20.09.1941 No 611 Squadron Spitfire Vb W3816 FY-K Fl/Lt. Barclay
Operation: Circus 100A
Date: 20th September 1941 (Saturday)
Unit: No. 611 Squadron
Type: Spitfire Vb
Serial: W3816 ('The Shopmate' a presentation Spitfire by John White and Northampton Evening Telegraph)
Base: RAF Hornchurch
Location: Buysscheure, France
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Richard George Arthur Barclay DFC. 74661 RAFVR Age 22. Evaded
REASON FOR LOSS:
While with 249 Squadron flying Hurricane V6692 during a patrol on the 29th November 1940 he was shot down by Me109 from JG26, baled out over Tunbridge Wells in Kent, England. Suffering wounds to his leg, ankle and elbow he was hospitalised for two months before rejoining his unit in March 1941.
On this occasion he was shot down and force-landed at Buysscheure, near Saint-Omer in France. Evaded capture with the assistance from the 'Comete Line' he returned to the UK via Spain and Gibraltar on the 10th December 1941 landing at Stranraer on a Catalina flying boat which he flew as second pilot.
Above and below photographs courtesy Paul Broderick
DFC Citation 26th November 1940: "This officer has shown admirable coolness and courage in combat against the enemy. His keenness and determination have enabled him to destroy at least four of their aircraft". Awarded MiD 01st January 1943 - posthumously.
In the early evening of Friday the 17th July 1942, he led the squadron on a patrol of the Alamein area acting as top cover for No. 274 Squadron. As 238 Squadron moved to attack some Ju87’s it was jumped by Me109’s and Barclay flying hurricane BP296 was shot down and killed, possibly by Leutnant Werner Schroer of III/JG27.
After the war Werner Schroer (shown right)) settled in Ottobrunn, outside Munich. Deceased 10th February, 1985. (Information courtesy Kracker Archive on this website)
FlLt. Richard George Arthur Barclay DFC. MiD. El Alamein War Cemetery. Grave X1.H.7. Born on the 07th December 1919 the son of the Revd. Gilbert Arthur Barclay, M.A., and Dorothy Catherine Topsy Barclay, of Langley Rectory, Maidstone, Kent, England. Grave inscription reads: "Jesus, Looking Upon Him, Loved Him". Also remembered on a plaque in Cromer Parish Church, where his father was vicar until 1946. His family were also to suffer the loss of his brother, 27 year old, Lt. Gilbert Charles Barclay killed on the 05th May 1944 whilst serving with the 2nd Battalion Royal Norfolk Regiment in India.
Lt. Gilbert Charles Barclay. Kohima War Cemetery. Grave 11B.9. Husband of Rome Flora (née Davidson) Barclay.Grave inscription reads: "A Beloved Husband, Father Of Leo And David "In Thy Presence Is Fulness Of Joy".
With thanks to Alison Treacy and 'The Returned' website for Cromer Church memorial photograph. Revd. Gilbert Arthur Barclay was the vicar for this church for several years. Paul Broderick for various photographs. Further details our thanks to the following sources.