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F540 Operations Record Book October 1952 NO 4 SQUADRON.
PRO Kew No. AIR27 Piece 2590 Microfilm Row1 Draws 52-71
R.A.F. JEVER 1.10.52             A number of high level missions to practise cross over turns were flown this
morning.   The afternoon was devoted to station sports.   R.A.F. Jever Rugby Club
is to be formed.
  2.10.52             After a weather reconnaissance, flying this morning was cancelled.   Rain and
very low cloud caused too great a hazard.   Ground servicing lectures were organised
for the aircrew while drop tanks were fitted in readiness for Exercise Ardent.   Just
before lunch all aircrew at R.A.F. Jever attended a special showing of the news reel of
the D.H. 110 accident at this year's S.B.A.C. Display.
          There was no flying this afternoon: all officers were in attendance at a
mess meeting.
  3.10.52             More ground servicing lectures in the morning, again because of poor weather.
In the afternoon a Wing let down practice was held.   This was flown by 21 a/c
carrying drop tanks.   The form up, including a snake climb in pairs from take off,
took 34 minutes.   But that was of secondary importance.   The object of this trial
was to test out let down procedure.   The descent worked out well, pairs arriving
regularly and well spaced out on the approach.
          Shortly after the Wing had landed Fg. Off. Fletcher made an emergency
landing on the airfield resulting in severe personal injuries and destruction of the
  4.10.52            Difficulty in forecasting the weather over U.K. for Exercise Ardent caused
more confusioin.   The original plan involved landing and refuelling at an airfield in
England.   Because bad weather prevented this, the raid was at first cancelled; then
suddenly laid on again at very short notice against a different target and with
R.A.F. Wahn as the refuelling point.   On receipt of the cancellation order all the
drop tanks had been removed from 4 Squadron's aircraft in preparation for Battle
duties the following week.
          Nevertheless by a considerable and highly sustained effort all the aircraft
were refitted with drop tanks and ready to go within forty minutes of the raid being re-ordered.   Interception by Meteors, Sabres and Venoms was achieved off the East Anglian coast at 30,000ft.   As usual the attacks by Meteor aircraft tended to degenerate to somewhat sluggish line astern pursuits, while the Sabres and Venoms were able to make full use of a variety of tactics.
     Only two of this Squadron's aircraft took part in Exercise Ardent to-day.
They flew with the Oldenburg Wing on a raid to North Luffenham, landing at R.A.F.
Finningley for refueling.     At one time there were upwards of 63 Meteors attacking the
Vampire formation; including some fitted for flight refueling.     Sabre aircraft were
also used by the defence.     Interceptions began well out to sea and continued at high 
intensity all the way to the target and some way beyond.     The remainder of the Squadron 
flew back to base from R.A.F. Wahn where it had stopped overnight.
     Battle Flight.     There were U/T controllers on duty this week:   they made the
most of their opportunities.     This morning for example, the flight was scrambled three
times in rapid succession to do battle with the boys from Oldenburg.     Control showed
a tendency not to appreciate fully the rate of climb of the Vampire aircraft.   On three
occasions, the fighter force was too far below its target to be able to climb up
in time for an attack.     However , the ground controllers were obviously trying hard to
exercise the flights in various manoeuvres, and the morning was well spent.
          Flying stopped for the rest of the day, the airfield having become red because
of a vile cross wind.
         Lt. Jean Louis Richard returned to the French Air Force today at the end of his
attachment to our squadron.   His stay with the Squadron has been very pleasant,
and has resulted in a most cordial cementing of the entente cordiale.
     The Battle Flight was scrambled only twice - on the first occasion through
a cumulus shower under I.F.R., to make an interception of three other Vampires near
Dummerz Lake at 5,000 ft.     On the second trip, the flight had to cancel their
mission because of an A.S.I. failure shortly after take off.   During the rest of the
day, when radar control was inoperative, the flight was stood down, and carried 
out some formation practice.
     Radar was being serviced.   The battle flight carried out an
operational cannon and rocket attack at Nordhorn range, and a high level cross country 
under D/F control. Flying stopped at midday for Sports Afternoon.
     Flying Officer Fletcher died this morning as a result of the wounds he 
received in the accident last Friday. [3Oct52 Vampire VZ834]
The weather was unfit for battle flight, which was stood down.   Some low level
formation flying was carried out below low stratus cloud in intermittent drizzle.
During the morning the Battle Flight flew three missions, the last an operational
R/P attack at Nordhorn.   The interceptions were quite satisfactory (P.I.s
 against the Oldenburg Flight) except when, twice, both flights were formed 
 up together to look for a Lancaster and some other targets.   Nothing was 
 seen, the radar images "fading" before contact was made.
      No. 112 Squadron assumed the duty after lunch to allow 4 Squadron to 
prepare for the second phase of Exercise Ardent.
     Some trouble has been experienced by the flight when using its secondary 
G.C.I. frequency.   On this, interference from a civil broadcast transmitter is 
at times almost deafeningly loud, and a source of considerable inconvenience 
on this type of missions.   This has been reported to Group Headquarters.
There were two raids this weekend.   The first, against Soulthorpe, was made
by a combined force of 48 Vampires from the Jever and Fassberg Wings.   The 
Jever Wing, flying  two squadrons line astern, was stepped up and behind 
the Fassberg Wing.
    Curiously, and most illuminatingly all attacks by the opposing forces
were directed against the lead Squadron.   The second squadron went entirely 
unscathed and delivered its dozen atomic bombs on Soulthorpe as briefed.
Interception took place very late, nearly over the coast, and again was made 
by Meteors and Sabres in large numbers.   Refueling was carried out at R.A.F. Driffield.
     We were to have landed at R.A.F. Finningley on the second raid, but 
industrial haze prevented use of this airfield.   Instead, after bombing 
Lakenheath, we diverted to R.A.F. West Raynham.   Interception this time
was much more effective.   Well out to sea, very many Sabres came up to attack.
We were trying to fox the defence by flying between 37,000 and 38,000 feet: 
but this did not seem to worry the F.86 very much.   They "killed" most of 
the Wing before it reached England.
     In the coastal belt, Meteors joined in the fray: Fighter Command indeed 
was launching whole squadrons against the attackers.   The Sabre is quite 
capable of putting in near vertical high quarters at this height without 
having any difficulty in pulling hard round and regaining altitude   The 
Meteor, however, appears able to make only all but line astern attacks, and 
takes quite some time to regain striking position.
Today, the funeral of Flying Officer Fletcher occupied most of the Squadrons
servicing personnel.   There was a little flying - dual and asymmetric Meteor
work, and the start of practice for an R/P demonstration in the U.K.
Weather was very bad.   Only one Meteor flew, on instrument practice.   A full
day's series of lectures was given in the Wing Briefing room.
   A forty minute weather test confirmed the skies as unfit to fly in, and the
morning was spent like yesterday at lectures.
At last a hole appeared in the clouds, and off we went: intensive R/P. practice
at Nordhorn to decide a team for U.K. , and simulated fluid six practice (snake climbs). 
Flight Lieutenant Collins and Flying Officers Beaton and Lack from No. 4 Squadron; 
(Flying Officer Creswick and Sergeant Jones from No. 112 ); and (Flying Officer
Sturman and Sergeant Garratt from No. 93).   With the team will go an Anson,
carrying five armourers and spares.
     Another Squadron pilot qualified today on Meteor aircraft.
The rocket team left today for England: the trips to R.A.F. Odiham was uneventful.
The Squadron supplied some aircraft for battle flight duty with No. 93 Squadron.
There was also some individual flying and another pilot renewed his Instrument
Rating.   There was no flying by the time the team in England because of bad weather.
Two aircraft were available and were flown on cine exercises.   There were ten
such, all ranging and tracking.   A further two sorties, of aerobatics and
Q.G.H.s, were flown.   Pistol shooting also took place in the morning.
     Night flying, which was scheduled, had to be canceled because of an
approaching rain belt.
     The rocket team put in an inspection of the range at Westdown on Salisbury
Plain, and held a rehearsal for the main demonstration, postponed till the following
day by bad weather.
The weather at base began to deteriorate during the morning, preventing nearly all
flying.   In England the main R/P demonstration was canceled because of pouring rain.
At base there was no flying, due to continuous rain, but in England the rocket
team managed to carry out the rehearsal for and the second demonstration.   On the 
former, one of this Squadron's aircraft was damaged by debris from the preceding
aircraft's rockets and was grounded, Cat.3.   The demonstration itself, despite
a strong cross wind at the target, was quite successful.
The only flying was the delivery to the Finishing Flight at R.A.F. Fassberg, of
an aircraft for camouflaging, and an air test.   Lectures were given during the 
morning to take advantage of low cloud and drizzle which prevented productive flying.
     The aircraft in England were unable to return because of unsuitable weather
and have been delayed til the 27th.
Squadron stand down.
The battle flight this morning did not fly until late because of early morning
fog and then only on a cross country under D/F control.   There were no scrambles 
in the afternoon.   The rocket team returned from England, landing just before 
sixteen Meteors of No. 245 Squadron who are on a visit to the Station.
There was one mission to Nordhorn range, but even there, no firing took place.
Low cloud, leading to steady rain, stopped further flying.
Two mission for battle flight, P.I.s against another battle flight.   The enemy
seemed to have some difficulty in spotting our flight, although our own formation,
when acting as the fighter, found their target every time at good range.
There were four missions for the battle flight: all P.I.s, of average quality
On the second, control took the flight a long way from base, the homing vector being 
290∠ 90 n.m. against a strong headwind.
On the only mission today, the battle flight was scrambled to 38,000 feet to
intercept a Canberra flying from the U.K.   No interception was made, because the 
target was flying at 10,000 feet.


An average month's work in which the target was undershot by only three quarters of an hour. The principle event was Exercise Ardent, held over two weekends early in the month. There were four high level raids against targets in U.K., the main results achieved being practice in wing snake climbs and descents all of which were satisfactorily executed except that pilots had to keep close watch on jet pipe temperatures above 20,000 feet, adjusting r.p.m. to control excessive rise. There was a demonstration at West Down and Imber Ranges in U.K., of ground attack technique, in which the Squadron took part Good use was made of Station Flight, for renewing instrument ratings and qualifying pilots on Meteor aircraft. DATE SORTIES HOURS 1st October 1952 16 10.45 2nd " 1952 2 ..20 3rd " 1952 11 10.45 4th " 1952 8 13.50 5th " 1952 14 12.35 6th " 1952 15 11.25 7th " 1952 26 17.35 8th " 1952 8 7.20 9th " 1952 10 4.50 10th " 1952 23 19.45 11th " 1952 16 26.45 12th " 1952 16 23.20 13th " 1952 2 1.35 14th " 1952 15th " 1952 1 .40 16th " 1952 22 14.10 17th " 1952 10 5.45 18th " 1952 8 7.00 19th " 1952 20th " 1952 9 6.55 21st October 1952 18 13.50 22nd October 1952 1 .10 23rd October 1952 7 5.15 24th October 1952 3 1.05 25th October 1952 26th October 1952 27th October 1952 13 11.25 28th October 1952 2 1.40 29th October 1952 2 6.20 30th October 1952 12 8.35 31st October 1952 3 2.45 FLYING INDIVIDUAL 18.10 INTERCEPTION 48.05 SQDN/WING EXERCISES 128.50 GROUND SUPPORT NAVIGATION 7.00 WEAPONS 33.30 NIGHT FLYING 7.55 VAMPIRE TOTAL 243.30 METEOR FLYING 19.55 GRAND TOTAL 263.25
Compiled by...Sgn ENH Lack...FG/OFF.
                  (E.N.H. LACK)

                                                         Authorised by...Sgn PKG Williamson...SQDN/LDR.
                                                                             (P.K.G. WILLIAMSON)