bomber exploding after leaving swinderby nov 1943

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by lindsay, Aug 16, 2009.

  1. lindsay

    lindsay Junior Member

    I am trying to find out any information about my uncle John (Jack) Kidston
    Law Paterson (flying Officer/bomb aimer) He was killed on the 10th November 1943 having left Swinderby. As far as I have been told the bomb exploded mid -air. I am trying to find out which squadron he was with and what plane he was in and if any one who knew him may still be alive. He lived in Knutsford in Cheshire and was killed the day after his 21st birthday. If anyone has any information I would greatly appreciate it.
    If there is another way of finding out any more information please let me know.
     
  2. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Hi lindsay,

    Welcome to the forum.

    I have the following details related to the loss of your uncle, which I hope are a help.


    Name: PATERSON, JOHN KIDSTON LAW
    Initials: J K L
    Nationality: United Kingdom
    Rank: Flying Officer (Air Bomber)
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Age: 21
    Date of Death: 10/11/1943
    Service No: 151636
    Additional information: Son of Robert and Elizabeth Anne Kidston Paterson, of Knutsford.
    Casualtty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
    Grave/Memoral Referencee: Grave 668.
    Cemetery: KNUTSFORD CEMETERY, Cheshire



    10 November 1943

    1660 HCU (Heavy Conversion Unit)

    Lancaster III ED812
    Training

    Took off Swinderby for a Bullseye detail. Dived steeply, from a considable height, the main planes falling before it smashed into the ground at around 2145 hrs.
    From what could be determied among the debris collected from the fields near Dunholme Lodge airfield, it appear most likelly that the crew were faced with an in-flight fire but as to whether or not this led to the loss of control could not be ascertained.

    Crew:
    P/O. S G. Scutt +
    Sgt. C W H. Baughen +
    Sgt. I C. Brough +
    F/O. J K. Paterson +
    Sgt. F D. Grant +
    Sgt. W. Halliwell +
    Sgt. E W. Plowman +
    AC1. N. Wade +

    BCL Vol.8 - W R. Chorley
    .

    Bullseye detail = Training exercise simulating operational conditions, aircraft gets gradually closer to centre of target, hence 'Bullseye'


    Regards
    Peter.
     
  3. lindsay

    lindsay Junior Member

    Hi Peter
    Lindsay here, thank you so so so much for all the fascinating information you have sent me. At last I have his number and squadron. I was always told that the bomb blew up before they dropped it? I am sure your information is more correct. I would still love to know if any one who knew him is still alive..any ideas how I might do this please! Jack had only one sister and no brothers, his sister was my mother, I have only heard from her and my grandfather (his father) how devastating this was for them all..not to mention several of the ladies (and I also know there were lots!). I have visited his grave in Knutsford. My mother told awful stories about his coffin being sent home and his parents trying to open it, in fact she slept with the coffin the whole time he was at home to prevent them doing so. I cannot thank you enough for your quick response, it has led to a few tears...you managed to answer in one day what has taken me 30 odd years. Once again many thanks, look forward to hearing from you. Oh yes where was Dunholme Lodge Airfield and is there a memorial there that you know of ? Lindsay
     
  4. Capt.Sensible

    Capt.Sensible Well-Known Member

  5. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Hi lindsy,

    Have you applied for your uncles service record? If not then I would do so. The record will give information such as when he enlisted, the courses he undertook and the squadrons served with + much more, well worth obtaining.

    I wish you luck

    Regards
    Peter

    Service records - RAF
     
  6. baughen

    baughen Junior Member

    Hi,
    My uncle was the C(lifford) W(alter) H(enry) Baughen mentioned. I was named after him.
    My father, who is still alive, told me that this was the last training flight before the crew started active duty. He always believed that two planes crashed (I don't know whether this was what he was told or theorised on). I know that very little known about it until the records became available.
    My father also said that the coffin was very heavy, as though it contained rocks. As far as I know the coffin wasn't opened. Clifford was buried in Norwood cemetery, London. According to the last letter written to my father Clifford and one other of the crew were from London.

    Cliff
     
  7. MarkB

    MarkB Junior Member

    I am trying to find out any information about my uncle John (Jack) Kidston
    Law Paterson (flying Officer/bomb aimer) He was killed on the 10th November 1943 having left Swinderby. As far as I have been told the bomb exploded mid -air. I am trying to find out which squadron he was with and what plane he was in and if any one who knew him may still be alive. He lived in Knutsford in Cheshire and was killed the day after his 21st birthday. If anyone has any information I would greatly appreciate it.
    If there is another way of finding out any more information please let me know.
    Hello Linsay, I am almost certain Your uncles Lancaster ED812 is the one that crashed behind my parents house between Dunholme and Scothern. Finn's book "Lincolnshire air War" also mentions that the tail plane broke off, and this fits with what i was told about the crash from farmworkers (since deceased) who witnessed it, the oak tree which the tail plane struck is still there, Small fragments of the bomber sometimes turn up during field cultivations, would be happy to discuss further with you , regards, Mark
     
  8. Jordanjacobsladder

    Jordanjacobsladder Junior Member

    I am sorry for the loss that your family suffered, it is hard to imagine the pain that families must have endured.I believe this is the plane crash that one of my elderly relatives ( now deceased) told me about, he was a farm labourer from Scothern in Lincolnshire.. He told me that a Lancaster bomber came down in a field, he always said that he jumped on his bike and was the first on the scene, there was nothing that could be done for the airmen, nobody survived.. He says that this memory stayed with him all his life.. I was a child when he told me this, however it has stayed with me also.
     
  9. MarkB

    MarkB Junior Member

    Hello Jordanjacobsladder, interested by you comment, the field in question is part of Manor Farm at Scothern, just wondering if your relative once worked there?
     
  10. Herby258

    Herby258 New Member

    Hello Lindsay. I read this forum with interest as my uncle was Neville Wade as mentioned on the crew list. He came from Woking, Surrey and is buried there. It must have been awful for the relatives at the time including my grandparents.
    Regards
    Mark
     
  11. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    Hello and welcome
    Over the years you can see we have had various relatives of crew members appearing on this thread.
    Your uncle was an Aircraftsman 1st Class and as such would normally have been ground crew.
    To have been aboard ED812 that day signifies that the crew were happy to take him on board, perhaps as a reward for being one of "their" ground crew looking after their aircraft.

    Have you tried Googling the serial number?

    It shows that this aircraft had been modified to carry the "bouncing bomb" to attack the Dams in May 1943.
    This is confirmed as the correct serial was ED812/G, as the "G" suffix was to denote that the aircraft was to be guarded by armed personnel whilst on the ground. It's serial was AJ@N.
    If that can be verified, it would be one of the only 22 Lancasters converted to carry the "Upkeep" bouncing bomb. They were designated as Avro type 464 (Provisioning) Lancaster.

    My problem is that the earliest serial I can trace for this version is ED817 which is described as the SECOND prototype. Other modified to Type 464 standard are
    ED906, ED909 and Gibson's ED932, ED933, ED921, ED924, http://www.lancaster-archive.com/bc_damsraid6.htm
    ED817/G Scrapped - 23 September 1946
    Actual Serial Number ED817/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. second prototype airframe, 617 Sqn del'd 20-4-43 AJ-C, AJ-X for 'Upkeep' dropping trails at Reculver, retained by 617 Sqn used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored at 46 del'd 15-4-44.

    ED825: Shot Down – SOE Target 9/10 December 1943, Crashed France
    Actual Serial Number ED825/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. third prototype airframe, 617 Sqn AJ-T, A&AEE Boscombe Down del'd 5-43, 617 Sqn del'd 5-43 AJ-E, sent for repair, 617 Sqn del'd 6-43 AJ-E.
    The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED864: Shot Down – Moehne Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Marbeck
    Actual Serial Number ED864/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn AJ-B. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED865: Shot Down – Moehne Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Gilze-Rijen Airfield, Holland
    Actual Serial Number ED865/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 19-4-43 AJ-S. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED886: Failed To Return – SOE Target 9/10 December 1943, Crashed Terramesnil
    Actual Serial Number ED886/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 23-4-43 AJ-O, retained by 617 Sqn used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED887: Shot Down – Moehne Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Castricum an Zee, Holland
    Actual Serial Number ED887/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn del'd 17-4-43 AJ-A, retained by 617 Sqn used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED906: Scrapped: 29 July 1947
    Actual Serial Number ED906/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc, 617 Sqn AJ-J del'd 23-4-43, retained by 617 Sqn used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored at 46 MU del'd 15-4-44, 61 Sqn del'd 8-46 YF-A For ‘Operation Guzzle’ (disposal of remaining UPKEEP mines, but in fact flew with No.1 Group Major Servicing Unit using Scampton Station Flight ‘s ‘YF-‘ codes, and were flown by crews temporarily detached in from other Bomber Command squadrons. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED909: Scrapped - 29 July 1947
    Actual Serial Number ED909/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn AJ-P (Martin’s P-Popsie) del'd 30-4-43 used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored at 46 MU del'd 15-4-44, 61 Sqn del'd 8-46 YF-B. For ‘Operation Guzzle’ (disposal of remaining UPKEEP mines), but in fact flew with No.1 Group Major Servicing Unit using Scampton Station Flight ‘s ‘YF-‘ codes, and were flown by crews temporarily detached in from other Bomber Command squadrons. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED910: Shot Down – Moehne Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed, Hamm, Germany
    Actual Serial Number ED910/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 28-4-43 AJ-C. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED912: Scrapped - 26 September 1946
    Actual Serial Number ED912/G:, Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc, 617 Sqn del'd 3-5-43 AJ-N, AJ-S, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU from 2-45. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED915: Scrapped – 8 October 1946
    Actual Serial Number ED915/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc, 617 Sqn del'd 3-5-43 AJ-Q, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU from 2-45. The aircraft did not take part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED918: Crashed – 20 January 1944 – Training Flight at Snettisham, Norfolk
    Actual Serial Number ED918/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc, 617 Sqn del'd 30-4-43 AJ-F, Cat. AC – Repaired on site, retained by 617 Sqn AJ-F, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    The pilot, F/Sgt. K.W. Brown, RCAF, during a personal interview with myself in 1995, stated that the aircraft was not flying true after its return from repairs and that he had advised the squadron the aircraft should not been flown until fixed. However, while he was away on leave, the aircraft crashed during a training flight, and the “out of true flying characteristic” may have partly the cause of the aircraft’s loss. Sadly F/L T.V. O'Shaughnessy and F/O A.D. Holding were both killed; while F/O G.A. Kendrick and F/O A. Ward were both injured.

    ED921: Scrapped – 26 September 1946
    Actual Serial Number ED921/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 30-4-43 AJ-W, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED924: Scrapped – 23 September 1946.
    Actual Serial Number ED924/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 30-4-43 AJ-Y, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED925: Shot Down – Moehne Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Ostoennen, Germany
    Actual Serial Number ED925/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn AJ-M. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED927: Shot Down – Sorpe Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Haldern
    Actual Serial Number ED927/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc, 617 Sqn del'd 3-5-43 AJ-E. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED929: Scrapped – 7 October 1946.
    Actual Serial Number ED929/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn del'd 30-4-43 AJ-L, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED932: Scrapped – 29 July 1947
    Actual Serial Number ED932/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn del'd 30-4-43, AG-G (Gibson’s aircraft), later AJ-V used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored 46 MU del'd 7-2-45, 61 Sqn del'd 8-46 YF-C For ‘Operation Guzzle’ (disposal of remaining UPKEEP mines), but in fact flew with No.1 Group Major Servicing Unit using Scampton Station Flight ‘s ‘YF-‘ codes, and were flown by crews temporarily detached in from other Bomber Command squadrons. Sustained Cat AC damage on take-off for an Operation Guzzle sortie on 8-11-46, was re-categorised to Cat E and scrapped at Scampton. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED933: Scrapped – 7 October 1946
    Actual Serial Number ED933/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn del'd 2-5-43 AJ-X, AJ-N-Bar, No. 54 Base, Coningsby, carrying out various trials including formation assembly with coloured smoke using crews from other squadrons. The aircraft did not take part in the Dam’s Raid.
    The aircraft was damaged by spray during practice drop of an inert “Upkeep” during training for Dam’s Raid. Damage was classed as Cat AC and the Lancaster was repaired on site, at which time it may have been partially returned to returned to Mk.III standard.

    ED934: Shot Down – Sorpe Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Waddenzee
    Actual Serial Number ED934/G, Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 3-5-43 AJ-K. The aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED936: Scrapped – 29 July 1947
    Actual Serial Number ED936/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc. 617 Sqn del'd 12-5-43 AJ-H, sent for repair, 617 Sqn del'd 17-7-43, used occasionally for operations, trials and training duties by No. 54 Base at nearby Coningsby (No. 54 Base included Coningsby, Metheringham and Scampton), Stored at 46 MU. The aircraft that took part in Dam’s Raid.

    ED937: Shot Down – Eder Dam 16/17- May 1943, Crashed Netterden, Germany
    Actual Serial Number ED937/G: Type 464 (Provisioning) Lanc., 617 Sqn del'd 14-5-43 AJ-Z. This aircraft took part in Dam’s Raid.

    In summation: ED817, ED912, ED915, ED921¸ ED924, ED929, ED933 all appear to have survived in storage in a Dam’s configuration or something close to it. All were scrapped at No. 46 Maintenance Unit (MU).

    ED906, ED909, ED933 appear to have been reconfigured and used in some role after the Dam’s Raid. They were returned to Dam’s configuration after the war and used to dispose of the remaining “Upkeep’s”. After completing this task the aircraft were scrapped by what appears to have been a special AVRO contract team specifically tasked to do this.

    ED918, was reconfigured back Mk. III Standard, apparently minus its bomb doors, and crashed in a training flight.

    ED933 appears to have been reconfigured back Mk. III Standard, apparently minus its bomb doors, and by all accounts did not see further operational duties and served as a trials aircraft.

    As you'll note, these serials are all subsequent to ED812, therefore either ED812 was NOT a Dams conversion or it must be the FIRST 464 prototype.

    Maybe some more learned Pals can clarify for you.
     
    Fred Wilson likes this.
  12. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    ED 812 as far as I can ascertain was not a G aircraft.It was one of 620 Lancasters built by Avro at Chadderton between November 1942 and June 1943.While these aircraft all carried the ED serial letters,ED 812 was not one subject to the provisioning contract with Avro.

    Incidentally G,signified Guard and was suffixed to an aircraft serial number when the aircraft had equipment fitted of a higher security grading than the normal aircraft type....aircraft fitted with special electronic equipment would fall into this category.I have never seen a reference to the guarding of G aircraft. As regards the Dams raid,the policy I would have thought, was to ensure that the preparations for the operation did not draw any undue attention by the scene of guards manning the presence of G aircraft at dispersal.As far as detail of the target was concerned,the squadron was not briefed until May 15 ,although it is recorded that Gibson's Flight Commanders had a separate briefing from him before the rest of the squadron.

    ED 812 may have been delivered new (unusual but it occur) to No 1660 HCU.I cannot find any previous operational service or flying hours for this aircraft.The failure of the tailplane suggests that in diving steeply that the tailplane was over stressed or failure was due to the accumulative stresses that the aircraft was subject to while in flying service.
     
  13. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    From what I understand, the letter 'G' after the aircraft's serial number denoted that the aircraft was to be guarded when away from its home base.
     
  14. Herby258

    Herby258 New Member

    Hello Kevin ,Harry and Peter. Thank you for all the detailed information. I was always told my uncle was colour blind so could not take part in operations but he was involved testing radio equipment on the ground normally but this time was testing in flight conditions.
    Regards
    Mark
     
  15. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Lancaster ED 812....."suffered a structural failure and crashed near Dunholme Lodge" is a report from another source...no mention of past operational service or flying hours.

    Officially,it was calculated that these aircraft were to have a flying hours life of 40 hrs.As regards servicing there was no such maintenance procedures as NDT so unless evidence of overstressing was apparent visually,aircraft just stayed in service and were only subject to situations off the squadron for minor and major servicing if they survived that long.....some did,numerous ones,didn't.

    Any availability problems beyond that,it was a case of using the aircraft manufacturer's resources on site or despatching the aircraft to an aircraft manufacturer's dedicated repair centre.
     
  16. Bluestripe

    Bluestripe New Member

    I have read the posts about ED812 with a great amount of interest.

    I am the Curator of the RAF Dunholme Lodge Heritage Collection at William Farr School, Welton, near Lincoln. The School was founded in 1952 on land that the Rev William Farr had bought from the Air Ministry. The land had formerly contained Communal Sites Nos 1 and 2. William Farr School is proud of its aviation heritage and is intent on preserving and promoting it; our aviation heritage even has its own page on the School's website (http://www.williamfarr.lincs.sch.uk/about-us/raf-heritage-collection). The foundations of buildings belonging to Communal Site No 2 still remain on School land (today an area of overgrown woodland, although the trees were planted after WWII) and we hope in the future to incorporate them into an interpretive heritage trail about life at RAF Dunholme Lodge.

    Lancaster ED812 crashed at 2145 on 10 Nov 43 on part of the Officers' Mess on Communal Site No 1; in addition to those who were killed on board ED812, two members of the WAAF and one member of the RAF were seriously burned. I have uploaded a copy of Appendix A of RAF Dunholme Lodge's Operational Record Book (RAF Form 540) for November 1943, which provides more details about ED812's crash.

    On that same night, No 44 Squadron had despatched 14 Lancasters from Dunholme Lodge to attack the railway yards at Modane in France, which were on the mainline to Italy; all 14 Lancasters returned safely.

    The Officers' Mess on No 1 Communal Site was located on a spot that is today within 50m of the School's main entrance. We would like to commemorate the tragic loss of ED812 and would be delighted to be in contact with relatives and descendants of the crew. Please contact me via this forum or e-mail me at: b.riley@williamfarr.lincs.sch.uk.

    Incidentally, I see from previous posts that other people came across the same confusing information about the aircraft that I did. ED812 was not the same aircraft that is credited with finally breaching the Eder Dam - that aircraft was ED912/G, AJ-N, flown by Pilot Officer Les Knight.

    Many thanks.

    Brian Riley
     

    Attached Files:

    alieneyes likes this.
  17. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    Thanks, Brian, I had seen that there was an ED912/G as a Provisioning Lancaster and did wonder whether 812 had been confused with 912.
    Reference to ED817 being the second prototype for the Dam Buster bouncing bomb would have logically meant that '812 would therefore have had to be the first prototype, and that didn't turn up in any searching.
    You'll notice I did make many qualifications that "if it could be verified..." etc etc!
    It would still appear to have been one of the aircraft which had the mounting ring for a proposed ventral turret which was later used as the base for the H2S radome.

    I still wonder whether Lancs having a ventral turret would have better dealt with the schrage musik attacks and thereby saved a lot of lives....
     
  18. Bluestripe

    Bluestripe New Member

    Hi Kevin,

    Sadly, I think that you may have a point about a ventral turret saving lives. I also think that equipping our bombers with 0.5" guns instead of 0.303" might have helped...
     
  19. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Thanks Brian for relating the the background to the loss of ED 812. Pleasing to hear of another airfield that has heritage organisation to remember those who served in the past.

    I had a late acquaintance who served at Dunholme during the post war era when the airfield was equipped with Blood hounds for the protection of Scampton in the early days of the V bomber force.

    Dunholme Lodge was an example of a wartime station which was built in accordance with the principle of locating the domestic sites well away from the airfield for safety of personnel...many is the time when I have motored either way on Horncastle Lane and enjoyed the straight run on the former 24/16 runway,a road which still has the runway concrete still evident.

    As regards the ventral turret.There were a number of Lancaster B1s fitted as such as FN 64 models.One test piece DV 723 was fitted with a single .5 inch gun and it was planned to fit Nos 101,467 and 207 Squadrons with this armament from October 1943.However this mod was cancelled when it was decided by the AM to fit H2S bombing gear to bomber aircraft as standard equipment from January 1944.

    The .5 inch turret was adopted by No 1 Group starting with No 170 Squadron in late 1944.It was manufactured by Roses of Gainsborough who manufactured these turrets from an initiative of the AOC No1 Group AVM Rice.This twin turret increased the defensive fire power at the back end of the aircraft but also made it easier for the gunner to exit the aircraft between the guns in an emergency.

    I think the cancellation the ventral turrets was a trade off with the inclusion of the H2S bombing gear seen as giving an increase in bombing efficiency ...may have been subject to Operations Research by Air Ministry scientists.The adoption of the ventral turret mod would have probably required an additional crew gunner.As it was the bomb aimer also manned the front turret while not engaged on bomb delivery but it would not be practicable to depend on further duty flexibility to man the ventral turret.
     
    Peter Clare likes this.
  20. Bluestripe

    Bluestripe New Member

    Interesting stuff, Harry, thanks.
     

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