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F540 Operations Record Book March 1958 NO 4 SQUADRON.
RAF Museum Hendon. Holds 2nd copy of F540 1945 to 1970.
PLACE DATE TIME SUMMARY OF EVENTS                             COMPILING OFFICER   __Flying Officer P.F. Hunwick.___ Refs
      PeteHunwick.jpg, 1653 bytes  
R.A.F. Sylt 1.3.58        The visiting Squadrons were given the week-end off.   Our hangars and rooms were
inspected by the Wing Commander Flying, who was impressed with the very high standard
of cleanliness.   In the evening we had an excellent party to celebrate the promotion
of Flight Lieutenants J.D. Hawtin and J.A. Bell.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  3.3.58        Fg. Off. A.R. Macnae was treated in Nordseekrankenhaus for head injuries received
in yesterdays soccer match.   Fog, which looked as if it had come to stay for some
time, prevented flying all day.   We played yet another game of basketball against
No. 14 Squadron and many pilots played squash.   With Jever snowed under, and Sylt Red,
we had four pilots stranded there.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  4.3.58        Visibility still about 300 yds, and so we saw films.   The first one was an interesting
travelogue on Cyprus, and the second an outdated American film made in 1944 on Air
Power and Land Forces.   In the afternoon we beat No. 14 Squadron at soccer in the
replay of Sundays match.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  5.3.58        We had another non flying day due to weather.   Except for one or two pilots we have
now finished firing at low level.   Our final average was 18.5% an improvement on our
last detachment of 1%, and our stoppage rate now stands at 1548.   The top scorer was
Fg. Off. D. Bebington, with a straight shoot of 76 hits.   He also has the top average
of 28.0%.   This is particularly creditable in the view of his lack of experience on Hunter
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  6.3.58        Fg. Off. D. Bebington left today to take an immediate posting to a Venom squadron in
Aden.   We started flying at medium level.   Although we only had eight effective sorties
our average was 26.8%.
                                            SORTIES : 21           HOURS : 12.00
  7.3.58        We did six sorties which were unsuccessful due to cloud on the range.   In the after-
noon, all available pilots went to List baths and we went through our dinghy drill again
on the s.s. Mk 2.   We are equipped with the s.s. Mk. 3 but there are a few differences.
                                            SORTIES :   6           HOURS : 3.15
  8.3.58        Another long week-end for Sylt.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  10.3.58        The range was unserviceable again due to cloud at medium level.   In the afternoon
we did S.F. and routine trips in P.A.I.s aircraft.   The first issue of 'Focus on Four',
a squadron magazine of general interest, was published today by Fg. Off. A.R. Pollock.
Two months delay was due to security regulations.
                                            SORTIES : 34           HOURS : 19.05
  11.3.58        Exactly the same conditions prevailed on the range as we had yesterday.   In the afternoon
we all practiced close formation, but low cloud over Sylt prevented a flypast.
                                            SORTIES : 23           HOURS : 14.15
  12.3.58        The first good firing day for a fortnight, enabled us to get 25 effective shoots.
                                            SORTIES : 37           HOURS : 22.10
  13.3.58        The good weather continues and our medium level average went up to 22.1
                                            SORTIES : 37           HOURS : 21.25
  14.3.58        Most of the pilots individual scores were improving, and todays average of 25.2%
put our progressive medium level average at 23.2%.   This is better than our last
                                            SORTIES : 37           HOURS : 22.35
  15.3.58        We did a full days shooting in good firing conditions.   The average did not improve
however, and finished at 23.0%.   L.A.C. W.C. Robertson ran for R.A.F. Jever at the
2nd T.A.F. Cross-Country championships held at Wildenwrath.
                                            SORTIES : 29           HOURS : 17.10
  16.3.58        14 pilots and Cpl. P.I.P. Newmarch formed the victorious Squadron rugger team
which played R.A.F. Sylt in the afternoon.   Both sides enjoyed a good clean open
game which we won 23 - 0.
  17.3.58        Flt. Lt. J.D. Hawtin left for Brussels this morning where he is playing hockey for
2nd. T.A.F. against the Belgian Army, and against B.A.O.R.   Nearly everyone's shooting
was improving, and todays firing brought our medium level average up to 23.4%.
                                            SORTIES : 45           HOURS : 28.00
  18.3.58        Our last day firing at medium level.   Our stoppage rate went up to 1809.   The daily
average was 25.5% giving us a final medium level average of 23.9%.   This is a record
for British Hunters at Sylt, and is an improvement on our last detachment.
                                            SORTIES : 37           HOURS : 20.30
  19.3.58        We were to spend our last day at Sylt firing at 25,000ft.   The first
half of the day our average stood at 25.5%, but by the evening it fell to 15.9% -
quite creditable for this height.
4sqnpic036.jpg, 33083 bytes

Bugs Bendell and Al Pollock in front of 4 Sqn Scoreboard at Sylt - Mar58. Names: Barraclough, Cope-Lewis, McElhaw, Maish, Hawtin, Hunwick, Slaney, Bebington, Hipperson, Jones, Riley, Dave Ferguson, Eades, McNae, Brewer, Dale.   (Thanks Barry Dale).   [Photo not in F540].
                                            SORTIES : 37           HOURS : 23.40
  20.3.58        The most enjoyable and operational flights of the whole detachment, as we spent the
morning firing at gliders.   Our first one was blown to pieces, and the second one was
knocked off after quite heavy punishment.   In the afternoon we flew all the aircraft
back to Jever.
                                            SORTIES : 12           HOURS : 5.50
R.A.F. Jever 21.3.58        The pilots who had flown down yesterday, found the offices and crew-rooms in complete
disorder, as they had been re-decorated whilst the Squadron was up at Sylt.   Everybody
set about cleaning up, and re-arranging the rooms.   Several hours were flown in the
Vampire TXI., the Squadron aircraft awaiting the arrival of the ground crew from Sylt.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  22.3.58        Since the convoy did not arrive until very late last night after a long journey, the
drivers stood down and there was no flying.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  24.3.58        The day was spent preparing the Squadron Aircraft for resumption of normal training
and preparing for the coming pre - A.O.C.s inspection.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  25.3.58        Today the Squadron resumed normal Hunter flying.   Ten syllabus sorties were flown
and the Squadron's first extended leading - edge Hunter was air tested by O.C. 'B'
Flight, Flt. Lt. R.E. Barraclough.
                                            SORTIES : 11           HOURS : 8.45
  26.3.58        This morning two of our aircraft were flown down to R.A.F. Laarbruch by Fg. Off.
J.B. Cross
and Fg. Off. T.M. Jeffrey for airframe modifications.   This left only three
aircraft serviceable on the Squadron so that only six other sorties were flown.   Cloud
was thick to above twenty thousand feet and a considerable amount of 'actual' flying
was logged.
                                            SORTIES :   6           HOURS : 7.50
  27.3.58        The Squadron participated in Exercise 'Amled' from 0900 hours onwards.   This involved
medium and high level interceptions under G.C.I. control of CANBERRA and THUNDERSTREAK
aircraft returning from raids over Denmark.   Drop tanks were still being fitted to our
aircraft and the Squadron could only operate one pair of aircraft.
                                            SORTIES : 17           HOURS : 16.55
  28.3.58        Seventeen sorties were again flown today, five of them general syllabus training
The other sorties consisted of high level battle formation and individual dogfights
at altitude.
                                            SORTIES : 17           HOURS : 18.05
  29.3.58        This morning there was no flying.   A parade scheduled for Flying Wing was can-
celled due to inclement weather.   All pilots available helped to begin the formidable
task of thoroughly cleaning our aircraft, begrimed after our air firing detachment at
     In the afternoon a convoy of the Squadron's cars descended on Oldenburg town where
Fg. Off. H.W. Slaney was duly married.   For at least twelve hours following the ceremony
the Squadron could hardly be termed operational.
                                                              SORTIES :   NIL
  31.3.58        Only sixteen sorties were flown by the Squadron on the last day of the month.
These were again a mixture of individual syllabus, high level battle formation and
dogfight practice at various altitudes
                                            SORTIES : 16           HOURS : 16.50
      GO Eades                                                  
(G.O. EADES)                                               
Flight Lieutenant,                                         
for     Officer Commanding,                                  
Number 4 Squadron.