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Thread: RAF Bradford Bridge?

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    Default RAF Bradford Bridge?

    I have an entry in a log book indicating a flight to Bradford Bridge in early 1945. Does anyone have any idea, what is it?
    TIA
    Franek
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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Hello Franek,
    I am not 100% sure but Bradford Bridge could have been Yeadon Aerodrome, Bradford built before the war in the 1930's.
    Roy

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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Might be Hartford Bridge (the current Blackbushe)?
    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: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Can only offer an absence of mention summary.

    There is a Bradford Bridge (sic) at Bradford on Tone today, in Somerset between Taunton and Wellington to the West (according to Google).
    In the National Archives, the only mention of "Bradford Bridge" is in the context of the Bridge, as an ancient monument/historic Bldg file.

    Nor is it mentioned in an RAF context in
    Jefford RAF Squadrons
    Sturtivant RAF Flying Training & Support Units Since 1912
    Imperial War Museum Collections search
    AM/RAF c1942 compendium volume of RAF aerodromes/airfields (MLRS digital edn)
    Nor in the accompanying Security Released Airfields in The UK (Correct to 31st December 1944), Sheets 1 (N) and 2 (S)
    This latter gives comprehensive UK coverage of:
    RAF Airfields & satellites, RN Airfields, EFTSs, RLGs, AONs, B&GSs & ALGs + water sites.
    The legend specifically notes that ELGs are not shown on the sheets.

    Lastly, if it is at or near Bradford on Tone/Bradford Bridge, no landing ground or airfield is shown there on
    RAF Edn (War) Aviation Map of Great Britain 1:500,000 Sheet 7 SW England 2nd Edn c1940

    Bradford Bridge might, perhaps, have been an ELG: perhaps there's a listing of ELGs somewhere?

    Possibly may help to know from the Log Book
    a) the Duty entry
    b) the recorded Flight time to "Bradford Bridge" (and the full text of that Remarks col entry)
    c) Unit posted to, at flight date?
    Last edited by Don Clark; 19th September 2020 at 09:54.
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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    On 8 January 1945 S/L Kałuża, OC B Flt No 305 Sqn flew Oxford from Epinoy to Bradford Bridge. This is from a log book of a pilot who was a passenger on this flight. I would need to check Authorisation Book of No 305 Sqn if there are any details, but no access at the moment. I was checking loose ends and found the mysterious place.
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    Don Clark (19th September 2020)

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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    My guess would be Hartford Bridge. Let's see.

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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Yep, looks like Ianh and Resmoroh are both on the money.

    Fascinating. For me, that addnl info from Franek cleared the fog.
    Without that, my apologies, the connection to 305 Squadron eluded me.

    From Epinoy in the Pas de Calais to Hartford Bridge is ~170 nautical miles, well within reach of an Oxford, and Hartford Bridge was previously home to 305 Squadron, immediately before their move to A75 Cambrai/Epinoy from mid-Nov 1944.

    So the mystery was a passenger's mistaken log entry: just as well S/Ldr Kaluza didn't go looking for Bradford Bridge!

    The flight isn't recorded in the Sqn Form 540 Summary of Events for the day: such non-ops events may sometimes be recorded, but not in this case - the Squadron was quite busy with ops eg the night before.

    Sources
    Jefford RAF Squadrons
    the useful Mapping and Distance Tools at https://www.acscdg.com/
    TNA AIR 27/1672/81
    Last edited by Don Clark; 19th September 2020 at 21:06.
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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Thanks Don! Yes, the airman was quite sloppy in his writing, so the error is plausible.
    I wonder what was the reason of the flight there. If this was some support base for No 305 Sqn which vacated the airfield on 19 November 1944 or was it the nearest to London FIDO equipped airfield. At the time weather over UK and Western Europe was rather poor.
    The flight should be recorded in an Authorisation Book of B Flight No 305 Sqn. They are preserved at Polish Institute & Sikorski Museum, but I cannot access it at the moment.
    Aside, should not be RAF Blackbushe already?
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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Blackbushe: Yes, that's right Franek, for Jan 45.

    Jefford RAF Squadrons has 305 Sqn at Hartford Bridge, from 30 Oct according to Halley Squadrons of the RAF & Commonwealth (thence to Epinoy 19 Nov).
    The Squadron Form 541 Summary of Events Nov 1944 AIR 27/1672/77 confirms dep of aircraft and personnel from Hartford Bridge to Epinoy 19 Nov.
    According to Wikipedia, renamed as Blackbushe 18 Nov, that is, the day before 305 Sqn left to for Epinoy.

    I could have looked again at Security Released Airfields in The UK Sheet 2 (South), which is correct to 31 Dec 44 and shows Blackbushe, not Hartford Bridge.
    My other map sources date from 1940 & 1942.

    I imagine you're familiar with this site: https://blackbushehistory.weebly.com/ which mentions the name change but in general terms, and FIDO too...
    Well out of my familiar ground here, however, there is also a list in this FIDO piece, which interestingly includes Epinoy.
    Source not precisely stated as far as I could see.
    https://masterbombercraig.wordpress....-35-sqdn/fido/
    A bit of map checking vs the list would show whether any were closer to Epinoy than Blackbushe.*

    Also interesting to see Malcolm's www.rafweb.org listing of main Units and dates for Hartford Bridge/Blackbushe, the earliest for Blackbushe as such being 21 Nov!
    http://rafweb.org/Stations/Stations-B.htm#Blackbushe

    *From the FIDO piece list & maps in Wikipedia:
    Manston was much closer to Epinoy but further from London, vs
    Blackbushe, further from Epinoy but as UK members will surely know, much closer to London.
    Last edited by Don Clark; 19th September 2020 at 22:48.
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    Default Re: RAF Bradford Bridge?

    Thanks Don once again!
    The link about FIDO listing other airfields with the system was particularly interesting, as it provided some answers to other questions I had. I was surprised to find Epinoy on the list, though. I guess it was necessary to have all weather airfield on the other side of the Channel. Interestingly, one of the persons involved in developing FIDO was Polish F/L Dr Józef Mazur P-0168. The others were Dr Hans Reinhard(?) Fehling and Dr Paul Otto Rosin. I need to improve my knowledge on that, though.
    Franek
    https://www.facebook.com/Franciszek-Grabowski-241360809684411/

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