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Thread: 100 Sqn ORB?

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    Default 100 Sqn ORB?

    Dear all

    I have been asked about a late-war 100 Sqn FTR. Would anyone please have a copy of the ORB that they could look up for me? I need to check an a/c serial / code.

    Sorry this is a bit vague at the moment but I haven't got the papers with me so am trying to remember as best I can. As far as I can recall it was in Feb 1944, but I can supply more details anon, when I get home.

    Greg - if you see this, I noticed that you reappeared on a post here about the Lancaster Archive site. Haven't seen your banter on the board for ages! Where ya been? I wonder if you could maybe help me with this one please? Wasn't 100 Sqn one of 'yours'?

    Regards

    Ian

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    Hiya buddy - yes, 100 is one of my lot, so fire away!! The ORB is right by my side too, so i can whizz an answer back toy you!!

    I've been out of the circuit for a while buddy, but i think i'm back on track now. If only the same could be said of the Welsh rugby team..... ;)
    "You can take the boy out of Wales,
    But you can't take Wales out of the boy!!"

    Greg Harrison
    100 Squadron and 100 Squadron Association Historian
    100 Squadron Researcher 1917 - present day
    1 Group Researcher 1940 - 1945

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    Default 100 Sqn

    Hi Greg

    Great to hear from you again after all this time. Hope all's well. Didn't you have a baby girl? I guess that could be why you've been absent? :-) Happens to us all!

    Anyway, my question concerns P/O Sidebotham and crew's loss on 20/2/1944 (Leipzig raid). I've seen the post about this on the TOCH forum, and the Chorley entry. But apparently, according to the son of one of the crew, there is a small query about whether the a/c they were in was in fact ND571 / HW-N, or a different a/c, (serial ?), HW-U.

    The crew's usual a/c was 'U' but they had to take that to Binbrook on the afternoon prior to the raid for some minor maintenance. Returning to Grimsby, they found that they were to take a new Lanc ('N') to Leipzig instead of 'U'. But then they had a few problems with the new Lanc just before the raid and it's not clear which a/c, in the end, they actually took.

    So the question is: is it certain from the ORB - or any other documents - which a/c they actually took? Is it certain that it was ND571 / 'N', or could it possibly have been 'U'?

    I guess the ORB might settle this by listing either a/c, ND571 or the other one ('U') after this date. (And, out of interest, does the ORB give a serial no for 'U'?)

    So not too difficult a question I hope, and shouldn't take too long to check out.

    Many thanks in anticipation of hearing from you.

    Cheers

    Ian


    ps And I didn't mention the rugby once ...

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    Hi again Ian,

    Yes, we did have a girl, then another, and then two more lol Four daughters now, what hope have I for a pension plan by way of a Welsh rugby-playing son?! We had to move to a bigger house too, with a bigger mortgage, so now i have even less money than i did before!! Some health problems and some complications after that bike accident i had a few years ago played more of a role in my absence, but you know me, never down for ever :D

    Anyway, onto business. The ORB confirms ND571 HW-N for this raid. This is backed up by an unofficial diary i have a copy of, kept by the man in the signals caravan. It doesn't give any serials, but it does notate the take-off time of "N-Nan" which matches the ORB.

    Now, this is where it gets rather interesting. ND571's replacement after she was lost was ND644, aka "Naughty Nan". She went on to log 115 ops with 100 before being lost in Feb 1945. I've just pulled the F78 for ND644 out of my files and guess what date she was delivered to 100 Squadron? 20th of Feb 1944. So you can see why my interest was piqued when i noted that your crew had been told to take "N", a "new aircraft". Now according to my records, ND644's first Op was a few nights later on the 1st / 2nd of March, to Stuttgart. One thing is reasonably certain though, Sidebotham and crew didn't take ND644 on the 20th. It is all intriguing though isn't it :)

    As for HW-U, at the period in question it was being worn by JB557. She operated against Berlin on the 30th / 31st of Jan '44, with P/O Jones and crew. Over the target, she was heavily damaged by flak, which affected the port inner and the hydraulics. The crew had to wind down the bomb doors by hand, and were subsequently late on the bombing run, and overshot the AP. According to the F78 for her, she was Cat AC on the 31st, but repaired on base (possibly Binbrook?) but delivered back to 100 Squadron on the 19th of Feb. I wonder if it's possible that during the transit from Binbrook to Waltham, the aircraft developed some problems as a result of the repairs that had been made, so they took her back to Binbrook (or even left her at Waltham) and took ND571 to Leipzig instead?

    As an aside, the next time JB557 operated was to Augsburg on the 25th / 26th of Feb.

    Not quite the definitive answer you were looking for, I know, but i hope it adds something for you :)
    "You can take the boy out of Wales,
    But you can't take Wales out of the boy!!"

    Greg Harrison
    100 Squadron and 100 Squadron Association Historian
    100 Squadron Researcher 1917 - present day
    1 Group Researcher 1940 - 1945

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    Default 100 Sqn

    Excellent, many thanks for that Greg. I'll pass that on to my enquirer.

    LOL about your expanding family circumstances. Have you discovered what causes them yet? Should've called it quits after No.2. :D Better get saving for the weddings!

    Thanks again

    Ian

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    Default 100 sqn

    Greg
    I am trying to compile a list of planes in the sky on the night of the loss of my grandfathers plane returning from Homburg 20/21 July 1944
    I have complied the "losses" so far from most squadrons, would you be able to advise the list of planes that took part from 100 Sqn and any other that you may have ORB's for?

    100 SQN LANC
    Target Courtrai
    --- LANC taking part H:M
    DEPART RETURNED OVER TARGET AT NOTES: Contact/FTR etc
    HW-R ND413 23.55 Aylesby Lincs Return 3 Inj 5 Killed



    Kind Regards
    Tony

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    Hi Tony,

    Aside from your Grandfather's Lanc, the following all operated with 100 on the night in question: -

    LM585 HW-S
    LL898 HW-L
    ND644 HW-N
    ND388 HW-G
    ME828 HW-F
    LM175 HW-D
    LL915 HW-V
    LM622 HW-P
    LM644 HW-B
    ND326 HW-J
    ND356 HW-O
    LM346 HW-C
    JB557 HW-U
    PB172 HW-W
    JB603 HW-E

    All attacked the primary target between 01:50 and 01:56.

    However, the 100 Squadron ORB lists the target as Courtrai, not Homberg. There is a significant distance between the two, so I don't think it's just a mix-up of target names (which does sometimes happen in ORBs). I haven't got access to my Bomber Command War Diaries at the moment, or my copy of the 1 Group ORB, so I can't cross-reference the target for 100. Do you mind me asking where you got Homberg from?

    All the best,

    Greg
    Last edited by greg; 9th January 2018 at 22:05.
    "You can take the boy out of Wales,
    But you can't take Wales out of the boy!!"

    Greg Harrison
    100 Squadron and 100 Squadron Association Historian
    100 Squadron Researcher 1917 - present day
    1 Group Researcher 1940 - 1945

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    Default

    Hi Greg,

    BC had two targets. The synthetic oil refinery at Homberg and the marshaling yards at Courtrai.

    Regards,

    Dave

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    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the input, I've just had a look at the Night Raid Report for this night, and actually there were four main raids that night. The oil refineries at Bottrop and Homberg were attacked, and at Courtrai the railway marshalling yards and railway triangle were attacked in two separate attacks. There were also a number of spoof and Gardening operations conducted.

    Rather annoyingly, the Night Raid Report doesn't give the numbers of aircraft, or Groups, attacking Bottrop and Homberg. The attack on the railway triangle at Courtrai was an all-1 Group affair, marked by PFF. The attack on the marshalling yards was a joint effort by 1 and 5 Groups, again marked by PFF. There would have been enough aircraft from both 1 and 5 Groups left over to have mounted an attack on Bottrop and Homberg for sure, plus aircraft from whatever other Groups were operating that night.

    The 100 Squadron ORB does notate Courtrai as being the target for all the Lancs launched by the squadron that night, however.

    All the best Dave,

    Greg
    "You can take the boy out of Wales,
    But you can't take Wales out of the boy!!"

    Greg Harrison
    100 Squadron and 100 Squadron Association Historian
    100 Squadron Researcher 1917 - present day
    1 Group Researcher 1940 - 1945

  10. #10
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    Tony,
    75 (NZ) Squadron sent 26 Lancaster's to the Oil Refinery at Homberg on 20/21 July 1944.
    Sadly seven aircraft from failed to return, a very bad night for the squadron.
    You probably have these details, but if not I can post for you.

    Regards,
    Wayne.

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