary next day was:
    1 Group

    Leipzig

    Took off 170 Lancasters
    Primary 136 "
    Last resort 6 "
    Abortive 9 "

    Primary – TOT 03.33 – 04.36 hrs

    [TOT was 04.00 and the raid duration should have been 03.58 – 04.19 hrs – the ORS Interception and Tactics report 34/44 repeats the 1 Group figures above of 03.33 – 04.36 hrs.]

    This time LEIPZIG was the selected target, and this Group contributed 170 Lancasters out of the total force of 823 despatched from the Command. Broken cloud was encountered over the North Sea and as far as Hannover, from which point 10/10ths cloud was encountered with tops between 7-10,000ft. The target was also covered by 10/10ths cloud layer and visibility above the cloud was reported as good. Owing to the fact that the actual winds were considerably lighter than forecast, all crews were ahead of time. Some aircraft made several dog-legs en route, while others spent a considerable time in the target area waiting for the P.F.F. marking to start. Reports indicate that the marking may have been two or three minutes early, but an excellent concentration was achieved, and most of the crews who were carrying H2S found that this navigation aid confirmed the area marked by the P.F.F. With so many aircraft in the target area when the marking started, the attack developed very quickly and very shortly after zero hour the glow of many fires was seen reflected through the cloud. An excellent concentration of marking was maintained throughout the attack, most crews choosing to bomb on the release point flares, although a few were able to see the T.I. markers reflected through the cloud. A quarter of an hour after the attack was scheduled to commence, dense clouds of smoke were reported rising up to the heights of our aircraft. Some crews who were forced by their early arrival to make vary large orbits and as a result bombed after the last markers had gone down, reported a very large area of concentrated fires. Several crews bombed before zero hour by means of their navigational aids.

    Very few searchlights were reported in the target area and only moderate heavy flak in barrage form was encountered. The light flak was chiefly aimed at the release point flares. Four aircraft report damage by flak.

    Enemy night fighters were very active and although the major concentration was in the target area, considerable opposition was encountered between the Dutch coast and Hannover.

    Last Resort

    Texel (engine trouble), Leeuwarden airfield (oxygen failure), defended area NW of Berlin (damaged by fighters), Emden (engine trouble), Groningen (engine trouble), SE of Emden (nav instruments u/s).

    Nine aircraft abandoned mission, one due to crew sickness, two due to a navigational error, and the remaining 6 due to various technical faults.

    17 of our aircraft are missing, nothing having been heard from them after take off:

    2 from 460 Sqn (1st op and 7th op)
    3 from 625 Sqn (1st; 11th; 12th)
    1 from 100 Sqn (11th)
    2 from 103 Sqn (1st; 10th)
    1 from 576 Sqn (2nd)
    3 from 166 Sqn (4th’ 7th; 1st of 2nd tour – Sqn Leader)
    1 from 550 Sqn (6th of 2nd tour, plus 2nd Pilot)
    1 from 101 Sqn (18th)
    2 from 12 Sqn (5th; 13th)
    1 from 626 Sqn

    Two aircraft collided over base on return; four members of the crews were killed and five injured.
    Last edited by Richard; 13th January 2017 at 11:50.

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    ...and from the Spilsby ops log:

    57 d20 o20 er2 m1 c-
    630 d19 o17 er1 m2 c2
    207 d20 o19 er2 m2 c1
    44 d18 o18 er3 m- c-
    49 d15 o15 er2 m2 c-
    619 d19 o19 er- m- c-
    61 d16 o15 er1 m2 c1
    106 d15 o15 er1 m1 c-
    463 d18 o18 er1 m1 c-
    467 d19 o18 er- m- c2
    50 d15 o16 er1 m- c-
    9 d20 o20 er2 m1 c-

    Tot: d214 o209 er16 m12 c6
    (d = detailed; o = offer; er - early return; m = missing; c = cancelled)


    Let me know if you need any more info, there's quite a bit available for this op.

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    Steve

    From the 4 Gp ORB

    "ATTACK ON TARGET AT LEIPZIG

    17 a/c of 10 Sqn Melbourne, 18 a/c of 51 Sqn Snaith, 14 a/c of 77 Sqn Elvington, 21 Sqn of 78 Sqn Breighton, 17 a/c of 640 Sqn Leconfield, 20 a/c of 102 Sqn Pocklington, 16 a/c of 158 Sqn Lissett, 17 a/c of 466 Sqn Leconfield and 13 a/c of 578 Sqn Burn were detailed.

    102 a/c attacked primary, 1 a/c attacked unidentified target in Germany. 18 jettisoned their bombs, 1 brought bombs back and 13 did not start.

    Casualties: 2 a/c of 102 Sqn, 1 of 51 Sqn, 4 of 77 Sqn, 3 of 78 Sqn, 2 of 640 Sqn, 2 of 102 Sqn, 2 of 158 Sqn and 1 of 466 Sqn are missing. 1 a/c of 158 Sqn crashed at Catfoss.

    Results

    Owing to cloud conditions the great majority of aircraft bombed on release point flares. These were reported well concentrated. Towards the middle of the attack there was a period during which no release point flares were seen over the target area, though some had been visible on the approach. At this time the attack seemed to have scattered some what owing to the lack of flares, but concentration improved as the flares thickened up once more. Considerable glow of fires noted by aircraft las on the target and was visible a long way off on the homeward route. On these grounds there is some justification for optimism as to the success of the attack.

    North of Hanover and the vicinity of Stendal show the heaviest concentration of aircraft shot down. While flak accounted for a considerable amount of losses both en route and at the target, the majority have fallen to fighters. In all there were 17 combats reported, some enemy aircraft were claimed as damaged and 1 JU88 definitely destroyed."

    Regards

    Daz

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    Daz,

    Great mate, thank you kindly.

    Steve
    No.218 (Gold Coast) Squadron Association Historian
    No.623 squadron Research

    ~~IN TIME ~~

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    Steve. Sent you an e-mail
    Richard

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