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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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41 Squadron crest
12.08.1941 41 Squadron Spitfire Va R7274 Sgt. Allan L. Bull

Operation: Circus 70

Date: 12th August 1941 (Tuesday)

Unit: No. 41 Squadron

Type: Spitfire Va

Serial: R7274 ('West Riding')

Code: EB-?

Base: RAF Hornchurch, Essex

Location: West of Hazebrouk, France

Pilot: Sgt. Allan Lindsay Bull AUS/400219 RAAF Age 23. PoW No: 99 Camp: Various - Stalag Fallingbostel


12 Hampdens from 5 Group were sent to raid Saint-Omer and Gosnay as diversion for the main operation carried out by some 54 Blenheims. They were sent to Knapsack and the Quadrath power stations near Cologne. The purpose of their operation was to hopefully draw the Luftwaffe fighters back to the west to assist Russia.

Flying at 1500 ft the squadron were attacked by Luftwaffe fighters. After taking evasive action Spitfire R7274 was hit in the tail by flak, although the pilot tried to gain some control of the aircraft it proved impossible and so baled out at about 1000 ft coming down about a mile from the German airfield at Saint-Omer. German guards immediately captured him.

Another Spitfire was also lost by the squadron, R7210 'City of Liverpool' flown by Sgt. Raymond L. Chapman 971230 RAFVR also shot down. The pilot eventually ending up at Stalag Kopernikus.

Burial details:

None - survived the war as a PoW, sadly passed away in 1997 age 79. Born on the 25th February 1918 in Bairnsdale, Victoria, Australia. Enlisted in Melbourne on the 21st July 1940 - trained at Camp Boden and Debert in Canada. Arriving in United Kingdom on the 20th April 1941 and joined 57 Operational Training Unit. After the war on the 09th September arrived back in Australia. Left the RAAF as a Warrant Officer having completed 80 operational flying hours. Awards: 1939-45 Star, Aircrew Europe Star, War Medal 1939-45, Australia Service Medal 1939-45, Returned from active service badge.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to sources as quoted below in addition to the Australian National Archives and the great RAF Commands Forum:

In addition we recommend further reading of the publications; 'Blood Sweat and Courage' written by Steve Brew ISBN: 978-1781552964 the story of 41 Squadron RAF 1939-1942 Also by the same author: 1942 - 1945 'Blood, Sweat and Valour' ISBN: 978-1781551936. Nearly 2000 pages of 41 Squadron service history written by the 41 Squadron archivist.

KTY - 01.01.2018

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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', Stan D. Bishop, John A. Hey MBE, Gerrie Franken and Maco Cillessen - Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces, Vols 1-6, Dr. Theo E.W. Boiton - Nachtjagd Combat Archives, Vols 1-13. 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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