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F540 Operations Record Book October 1955 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 Fg.Off. P. Leigh-Lancaster REF. TO APPENDICES
      LuluLeighLancaster.jpg, 5843 bytes  
R.A.F. Jever Saturday
October
1st
1955
          The morning was spent preparing flight plans for the coming simulated Bomber
Sortie over the North Sea towards England, and at 12.30 a four and two pairs took
off on this exercise but returned to base without having been intercepted.   Earlier
during the morning Fg. Off. Davis had been lucky to escape with his life when
circumstances forced him to crash land a Sabre over 1,000 yards in the undershoot
after a complete engine failure.   The aircraft was a write-off.
 
  3rd Monday.           Battle Flight flew six operations today, the only her flying was one trip
from the hangar dispersal.   Three Canberras were the only aircraft intercepted,
although generally the G.C.I. control was good.   Today concluded a week of battle
flight
duties for the Squadron.
 
  4th             The first trip this morning was a weather check following which the airfield
colour state was put to red.   The low stratus and poor visibility responsible for
this remained all day.   The morning was spent listening to lectures on the
Hunter, and an inter-flight volley ball match took up the first part of the afternoon
The cloud suddenly cleared at 15.00 hours when the only four of the day took off to
practice high level battle formation.
 
  5th             The main practice today was cine quarters although four actual firing sorties were flown on a flag at Sylt.   Fg. Off. Busby scored 28% being the highest scorer
of those taking part.   Only 14 hours were flown today.
         In the afternoon the wing pilots football team played the G.S.O. in a league
match and won 4 - 3.
 
  6th             More flag firing sorties were arranged in conjunction with an Air to Ground
programme.   For the air to ground firing, the weather conditions were not too
good with a crosswind of forty knots scoring difficulties were encountered as
well, and so the programme was discontinued.   Also at air to air only one flag
was available on which a pair fired.   Throughout the day cumulo-nimbi had been
building up and during the afternoon a battle four inadvertently flew through one
on the climb.   A large and brilliant flash was believed to have
struck the leader's aircraft and on return to base all four aircraft had their
compasses re-swung.
 
  7th   Stand-down.  
  8th   Stand-down.  
  9th   Stand-down.  
  10th             The visibility into sun was 1,200 yards at first this morning and no flying
took place until 10.00 hrs. when one pair per Squadron was allowed off.   This was
not enough to run the air to air programme which had been arranged with Sylt so
the practice was cancelled and the day's flying consisted of cine sorties and
practice G.C.A.s at Ahlhorn.
 
  11th             A mild South Easterly gave us a cloud base of stratus at 200 feet and an
initial visibility of under 1,000 yards.   The pilots accordingly listened to
a lecture on the Martin Baker Ejection Seats, then watched an American film on the
Battle of Britain.   Afterwards they returned to the Squadron to do their jobs.
In the afternoon the pilots who were not still employed on jobs played an inter-
flight game of volley ball.
 
  12th             The fog was still here giving a visibility of 200 yards in the early morning,
improving towards midday, but thickening again as the sun began to go down.   There
was no flying - instead we had lectures, firstly on Soviet aircraft and secondly
on the Avon engine.   In the afternoon the Wing plots football team played the
Squadron airmen and luckily won 6 - 4.
 
  13th             Fog again, but before we came to the Squadron to do some more work on our
jobs - which was the day's programme - we were given an aircraft recognition test
by the Intelligence Officer.   Most people, although they knew the Soviet aircraft
by sight and the now old fashion numbering system, became hopelessly mixed up
with the 'B' bombers - Badger, Bison etc.
 
  14th             Another day of cloud and poor visibility.   Pilots spirits rose when the pilots
were rushed to the Squadron to fly just before the start of an inter flight
football match.    Cloud had lifted, and the sun had broken through - but only
for a few minutes before the weather clamped again.   There was no flying.
 
  15th             There was low stratus this morning which cleared surprisingly rapidly at
ten o'clock and in the last three hours of the week 20 sorties were flown before
we stood down for the weekend.   A welcome change from the past week.
 
  17th
Monday
            The day began with clear blue skies but within an hour showers had started
and throughout the day we had an average of one cumulo-nimbus an hour passing
over the airfield associated with strong and gusty crosswinds.   We flew all day concentrating mostly on high level battle and cine practises.   Owing to the weather
night flying was cancelled.
 
  18th             An air to ground programme was flown at Meppen today; the first two pairs to
go down had to 'abort' and do low level map reading sorties because of too-low
cloud base, but the rest of the day's flying went according to plan - there being
38 actual firing sorties completed.   Unfortunately the targets were not scored,
which took some of the competitive spirit out of the firing.   Over 9,000 rounds were
fired.
         In the evening 6 pilots were checked out for night flying by the squadron and
'A' Flight Commander.
 
  19th             A sports afternoon limited the flying to 22 sorties, which were mostly high
level cine and battle formations, although the last four airborne made a low-level
strike on Varden - a disused airfield.
          In the afternoon the wing pilots football team beat 118 Squadron 3 - 1 to
become top of the league.   50% of the team are 93 Squadron pilots.
 
  20th             With a clear blue sky the Squadron flew 31 hours of high level battle cine,
and low level strike sorties.   A dog fight was arranged against a Hunter Squadron.
Our pilots were given a quarter of an hour start for a climb to 40,000 feet
However, the other squadron cheated taking off only 6 or 7 minutes later and using
eight aircraft instead of the stipulated four.   Although our formation was
reduced to three owing to unserviceability, the pilots gave a good account
themselves and the verdict was 'inconclusive'.   Also a 'recce' carried out
to see how the repairs on the 'Nautilus' was progressing.   This is an exercise
including a precision descent from a pinpoint at 20,000 feet to a very small lake
in the Schleswig Holstein low flying area, where Nautilus resides.   Photo recce
or the use of some form of delayed atomic weapon (simulated) is then carried out
and an escape made at low level.   With a cloud layer between the ground and 20,000
feet this exercise embraces the use of all forms of formation and navigation
practice.
 
  21st.             It was a full day's flying with the Squadron flying 33 sorties to give a total
of 23.45 hours.   There were only two individual trips - both air tests, and the
rest of the flying was entirely high level battle practice.
 
  22nd             This morning a Squadron parade was held and afterwards a half hour's drill
period.   Owing to the poor visibility only one pair per Squadron was allowed to fly
and we completed six sorties before standing down at midday for the weekend.
 
  24th Monday           Low stratus covered the north German plain area this morning but a gradual
clearance from the north permitted each Squadron to have four aircraft airborne
after a weather check at 1,000 feet.   So it stayed for the remainder of the day.
For the last trip the Squadron Commander obtained permission to take up a six to
practice co-ordinated pairs quarters at 30,000 feet - this exercise proving that
the Squadron needs far more practice in attacking at high altitudes.   This will
be forthcoming.
 
  25th             We started a week's battle flight again today, and although the weather
deteriorated temporarily during the early afternoon we completed 6 operations.
Most of the time was taken up with practice interceptions; the only real
interception being on one Canberra in the afternoon.   G.C.I. control was very
good, the height finding in particular being excellent and on practice interceptions,
was sometimes on the side of too great an angle-off instead of the in-the-past
familiar tail-chase.
 
  26th             Cold front weather gave continuous rain throughout the morning with a cloud
base of low stratus varying from 200 - 700 feet.   There was no flying - battle
flight
remaining at 30 minutes availability until 12.30 hours.   The other pilots
attended a lecture on oxygen systems followed by some films at Flying Wing
Headquarters.
          There was a sports afternoon during which the Wing pilots football team beat
Technical Wing B 10-1.
 
  27th             Today the standard of G.C.I. control was good when serviceable.   Unfortunately
most of the time was spent 'in the dark', and the height finding apparatus was
unreliable.   A number of successful practice interceptions were carried out but
only one aircraft - a Vampire T.11 was intercepted under G.C.I. control.   However
two Vampire T.11s and two Meteors were intercepted visually and battle flight was
itself 'bounced' by a section of Hunters.
 
  28th             Seven operations were flown today although on three only two aircraft were
airborne.   The first two operations were unproductive as the G.C.I. went
unserviceable, but throughout the remainder of the day the G.C.I. control was good,
and the height finding was accurate - which resulted in a series of good
interceptions on a variety of targets.
 
  29th             There were three missions flown from battle flight.   Only one actual
interception - on a Canberra - was made, the rest of the time being spent on
practice interceptions.   For the last sortie of the day seven aircraft were
airborne doing local close formation flying, and this trip was completed with a
paired break and paired landings.   The Squadron stood down at 13.00 hours for
the weekend.   So far three Squadron pilots - other than those who have attended
the D.F.L.S. course - have had their first trips in a Hunter with the other 122
Wing Squadrons on a reciprocal basis of one Sabre trip for one Hunter trip.
 
  31st Monday.           During its seven missions today battle flight flew two pairs, two threes and
three fours - also during the third mission the Squadron passed its monthly flying
target for the seventh consecutive time.   One mission was devoted to local flying as
G.C.I. control was good, one Canberra, one Lincoln, two Dakotas and four Venoms being
intercepted.   The last pair however chased a Lincoln over most of the British Zone
and eventually landed without having seen it.
 
      Hours Flown..                                         Day                               Night                          Sorties
Operational Type       Sabre Mk.4     353.45                             3.00                             482
Training Type             Hunter                  5.25                               -                                       6
                                      Vampire T.11   22.45                           12.45                                45
                                      Prentice               2.55                               -                                       3  
                       Totals                             384.50                           15.45                              536  

 
      PERSONNEL  
  5th   Fg. Offs. Bell and Chadwick returned from leave in Spain.  
  7th   Fg. Off. Davis proceeded on leave to U.K.  
  9th   Fg. Off. Sanderson returned from U.K. leave.  
  10th   Flt.Lt. Colvin proceeded on continental leave.   F.S. Shrubsole proceeded on continental leave.  
  16th   Fg. Off. Sanderson went on U.K. leave to get married.  
  17th   Flt.Lt. Colvin returned from leave.   Fg.Off. Clayton-Jones commenced a survival
Course in Southern Germany.
 
  18th   Fg. Off. Bell went on leave to U.K. to be Best Man at Fg. Off. Sanderson's wedding.  
  20th   Fg. Off. Hickman proceeded to U.K. on an Aircraft Recognition Course  
  21st   Flt.Lt. Colvin went sick with a throat infection.  
  24th   Fg. Off. Bell returned from U.K. leave.  
  29th   Fg.Off. Clayton-Jones returned from Survival Course.  
  30th   Flt.Lt. Colvin returned to the Squadron.  
  31st   F.S. Shrubsole returned from leave.  
     

OPERATIONAL

          The Squadron started and finished the month with Battle Flight duties.
Although the weather was quite often poor and flying was restricted to one section,
this no longer curtails the flying training in the same proportion as it used to
with a 22 U.E. Squadron thus less hours are lost.   The flying target was achieved
with 357 Sabre hours.
          A good month's training was carried out, the majority of pilots got well over
20 hours flying.   A.P.S. Sylt provided two flags on the Western Range for us, which
were fired upon with average results using radar ranging and operating the attackers
from Jever.   It is hoped that these practices will become a regular feature in the
month's training.
          Air to Ground firing was resumed and is still a fairly useful precision
exercise.   All pilots adhered strictly to the new cease fire ranges and the pull
out 'G' imposed is 3 - 3 ½ as calculated.   The firing accuracy was not particularly
high.   A lot more emphasis is being placed on cine quarter attacks above 30,000 feet
but with the limited radar facilities, interceptions at these altitudes are
unrealistic.   Night flying is a regular monthly practice.   The number of dual
night checks necessary have been high owing to the general lack of practice of all
Pilots.
          The Hunter Squadrons on this Wing have been very helpful in allowing several
of our pilots to 'convert' on to their Hunters.   This has helped to keep the
pilots interest during ground lectures prior to the expected re-equipment.   This
Squadron now has ten aircraft on strength and twenty one pilots.
 
     

ADMINISTRATIVE

          The expected re-equipment of Hunter aircraft has not materialized as
planned this month.   It seems as if it will not be until next year.
          The Squadron strength is steadily reducing as pilots and groundcrew finish
their overseas tours or service.   The Squadron is now just below established
strength, but this is counteracted by the fact that there are only ten aircraft
on charge and no likelihood of any replacement.

Signed DFM Browne          
(D.F.M. BROWNE)              
Squadron Leader               
Officer Commanding         
No. 93 Squadron