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Old 7th May 2011, 10:02
Larry Hickey Larry Hickey is offline
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12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Hello,

Peter Cornwell has now completed is re-analysis for the EOE Working Group of FB losses to 12 SQ during the WC. This SQ is one of the best that we have for surviving information on a/c codes and SN, but one of the worst ones for photos matching this unit's numerous losses. In fact, we have photos of only six of this SQ's many losses during the Blitzkrieg: (PHoP L5190, PHoG L5241, PHoC L5188, PHoF P2332, PHoA P5538, and PHoY N2150). If you know of photos of any other PH coded a/c FL or crashes, they would add to our body of knowledge of this unit's losses. So here goes our questions:

For 10 May 1940: We have only one match, that is for photos of PHoP, Battle 5190, FL in Luxembourg.

What we need are photos of three others: L5249 (PHoD) returned to base, but later abandoned , P2243 (PHoU) FL at Haucourt-la-Rigole,W of Piennes; and L4949 (PHoV) FL on fire at "Mohimont',Sommerthonne, NW of Virton and may have burned out.

12 May 1940: We have two photo matches P2332 (PHoF) FL near the Vroenhoven bridge over the Albert Canal; same raid L5241 (PHoG) FL at St Germain-les-Mons; crew captured and plane burned out to center of rear fuselage by crew.

What we need are photos of four others: L5227 (PHoJ) crashed and burned at Eigenbilzen with crew killed; L2204 (PHoK) Crashed and burned out near Lanken with crew killed and Battle L5439 (PHoN) FL at Neerharen with crew POW.

14 May 1940: We have photo of one loss: L5188 (PHoC), tail of smashed to pieces a/c as crew bailed out somewhere in the vicinity of Bouillon and Givonne;

What we need are photos of 3 more losses and 1 damaged: L4960 (PHoV) crashed and burned out Vrigne-aux-Bois; L4952 (PHoX) Crashed near Pouru-St-Rémy with one 2 crew KIA &1 POW; L5229 (PHoO) crashed in same area, 2 crew KIA and one POW; L5538 (PHoA) Returned to Base damaged but repairable.

16 May 1940: L4944 (PHoR) Abandoned at Reims upon withdrawal.

19 May 1940: we have photos of one of two losses L5538 (PHoA damaged on 14 May) FL and written off near Mesnil-Lépinois.

We need N2178 (PHoI) crashed near Cauroy; one crew KIA and 2 WIA.

5 June 1940: we have no photos of 4 a/c lost or damaged that day.

We need L5478 (code unknown) dam near tricot and returned repairable; L5568 FL at Faux-Villecerg dam in attack on French tanks near Tricot; L5520 FL at Vaux-Villaine (PHoN); and L5383 FL at Chaumont AF (PHoF) repairable.

7 June 1940: we have no photos of 2 a/c lost or damaged that day.

We need P2162 (PHoQ) crashed and burned out near St-Valéry with crew KIA; L5415 (PHoO) Returned to base repairable with crew OK.

8 June 1940: we need photos of one loss: L5546 (PHoU) crashed & burned out near Lamaronde with 2 crew KIA and 1 POW. Remains dug 28 June 2005 but contemporary photos not presently known.

13 June 1940: we need photos of 3 losses: L5580 (PHoX) FL N of Sézanne with 3 crew POW; L5324 (PHoA) crashed & burned near Montmirail with one crew KIA & 2 badly burned; and L5531 (code unknown) FL along a road between Esternay and St-Martin-due Boschet and plane set afire by the crew before POW.

14 June 1940: we need photos of 3 losses: L5396 (a/c code unknown) crashed near Coulonges-Ardennes; L5383 (PHoF) crashed near Pacy-sur-Eure, crew KIA; and unknown Battle set afire in night bombing attack on airfield; plane destroyed.

In addition we have information from SQ records of 3 a/c "Lost in France" but no further details, although we have SN and code for one of these FL in good condition with no further details: N2150 (PHoY), we also need info of place, circumstances dates and crews for the two other unknown 12 SQ losses: L5328 and P5231.

I know that this is a tall order, and that several of these will probably never be documented photographically, but based upon my experience with this message board and other sources, I think that photos of a lot of these incidents are out there and can be located. I hope that you will continue to help with this.

Regards,
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Old 7th May 2011, 12:37
Iain Torrance Iain Torrance is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

L5241 PH-G - all the crew were not captured, Davy flew back to near the base, plane was later collected and flown to base but was then burnt on the retreat.

kind regards

Iain
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Old 7th May 2011, 19:59
Larry Hickey Larry Hickey is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Iain,

That is also what our info says, but I have a photo that seems to indicate otherwise. I'd like to send you a copy of this photo to get your opinion, but can't find that I have your email address. If you'll send me a PM with that info, I'll send you a copy of this for your opinion.

Regards,
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Old 7th May 2011, 20:35
Larry Hickey Larry Hickey is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Iain,

You are right, one of the crewman was later captured, but not at the time of the FL. It seems that Peter C. has sent a photo of what he has identified as this a/c burned out on the ground, which is probably L5241. However, I have a separate photo at another location of a PHoG up on blocks, for lowering the gear after a FL. This was also taken by the Germans at an Allied base, and must show a subsequently coded PHoG later in the campaign. I can't identify a SN, nor do I know where it was taken, although there appear to be other abandoned and burned British a/c in the distant background. I'd still like to send you copies of these for your opinion.

Regards,
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Old 9th May 2011, 17:46
Larry Hickey Larry Hickey is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Hello,

Regarding: "14 May 1940: We have photo of one loss: L5188 (PHoC), tail of smashed to pieces a/c as crew bailed out somewhere in the vicinity of Bouillon and Givonne" in my original post, this appears to be incorrect. The photo that I identified with this incident shows another crash of a 218 SQ Battle, HAoJ, on May 12th. So we're still looking for a photo of the crashed PHoC, L5188 of 12 SQ that was shot down on May 14th. Can anyone help?

Regards,
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Old 10th May 2011, 21:42
Iain Torrance Iain Torrance is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Larry

I'll reply to your PM.

L5241 was definitely burnt out after being brought (flown) back to base after Davy landed. Problem was holed fuel tanks. I interviewed a 12 Sqn ground crew who was one of a small group that returned after the retreat to collect the spares trailer. They also set fire to the fuel dump as the cans had not been pierced when set fire on the retreat!! They got out with the trailer just ahead of the Germans.

Anyways I showed him photos of the G burnt out and he confirmed (very certain) it was Davy's plane and it was as he left it. The other PM-G was identified as at Souge; a lot of photos of that one show destroyed Battles in the background. So that PH-G is was one of the repacements.

Best regards

Iain
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Old 11th May 2011, 02:28
Larry Hickey Larry Hickey is offline
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Re: 12 SQ Fairey Battle Loss questions for the WC of 1940

Iain,

Thanks for your conclusive comments about L5241; have adjusted the captions for the 3 photos in the DB on that one.

Regarding the replacement PHoG up on wing jacks at Souge, do any of your photos show a SN for that one?

Regards,
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