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Thread: 471203 - Unaccounted Airmen - 03-12-1947

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    Default 471203 - Unaccounted Airmen - 03-12-1947

    Hello,

    471203 - Unaccounted Airmen - 03-12-1947

    From Henk's List -

    UK
    ARMS, James Thomas - AC2c - 3102341 - RAFVR.
    Abbey Park Cemetery, London.
    GURD, Dennis Gerald - AC2c - 4022884 - RAFVR.
    Salisbury ( London Road ) Cemetery, Wiltshire.
    HILL, Oliver Francis - AC2c - 2354520 - RAFVR.
    St. Teath ( St. Thetha ) Churchyard, Cornwall.

    From CWGC -

    Nil.

    Alex

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    Hello

    UK
    ARMS, James Thomas - AC2c - 3102341
    HILL, Oliver Francis - AC2c - 2354520 - both registered Salisbury.

    The deaths of Arms and Hill were reported in the Western Gazette of December 12th 1947. It reports that they were killed when a stack of 20lb American fragmentation bombs exploded at a bomb dump at Grovely Wood, between Wilton and Dinton, near Salisbury. Hill died in Salisbury Infirmary some six hours after the explosion, and Arms (recorded in the article as Arnes), died instantly. They were part of a working party sent to collect salvage - pieces of paper, small bits of wood etc. There was an order that they should not to touch the explosives unless detailed to work on them, and it could not be ascertained what had caused the explosion.

    GURD, Dennis Gerald - AC2c - 4022884 - also registered Salisbury. Various newspapers at the time reported that his body was found on the main Salisbury to London railway line.

    Regards

    Simon

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    Alex/Simon, Hi,
    At GE 51.093509 -1.933865 there are a very large number of non-natural, but ‘regular’, soil/crop marks. This might indicate some considerable earth disturbances in the area at some time? There is also possible evidence of at least one railway spur siding into the area from the (still existing) Salisbury to Sherborne line at Barford St Martin. Not many USAAFE Units in that area during WW2? Were we using American bombs?
    The railway and/or munitions dumps experts may know?
    And, as a minor footnote, there is still a firework factory at Dinton!!
    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Last edited by Resmoroh; 20th September 2019 at 12:19. Reason: QSD
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hello All,
    The area/place definitely has a “history”. 33 (at least) of the Australian Infantry (various Btns) buried (CWGC headstones) in local Churchyards between 7 Jan 1917 and 5 Oct 1918. Looks as if there might have been a Camp in the area which was used as a Staging Post for Strine troops on their way to the WW1 Front?
    Only WW2 Cas is a Gnr E C Penfold (d. 19 Oct 1946) from 6 Bty, 2 S/light Regt.
    Where do I go to find the WW1 history of the place – and it’s possible use(s) in WW2? Not trying to hi-jack the thread, but just discover the broader history of the place/event!
    TIA
    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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    Peter

    If you use Google to search for "Grovely Wood" WW2 it comes up with a few results about its use in the last war.

    A similar search using WW1 brings up a couple of cycling guides, one of which states that "12 military camps were built in the parish during the First World War and occupied by Australian soldiers, one in a field near Naishes Farm and earthworks can still be seen from the air."

    It also states that in the churchyard of St. Edith in Beverstock you can find "the graves of 32 Australian soldiers from the First World War who died locally from diseases like influenza, penumonia and bronchitis."

    See: https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-war-d...9%2BChurchyard

    An example is 4333 Pvt. George William Percy Albertson, who died on bronchitis at the Military Hospital at Fovant, Wiltshire on February 26th 1917.

    Regards

    Simon
    Last edited by wwrsimon; 20th September 2019 at 15:29. Reason: added details from cycling guide

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    Hello,

    No.11 MAINTENANCE UNIT.

    Formed 20.3.39 ex No.11 ED at CHILMARK (later Explosives Storage Unit, then Ammunition Storage Depot, to Ammunition Supply Depot 1.12.63) (sub-sites at Charlton Horethorne 14.4.45 - 22.6.48; Dinton, Long Newton by 10.39 & 31.7.45 - 15.1.50; Elm Park Quarry, Gastard, Hawthorn, Wilts 6.3.42 - 18.8.43; Groveley Woods (Reserve Ammunition Depot) to USAAF 9.7.42. also to 15.1.50; Ridge Quarry, Corsham 1.1.50 -31.7.54); 19.6.39 to No.42 Group; Closed 27.1.95.

    See:FT&SU since 1912/Sturtivant & Hamlin./A-B/2007/176.

    American Bombs.

    During 1944 large quantities of American bombs were used. These were the ANM 44, 58 and 64 (500lb) and ANM 59 and 64 (1,000lb). The 58 and 59 were SAPs while the others were equivalent to the British MC range. These bombs were quicker and easier to fuse and tail than their British-made equivalents, and gave good service, but the American box-type tails drastically reduced the number which could be carried in British aircraft.

    See:
    The Bomber Command Handbook 1939-1945.
    Falconer,Jonathan
    Stroud:Sutton Publishing,1998.
    pp.82 & 84.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 20th September 2019 at 15:38.

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    Further to my last (and thanks to Simon):

    From https://unusual-encounters.blogspot....t-bunkers.html

    A quick look on the internet hints that the nearby farm (Oakley Farm - GE 51.108655 -1.993573) served as an RAF Ordnance Depot and Head Quarters during WW II and that Grovely Wood was used by the US Air Force as an ammunition depot. Grovely Wood was seemingly chosen for this purpose due to its proximity to main line rail stations such as Wylie. Apparently, bombs and shells were left stacked out in the open in the woods, and the less robust munitions (e.g. fuses) were stored in hundreds of small huts that were dotted around the wood. Given the military history of the site, presumably the bunker is related to this WW II heritage..

    That would seem to sort it out? The WW1 Strines in the area would be a bonus!

    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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