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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.

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51 Squadron Crest
16/17.08.1940 No. 51 Squadron Whitley V P4986 MH-F Fl/Lt. John S. Scott

Operation: Böhlen

Date: 16/7th August 1940 (Friday/Saturday)

Unit: No. 51 Squadron

Type: Whitley V

Serial: P4986

Code: MH-F

Base: RAF Dishforth, Yorkshire

Location: Essinghausen, East of Peine

Pilot: Fl/Lt. John Stanley Scott 37484 RAF Age ? Killed

Pilot 2: Sgt. Frederick Allen Beale 741185 RAFVR Age 25. Killed

Nav: Sgt. Roy Desmond Edward Clarke 580869 RAF Age ? Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Peter Duncan Salmon 551589 RAF Age ? Killed (1)

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Harry Haggett 626994 RAF Age 19. Killed


Taking off at 20:10 hrs to bomb Böhlen. No. 4 Group sent a total of 49 aircraft on long distance raids to Augsburg - aircraft factory, Böhlen - synthetic oil refinery/power stations, and Jena - Zeiss Works. A further 101 other aircraft made up from Blenheims, Hampdens and Wellingtons to other targets.

It is reported that Whitley P4986 was hit by anti-aircraft fire and explode whilst in the air in the area as shown approximately on the map.

The pilot was extremely experienced - served since December 1935 - obtaining his wings whilst at 7 FTS in Peterborough, England.

Mr. Hans van Ekelenburg has been trying to arrange a memorial to this crew, but the local Mayor of Peine has not been very supportive of the idea.

(All photographs courtesy of Edgard L. Fuss)

(1) Sgt. (then AC1,) Peter Salmon survived an earlier crash in Whitley K9039 when after an attack to Norway on the 30th April 1940 the Whitley ran out of fuel on return and crashed on Burnside Fell, near Slaidburn - Yorkshire Pennines. The pilot, P/O Edward Cotton 43417 RAF survived but the 2nd pilot, P/O John Martin Gilmer 41690 RAF and observer Sgt. Walter Richard Coveney 580764 RAF were killed. The air gunner, AC1 Maylin 626629 RAF also survived.

Burial details:

Fl/Lt. John Stanley Scott. Hanover War Cemetery. Grave: 5.G.12. No further details - are you able to assist?

Sgt. Frederick Allen Beale. Hanover War Cemetery. Grave: 5.G.9. Son of Joseph and Eliza Beale of Clapham, Bedfordshire, England.

Sgt. Roy Desmond Edward Clarke. Hanover War Cemetery. Grave: 5.G.11. No further details - are you able to assist?

Sgt. Peter Duncan Salmon. Hanover War Cemetery. Grave: 5.G.8. No further details - are you able to assist?

Sgt. Harry Haggett. Hanover War Cemetery. Grave: 5.G.10. Son of George and Florence Haggett, of Stafford, Staffordshire, England.

Researched by Edgard L. Fuss for Aircrew Remembered - November 2016. Page dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to sources as shown below.

Acknowledgements: Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives and Fred Paradie - Paradie Archive (both on this site), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 02 November 2016, 23:08