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Thread: LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

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    Default LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

    Hello All,
    Does anyone have a copy of TNA AIR 81/10678 (it’s not been digitised!). It is a list of “multiple casualties” (RAF/RAAF PoWs) taken at Fort Sidi Azeiz on 26 Nov 1941. There are several Sidi Azeiz. But this one is a few clicks SSW of Bardia, Cyrenaica. I think it must be LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 3140′2″N 2453′7″E, or GE 31.667247 24.885743. I’ve been to Bardia in the mid-50’s on an El Adem Desert Rescue Exercise. We went to many LGs on the way there/back. I must have been to Fort Sidi Azeiz/LG-148, but I don’t remember it. It must have been a fort built during the Italian colonisation period? But what happened there on 26 Nov 41 I cannot find out. Does anybody know? There are no current soil marks I can see, on GE, of an airfield at that lat/lon!
    And – if “multiple [RAF/RAAF] casualties” were taken one assumes it was a fairly big operational airfield? And – if this file has not been digitised, have these PoW casualties been “included-in” to existing PoW lists, or do they remain “included-out”? I have a distinct memory of seeing some drawings on a wall of a house in Bardia supposedly done by Australian PoWs – but I can’t remember what they were (age/infirmity!!).
    You’re taking me back 67 yrs!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Can anybody help?
    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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    Default Re: LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

    Hello,

    A few of the RAAF airmen (+ 1 RAF Officer), who went into the bag on 27 November, 1941:

    BAILEY, Wildon George. F/Sgt. 6719. Fitter. Born: Lismore, N.S.W. 5/9/1919. 451 Sqn RAAF. Captured Sidi Azeiz. 27 November, 1941.

    He was a ground crew member, who was captured whilst attached to the Fifth New Zealand Brigade, but was later freed by Allied forces at Bardia on 2/1/1942.

    Also captured were Sgt John Thomas FISHER RAAF (9917), Cpl Keith Allan TAYLOR RAAF (5151/A31383), LAC Arthur BAINS RAAF (21219), LAC Jack Noel WARD RAAF (5394) and an RAF officer, F/Lt George Michael CARMICHAEL RAF (33339), and six RAF other ranks. Carmichael was transported to Italy by submarine, but the remainder were freed in the British advance.

    BAINS, Arthur. LAC. 21219. Ground Staff. Born: Chester le Street, England. 22/4/1916. 451 Sqn RAAF. Captured Sidi Azeiz. 27/11/1941.

    He was a member of ground crew attached to the Fifth New Zealand Brigade and captured in the Afrika Korps advance. He was later freed in an Allied advance at Bardia 2/1/1942.

    FISHER, John Thomas 'Bill'. F/Sgt. 9117. Born: Coolamon. N.S.W. 27/12/1917. 451 Sqn RAAF. Captured Sidi Azeiz 27/11/1941.

    He was part of a ground crew contingent captured at Sidi Azeiz on 27/11/1941, but later released during the Allied advance. Such an occurrence was not unknown with the fluid state of desert warfare.

    TAYLOR, Keith Allan. W/Off. 5151/A31383. Born: South Melbourne, Victoria. 451 Sqn RAAF. Captured Sidi Azeiz 27/11/1941.

    A communications NC, he was captured on the ground during an Axis advance. He was released at Bardia on 2/1/1942, following the Allied advance.

    WARD, Jack Noel 'Tubby'. W/Off. 5394. Born: Newry, Victoria 25/12/1917. 451 Sqn RAAF. Captured Sidi Azeiz 27/11/1941.

    He was a member of a group of captured ground crew who were released at Bardia on 2/1/1942, following the British advance.

    F/Lt George Michael CARMICHAEL 33339 RAF - see LG.

    See:
    Wingless A Biographical Index of Australian Airmen Detained in Wartime.
    Robert,T V (Dr.)
    Ballarat:Author,2011 (with corrections)

    No.451 Sn RAAF ORB 27/11/1941 - SIDI AZEIZ.

    SIDI AZEIZ attacked by enemy column at about 1030 hrs. F/Lt CARMICHAEL, Lt MAIDES, ten airmen and four AIL O/R's captured. Cpl T. P. FARR* W/Optr, killed by machine gun fire.

    * https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/fi...2116079/THOMAS Patrick Farr/

    NAA: A9186, 136 Page 50 of 615.

    At Sidi Azeiz the advanced party of 451 was taken into the armed camp established by the 5th New Zealand brigade, the pilots sleeping beside their machines. The expected attack came early on the morning of the 27th and part of the Australian maintenance party was overrun and captured*, but the four Hurricanes took off in the dark without any kind of flare path in an attempt to observe and report progress to the New Zealand troops.

    * Two officers , 10 airmen and 4 attached army rankers were captured and taken to Bardia. Major A. D. Molloy and Captain A. P. Fleming of 1 (Aust) Air Support Control were also captured but effected a daring escape after being held for several days.

    See:
    Air War Against Germany & Italy 1939-1943.
    Herington,John.
    Canberra A.W.M.,1954.
    p.205.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 17th September 2020 at 07:32.

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    Default Re: LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

    Col,
    VMT for that. I'll check them out. Things were clearly fairly chaotic in them parts at those times. Reminds me of the UK (County?) Regt who reported their daily Italian PoW total as "2 acres of Officers and 5 acres of ORs"!!!
    Tks again.
    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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    Default Re: LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

    For the purists, there is what looks suspiciously like a series of triangular runways at GE 31.709092 24.994154 (not far from the previously given location of Sidi Azeiz). But I doubt if they would have needed 12,000 ft of runway in the early 1940s? This looks very similar to the modern Gamal Abdul El Nasser Airbase built on the old RAF El Adem. Work may have been in progress here when Gadaffi met his demise and was subsequently not proceeded with?
    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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    Default Re: LG-148, Sidi Azeiz Airfield, 26 Nov 1941

    I tried to post a thread on the Airfield Research Group (ARG) about LG 148 but their security (and I'm a registered member, and my ID/PW let me in to their site) defeated my attempts to do anything. IT at it's very best?
    Peter
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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