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|RECENT UPDATES TO OUR AVIATION HISTORY DATABASES|
|Updates made to Aircrew database for : Sergeant P E Wilks : Squadron service dates updated|
|Updates made to Airframes database for : Hampden AD734 : Airframe notes updated (added 11-02-1941 : Hampden was abandoned after flying into a balloon cable over Birmingham. It's believed that the Hampden was set onto auto-pilot following the collision, and eventually crashed into the Irish sea.)|
|Updates made to Airframes database for : Whitley T4220 :|
|New victory claim added : Me109 (Probable victory) claimed on 2nd June 1940 by James Baird Coward of No.19 Sqn RAF|
|Updates made to Airframes database for : Whitley P4981 : Aircrew updated|
|SEARCH OUR AVIATION HISTORY DATABASES|
No.83 Sqn RAF
Founded : 7th January 1917
Strike to defend
No.83 Sqn RAF
No.83 Sqn RAF Artwork Collection
Target Peenemunde by Robert Taylor.
|Aircraft for : No.83 Sqn RAF|
|A list of all aircraft known to have been flown by No.83 Sqn RAF. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.|
Manufacturer : Handley Page
Retired : 1942
Number Built : 1500
The Handley Page HP.52 Hampden was a twin-engine medium bomber built for the Royal Air Force and was used by Bomber Command in the early years of world war two. Along with the other medium bombers the Whitley and Wellington, the Hampden bore the brunt of the early bombing war over Europe, taking part in the first night raid on Berlin and the first 1,000-plane raid on Cologne. The newest of the three medium bombers, the Hampden was known as the Flying Suitcase because of its cramped crew conditions. A total of 226 Hampdens were in service with eight Royal Air Force squadrons by the start of the Second World War. Despite its speed and agility, in operational use the Hampden was no match for the fighters of the Luftwaffe (ME109 and FW 190) and the Hampdens role as a day bomber was brief, but Hampdens continued to operate at night on bombing raids over Germany and in mine laying (code-named gardening) in the North Sea. Almost half of the Hampdens built – 714, were lost on operations, witht he loss of 1,077 crew killed and another 739 missing. German flak accounted for 108; with one Hampden being lost due to German Barrage balloons; 263 Hampdens crashed due to a variety of causes, and 214 others were classed as missing. Luftwaffe pilots claimed 128 Hampdens, shooting down 92 at night. The Hampden soon became obsolete for its roll as a medium modern bomber, after operating mainly at night, it was retired from Bomber Command service in late 1942. but continued with Coastal Command throughout 1943 as a long-range Torpedo Bomber (the Hampden TB Mk I which carried the Mk XII torpedo in an open bomb-bay and a single 500 lb (230 kg) bomb under each wing) The Hampden was also used by the Royal Canadian Air Force and Royal New Zealand Air Force.
Manufacturer : Hawker
Production Began : 1935
The Hawker Hind entered service with the Royal Air Force in November1935 and eventually 20 RAF bomber squadrons equipped with Hawker Hinds. Many Hinds were also sold to foreign customers including Afghanistan, the Irish Free State, Latvia, Persia (Iran), Portugal, South Africa, Switzerland, and Yugoslavia. The Hawker Hind was gradually phased out of frontline service from 1936 onwards and replaced by the Fairey Battle and Bristol Blenheim. At the outbreak of world war two only 613 squadorn was still equipped with Hawker Hinds in the roll of Army co-operation before re-equipping the Hawker Hector in November 1939. The Hawker Hind became a training aircraft from 1938 being the next step up from basic training on Tiger Moths. In 1941, Hinds flew combat missions in their original role as light bombers. South African Hinds were employed against Italian forces in Kenya, Yugoslav Hinds were used against the Germans and Italians.
Manufacturer : Avro
Production Began : 1942
Retired : 1963
Number Built : 7377
The Avro Lancaster arose from the avro Manchester and the first prototype Lancaster was a converted Manchester with four engines. The Lancaster was first flown in January 1941, and started operations in March 1942. By March 1945 The Royal Air Force had 56 squadrons of Lancasters with the first squadron equipped being No.44 Squadron. During World War Two the Avro Lancaster flew 156,000 sorties and dropped 618,378 tonnes of bombs between 1942 and 1945. Lancaster Bomberss took part in the devastating round-the-clock raids on Hamburg during Air Marshall Harris' Operation Gomorrah in July 1943. Just 35 Lancasters completed more than 100 successful operations each, and 3,249 were lost in action. The most successful survivor completed 139 operations, and the Lancaster was scrapped after the war in 1947. A few Lancasters were converted into tankers and the two tanker aircraft were joined by another converted Lancaster and were used in the Berlin Airlift, achieving 757 tanker sorties. A famous Lancaster bombing raid was the 1943 mission, codenamed Operation Chastise, to destroy the dams of the Ruhr Valley. The operation was carried out by 617 Squadron in modified Mk IIIs carrying special drum shaped bouncing bombs designed by Barnes Wallis. Also famous was a series of Lancaster attacks using Tallboy bombs against the German battleship Tirpitz, which first disabled and later sank the ship. The Lancaster bomber was the basis of the new Avro Lincoln bomber, initially known as the Lancaster IV and Lancaster V. (Becoming Lincoln B1 and B2 respectively.) Their Lancastrian airliner was also based on the Lancaster but was not very successful. Other developments were the Avro York and the successful Shackleton which continued in airborne early warning service up to 1992.
Manufacturer : Avro
Full profile not yet available.
Manufacturer : Avro
Full profile not yet available.
Manufacturer : Avro
Production Began : 1955
The Avro Vulcan was the worlds first delta winged heavy bomber. the first prototype flew on the 30th August 1952 and the first production Vulcan flew in February 1955. The first Avro Vulcan's arrived for service with the Royal Air Force with 230 operational Conversion Unit (OCU) at RAF Finningley in May 1956. with the first squadron to receive the Vulcan in July 1957 was 83 squadron. In April 1968 Bomber Command merged into the Newly created Strike Command with eight Squadrons being equipped with Vulcan's. A terrain Hugging variant was introduced (the Vulcan SR2) in 1973, to all squadrons except no. 27 squadron (Flying Elephants) which was a Maritime reconnaissance Sqd. The Last Major role for the Avro Bomber was the bombing of Argentinean Airfields in the Falkland Islands During The Falklands Conflict The Avro Vulcan high Altitude Bomber with a crew of five. Top Speed 650 mph with a ceiling of 60,000 feet. maximum range of 5750 miles (with in flight refuelling). with a conventional bomb load of 21 x 1000 lb bombs
Manufacturer : Vickers
Production Began : 1938
Retired : 1953
The Vickers Wellington was a Bomber aircraft and also used for maritime reconnaissance. and had a normal crew of six except in the MKV and VI where a crew of three was used. Maximum speed was 235 mph (MK1c) 255 mph (MK III, X) and 299 mph (MK IIII), normal operating range of 1805 miles (except MK III which was 1470miles) The Wellington or Wimpy as it was known, was the major bomber of the Royal Air Force between 1939 and 1943. The Royal Air Force received its first Wellingtons in October 1938 to 99 squadron. and by the outbreak of World war two there were 6 squadrons equipped with the Vickers Wellington. Due to heavy losses on daylight raids, the Wellington became a night bomber and from 1940 was also used as a long range bomber in North Africa. and in 1942 also became a long range bomber for the royal Air Force in India. It was well used by Coastal Command as a U-Boat Hunter. The Wellington remained in service with the Royal Air Force until 1953. Probably due to its versatile use, The aircraft was also used for experimental work including the fitting of a pressure cabin for High altitude tests. The Vickers Wellington could sustain major damage and still fly, probably due to its construction of its geodesic structure and practical application of geodesic lines. Designed by Sir Barnes Wallis
|Signatures for : No.83 Sqn RAF|
|A list of all signatures from our database who are associated with this squadron. A profile page is available by clicking their name.|
Warrant Officer M Ben Brennan DFM AFM
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer M Ben Brennan DFM AFM
| Warrant Officer M Ben Brennan DFM AFM |
Ben Brennan volunteered for the RAF in 1941, qualifying as a Flight Engineer in early 1943. Converting to Lancasters, he was posted to join 619 Squadron at Woodall Spa. In late 1943 he went to 83 Squadron at Wyton, as part of the Lancaster Pathfinder Force, before joining No 5 Group at Coningsby. He flew a total of 80 operations during the war.
Warrant Officer James Goldie DFC DFM
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer James Goldie DFC DFM
| Warrant Officer James Goldie DFC DFM |
No's 7, 83, 97 and 224 Squadrons. Joined RAF trained as Air Gunner.Flew 73 missions with Bomber Command - 38 Main Force, 35 Pathfinders and 38 with Coastal Command. Total flying hours 1,630. Crashed in an Avro Manchester 13109/41. Spleen removed as a result of injuries sustained in the crash and returned to Operations. Raids included 6 Essen, 6 Duisberg, 3 Berlin, 4 Hamburg, 5 Bremen and 3 Nuremberg. Served with 83 Squadron at RAF Wyton, 97 Squadron RAF Coningsby/ Woodhall Spa and 7 Squadron Oakington. Demobilised 1956.
Flight Lieutenant Mervyn Ingmire DFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Mervyn Ingmire DFC
| Flight Lieutenant Mervyn Ingmire DFC |
As a young man, Mervyn Ingmire witnessed the great air battles over London and Kent during August 1940 from his home in Margate. He volunteered for the RAF and while waiting to be called for aircrew training he saw the huge German raids being intercepted by RAF fighters and watched Ju87s dive-bombing Manston airfield. He joined 115 Squadron in 1941 at Marham, flying Wellingtons and had completed a full tour of operations by April 1942. After a spell on Whitleys in the Western Desert and Mediterranean theatre during 1943, he joined 83 Squadron at Coningsby, part of the 5 Group Lancaster Pathfinder Force. In late December 1944, his aircraft, PB533 OL-Q, was diverted to Metheringham on return from a mission to bomb the synthetic oil refineries at Politz. Short of fuel, the Lancaster crashed while attempting to land in early morning fog, killing the other seven crew of the Lancaster (Squadron Leader Leslie Hatcher DFC AFM, Flight Sergeant H J Naldrett, Flight Lieutenant A J Booker DFC, Pilot Officer E Marron, Wireless Operator R F Goodman, Flight Lieutenant C Summerscales DFC and Wireless Operator F J Bell), but Ingmire was rescued from the wreckage and despite terrible injuries, he survived. After the war Mervyn Ingmire enjoyed a career in the motor industry before retiring to live in Norfolk and sharpen his bridge-playing skills.
Wing Commander Roderick Learoyd VC
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander Roderick Learoyd VC
| Wing Commander Roderick Learoyd VC |
On the day that war was declared Rod Learoyd was on patrol flying Hampdens with 49 Sqn. Continually involved with low level bombing, on the night of 12th August 1940, he and four other aircraft attempted to breach the heavily defended Dortmund - Ems canal. Of the four other aircraft on the mission, two were destroyed and the other two were badly hit. Learoyd took his plane into the heavily defended target at only 150 feet, in full view of the searchlights, and with flak barrage all around. He managed to get his very badly damaged aircraft back to England, where he circled until daybreak when he finally landed the aircraft without inflicting more damage to it, or injuring any of his crew. For his supreme courage that night he was awarded the Victoria Cross. He later joined 44 Sqn with the first Lancasters, and then commanded 83 Sqn. He died 24th January 1996.
Wing Commander Norman Mackie DSO DFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Wing Commander Norman Mackie DSO DFC
| Wing Commander Norman Mackie DSO DFC |
Joining the RAF in 1940 he was posted in April 1941 to 83 Sqn at Scampton flying Hampdens and Manchesters, joining OTU as an instructor on Wellingtons in March 1942. He then rejoined 83 Sqn now at Wyton as a Pathfinder flying Lancasters until he was shot down by German Night Fighters in March 1943. Having been captured he escaped to Switzerland and after a period there managed to return to Britain through France and Spain. In May 1944 he joined 571 Sqn flying Mosquitoes with the Light Night Strike Force taking part in many of the units operations over Western Germany. He left the RAF in December 1967. He died 1st January 2003.
Air Commodore Alun Morgan
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Commodore Alun Morgan
| Air Commodore Alun Morgan |
Air Commodore Alun Morgan was called up for National Service in 1950, and was then selected for RAF College Cranwell, (1951-53). His first tour was on 81 Sqn in Singapore flying Meteor PR 10s and Pembroke's. He joined the V-Force in 1960, first as a co-pilot then as a captain on Vulcan Is and 1As. From 1967- 67 he was FIt Cdr on 83 Sqn at Scampton flying the Blue Steel Vulcan 11. A short tour in 1974 as OC the Vulcan Standardisation Sqn was followed by a tour at Akrotiri, Cyprus as OC Vulcan Bomber Wing. A desk tour at HQ 1 Group followed as Vulcan Operations, but he still managed two of the USAF Bombing Competitions in the USA, leading the Vulcan High Noon and Giant Voice detachments in 1975 and 1977. From 1978-81 he was the NATO Targeting Representative at Headquarters SAC at Offutt USA, and retired in 1986 as the UK National Military Representative at SHAPE, Belgium. He flew his last Vulcan sortie on 18 Nov 1982.
M/Sig R D Pearson
Click the name above to see prints signed by M/Sig R D Pearson
| M/Sig R D Pearson |
Joined the RAF in 1943 to begin training as an Air Gunner. After the usual short attachments at various training stations eventually ending up at No 2 AGS Dalcross. Air firing was carried out from an Avro Anson. There was always a mad rush to be first aboard the aircraft on every detail, not from enthusiasm, but from trying to avoid winding up the undercarriage after take off. M/Sig Pearson went from Dalcross to Kinloss to join a crew flying Whitleys and several months later ended up at 158 Sqdn Lissett to commence operations on Halifaxes. After half a tour and very happy at Lissett his crew were posted onto a PFF Sqdn, 635 Sqdn Downham Market. His first operation, and very nearly his last, was a daylight raid on Hamburg. On the bombing run, they had the misfortune to be selected by the pilot of a ME262 as his victim. He was not spotted until he was dead astern and blazing away with the four 30mm cannon in the nose. Evasive action was given and the pilot promptly stood the Lanc on its nose. Unfortunately not all the cannon shells missed and they lost quite a piece of fuselage leaving ammo belts hanging out in the slipstream. After regaining level flight, they were attacked again by another ME262, but this time they were lucky. Both ME pilots decided to push off and find some other sitting duck! Despite these attacks, they carried on and bombed, making their way home across the North Sea, not a pleasant journey. The pilot received an immediate award of the DFC. M/Sig Pearson finished the war out at Downham Market and after the war in Europe ended was posted to 83 Sqdn Conningsby for Tiger Force training and operations against the Japanese. Fortunately the war in the east ceased just as they were ready to depart. He was demobbed in May 1947, but was not happy out of uniform so was back in again at the end of 1949 as an A/G flying on Lincolns at 9 Sqdn. Binbrook. He had a short detachment with 617 Sqdn at Shallufa, Egypt and at the end of 1952 was posted onto B29 aircraft with 15 Sqdn. Coningsby. After six months he was posted to Little Rissington on a Link Trainer course and then to FTS Syerston as a Link instructor to Naval cadet pilots. In 1955, he was required to either remuster to a ground trade or take another aircrew trade. He was posted to Swanton Morley to take training as an Air Signaller and from then to St Mawgan 228 Sqdn on Shackletons. Next came a posting to Northolt in a drawing office drawing En-Route charts and Terminal Approach Procedures. Back to flying in 1961 and a posting to 224 Sqdn Gibraltar and then to Air Traffic Control School at Shawbury. On completion of this course came a posting to RAF Lyneham as Local Controller and thence to RAF Colerne as Approach Controller. He left the service in 1968.
Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener DSO DFC (deceased)
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener DSO DFC (deceased)
| Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener DSO DFC (deceased) |
One of the top RAF navigators of the war who went on more than 100 sorties in Bomber Command. Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener was born in Birmingham in November 1915 and joined the Royal Air Force in early 1939. Norman Scrivener trained at Staverton Aerodrome, in Gloucestershire, where he discovered he suffered from air sickness. He joined 97 (New Zealand ) Squadron, became a pilot officer and was one of the first navigators to use the developing radar systems and later flew with Wing Commander Guy Gibson (before Gibson moved to the Dambusters.) with 106 Squadron and in 1943 joined the Pathfinders of 83 Squadron as navigator to the Squadron Commander John Searby and took part in the raid on the German radar facilities in Peenemunde where the German V2 and V1 rockets were produced and tested. Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Distinguished Flying Order. Sadly Squadron Leader Norman Scrivener died in Worcester aged 91 in May 2007.
Air Commodore John Searby DSO DFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Commodore John Searby DSO DFC
| Air Commodore John Searby DSO DFC |
John Searby joined the RAF in 1929 as a Halton apprentice but was a Sergeant Pilot flying bombers when war broke out. Joining 106 Squadron he flew Lancasters with Guy Gibson and eventually took over as Squadron Commander when Gibson left for 617 Squadron. A specialist in navigation, he was then chosen by Arthur Harris to take command of No.83 Pathfinder Squadron at Wyton. Searby quickly developed a superb reputation as a Pathfinder and was involved in countless precision raids including his role as Master Bomber on the Peenemunde raid, coordinating the attack by over 600 heavy bombers. He died on 14th January 1986.
Citation for the award of the Distinguished Service Order
Warrant Officer Frank Stone
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer Frank Stone
| Warrant Officer Frank Stone |
Rear Gunner on Hampdens with 83 sqn, he was shot down in August 1940 aged 17 over Ludwigshafen and sent to Stalag Luft III. In Hut 104 he was in charge of the hidden radio that aided the ‘Great Escape’ and had it been a success he would have been part of the second escape attempt two weeks later.
Flight Lieutenant Fred Watts DFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Fred Watts DFC
| Flight Lieutenant Fred Watts DFC |
Fred Watts joined the RAF in 1940, and qualifying as a pilot was posted to 630 Squadron in 1943 flying 15 operations on Lancasters out of East Kirby. He joined 617 Squadron in April 1944 and took part in many of the precision operations that the Squadron was renowned for, including raids on V1 sites, V2 rocket bases, and all three attacks on the Tirpitz. He left 617 Squadron in March 1945 to join 83 Pathfinder Squadron for Far East deployment with Tiger Force but VJ-day brought disbandment of the Force before it could be despatched. He stayed on in the RAF after the end of the war, retiring in 1964. He died 6th August 2007.
Flight Lieutenant Dennis Woolley DFC DFM
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Dennis Woolley DFC DFM
| Flight Lieutenant Dennis Woolley DFC DFM |
Flight Lieutenant Dennis William, Woolley. DFC, DFM. 106 (5 Group) and 83 (S-PFF- Group) Squadrons. 1940 - Volunteered for air crew service. 1941 - Trained as an Air Observer in Manitoba. 1942 - Did 1st tour, on Manchesters (6 trips) and on Lancasters (27 trips). Awarded DFM. 1942 - 3 - Instructor at Winthorpe, Notts. 1943 - Engaged in special operations relating to the advancement of the Italian campaign. Based latterly in Sicily. 1944 - Did 2nd tour in Bomber Command in 83 (PFF) Squadron. 25 trips in Lancasters. Awarded DFC and Pathfinder Badge. 1944 - 5 - Joined Transport Command, Transatlantic Ferry Unit based at Darval, Montreal. 1945 - 6 - Seconded to what is now known as British Airways. Based at Poole, navigating Sunderland flying boats to and from Singapore. 1946 - Demobilised.
|Aviation History Timeline : 19th April|
|19||April||1941||Former New Zealand Battle of Britain pilot, P/O E. W. G. Churches of 74 Squadron, was Killed.|
|19||April||1944||Otto Wessling, a WW2 Ace with 83.00 victories, died on this day|
|19||April||1945||Carroll Ofsthun of 357th Fighter Group, 363rd Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Gilmon Weber of 357th Fighter Group, 364th Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Ivan McGuire of 357th Fighter Group, 364th Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Jack Hayes of 357th Fighter Group, 363rd Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||James McMullen of 357th Fighter Group, 364th Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Paul Bowles of 357th Fighter Group, 363rd Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Robert DeLoach of 55th Fighter Group, 338th Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1945||Robert Fifield of 357th Fighter Group, 363rd Fighter Squadron shot down a Me262|
|19||April||1970||Former British Battle of Britain pilot, S/Ldr. D. O. Finlay of 41 & 54 Squadrons, Passed away.|
|19||April||2007||Colonel William J Cavoli, whose signature is on some of our aviation art, died on this day|
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