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Thread: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

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    Default Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    I am trying to find information about my Grandfather. He received a CBE but we don't know why and he never talked about it. He was not a pilot but was a Squadron Leader at the end of the war. The only information we received verbally was that he worked with the Polish Airforce in the war. I have found a couple of photographs of him - one dated March 1943 where he was MSFU Speke. There is also another photograph with this of No. 255 Squadron where he has written the names of all the men on as if he knew them but he is not on this photograph and I can't find any record of him there. This photo is undated.

    I found the record of him having his CBE in the newspaper and also a record of him in one of the old lists where he is down as Administration/Special Duties.

    My father remembered that he flew around the country a lot when he was young but would not say where. My father has now died and I would be interested to find out more.

    Thank you for any help.


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    Default Re: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    Alibrook, Hello,

    Charles Brook (all from the London Gazette)
    10 Oct 1941 Cmd (from civilian) A/Plt Off(p) RAFVR A&SD Branch (108663)
    10 Dec 1941 Regraded Plt Off(p)
    1 Oct 1942 Promoted Fg Off
    1 Jan 1946 Award MBE (as A/Sqn Ldr)
    10 Feb 1954 Relinquish as Fg Off (retaining Sqn Ldr)

    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: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    So a confirmed MBE and not the higher CBE. The recommendation for his award may still be extant in the file AIR 2/9130 (Victory in Europe Non-Op Commands Awards) at Kew. Unfortunately, the Op Commands awards file was destroyed post war, so it all depends on which Command this officer served with.
    In fond memory of Corporal James Oakland AGC (RMP), killed in action in Afghanistan on 22 October 2009. Exemplo Ducemus.

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    Default Re: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    Thank you so much for your response Peter -What is Fg Officer and do you know how I can find out which Squadron he was leader of? This is all new to me and I don't know much about the ranks etc.

    I really appreciate your research - I have been googling his name and did not find this.

    Best wishes

    Alison

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    Default Re: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    That is interesting - it was probably an MBE and not a CBE - I don't know how to find which Command he served with and I can't seem to find much online. Thank you for this information. It was never really mentioned in the family but I have become interested after watching some documentaries on PBS America!

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    Default Re: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    Pilot Officer, Flying Officer and Squadron Leader are ranks, indicating level of responsibility or command.
    They apply across all RAF Branches, but they don't mean occupation, nor that they qualified as a pilot...

    That is, a Pilot Officer (and so on up the chain) may not be a pilot, even in the General Duties Branch (the Branch for operational flying personnel, briefly).
    In GD Br he may well be a Navigator or even a Wireless Operator/Air Gunner or other aircrew classification, and indeed flying on operations.

    So, a Squadron Leader may not be a pilot: he will have responsibilities of command but not necessarily as Commanding Officer of a flying Squadron
    And a Flight Lieutenant may not be in command of a Flight in an operational Squadron, a Wing Commander, even GD Branch, may not be in command of a Wing...

    Certainly in the (non-flying duties) Admin and Special Duties Branch, as Acting Squadron Leader (substantively Flight Lieutennt) he'll have responsibility at some functional level, but not (regularly) flying as aircrew on operations with a Squadron. Some A&SD men had earlier qualified as aircrew, however, for one reason or another, transferred out of the GD Branch.

    AS&D Br functions include:
    Administration, Intelligence, Ops Room, Photographic, Defence, Mech Transport, Marine, Catering.

    For the units he was posted to (and hence the Command/s he was under) you need his Officer's record of service, a 2 page summary broadsheet proforma completed mostly by hand in RAF abbreviations.
    The colour photocopies cost 30 pounds, there's a long wait, and you need to carefully complete the quite detailed forms and send in with your cheque - details here
    Personnel and Casualty record requests
    https://www.gov.uk/government/collec...ervice-records

    You'll likely want help interpreting the record, which though sparse can give a pretty good picture of service, once unravelled.

    MBE
    Definitely an MBE (Military), as noted by Resmoroh:
    Awarded as Acting Squadron Leader, 1946 New Year's Honours, London Gazette: https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/37407/page/41
    Meritorious, albeit his only award.
    Last edited by Don Clark; 10th January 2021 at 20:30.
    Toujours propos

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    Default Re: Charles Brook 108663 Administration and Special Duties RAFVS Worked with Polish

    Thank you - that is very helpful. I will have a look at getting the copy of his records.

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