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Thread: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

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    Default Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    Hi all,

    I have a recollection of an AG who was supposed to be posted to an "AGS somewhere in Lincolnshire" at the end of August 1943. But eventually he was not posted and passed his training later.

    I have two queestions:
    1. were there any problems with the AGS's capacities in summer 1943 and that was the reason why his trainign was delayed?
    2. was there really any AGS based in Lincolnshire in summer 1943? My research so far come up only with the Central Gunnery School at Sutton Bridge but I suppose this unit was for an advanced AGs like instructor or possibly Gunnery Leaders but not for a freshmen?

    Any comments and information regarding those two matters would be much appreciated.

    TIA

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Default Re: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    hello,

    Try 1485 (Bombing) Gunnery Flight, Fulbeck (18/12/42 - )/Skellingthorpe (23/08/43 - ), Lincolnshire.

    See: FT&SU since 1912/Sturtivant/A-B,2007/p.124.

    There was a bad accident on 18 July,1943, involving the break up (mainplane failure), in mid-air, of a 1485 Flt, Fulbeck-based Wellington III, BK235. Four high-ranking officers and two crew lost their lives. It seems there was an inquiry into this affair and the Wellingtons were grounded (Can someone confirm?). See: BCL8/Chorley/Midland Pub.,2003/p.205.

    Be interesting to see what the ORB has to say.

    Coincidentally, 780559 W/O Kazimierz FELUS PAF, lost his life when 1485 Flt Martinet I HP318, spun and crashed at Eagle, some 7m SW of Lincoln, on 6 August, 1943. See: above BCL ref, same page.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 12th November 2020 at 06:34.

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    Default Re: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    Hi Colin, thank you very much - as usually.

    The first case seems to me like a very probable cause of delay confirmed by this site:

    At Fulbeck that day in July, those RAF senior officers had died in our stead. Now all flying in the Wellingtons was cancelled for them to undergo a major inspection.

    http://www.raf-lincolnshire.info/ful...JACampbell.htm

    I understand that this may possibly influence all training units using Wellingtons at the time or only 1485 Flight?
    The other thing is that my man was supposed to go to an elementary AG training and as far as I know those Flight was doing only short refresher courses fro already trained AGs?

    Anyway this looks like a promising start!

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Default Re: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    Hi Pavel & Col.

    No.1485 B(G)F's ORB states that 'all aircraft were grounded' but does not make it clear what 'all' means. I suspect it may just have been the Flight's aircraft, but this is only my take on it. The ORB states that there was 'No flying for Gunnery Instruction' on the 19th, 20th, 21st and 22nd of July, but the entry for the 23rd states that 'Flying resumed for Gunnery Instruction in the afternoon'.

    As regards to the type of gunnery training undertaken by the Flight, the ORB makes repeated reference to 'Fighter Affiliation Practice. There is also some information about the Flight in ‘Gunning for the Enemy: Wallace McIntosh, DFC & Bar, DFM’ by Mel Rolfe (published in 2003 by Grub Street). It isn't explicit, but it does appear that the gunners being trained there were not novices.

    Interestingly, two Lancasters were loaned to the Flight between the 23rd and 28th but, on their return, five Manchesters were loaned instead. This would perhaps suggest, but not of course prove, that the Wellingtons were still under investigation. The following entry for 30th July is also interesting '1 Wellington X aircraft held by this Unit and commenced flying for Gunnery Instruction'. Bearing in mind the fatal crash involved a Wellington III, might this suggest that the Mark X was brought in to replace the Mark III because of a problem found? Maybe others on here, with more knowledge of Wellingtons, will be able to throw more light on this.

    I hope this helps. Andrew

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    Default Re: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    Just to add to this, No.51 Base ORB describes the role of No.1485 B(G)GF as follows:

    It was early recognised that physical fitness coupled with re-action training was necessary and the Base organised a special training course for gunners at 1485 B & G Flight at which air training in manipulation and sighting during the tactical defence “corkscrew” was taught.

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    Default Re: Problem with AGS capacity in August 1943 + AGS in Lincolnhire

    Hi Andrew, thank you fro valuable info!
    Well it seems to me that all aircraft of No.1485 B(G)GF may be grounded.

    So it seems to me this case may be not the real cause.

    I have found another note which may have a relation:

    https://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/documen...ber_harris.pdf

    pg 100

    In May 1943 problem a the AGSs made it impossible to provide all flight engineers with a gunnery course...


    After a careful re-check I have found that my AG was not an AG in fact but a FE waiting for gunnery training as he was supposed to be posted to Coastal Command squadron.

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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