View Full Version : TNA Missing Research and Enquiry Service/Berlin Raid 2/3 Dec 1943

3rd February 2011, 11:31
Hello, I'm searching for information about the Missing Research and Enquiry Service in the Russian zone and need assistance with some document at the National Archives.

It's for a documentary about the main cemetery of the killed airmen of the Berlin Raid in Döberitz, close to the Olympic-Village.

267 RAF and Dominion was buried there and 1946 transferred in 7 days to the Berlin War Cemetery in the Heerstrasse.

55 of these airmen were buried by name in Döberitz, but after the war came to these area they lost her names. The Garrison Cemetery Döberitz was damaged and all crosses were used for heating the houses in the cold winter 1945/46.

And it was all soviet area with a huge military training field and airport a few meters away.

My wish is it to get more light in this incident and need a TNA researcher with experiences.
Please notice: Not for free!

I'm searching especial for photos, maps, documents about the transfer and the problems and No. 56 Graves concentration unit under the command of Colonel Lange who were responsible for the exhumations at Doberitz.

Interesting files are Air2/12790, Air2/7055 and Air2/7056.

Thank you for your attention


P.S. I'm looking for Information about the Berlin Raid of the night 2/3 December 1943 also.

3rd February 2011, 20:00

Not exactly what you are seeking but are you aware there are a number of books that include quite a lot of details about this raid that could be of use:

Martin Middlebrook - "The Berlin Raids" (Probably the most comprehensive and well researched; it includes both British and German accounts)
Alan Cooper - "Bombers over Berlin"
John Searby - "The bomber battle for Berlin"
Walter Thompson - "Lancaster to Berlin" (Haven't read it as I'm waiting for delivery.)

I'm sure there must be others.

All available via Amazon, although the Searby book is a bit pricey.


Edit: 463 and 467 Sqns ORBs at http://www.467463raafsquadrons.com/L02Pgs/orbsTimeLine.htm
97 Sqn ORB at http://www.97squadronassociation.co.uk/flightops.html

3rd February 2011, 22:28
A good source will be Stuart Hadaway's book, published in about 2007, but I'm having a 'senior moment' and can't remember its title.

Stuart is still very much 'around' and may even be a member of this site.

If you are concerned about how the casualties were identified (before the age of DNA) there are a series of fairly straight forward methods and I can summarise these for you. However, I have no knowledge of the particular reburial to which you refer.

Old Duffer

PS There were also rules which governed the digging for and physical removal of remains from graves, not to mention the issues associated with health etc.

3rd February 2011, 23:20
Hadaway's book is "Missing Believed Killed - The Royal Air Force and the Search for Missing Aircrew 1939 -1952"

I have never seen any MRES/MREU papers at Kew. Found lots of them in Aussie and Canadian archives.

Many end with an MRES team leader frustratingly stating "As we are not allowed in Soviet territory, we must close this case"

Alex Smart
4th February 2011, 03:49
You may have these names already.
From W R Chorley's BCL vol 4 1943
2/3 December 1943
12 Sqdn Lancaster "PH-R" JB463, 8 aircrew
460 Sqdn Lancaster "AR-R" JB611, 6 aircrew
460 Sqdn Lancaster "AR-H2" LM316, 8 aircrew
1/2 March 1943
44 Sqdn Lancaster "KM-V" W48829, 7 aircrew.
27/28 March 1943
156 Sqdn Lancaster "GT-" W4895, 7 aircrew all buried Dóberitz 9th April.
23/24 August 1943
15 Sqdn Sterling "LS-S" EH875, 7 aircrew.
97 Sqdn Lancaster "OF-X" ED950, 6 aircrew.
100 Sqdn Lancaster "HW-Z" EE171, 6 aircrew.
All listed as "Burials are reported from Dóberitz".

Well that would be 55 named aircrew I expect if you search through the Chorley books the rest may well be in them.

All for now

4th February 2011, 08:00
Further to Alex's post, Cooper's "Bombers over Berlin" lists all crews lost in all the raids and their places of burial, including the 40 crews that failed to return from the 2/3 Dec raid.