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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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10 squadron crest
27/28.06.1941 No. 10 Squadron Whitley V T4179 ZA-U Sgt. Shaw

Operation: Bremen

Date: 27/28th June 1941

Unit: No. 10 Squadron

Type: Whitley V

Serial: T4179

Code: ZA-U

Base: RAF Leeming, Yorkshire.

Location: Hipstedt

Pilot: Sgt. John Stanley Shaw 908401 RAFVR Age ? Killed

Pilot 2: P/O. Donald Vincent Bingham-Hall 62697 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

Obs: Sgt. John Marshall McAlonan 948560 RAFVR Age 23. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Douglas Walter Banham 751616 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Edward Lawley 954205 RAFVR Age 25. Killed

REASON FOR LOSS:

Took off at 22:31 hrs from Leeming to attack Bremen. The bomber Command force of 73 Wellingtons and 35 Whitleys braved storms and heavy icing during this raid and the majority of the bombers attacked Hamburg by mistake.

This raid cost the allies dear with the heaviest losses of the war to date with 14 aircraft failing to return. This was also the first raid of the war in which Bomber Command recorded 'intense night fighter activities'. Hamburg was very well defended with a superb series of searchlight units working well with the night fighters.

A tragic night indeed for the allies but also for 10 Squadron losing 4 Whitleys:

P5016 ZA-V Flown by Sgt. Alan Knape - 4 crew killed and another taken PoW.

P5055 ZA-G Flown by Sgt. Anthony Rickcord - all 5 crew killed.

Z6561 ZA-J Flown by Sgt Gregory - 1 crew member killed and 4 taken PoW.

T4179 ZA-U was attacked by Oblt Helmut Lent (1) and his BF Uffz. Kubisch of 6./NLG1 shortly after they took off on patrol at 01.55 hrs when Kubisch heard over the radio 'Target in searchlight cone in direction 270 degrees'. After a short chase in their Bf110 10 E-2, the night fighter identified the coned bomber as a Whitley, fired a long burst of machine gun and cannon fire into the rear turret and starboard engine of the Whitley - the aircraft immediately went down to crash in flames near Hipstedt. The attack took place at 01.58 hrs at 4.700 mtrs. Post war research positively identified this aircraft as T4179. (Information courtesy Theo Boiten)

Funeral with full military honours by the Luftwaffe (courtesy Colin Bingham-Hall)

Above: P/O. Donald Vincent Bingham-Hall and grave marker (courtesy Colin Bingham-Hall)

Left: Oberst. Helmut Lent

(1) Oberst (Posth) Helmut Lent went on to claim 102 night fighter kills and a further 8 kills.

For further details see 'Kracker Archive' on this website.

On the 7th October 1944 he died after suffering injuries sustained during a crash landing on the 5th October 1944 during a crash landing in his Ju 88 G-6 at Paderborn Airfield following engine failure and subsequent collision with a high tension cable.

His crew were rescued - injured from the crash. Walter Kubisch (radio operator) and Hermann Klöss (2nd radio operator) died the same day, Werner Kark (War correspondent and Air/Gnr) died the next morning.

Burial details:

Sgt. John Stanley Shaw. Becklingen War Cemetery. Grave 26.A.12. Son of John Richard and Jessie Annie Shaw, of Hornchurch, Essex, England.

P/O. Donald Vincent Bingham-Hall. Becklingen War Cemetery. Grave 26.A.11. Son of Vincent Bingham Bingham-Hall, and of Gladys Hilda Bingham-Hall, of Winchmore Hill, Middlesex, England.

Sgt. John Marshall McAlonan. Becklingen War Cemetery. Grave 26.A.13. Son of William Askew McAlonan and Ellen Catherine McAlonan; husband of Joyce Dorothy McAlonan, of Cambridge, England.

Sgt. Douglas Walter Banham. Becklingen War Cemetery. Grave 26.A.10. Son of Walter John and Violet Olive Banham, of Bedminster, Bristol, England.

Sgt. Edward Lawley. Becklingen War Cemetery. Grave 26.A.9. Son of Levi and Florence Lawley.

Researched for the brother of P/O. Donald Vincent Bingham-Hall - Gordon, and all the relatives of this crew. With thanks to the sources shown below.

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls
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, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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