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Thread: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

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    Default Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Hudson AE650 is recorded in the relevant Air Britain serials book as being A&AEE/233/53, SOC 18 Aug 47. "Lockheed Twins", also by Air Britain, says the same.
    This seems a little strange, as 53 Sqn gave up its last Hudsons in Jan 43.
    "United in Effort" (53 Sqn history) records that AE650/T "was wrecked but nobody was hurt" in a landing mishap in Dutch Guiana on 12 Aug 42.
    I am wondering if the strike date might be a typo, or a misinterpretation of the handwriting on the record card.

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    The SoC dates as I understand them need not always be the actual date. Its possible that one day in 1947 its F78 was found with no fate so it was SoC on that date.

    EDIT: yeah, if i'd read the dates properly it was clearly a typo of 1942.
    Last edited by dennis_burke; 29th April 2021 at 21:51.
    Dennis Burke
    - Dublin

    Foreign Aircrew and Aircraft Ireland 1939-1945
    www.ww2irishaviation.com

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    I suspect it a misread of the the original card - I think there was a Census done in 1945 ??

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Thanks for the input. I too am inclined to think that it is a case of 18 Aug 42 being mis-read as 18 Aug 47, but you never know I guess.
    How do I go about getting the F78 for a look at it?

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Andy. E-mailing you the movement card.
    richard

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Richard,
    Thanks, received. The penultimate entry clearly reads:

    53 Sqd Trinidad
    Cat B
    18.8.42
    Authority (looks like Marcus 117 or similar)

    The last entry is the indistinct one. It seems to read:
    SOC
    53 Sqdn
    Authority (indistinct)
    It looks like x/x (where x are letters), followed by what appears to be 7/6/47. But then again, it might not even be a date, and shouldn't be given that this is the box for listing the authority for the "move". It might just be the signal reference of the authority to strike.

    Either way there is nothing that says it was struck on 18.8.47. I think it should be 18.8.42 as in the previous entry.

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Andy,
    I have looked at No.53 Squadron's Hudson's and recall there were at least two anomalies.

    I think Dennis's suggestion is probably about right.
    7.6.47 is probably the official SOC date, after the paperwork finally caught up with events.

    The following comes from a list of squadron accidents in the adjutant's record book...
    12.8.42. 19.20. Zandery, D. Guiana. Mk.V. "T", AE650.
    Sgt. Badger.
    Sgt. W/Davis.
    Sgt. Thomas.
    Sgt. Wright.
    Aircraft got lost on flight to Zandery, Dutch Guiana. On locating the 'drome with 20 minutes fuel left, the lights were extinguished as believed to be enemy.
    Lights put on again 20 mins later when B-18 came into land and a/c came in downwind but hit rather left of end of sentence unreadable.

    AE650 does not appear the in squadron's records again, it was a Cat. B crash and I suspect the wreckage remained in Dutch Guiana.

    I think "Marcus" was the code for a telegram from the RAF Delegation in Washington to whom the Squadron based at Edinburgh Field, Trinidad reported.
    The U.S. Navy was in overall command of antisubmarine war in that part of the Caribbean, and that some stage they complained about the RAF squadron's combat reports, etc., were not being forwarded to them.
    I suggest once daily reports were passed through the U.S. Navy possibly very little reached the RAF Delegation and therefore there were no follow-up reports on any damaged aircraft added to the RAF records.

    Tony Broadhurst

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Andy,
    I mentioned that there were further anomalies relating to 53 Squadrons' Hudson records. Having looked back at my files I can offer the following...

    V9253 missing from 10 September 1942. It was subsequent discovered that in attacking U-boat A-505 V9253 was probably struck by debris from one of it's own depth charges that exploded on the rear of the U-boats conning tower. V9252 plunged into the sea and the entire crew were lost. As with AE650 the SOC entry is not clear but appears to read "SOC 6/7/47".

    V9090 Re AM78, looking at the allotments: 48 Sqdn, 16.8.42; 53 Sqdn, 3.9.42; 233 Sqdn (Gib), 13.10.42; 3502 SU Gosport 13.10.42; R.I.W. 22.4.43....
    The Adjutant’s book lists V9090 as a replacement for an earlier Hudson "E" (AM795 which crashed on arriving at Waller Field, Trinidad 16.8.42 - no injuries.) There is also data from the Ferry Command records that V9090 was flown to join No. 53 Sqn in the Caribbean and returned to the UK with the same squadron in early 1943. Therefore it cannot have been with 233 Sqdn from October 1942.

    AM795 Re AM78. looking at the allotments: 53 Sqdn St Eval 16.5.42; 53 Squadron, Trinidad, Cat B 18.8.42; 3502 SU 21.1.43. Finally "Presumed SOC 21.6.47. Branch Instruction No42". this is a common sign off for a "lost" aircraft.
    I seriously doubt AM795 reached No.3502 Servicing Unit, Gosport in January 1943. Judging by Ferry command assignment cards AM795 was not among the Hudsons flown to the UK by returning 53 Squadron crews during the early months of 1943.

    Hope this helps, Tony Broadhurst
    Last edited by Freshman; 29th April 2021 at 21:28.

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Tony,
    Thanks for your thoughts, all very interesting.
    Regarding AM795, I need to understand what the record card is saying. Doesn't the entry "3502 SU 21.1.43" just mean that it was allotted to 3502 SU on that date? There is no reason to infer that it actually went to Gosport. Given that 53 Sqn was returning to the UK and disposing of its Hudsons around that time, could it not have been a convenient way of getting that aircraft off the 53 Sqn books? ie 3502 SU was just a paper "holding unit" for dead Hudsons?
    If there is no evidence of it crossing the Atlantic eastbound, it seems almost certain that it ended its days in the landing incident at Waller Field on 16 Aug 42, when "United in Effort" reports that it was wrecked.
    Andy

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    Default Re: Lockheed Hudson anomalies

    Andy,
    As regards the allotment of AM795 to 3502 SU. It may be just a paper allotment.

    The saga of the returning Hudsons and their crews is not well covered in the Squadron ORB.
    On 18th November 1942 the Squadron received the order to return Quonset Point R.I., and be ready to leave the USA for UK by 15th December.
    From the Squadron ORB:
    Quonset Point
    Dec 12 Sea Party sailed. Aircraft at Quonset preparing for trans-atlantic flight. Spare aircrew at Montreal.
    Dec 30 Sea party arrived Gourock, Scotland.
    31 Dec Sea party arrived Davidstow Moor.
    Davidstow Moor
    Jan 43 Squadron Non-Operational. ground staff being built up to establishment at Davidstow Moor, aircraft flying back from USA, proceeding direct to Gosport, aircrews proceeding on leave then returning to Davidstow Moor. No Operational flying.
    31 Jan Five aircraft have arrived back in the UK, all at Gosport, and unit being built up to new Establishment, WAR/OC/178b dated 1.10.42.
    13 Feb ... five complete Whitey crews posted to this unit on re-arming with Whitley aircraft. All Hudson aircrew, except five to be posted away (Operationally expired).
    Docking
    18 Feb Hudson PZ/Z and PZ/W arrived Docking Ex. Canada ..... All Hudsons prior to these two aircraft had been flown to No. 3502 Servicing Station Gosport for overhaul and allotment away.
    Bircham Newton
    27 Mar F/O Puckridge & crew arrived on return from USA. [V9096 PZ-P]
    8 Apr F/Sgt Badger & crew arrived on return from USA. This is the last of the squadron and completes the move, all aircraft and crews completing the journey successfully.

    [Badger & crew actually ferried across a new Hudson, FK633 from Dorval to Prestwick, arriving there on 7 April 1943.]

    The reasons for the delayed return can be found in the Ferry Command ORBS. It seems a lot of overhaul and repair work was found to be necessary before their Hudsons could make a trans-atlantic crossing.
    I have looked at each of the RAF record cards relating to the Squadron's Hudsons. AM795 is the only non-returnee alloted to 3502SU. According to the record cards a number of those which returned were alloted to 3502 SU. You can see how this might fit in the the description of 3502 SU given in "RAF F.T. & S. Units since 1912". It is also recorded on the IARCs that shortly after the returned squadron Hudsons were allotted to a contractor with the Civil Repair Organisation, either Cunliffe-Owen and T. MacDonald & Sons.

    It is worth mentioning that the Hudson's upper turret were removed whilst in Trinidad to improve range and endurance, etc. Perhaps this servicing and overhaul included replacing the missing turrets.
    Tony Broadhurst

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