Author Topic: William Henry Demel  (Read 1695 times)

Offline angelab

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William Henry Demel
« on: August 19, 2010, 12:01:59 AM »
I believe William Henry Demel was in the Manchester Regiment during WWI.

According to the Supplement to the London Gazette of 3 June 1919, he was awarded the DFC.

Does anyone have more information about him, or which battalion he was with?

Angela

Offline mack

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Re: William Henry Demel
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2010, 02:33:09 AM »
hiya angela.
heres a bit of info for you

2/Lt william,henry demel
9th manchesters
to egypt oct 1915
son of carl+helen,18 sandy lane,stretford
born,4-4-1893
died 1979 at anglesey
married phyllis,brundritt higham in 1922
resided "mayroyd"cecil ave,ashton upon mersey
children john,glassford[b.1923]/sheila,mary[b.1925]/helen,margaret[b 2-1-1930]/janet[b.1933]/kathleen[b.1938]
DFC
recommended for an OBE,uncertain if it was awarded
WW2.wing commander of 44 group ferry command RAFVR
his son flying officer 162322 john,glassford demel died in south africa on 9-10-1944,buried in standerton cemetery south africa,grave 312
his first three children were baptised at st.matthews church stretford

mack ;D

Offline angelab

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Re: William Henry Demel
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2010, 09:45:00 PM »
Wow thanks Mack!

That's amazing.

 :)   Angela

Offline Timberman

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Re: William Henry Demel
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2019, 05:53:11 PM »
His medals and other items were sold in May 2018 for £2800.00 by DNW.
The following was the write up and the additional items to go with the sale.


A fine Great War 1918 ‘Western Front’ D.F.C. group of seven awarded to Wing Commander W. H. Demel, Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force, late Manchester Regiment, who served as a Flight Commander with No. 149 Squadron and successfully completed 44 night bombing raids over Belgium and Northern France between June and November 1918; he subsequently served with the Auxiliary Air Force during the Second War, and was twice recommended for the O.B.E.

Distinguished Flying Cross, G.V.R., unnamed as issued; 1914-15 Star (2. Lieut. W. H. Demel, Manch. R.); British War and Victory Medals (Capt. W. H. Demel. R.A.F.); Defence and War Medals 1939-45; Air Efficiency Award, G.VI.R., 1st issue (Wg. Cdr. W. H. Demel. A.A.F.) mounted as worn and housed in a Spink, London, leather case, contact marks, nearly very fine or better (7) £2800-3200
Footnote
D.F.C. London Gazette 3 June 1919.

The Recommendation states: ‘This Officer has done continuously good work as a Flight Commander in a Night Bombing Squadron. He has crossed the lines on 44 night raids, successfully reaching his objectives frequently under very difficult weather conditions.’

William Henry Demel was born at Stretford, Lancashire, on 4 April 1893, and was educated at Manchester University. He was commissioned Second Lieutenant in the Manchester Regiment on 25 February 1915, from the Manchester University Contingent, Senior Division, Officers Training Corps, and joined the 9th Battalion in Gallipoli in October 1915. In December 1915 he embarked with the Battalion to Egypt, where for the next 12 months the Battalion was engaged on guarding the Suez Canal. On 14 December 1916 he became attached to the Royal Flying Corps, and after a period at the R.F.C. School of Instruction he was transferred to No. 39 Reserve Squadron at Montrose, Scotland, to begin training as a pilot. He was gazetted Flying Officer on 23 May 1917, and whilst still on secondment was promoted Lieutenant in the Manchester Regiment on 1 July 1917. He was subsequently attached to No. 77 (Home Defence) Squadron of the 6th Brigade, based in Edinburgh, specifically to train in night bombing.

Demel was posted to the newly-formed No. 149 (Night Bomber) Squadron as a Flight Commander on 22 May 1918. Equipped with 18 F.E. 2b machines, the Squadron was sent to France on 2 June 1918 as part of the Air Echelon of the British Expeditionary Force. Its first operation was on the night of 23-24 June from St. Omer, and from then on it operated from various satellite airfields as the Allied troops advanced, the principal targets being German road and railheads, ammunition dumps, and airfields. It also fulfilled the role of a reconnaissance squadron as the need arose, making use of flares to establish German positions. During the Allied push in September 1918 the Squadron concentrated on tactical bombing from Clairmarais, making a particularly intense and successful effort on two nights at the end of the month when, in driving rain with a cloud base of 1,000 feet, it dropped 12 tons of bombs on the roads in front of the Ypres salient and strafed every enemy light with their forward-firing Lewis guns, some crew flying up to nine sorties each night. The Squadron then returned to strategic bombing in the Germans’ rear until the Armistice when it became part of the Army of Occupation, remaining at Bickendorf until 26 March 1919 when it returned to England. During the period of operations between 23 June and 11 November 1918, the Squadron undertook 793 raids, dropped over 80 tons of bombs, and made 161 reconnaissance trips. Demel himself made 50 flights in this period, and dropped a total of 389 bombs. For his services he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, and was presented with this D.F.C. by H.M. King George V at Buckingham Palace on 12 May 1920. He was also presented with an illuminated Certificate by the Urban District Council of Stretford as an expression of their admiration.

Demel was posted to the Home Establishment on 15 November 1918, but remained in France until being invalided to England from Wimereux on 8 March 1919. Transferring to the unemployed list on 20 March 1919, he relinquished his Royal Air Force commission on 4 March 1921, and was appointed Captain in the 9th Battalion, Manchester Regiment (Territorial Force) on 21 June 1921, before he relinquished his Territorial commission on account of ill-health on 21 June 1924.

On 25 March 1939, shortly before the start of the Second World War, Demel was granted a commission as Flight Lieutenant in No. 915 (County of Warwick) Squadron, a Barrage Balloon Squadron of the Auxiliary Air Force. He transferred to the Balloon Branch on 27 March 1940, and was promoted Squadron Leader on 1 September of that year. Transferring to the Administrative and Special Duties Branch on 17 July 1941, and then to the Headquarters of the newly-formed No. 44 (Ferry Service) Group on 15 August 1941, he became head of both Administration and Organisation. Demel was promoted temporary Wing Commander on 1 January 1944, before resigning his commission on 1 October 1944, retaining the rank of Wing Commander. For his services during the Second World War he was twice recommended for an award of the O.B.E.

The first O.B.E. Recommendation, for the 1943 New Year’s Honours’ List, states: ‘Acting Wing Commander William Henry Demel has been S.O.A. and Wing Commander at Headquarters, No. 44 Group, since the formation of the Group in August 1941. Throughout this period new and difficult problems, without precedent for guidance, have arised daily. Wing Commander Demel has devoted himself unsparingly to his duties and it is due to his outstanding leadership and tireless energy that a team spirit and enthusiasm have been developed, contributing so largely to the results achieved in the despatch of Overseas Reinforcement aircraft for the Middle and Far East.’

The second O.B.E. Recommendation, for the 1945 New Year’s Honours’ List, states: ‘Wing Commander W. H. Demel is employed as Head of the Organisation Branch of No. 44 Group. His work in connection with organisation and planning has been of an exceptionally high standard. He is inspired by a genuine interest in the Service and in many avenues of Service Life his guidance and influence have been beneficial to both officers and airmen. He is about to return to civil life having accomplished excellent work whilst with the R.A.F.’

However, on neither occasion was Demel awarded the O.B.E., although he was awarded the Air Efficiency Award in 1949. After the War he returned to working within the metal industry, and between 1958 and 1960 was Chairman of the Midlands Area Council of the Royal Metal Trades Pension and Benevolent Society. He died in Anglesey on 24 December 1979.

Sold with a glazed and framed Urban District Council of Stretford illuminated Certificate congratulating Captain William Henry Demel on being awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, dated 6 January 1920; an annotated photograph album, containing a mixture of service photographs including of the 9th Manchester Regiment in Egypt in 1916 and of No. 39 Reserve Squadron at Montrose in 1917; a personal photograph album containing various family photographs; the recipient’s annotated copy of Technical Notes, Royal Flying Corps; a copy of Strong by Night, the History and Memories of No. 149 Squadron, Royal Air Force; a portrait image of the recipient; and a large quantity of research.

Click on the pictures to make them bigger.

Neil
« Last Edit: November 18, 2019, 05:55:57 PM by Timberman »

Offline mack

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Re: William Henry Demel
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2019, 06:05:58 PM »
nice work neil

mack

Offline Timberman

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Re: William Henry Demel
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2019, 07:19:05 PM »
Thanks Mack

Couldn't find him in the Transfer to the RFC/RAF topic.
Not sure if Angela will see this she's not been on since
Dec 2017, still worth adding though :)

Neil