PINCHBECK, Derek Edgar, F/O (70902, Royal Air Force) - No.49 Squadron - Distinguished Flying Cross - awarded as per London Gazette dated 24 December 1940. Born 22 April 1920. Appointed Provisional Pilot Officer on Probation, 9 July 1938. Confirmed as Pilot Officer, 16 May 1940. Served in No.49 Squadron, March 1939 to September when posted to No.14 OTU, having flown 34 or 36 sortiessorties. Shot down and made POW, 3 May 1941 (Manchester L7379, No.207 Squadron). Flying Officer, 3 June 1942. Mentioned in Despatches, 13 June 1946 as Squadron Leader, probably for services as a POW, having been held in Stalag Luft III. Permanent Commission as Flight Lieutenant, 22 September 1945. Squadron Leader, 1 August 1947. Retired 10 October 1958. Public Record Office Air 2/9327 has citation drafted when he was a Pilot Officer.
Throughout 36 operational missions against the enemy, Pilot Officer Pinchbeck has displayed courage and determination of a high order. On the night of 15th August 1940, he was detailed to make a low level attack ahead of the main attack, on the oil refineries at Pauillac. In spite of heavy anti-aircraft opposition he obtained direct hits on the target, which burst into flames and so enabled the remainder of his squadron to locate and attack the area without difficulty.
This would appear to be an early employment of Pathfinder tactics.