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F540 Operations Record Book May 1955.
RAF Museum Hendon. Holds 2nd copy of F540 1945 to 1970.
PLACE DATE TIME SUMMARY OF EVENTS                     COMPILING OFFICER   __Fg. Off. C. Boyack.___ Refs

chasboyack.jpg, 1427 bytes

R.A.F. Jever 2.5.55        Good weather continued today and only the last one or two flights were at
all affected by the cumulus type clouds which had been building up since late
morning.   It had been hoped to tow a few flags for cine work, in preparation
for our Sylt detachment, but a strong and gusty cross wind prevented this.   The
majority of today's flying was devoted to cine quarter attacks although tail
chases and close formation flying were also practiced on many flights.
                                             Flights 29   Hours 21.15
  3.5.55        The good weather continued, and the wind on the runway was favourable for flag
towing.   In all, six flags were towed and time allotted on the range for cine
firing was equally divided between No. 93 Squadron and ourselves.   In addition
to the cine flights, solo aerobatics was part of the training carried out.
                                      Flights 29     Hours 24.30
     This morning the Vice - Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir
Ronald Ivelaw - Chapman, K.C.B., K.B.E., D.F.C., A.F.C., visited the Station and finally
departed at approximately 1500 hours.
  4.5.55        Poor weather initially delayed the commencement of flying, but by 11.30 hours,
the weather had improved sufficiently to allow seven of our aircraft to take off
to intercept a course from the Day Fighter Leaders School which is paying us a
flying visit.   Several successful attacks were made.   Among the course pilots
is Flight Lieutenant C.A. Vasey who is "B" Flight Commander on this Squadron.
     In addition to the interception, two low-level flights were done and two
cine exercises completed.   There was a sports afternoon today.
                                             Flights 11         Hours 9.15
R.A.F. Jever 5.5.55        Cine work again took up mist of the Squadron's flying hours today.   A gusty
cross-wind again prevented flag towing, but normal parallel quarter attacks in pairs
were practiced.   Some high and low-level cross country exercises were flown.
                                       Flights 38         Hours 28.15
  6.5.55        Two flags were towed for cine practice today.   The strong cross-wind
prevented towing this morning, and later on towing was limited by serviceability
to a slight extent.   Cine work once more occupied most of our time.
                                  Flights 33         Hours 23.15
  7.5.55        There was no flying today.   The morning was devoted to general cleaning and
tidying-up of the hangar and there was an inspection by the Station Commander
of our airmen's barrack accommodation.
  9.5.55        The intensive cine training programme continued today.   Due to some trouble
in towing however, only ten flights of cine on the flag were done, although
normal cine quarter attacks occupied much of the day's flying.   Towards the
end of the afternoon, medium and upper cloud became very thick, and a few low-
level exercises were carried out.
                                      Flights 43               Hours 29.35
  10.5.55        Flying was limited today by poor serviceability, each flight having only two
aircraft flying all day.   Cine training, including quarter attacks and dog fights,
was carried out.
                              Flights 22          Hours 15.30
  11.5.55        Poor serviceability again limited the amount of flying which was done today.
Four pilots completed exercises on the flag, and on some other flights, aerobatics
and practice interceptions were done.
                                 Flights     9               Hours 5.20
  12.5.55   Only four aircraft were serviceable all through the day.   Cine exercises,
including two on the flag, were carried out.   Some aerobatics were also
practiced.   Another of our aircraft which was allotted away was flown back
to England.   Flying Officer Sanders, one of our pilots, had the pleasure
of taking it.   Today our Advance Party left by road for Sylt.   The convoy,
consisting of two Landrovers and four three-ton Thorneycrofts, will stay
overnight in Hamburg and will arrive in Sylt tomorrow evening.
                                        Flights 22     Hours 17.15
  13.5.55   There was no flying by "A" Flight today, since much work in preparation for our
Sylt detachment was necessary, and 'B' Flight only flew until mid-day.   Only cine
practices were carried out.
                                        Flights 6           Hours 4.15
  14.5.55   This morning was devoted to final preparations for our departure to Sylt.   There
was no flying.
  15.5.55   Our main party consisting of 1 officer, 7 S.N.C.O;s and 80 airmen left by rail for
Sylt at 07.00 hours this morning.   They are not due into Westerland until 21.36
this evening, so they are in for a very boring journey.
  16th   The only flying done today was the Squadron flight to Sylt.   One aircraft became
unserviceable on start-up and had to be left at Jever.   Another aircraft struck
the undershoot area at Sylt; the port undercarriage was severely damaged, and
the port drop tank fell off.   When the pilot jettisoned his starboard tank it
tore out the pitot head, so he was eventually obliged to land without pressure
instruments.   When orbiting the airfield the port wheel fell off, so that the
landing was made on two wheels and one stub.   The pilot was uninjured and the
aircraft was classified as Category four.
             [Web Master: "This was Ron Gray's Sabre F.4 J XB923.   Click to see full story.
           4sqnpic142.jpg, 17847 bytes

             Ron's Sabre after landing on two wheels and a main wheel stub.   Photo not in F540.]

'Welcome to Sylt' lectures were given by Wg.Cdr. Powell, the Wg.Cdr. Flying and
Sqn Ldr.
                                    Flights 11            Hours 5.40
  17.5.55   It has been decided that pending the production of at least one really good film
no firing will be done by pilots.   Consequently only one firing practice was
carried out today.
                                      Flights 32            Hours 18.30
  18.5.55   Very little flying was done today because of cross winds at about 30 knots with
gusts up to 50, and gale warnings in force.   In addition to this, cloud extended
from approximately 2,000 feet to 20,000 feet, most of the morning.   Squadron
average for the day, 16.8%.
                                        Flights 9                Hours 5.25
A lecture lasting one and a half hours on the Aden 30 m.m. gun was given to 'A'
Flight this morning, and the afternoon a Current Affairs talk on 'The Future of
Cyprus' was given to 'B' Flight.   Both of these lectures were very interesting and
informative in their different spheres of instruction, and it was generally felt
that more current affairs talks would be greatly welcomed, provided that they were
all of the same high standard as that given to us this morning.
R.A.F. Sylt 19.5.55   Today was rather frustrating for many pilots in so much as twenty seven flights were
cancelled because of poor weather.   Other factors such as G.C.I. being unserviceable
for a short while, and also the amount of cine work being done, gave us a total of
only 4 firing sorties.   Squadron average for the day 12.1%.
                                  Flights 14               Hours 6.50
  20.5.55   A good day's training was completed with a total of seventeen cine, and nineteen live-
firing flights carried out.   Four of the firing flights were aborted due to radar
and gunsight troubles.   Squadron average for the day 12.9%.
                                       Flights 37.       Hours 21.55.
  21.5.55   Six flights were aborted today, five of them because of gunsight troubles,
marring the morning's programme.   Scores were rather erratic, ranging from zero
to 28%.   Squadron average for the day 11.2%.   Two stoppage occurred today
the first of our detachment.
                                Flights 23.              Hours 13.25.
  23.5.55 Monday There was comparatively little productive flying today, mainly because of the weather
which made flying impossible from about 11.00 hours.   At this time, the cloud was
solid from 500 feet to 21,000 feet.   Prior to this hour, seven flights were aborted
because of the weather.   There was also five radar snags which took their toll
of countable flights.   Squadron average for the day 6.9%.
                                  Flights, 17.                Hours, 10.35.
  24.5.55   Only eight countable exercises were carried out today in spite of the
flying weather which prevailed after 08.00 hours.   Shipping on the ranges was the
main cause of non-firing flights.   Squadron average for the day 12.7%.
                                     Flights 35.                Hours, 20.10.
  25.5.55   Eight flights this afternoon were done as trials on various types of radar
reflector, so no firing was done as close attention to range drum fluctuations
were required.   A few flights were again made non-effective due to shipping.
Squadron average for the day 11.3%.
                                     Flights 43.            Hours 25.10.
  26.5.55   There were five more stoppages today, thus bringing our stoppage rate down rather
alarmingly.   Eight exercises had to aborted due to radar snags, but a fair
day's flying was done.   Squadron average for the day 11.8%.
                                     Flights, 44.               Hours 24.15.
  31.5.55 Tuesday Low cloud prevented flying initially this morning, and at about 15.00 hours this
afternoon flying was stopped because of a large bank of sea fog which was just off
the end of the runway.   Fortunately it did move away and permitted flying to be
started again.   Squadron average for the day 14.6%.
                                    Flights, 19.            Hours, 11.40.

Monthly Summary.
          Squadron progressive average for Detachment so far, 12.3.%
                                      Flights, 525.               Hours, 339.05.
          The first half of the month's activities were devoted to normal training
with the addition of a number of cine exercises against a flag target in
preparation for the Squadron attachment to Sylt.
          Valuable experience was gained in combat between modern fighters when the
D.F.L.S. Course from West Raynham came to Jever flying Hunters.
          The Squadron attachment at Sylt commenced on the 16th May, and has progressed
satisfactorily - all pilots are now confirmed in the value of radar ranging -
the shooting results show the value of it.
                                                                       Squadron Leader
                                                                       Officer Commanding
                                                                       Number 4 Squadron.
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