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F540 Operations Record Book May 1952 NO 93 SQUADRON.
PRO Kew No. AIR27 Piece 2636 Microfilm Row 1 Draws 52-71 from Duncan Curtis
PLACE DATE TIME SUMMARY OF EVENTS                    COMPILING OFFICER                                                                           REF. TO
APPENDICES
JEVER MAY 1   The Squadron was still on Battle Flight and carried out a full day's flying in
pleasant, clear conditions.  They did practice interceptions with other Battle Flights
and occasionally the monotony was relieved by an odd Dakota, which they were asked to
identify.  Serviceability proved a slight stumbling-block, and twice only five air-
craft became air-borne.  This is bound to happen owing to the time aircraft are taking
on inspection, and the difficulty, consequent upon this, of adhering to a good "stagger
programme".
There was a little local flying.
 
  2   The highlight of the day was the performance of the Aerobatic Team over the airfield.
They went through their whole routine as it has finally been settled, including the
finale, in which they perform a loop, lowering their undercarriage at the top, and
rolling out onto the downwind side of the airfield, from where they split into pairs
and complete a paired approach and landing.
Battle Flight were still operating, and were lucky enough to find a Lincoln, and in
the afternoon. a "B.50".
The weather has been very fine, the skies almost cloudless, and the temperatures high
for the time of the year.
 
  3   A skeleton party was kept on at the hangar, in spite of it being a long week-end.
They were to see the Aerobatic Team off to Gutersloh, and to attend to the various
other aircraft going to the display.  However, lunch-time saw all the aircraft back
and everyone was free to enjoy the fair weather.  Unfortunately this gradually clouded
over, and Sunday brought rain.
The result of the Aerobatic Competition was disappointing, 93 Sqdn. being placed
third.  It was not a satisfactory event, the sincerity of the judging being somewhat
doubtful, most people feeling that the prize should have gone to 94 Squadron.
 
  4   SUNDAY.  
  5   Because 112 and 4 Squdns. are both away, 93 Squdn. was again supplying Battle Flight.
The training took the usual form of interceptions, except that in the afternoon, when
F/Lt. Paterson had taken over the lead from F/Lt. Simpson, the flight was lucky enough
to be put onto a B.29, and had their routine varied by landing away from base the
same afternoon.  These slight variations are welcomed by the pilots, and introduce a
slight element of reality into the exercises.
The weather remained good, but serviceability is still not up to a very high level
owing to the difficulties already mentioned.
 
  6   The weather continued very good, and Battle Flight were flying all day.  The morning's
work was uneventful, but in the afternoon a Ground Attack sortie was flown against
Army M.T. concentrated N.E. of Soltau.
The formation used was fairly close Battle Formation, only swept back more than usual
to form a fairly sharp arrow-head.  It proved extremely flexible, and permitted
safe turns to be made at low-level.  After their attacks Battle Flight landed at
Fassberg.  Two of the aircraft went "U/S", but one was able to follow the rest closely
back to base, but the other remained over-night with a collapsed Oleo.
The I/F programme was continued, and a few aircraft were available for other training.
 
  7   This morning F/O Bergh led Battle Flight, and had for an introduction, very nasty
weather.  The cloud-base was at about 4,000', but with very poor visibility below it.
The top was at 30,000'.  This necessitated a long "snake" both up and down, which worked
out very well.  Some Cine attacks were carried out above the cloud, but poor R/T and
weak Fixer services meant that the trip had to be abandoned.  No more flying was at-
tempted.  The weather remained bad all day and the afternoon was devoted to sports.
 
  8   As from today four aircraft only were flown on Battle Flight.
They were scrambled early, and sent to Gutersloh, where they were re-fuelled and
sent after some Belgian Mosquitos.  These they intercepted and attacked repeatedly.
After landing back at Gutersloh, they once again scrambled to patrol West of
the Ruhr.  No targets were forthcoming however, and they were eventually vectored back
to base for lunch.  The afternoon was devoted to the usual training again.
Five pilots of the French Air Force are attached to the Squadron at the moment, but
will be spread among all the Squadrons on the Wing, as soon as possible.  They are-
Lt. Coulon, S/Lt. de Lacoste, and Sgts. Ephritikine, Treffle and Rousseaux.  They come
from the French air-base at Dijon, and are to fly with our Squadrons.
The temperature was at its highest yet, and the sky cloudless.
 
  9   P/O Bates today led Battle Flight on four routine flights.  The visibility had deterio-
rated from the previous day's perfection, and interceptions were rendered more diffi-
cult.
Some of the French pilots have had familiarisation flights, and R/T practices.
 
  10   In the absence of flying, Ground Combat Training was carried out by the Ground Staff,
while the aircrew had their individual duties to attend to.
 
  11   SUNDAY.  
  12   Today began a period of strictly curtailed flying.  On Monday 17th. the Sqdn. moves to
Sylt and the serviceability must be brought up to a maximum for the move.
With some of the unserviceable aircraft it was possible to give the French pilots some
practice flights.  Also a few miscellaneous flights, such as Air Tests and High Level
Q.G.H'S.
The main part of the day was occupied with demonstrations, by the armourers, of the
complete Harmonisation, and re-arming processes.  These, the pilots took part in and
learnt, in preparation for the day they might be called upon to do them.
The weather, though overcast, remains fair, and only serve to remind everyone of
the valuable flying time being, of necessity, lost.
 
  13   F/O Bergh returned from Celle in the station Tiger Moth.  It has been un-serviceable,
and, even in the air, unreliable.  It is definitely "U/S", pending the arrival of
a new set of sparking plugs.
F/O Wood returned from England, having taken his leave before the Sylt detachment.
Today's flying was devoted to Sector Reconnaissance in pairs, each led by a French
pilot, with one of the Squadron pilots merely shadowing him.  A few Opp. Qtrs were flown.
 
  14   It being Wednesday today, the sorties flown were very low in number.  The main exercises
were done, with the addition of a cross-country to Celle and Gutersloh for spare
parts, flown by F/O Wallace.
The harmonisation of the aircraft guns goes on apace.
 
  15   In spite of the handicaps prevailing, a good day's flying was achieved.  Fourteen
sorties were flown with four aircraft, mostly Opp. Qtrs.  Tanks were fitted in readi-
ness for the Sylt move, to the aircraft not on the flying programme.
The morning's work was somewhat hampered by a clothing parade held in the morning.
 
JEVER 16   No flying was attempted, the aircraft being entirely left to the ground-crews for
tank fitting and testing.
The air-crew were thoroughly briefed in the morning on procedure at Sylt, and on the
tech-nique of "flag" firing.  The first week or so is devoted to firing on the 180 kts.
"flag", the rest to the 220kts. "flag".
In the afternoon, a lecture on Aircraft Recognition was given by F/O Wood to the
assembled aircrew.
The evening deserves mention, in that a Farewell Party was held for F/Lt. Simpson
whose overseas tour is now complete.  Taking his place, is F/Lt. K. Pearch, who comes
from 16 Sqdn., and who is already with the Sqdn., having driven up from Celle.
 
  17   A quiet morning, putting the finishing touches to the Sylt preparations.  Dinghies
and parachutes were checked over, and their allocation verified.  It turned out that
one pilot had been using a parachute for a year or more, which had an inherent flaw
in the rigging, which had escaped the eye of the Official Inspector, and, incidentally
the service packers.  It was creditable that the first time it had to be packed at
Jever, the airmen concerned discovered the fault.
 
  18   SUNDAY.  
  19   The anticipated early start was postponed because Sylt was closed until lunch-time,
following a long week-end.
At 14.10 S/Ldr McGregor led the Squadron onto the runway, and they were soon on their
way in ideal flying conditions.  Eleven aircraft and pilots, the rest having left
early on Saturday morning.  The remainder of the ground-crew, and the baggage, left at
about 12.30 p.m. on the 19th. and were to suffer many set-backs before arriving, tired
and puzzled twenty-five hours later.  The allocation of the wrong type of pack-wagon,
meant that they had to empty it of kit at about 02.30, on Hamburg station.  The kit
then had to be re-loaded onto a suitable wagon, and F/O Bergh had the task of finding
breakfast for the whole party.
Meanwhile the pilots had settled in, and merely awaited their baggage.
 
  20   After the customary briefings, and the realisation that things had changed since last
time, the pilots set about shooting in the afternoon, and the ground-crew started in
earnest to work which will keep them almost ceaselessly occupied for the next
three weeks.  That is providing the weather permits continuous flying.
A mis-understanding about the R/T recrystallisation caused a few abortive sorties at
the very beginning, but at the end of the afternoon the Sqdn. Average stood at 8%.
This put them at the head of the list for the first day's firing.  489 rounds were
fired with 2 stoppage, making the stoppage rate poor. 245.
 
  21   A full day's programme was carried out.  Squadron Average - 4.9%.  Progressive Average -
5.4%.  Rounds fired 1,966.  Stoppage rate 655.
 
  22   A good day for both firing, and armament serviceability.  Squadron Average 9.3%.
Progressive average 7.2%.  Rounds fired 2,001.  Stoppage rate 1,001.
 
  23   SUNDAY.  Although a full programme had been planned, the weather forced its complete
cancellation.
 
  24   Flying and firing was intermittent throughout the day.  Low cloud prevented an early
start, and showers stopped the programme once or twice.  Squadron average 12.1%.
Progressive average 8.3%.  Rounds fired 1,424.  Stoppage rate 712.
 
  25   No flying again owing to bad weather.  
  26   Again a very broken day's programme.  The air-stream in which Sylt lay gave thunder-
storms and general instability.  Firing was carried out at every possible opportunity.
Squadron average 7.5%.  Progressive average 8.2%.  Rounds fired 1,318.  Stoppage rate 0.
 
JEVER 27   The weather gradually deteriorated until the programme was cancelled.  Squadron average
8.4%.  Progressive average 8.2%.  Rounds fired 959.  Stoppage rate 959.
 
  28   The Squadron is now losing more flags, and this has been attributed to the fact that
the G.G.S. over-deflects at small angles and close ranges.  Squadron average 8.5%.
Rounds fired 1,552.  Stoppage rate 0. Progressive rate average 8.2%.
 
  29   By the end of the day, after a small amount of unserviceability among the ranks of the
Towing Flight, the whole of the last two details were cancelled.  The Tempests are at
last beginning to feel the strain.  Squadron average 14%.  progressive average 8.8%.
Rounds fired 1005.  Stoppage rate 1005.
 
  30   Only eight sorties were flown before the weather became unfit again.  It had not cleared
by lunch-time, when the station closed down for the Whitsun Break.  A Squadron record
for this detachment was set by F/Lt. Pearch, who scored 38% in spite of the weather.
This was 2% better than Sgt. Thomas' previous record of two day's standing.
Squadron average 13.7%.  Progressive average 9%.  Rounds fired 350.  Stoppage rate 0.
 
  31   WHITSUN RECESS.  
JEVER-SYLT MAY   1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes ADMINISTRATION
One of the other difficulties encountered now is the problem of keeping the
Aircraft serviceable.  As a result of a considerable number of unsatisfied modifications
and the time needed for rectification work, Minor inspections, are taking up three
times the length that they should.  This is seriously affecting the amount of flying
which can be done.  An attempt is still made to achieve a monthly target of 350 hours
but it is virtually impossible.
 
      1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes MOVEMENTS 
F/LT  J.A.SIMPSON - Posted tour expired to home establishment.  w.e.f. 19th May 1952
F/LT K.M.PEARCH - Posted to command "B" Flight from 16 Squadron.
 
      1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes NOMINAL ROLL OF PILOTS  
1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesS/LDR McGREGOR S.M.
1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes"A" FLIGHT.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes"B" FLIGHT
F/LT PATERSON A.W.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesF/LT PEARCH K.M.
F/O HARDCASTLE J.E.M.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesF/O   BERGH M.O.
F/O STURMAN A.V.H.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesF/O   JAMES R.L.
F/O WALLACE A.R.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesF/O   TUCKER C.M.R.
F/O WOOD J.C.M.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesF/O   BATES E.K.J.
SGT WILLIAMS C.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesSGT GARRATT D.C.
SGT WEBSTER D.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytesSGT THOMAS D.J.
 
     

Signed SM McGregor S/L1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes
(S.M.McGregor) S/LDR1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes
Officer Commanding1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes
No 93 Squadron. R.A.F.1px-trans.gif, 43 bytes