RAF Squadron ORBs digitised by TNA

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by PsyWar.Org, Feb 16, 2012.

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  1. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey Patron

    Pieter F and James S like this.
  2. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member Patron

    Nice one Lee, thanks for posting

    Regards
    Peter
     
  3. horsapassenger

    horsapassenger Senior Member

    Just did a quick search for one squadron - the result was 128 pages for £3.50 so much better value than printing off the microfilm at 20p per page.

    Didn't download the file so can't speak as to the quality - let's hope that they did it from the originals not the microfilm.

    John
     
  4. nicks

    nicks Very Senior Member Patron

    I have downloaded two files and they are indeed copies of the microfilm however both are perfectly legible.
     
  5. Paul Reed

    Paul Reed Ubique MOD

    A real step forward for research and great news.
     
  6. James S

    James S Very Senior Member

    For me this is very good news, thank you for the heads up on this. :)
     
  7. horsapassenger

    horsapassenger Senior Member

    I have downloaded two files and they are indeed copies of the microfilm however both are perfectly legible.

    I have just downloaded two files where the original microfilm at Kew was illegible. I'm delighted to say that the copies that I downloaded are (almost) perfect so think that they must have copied these newly available files from the originals.

    One of the files was 100 pages and only cost £3.50 so was exceptional value. Some others I've looked at are only a few pages so for any files less than 17 pages it will be cheaper to download and print these at Kew.

    John
     
  8. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Thanks for the heads-up on this new resource.

    I have downloaded a few files so far, however, one problem is knowing which file to pick. So far most of the events I am interested in have at least two choices for the month & unit I need.

    One SQN had three choices where the third choice had the extra description that they were appendices to the ORB - they turned out to be daily returns of aircraft condition (serviceability, wastage etc). It gave me the tail number I needed but not the list of crew aboard. As the SQN only lost one aircraft that day I used the CWGC / hut6 to get the rest of the crew's details.

    For another couple of files, I got the daily breakdown of missions flown, which helpfully gave the aircraft details plus which ones went missing and a full crew list.

    Another couple of files were of the narrative type, what happened at the unit each day. No real help from those files - one gave a story of the incident I was researching but left out the aircraft's serial number etc.

    The other was for a ground accident I want some more info on - it didn't even rate a mention in the SQN history that the member had died let alone how.


    *************************************************


    As I carried out the checkout process for the first three files I couldn't help but think that the last time a member of my family paid the UK government 10 quid they got a one-way ticket for all of us to Australia.
     
  9. Oldman

    Oldman Very Senior Member

    Lee
    Thanks for the heads up, a very useful tool for our research
     
  10. papiermache

    papiermache WO 356 Mechanic

    There are free downloads available from the Documents Online calling page at The National Archives in the category " Air Ministry: Squadron Operations Records" covering 101 Squadron in December 1943. The "Summary of Events" PDF is 820 KB and the "Records of Events" PDF is 4.3 MB.
     
  11. Jan7

    Jan7 Senior Member

    Just noticed that the National Archives have begun the digitisation of RAF Squadron Operations Record Books. The digitisation has probably been done directly from the AIR 27 microfilm copies, in which case the quality will not be great. Good news nevertheless.

    Details here: The National Archives | DocumentsOnline | Air Ministry Squadron Operations


    Lee

    Excellent resource, Lee. I found that a very useful tool. Thanks for sharing.




    Jan.
     
  12. chick42-46

    chick42-46 Senior Member

    Excellent news!

    Sadly (for me and any other RAF Regiment nuts), the TNA haven't digitised the ORBs in AIR 29.

    Ho hum.
     
  13. rossa150c

    rossa150c Junior Member

    Hi, I was wondering is it possible to get ORB's for squadron 44 and 50 for 1945. I have orbs for 1944 about squadron 50 on disc which I asked someone to help locate. From the orbs I managed to find out about my grandfather's raids, crew mates and a crash from which he survived. The crash happened SW of RAf Benson as they attempted to land, he survived and escaped with a broken leg, he was back again on raids in December of that year. So following his movements from his service records he was initially placed with 44 squadron and then 50 squadron again. Because I only have orbs for the year 1944 it I would like to know what happened in 1945. My parents say he was in a second crash in Germany on his second tour? I have no leads yet, I am due to go to London at the end of this month, and was wondering should I go to the national archives at Kew or are these digitized so I could get them online myself, I was browsing the Air 27 and wasn't sure if its the ones I should be looking for? Can someone tell me if these are the ones I need? Thanks.
     
  14. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey Patron

    The references for 50 Sqd for 1945 are:

    AIR 27/489, No 50 Squadron: Operations Record Book. Item open from 1972 1945 Jan. 1946 Dec.
    AIR 27/490, No 50 Squadron: Operations Record Book: Appendices. Loose 1944 July 1945 Apr


    Both have been digitalised:
    http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/browse/C2503126?v=r

    Squadron Number: 50 Appendices: Y | The National Archives

    Lee

    Hi, I was wondering is it possible to get ORB's for squadron 44 and 50 for 1945. I have orbs for 1944 about squadron 50 on disc which I asked someone to help locate. From the orbs I managed to find out about my grandfather's raids, crew mates and a crash from which he survived. The crash happened SW of RAf Benson as they attempted to land, he survived and escaped with a broken leg, he was back again on raids in December of that year. So following his movements from his service records he was initially placed with 44 squadron and then 50 squadron again. Because I only have orbs for the year 1944 it I would like to know what happened in 1945. My parents say he was in a second crash in Germany on his second tour? I have no leads yet, I am due to go to London at the end of this month, and was wondering should I go to the national archives at Kew or are these digitized so I could get them online myself, I was browsing the Air 27 and wasn't sure if its the ones I should be looking for? Can someone tell me if these are the ones I need? Thanks.
     
  15. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Hi Rossa, I was going to respond to your PM today but good to see Lee has sorted you out.

    :)
     
  16. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Just took me 10 minutes to find this thread - so I thought I would give it a boost up......
     
  17. Pieter F

    Pieter F Very Senior Member

    When I have a look at the 76 Squadron ORB for January 1944 (both record of events and summary of events) it mentions 1 file approximately 0MB. Does this mean this is an empty file? I don't want to order a file (and pay 3,36) which does not exist..
     
  18. Luc Vervoort

    Luc Vervoort Member

    Hi Peter,

    This is indeed rather strange as the preview mentions 14 pages (+ 1 cover page).

    Best regards

    Luc
     
  19. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey Patron

    It looks like they've been upgrading their software recently and I think it's just a bug krept into the system. I noticed the same thing on Saturday but the file downloaded OK.
    I'll be downloading a few files when I there later this week, so if you PM the full references for the ones wanted I can grab them for free for you.

    Lee
     
  20. AlanW

    AlanW Senior Member

    Rossa,
    Have messaged you concerning the ORB's you need, as i have them in my collection.
    Alan.
     

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