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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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1 Squadron crest
27.08.1940 No. 1 Squadron Hurricane I P3897 P/O. Chetham

Operation: Night patrol

Date: 27th August 1940 (Tuesday)

Time: 01.00 hrs.

Unit: No.1 Squadron RAF (Northolt)

Type: Hawker Hurricane Mk.I

Serial: P3897

Code: JX-?

Base: RAF Northolt

Location: In small wood (Monkton Fir Plantation) at Speen, Buckinghamshire.

Pilot: P/O. Charles Arthur Copeland Chetham 82946 RAF Age 20. Baled out safely


This aircraft was held by searchlights and pilot lost control. The abandoned aircraft dived into a small wood and was totally destroyed.

P/O. Chetham baled out unhurt and landed at Amersham, Buckinghamshire.

P/O. Chetham on right with Canadian Fl/Lt. Brown at RAF Northolt (courtesy IWM)

Sadly P/O. Chetham was killed on the 15th April 1941, shot down by Me109s over Larissa, Greece, whilst serving with 33 Squadron in Greece. His commanding Officer during this period was Sq/Ldr. Pat Pattle a RAF ace, also killed in action a few days later on the 20th April 1941.

Above: as described (courtesy Rob/Fulham Rocks - used with permission)

P/O. Charles Arthur Copeland Chetham. Phaleron War Cemetery, Greece. Grave 4.C.15. Son of Samuel Fisher Copeland Chetham and Dorothy Kate Chetham, of St. Bernards, Wolborough Hill, Newton Abbott, Devon. Also commemorated on the Newton Abbot War Memorial.

Above left: An early portrait of P/O. Chetham and right: His father, Special Constable Samuel F.C. Chetham (courtesy Anne Kendall and family)

His father, Samuel Fisher Copeland Chetham, a civilian special constable was injured at the Berwyn Hotel on the 25th April 1942 during an air raid in which 4 others were also killed, he died later that day at Newton Abbot Hospital, age 63.

With thanks to Anne Kendall who contacted us in April 2014 advising us of some incorrect details on the father of P/O. Chetham - since changed. Her father (Charles Ewart Tremenheere Chetham 122982 RAFVR), was a cousin of the pilot (shown left) and also served. Won the DFC whilst serving with 97 'Pathfinder' Squadron. He survived the war and we now have details on his service. 'Fighter Command Losses' - Norman Franks. CWGC, the IWM. With additional details from Aircrew Remembered own archives.
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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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