Author Topic: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF  (Read 147826 times)

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #135 on: February 07, 2015, 08:03:04 PM »
To Charlie I would say :
"Thank you for the information which has clarified the position.  The action of the clerk's recording of 14 Reserve Squadron as 14 Squadron on the MIC has contributed greatly to the confusion."

To Timberman I would say: "There's nothing more to say - you have said it all!!!!!!. "    You have done some wonderful research. Thank you.

To conclude - thanks again to both of you. PhilipG.

timberman

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #136 on: February 07, 2015, 09:46:40 PM »
Your welcome Philip,
Next to the Manchester's the RAF comes
a close 1st ;D ;D

Have you got a list of the Officers on this thread,
if not I'll compile one and post it at the front.

One if you don't have him.

From the GWF

 2Lt RF Sinclair 14Bn Manchester Regt attached.

Timberman

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #137 on: February 08, 2015, 08:05:44 AM »
Timberman,

It would be an excellent idea to compile a list as a kind of index.My list is in long hand. Sinclair is already in the "in tray".   Thanks. PhilipG.

Offline charlie

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #138 on: February 08, 2015, 05:16:08 PM »
Capt Moore
From the Quarterly Army List for the quarter ending 31.12.1919:

(r)Moore AG (Capt 4 Bn Manch R)
S Africa War 1901-02. Operations in Orange River Colony July 01 to 31 May 02. Queens Medal with 3 clasps.
The war of 1914-19 Despatches, LG 21 Jun and 20 Oct 1916. MC & clasp to MC

MC LG 02.06.1916 Capt Alfred Garnet Moore Spec Res Manch R attd RFC.

Bar to MC LG 20.10.1916  Capt Alfred Garnet Moore MC Spec Res Manch R and RFC
For conspicuous gallantry  and skill. While fighting he had several wires shot away and his main spar damaged. His machine went into a spinning nose dive. Nevertheless he finally managed to get some sort of control and landed safely in an aerodrome


Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #139 on: February 12, 2015, 07:00:20 AM »
Charlie,,

Thank you. Quite a flyer. Philip.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #140 on: February 17, 2015, 12:02:06 PM »
                                    Lt. John Edward Martin Evans : 8th Bn. Manchester Regt. & No. 48 Squadron RFC.

Information on this airman is sparse.  The records state that he was a RFC Observer with No. 48 Squadron and that he was "killed whilst flying", a statement which fails to indicate exactly what took place and with whom he was flying.   However, at the time of his death on the 9th February 1918 he was airborne in a Bristol F2B type aircraft whose number was B 1210 and I have assumed that his pilot survived the incident.  Evans is buried in Roye New British Cemetery which lies south of St. Quentin.

As regards No. 48 Squadron, research revealed some interesting facts.  Firstly, it is reported that Keith Park of "Battle of Britain" fame was one of its Flight Commanders during Evans' service with the squadron and that Park was a "Fighter Ace" with 20 successes.  The whole squadron "had 32 aces serve in it".   Quite a record.

From this list of "aces"  one name caught my attention.  It was that of Captain John Herbert Towne Letts who by 1918 was then serving with No. 64 Squadron RAF.  A graduate of Sandhurst and the Central Flying School, he seemed to have had a moment of reckless over-confidence which resulted in his death on the 11th October 1918.

He took off in another squadron's SE5A aircraft and immediately the machine was airborne attempted to carry out a slow roll.    With insufficient height for such a manoeuvre, the result was inevitable and in the resultant crash to the ground he was killed instantly.   PhilipG.


Offline charlie

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #141 on: February 19, 2015, 02:33:19 PM »
Hello Philip

Lt Evans

Lt Evans died of injuries sustained after his pilot 2/Lt FR Hunt attempted a forced landing on a ploughed field near Flez, during which the aircraft overturned. The forced landing was due to engine failure. They had been employed on a "camera co-op" sortie - I presume this is old terminology for photo-reconaissance. 2/Lt Hunt survived.

Map reference for crash site 62cV28A http://digitalarchive.mcmaster.ca/islandora/object/macrepo%3A4060/-/collection

This was not the first time Lt Evans had been involved in a landing incident. On 12.11.1917, again in a Bristol Fighter of 48 Sqn (A7155), after losing their way after an offensive patrol in the Dixmunde area, his pilot 2/Lt JWD Needham had to make a forced landing at Neales near Etaples. This was carried out in the dark and in adverse weather conditions. Both officers were injured, 2/Lt Needham fatally, the aircraft was wrecked.

Charlie
« Last Edit: February 19, 2015, 04:58:56 PM by Charlie »

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #142 on: February 20, 2015, 10:55:05 AM »
Charlie,

Thanks for that interesting contribution. Philip.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #143 on: February 21, 2015, 04:23:25 PM »
                           Lieutenant W.R.Freeman (Major W.R.Freeman : 2nd Manchesters & No. 2 Squadron RFC).

I have been reviewing the information on this site in respect of the above named officer, paying particular reference to Robert Bonner's post on the 12th August 2014 and also to my contribution of the 13th August and that of "themonsstar" of the same date. (Page 4).  Thus, it now seems clear, that when last year I was recording the flying exploits of this gallant officer during 1914, I was in fact writing about a distinguished airman who was, in the passage of time, to achieve the rank of Air Chief Marshal - namely, Sir Wilfrid Rhodes Freeman, Bart.,RAF.  His awards and decorations are numerous, but include GCB., KCB., CB., DSO., MC. and several MID's.

Sir Wilfrid's service advancement and career are well documented elsewhere, but certain details remain in my mind.  For instance, his exploits on the Aisne which I described, incurred the wrath of his CO, for both flyers were qualified pilots, such crew make-ups being usually disallowed.

Sir Wilfrid's involvement in WW2 with aircraft production ensured that the RAF was eventually equipped with aircraft of excellent calibre, including the DeHavilland Mosquito, which once apparently had the nickname of "Freeman's Folly" - clearly wrong, for if memory serves me right, in WW2 it was a frequent bombing visitor over Berlin, usually at night at an altitude where it could not be reached.
PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #144 on: February 25, 2015, 11:39:30 AM »
                   Lieutenant (later Captain) Frank Billinge : 2nd Bn. Manchester Regiment & No. 20 Squadron RFC.

As was the case with Captain Solly, also formerly with the Regiment, this officer has also been recorded as an "Air Ace", the records reporting his gaining five "successes".

On the morning of the 7th February 1916, No. 20 Squadron flying FE2b aircraft were detailed to escort No. 15 Squadron operating BE2c machines in a joint Second Army reconnaissance over the Salient.  The whole morning's work was "harrowing" insofar as only by retaining tight formation were the two squadrons able to beat off up to 14 Fokker aircraft and return to base more or less intact, except for a leg wound suffered by Lt. J. Prestwich which subsequently and sadly proved fatal.  However, for Lt. Billinge this was a successful morning, for he was able to report that he had been in combat with an enemy 'plane which was seen to go into a side-slip at 8200 feet somewhere over Roulers with its engine on fire.  His pilot was Lt. J.Reid.

From the 8th February the German Army and its squadrons were very active in the Ypres area, attempting to divert attention from their forthcoming attacks at Verdun which began on the 21st February, then giving temporary, but welcome relief to the hard pressed RFC further north.

On the 13th February, Billinge was again airborne with his squadron, this time in FE2b No. 6336 with 2nd Lt. J.T.Kirton as his pilot, carrying out another escort/reconnaissance/combat patrol.   During this operation they were engaged in action against at least three German machines, one with an enemy machine at 7400 feet which was hit, fell to the ground crashing west of Mouscron and later they were involved with two other German aircraft, an Albatros over Menin and a Rumpler in the vicinity of Halluin.

Recorded as Billinge's first "victory", this was also the first CERTAIN victory for No. 20 Squadron.

On the 14th March Lt. Billinge was flying in a FE2b aircraft No. 6339 of No. 20 Squadron on a morning operation, his pilot being Captain J. R. Howett.  At 8 a.m. and at 8300 feet near Roulers, they were attacked by a Fokker aircraft which had taken off from Gites aerodrome.  The report of the skirmish indicates that it was intense and prolonged and at one stage included a head on engagement which almost involved a collision by the two aircraft, the margin of separation between them being given as not more than 10 feet.  The British aircraft returned to base badly damaged and with Billinge having a wound to his eye. 

In August 1916 he undertook pilot training in England and on completion returned to France, flying DH2 machines with No. 32 Squadron with whom he served until June 1917.   In February 1918 he was in France once again, joining No. 56 Squadron flying SE5A's where he completed his score of enemy 'planes downed with the destruction on the 22nd March of an Albatros DV.   An intrepid aviator.
PhilipG.






 

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #145 on: February 26, 2015, 10:53:15 AM »
Captain Billinge as mentioned above, is credited with five approved "claims".  In this connection, I see that only two enemy aircraft included in his list were able to be identified as to type of machine.  These are listed as an Albatros DV and a machine, previously unknown to me, recorded as an A.G.O.C .  PhilipG.

Offline charlie

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #146 on: February 26, 2015, 07:20:56 PM »
Philip
You are not alone in having never heard of a AGO Type C  aircraft before. From what I have managed to find they were not very good or popular with their crew.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/AGO_Flugzeugwerke#Aircraft

Charlie

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #147 on: February 27, 2015, 01:29:12 PM »
Charlie,
 Thanks. Very recently, I attended a presentation on the Spitfire given by a member of the Royal Aeronautical Society.   Speaking of the excellent qualities of this aircraft, he remarked: "if it looks right and it feels right, then it is right".   I sense from your comments and the photograph, that this maxim may not hold true re the A.G.O.C.   Thanks again. PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #148 on: March 04, 2015, 03:25:12 PM »
                                  Major John Simpson Foulkes DSO : 23rd. Battalion Manchester Regiment and RAF.

This officer's military service appeared to commence in 1908 when he held the rank of Sergeant in a battalion of the King's (Liverpool Regt.).  However, in February 1915 he was commissioned in the 23rd Manchesters in the rank of 2nd. Lt. and later saw service with the 14th battalion.   The citation for his DSO (1917), includes the following : "During an attack on the enemy trenches he personally closed with a party of the enemy and inflicted severe losses on them, and although wounded in the back by a bomb, continued to control the operation until its conclusion."

In 1918 he was attached to a battalion of the York & Lancaster Regiment holding the rank of Major (with seniority 17.10.16) and in August 1918 he transferred to the Royal Air Force, being posted to the RAF Station at Eastchurch in Kent for flying duties.

Born in Stockport, this brave officer died in Liverpool in 1946 at the early age of 56.   PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Transfers of Manchester Regiment Officers to RFC/RAF
« Reply #149 on: March 08, 2015, 11:22:25 AM »
                                          Lt.A.W.Brown : 3rd Bn. Manchester Regt. & No. 2 Squadron RFC

Early on the morning of the 22nd September 1915, Lt. Brown, (his pilot being 2nd. Lt. H.W. Medlicott), was engaged on an artillery patrol flying as Observer in a BE2c aircraft No. 2673 of No.2 Squadron RFC near Lens.  During the patrol they were in combat with what they reported was a "twin nacelled Albatros", but returned to base unscathed.

Later that morning the two airman were engaged in combat with German flyers in the Lens - Arras area.  The fighting commenced at 11,000 feet only being broken off when the combatants reached the lower altitude of 5,500 feet.

They were again airborne on an evening patrol and on return to base reported that they had met an enemy 'plane at 6 p.m. which they identified as a Fokker aircraft.    A busy day.

On the 26th October, Lt. Brown was detailed to carry out an artillery registration exercise in the Vermelles - Loos area again flying in a BE2c aircraft, this time No. 1729 with Lt. A.L.Russell piloting the machine.  At 11 a.m., they had reached a height of 9,000 feet when they encountered an enemy aircraft which they identified as an Albatros.  In the ensuing engagement the German 'plane was seen "to waver but to recover."

On the 10th November, with 2nd Lt. Medlicott acting as his pilot, Lt. Brown was detailed to make a reconnaissance in the Bapaume area.   On this occasion they were again flying in squadron aircraft No. 2673.  However, on this occasion good fortune deserted them and they were shot down (punctured petrol tank, perhaps?) over enemy lines and made POW's, Lt. Brown being found to have been wounded.

2nd Lt. Medlicott would appear to have been an inveterate escaper - one source suggests he attempted 13 escapes - being shot by the Germans upon undertaking his 14th attempt on the 21st May 1918.  He is buried in Niederzwehren Cem., Kassel.

In the case of Lt. Brown, he was subsequently sent for internment in Switzerland on the 19th January 1917 (serious nature of wounds?) and repatriated on the 11th September of that year.  Post War, he teamed up with John Alcock, acting as Alcock's navigator, in completing the successful transatlantic flight on the 14th June 1919 in a Vickers Vimy Bomber, their time being 16 hours and 12 minutes.  Both flyers were knighted by the King and received a prize of �10,000 from the Daily Mail newspaper.   As Lt. Col. Sir Arthur Whitten Brown KBE, this intrepid aviator died on the 4th October 1948.  PhilipG.

« Last Edit: March 31, 2016, 09:01:40 PM by Charlie »