AR banner
search tips advanced search

Info LogoAdd to or correct this story with a few clicks.
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.


We seek additional information and photographs. Please contact us via the AddInfo button, or send us email from the Helpdesk.
50 Squadron Crest
26/27.11.1943 No. 50 Squadron Lancaster I DV377 VN-X P/O. E.C. Weatherstone

Operation: Berlin

Date: 26/27th November 1943 (Friday/Saturday)

Unit: 50 Squadron

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: DV377

Code: VN-X

Base: RAF Skellingthorpe

Location: RAF Melbourne, Yorkshire

Pilot: P/O. Edward Charles Weatherstone 149521 RAFVR Survived

Fl/Eng: Sgt. D. Gregory RAFVR Survived

Nav: Fl/Sgt. P.E. Thompson RAFVR Survived

Air/Bmr: Sgt. P.H. Lane RAFVR Survived

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. A.D.F. Spruce RAFVR Survived

Air/Gnr: Sgt. H.J. Lineham RAFVR Survived

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Ralph Adey Cuthbert Collingwood RAFVR Survived

REASON FOR LOSS:

Took off at 17.06 hrs from RAF Skellingthorpe, Lincolnshire to bomb Berlin together with a further 442 aircraft. Most of the Luftwaffe thought the main target had been Frankfurt and were diverted there. They intercepted the bomber stream as it passed with several losses to the allies, they were bothered very little by fighters over the target area itself and the main threat were the intensive German radar controlled flak guns.

The Luftwaffe were waiting to hit them on the return - a total of 28 aircraft lost with a further 14 crashing over England.

Berlin was hit again and although no accurate figures are available to this raid alone the damage attributed to these and the other 2 earlier raids stood at 104,613 apartments destroyed (417,665 people made homeless) and the death toll on the ground stood at 4,330 people.

On return they were diverted due to heavy fog and although very short of fuel they made Melbourne but P/O. Douglas Tovey in JA961 VN-A who had just landed, had become bogged down in soft ground - after touching down one of the wheels of DV377 went over a standard 8 van, killing the RAF driver. The Lancaster went on to hit JA961 and despite both aircraft catching fire, all the crew escaped uninjured.

Left: Combat report (National Archives)

On the 30/31st January 1944 on another operation to Berlin the same crew came under attack by night fighters, they corkscrewed starboard with the air gunners opening fire on a Ju88. after a total of 400 rounds fired the rear gunner claimed the Ju88 as destroyed.


Burial details:

None - all crew survived.

Sources as quoted 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.
Click any image to enlarge it

Click to add your info via ticket on Helpdesk •Click to let us know via ticket on Helpdesk• Click to buy research books from Amazon •Click to explore the entire site

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon
All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© Aircrew Remembered 2012 - 2017
Last Modified: 29 November 2015, 20:58

Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor