Wreckage of Stirling Bomber found at Camperduin, Netherlands

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by smdarby, Mar 28, 2022.

  1. smdarby

    smdarby Well-Known Member

    In Dutch News: "Wreckage found in the aftermath of storm Eunice at the beach at Camperduin, near Alkmaar, has been identified as a British Short Stirling MK1 shot down by the Germans in 1942."

    This is just down the road from me and I'm familiar with the bunker where the wreckage will be displayed. I'll try and visit next month for photos.

    Note the glaring mistake contender later in the article.

    Wreckage found on beach is identified as wartime British bomber - DutchNews.nl

    Pictures of the crew on the bunker museum website:

    Last edited: Mar 28, 2022
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  2. Little Friend

    Little Friend Senior Member

    I've spotted three mistakes.
  3. smdarby

    smdarby Well-Known Member

    Date, number of crew members and ...?
  4. brithm

    brithm Senior Member

    BF396 17/18.12.1942 75 Squadron Stirling I BF396 AA:X Wg Cdr. Mitchell DFC, RAF Newmarket, Suffolk, North Sea

    The aircraft was shot down by the night fighter crew of Oberleutnant Husemann & Feldwebel Seufert of the Stab/NJG 1, who had taken off from Deelen in Bf 110 G9+HA.

    Target: Fallersleben, Wolfsburg, Germany
    Takeoff time: 17:45
    All are missing in action and are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial:

    Pilot W/Cdr. V. Mitchell DFC 37755 RAF
    Second Pilot W/O. T.H. Bagnall NZ40640 RNZAF
    Flight Engineer Sgt. R. Hart 523663 RAF
    Navigator W/O. R.W. Pearson 747858 RAF
    Bomb Aimer Sgt. G.T. Padden 1041966 RAF
    Wireless Operator/ Air Gunner Sgt. S.J. Goff 916785 RAF
    Mid Upper Gunner Sgt. A.H. Rider 960489 RAF
    Rear Gunner F/Sgt. A.C.W. Parker 909252 RAF
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2022
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  5. smdarby

    smdarby Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the information. Eight crew members is correct then. Do you know why there would be 8 crew instead of 7 (I'm no expert - a general google search stated 7 crew is standard in Stirlings)? Also, the photo on the museum website linked above only shows 7 crew.
  6. RAFCommands

    RAFCommands Senior Member

    Pre war the RAF Heavy Bomber (which would become the Medium Bomber with the advent of Halifax, Lancaster etc) was to have two pilots and the controls provided for this.

    As war progressed the loss rate and time to train led to the adoption of a single pilot aided by the new trade of flight engineer.

    However the single pilot strategy was not hard and fast with the requirement to add a second pilot or "dicky" to an operational crew as an pilot under training from an OTU to give operational experience. Many aircraft were lost with the second dicky leading to what was called a headless crew at OTU made up of the crew that the pilot was training with. The headless crew was recoursed with a new pilot.

    Another source of two pilots in the early years was due to a particular tasking for the first pilot eg airborne master bomber.

    So could be a second dicky, or in 1942 a unit that had still to transition to the single pilot operations but given the ranks of first and second pilots a preference of the W/C for his tasking.

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  7. Marco

    Marco Senior Member

    Part of the aircraft on display @ Jansje Schong museum. MIL1046-35.jpg
    8RB likes this.

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