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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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Transport Command Crest
21/22.08.1944 105 (T) OTU Wellington X MF517 KAM-N F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox

Operation: Training

Date: 21/22 August 1944 (Monday/Tuesday)

Unit: 105 (Transport) Operational Training Unit - Group 44 Transport Command

Type: Vickers Wellington X

Serial: MF517

Code: KAM-N

Base: RAF Bramcote (4 miles south-east of Nuneaton) Warwickshire,

Location: Newtown Farm, Romsley, Worcestershire

Pilot: F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox 149226 RAFVR Age 29 - Killed (1)

Nav: Sgt. George Firth 1207021 RAFVR Age 29 - Killed (2)

W/Op/Air/Gnr: P/O. Stanley Clarkson Walker J/90030 (formerly R105492) RCAF Age 31 - Killed (3)


We appeal to anyone with further information and/or photographs to please contact us via our Helpdesk




INTRODUCTION


105 (T) OTU was formed at RAF Bramcote , Warwickshire, in April 1944, to train crews for airline transport squadrons, at first using the Vickers Wellington, but by September 1944, the Douglas Dakota. Training did not begin until July 1944 due to the modifications required to their Wellington aircraft . Due to them being used in a transport role, the Wellingtons were to fly with just a crew of pilot, navigator and wireless operator, air gunners not being required. To this end, Kenneth Fox, George Firth and Stanley Walker had subsequently crewed up together.

Ken Fox and Stanley Walker both arrived at Bramcote on 13 June 1944. They were both from Toronto and coincidentally, both had English born parents. Ken had been turned down by the RCAF on account of him having no college education, but not to be deterred, he worked his passage to the UK and was accepted by the RAF. He soon found himself sailing back to Canada for further training and in due course was awarded his Flying Badge. After returning to the UK he suffered severe injuries in an aircraft accident but eventually became a flying instructor. But despite three years of service with the RAF, Ken was yet to gain any operational experience hence his posting to 105 (T) OTU.

Wireless Operator and Air Gunner, Stanley Walker, on the other hand, had had plenty of operational experience. Having enlisted in 1941 he was later stationed in Algeria, Sicily and Gibraltar. Flying Lockheed Hudsons and Martin Baltimores he had flown more than 40 sorties, taking part in convoy escort duties, air sea rescues, anti submarine patrols, u-boat hunts and shipping searches mainly with 52 Squadron. At the end of March 1944, 52 Squadron disbanded and Stanley came back to the UK where he had eventually ended up at Bramcote.

The third member of the crew was George Firth, a school teacher, born at Bradford in God's Own County of Yorkshire. Prior to enlisting he had lived and worked at Whittlesey in Cambridgeshire. He had trained as a navigator in South Africa and had only just returned to the UK in March 1944 and in April, married his fiancée, Violet, a Whittlesey girl.





REASON FOR LOSS


On Monday 21 August 1944 F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox and crew consisting of navigator Sgt. George Firth and wireless operator/air gunner P/O. Stanley Clarkson Walker, flying Wellington X MF517 call sign KAM-N, took off at 2159 (Double British Summer Time) from RAF Bramcote near Nuneaton, Warwickshire. Surface wind at take off was 11 mph, visibility was good and the cloud ceiling was 2000 feet.

The flight was authorised by F/O. Robinson for navigational training with special instructions as follows: "On return to locate SBA beam and descend through cloud by QGH procedure"

[SBA - Standard Beam Approach (a blind-landing radio navigation system using the Lorenz beam developed by C. Lorenz AG in Berlin in 1932). QGH is the code for Controlled Descent through Clouds i.e. a let-down procedure using a ground-based DF/ADF (direction finder/automatic direction finder)]

The aircraft failed to return and it later transpired that it had crashed at Newtown Farm, Romsley, Worcestershire some 10 miles south of Birmingham.



Later, on 22 August, a 'Form 765 - Report on flying accident or forced landing not attributable to enemy action' was completed with details as follows:

Description of the Accident

Duration of flight 4 hours 47 minutes

The officer i/c flying, reports that:-At 2159 hours on 21 August 1944 Wellington X aircraft 517 of "A" Flight, Pilot F/O. Fox, took off from RAF Bramcote, on a training night cross country flight. The route was B.63, i.e. Base-Valley-St. Kilda-Base. The aircraft established W/T contact and started its exercise. W/T. communication was maintained with the aircraft throughout its flight. At 0246 hrs a message was received from the aircraft (Call sign KAM-N) giving his position as 54° 17'N 04° 09'W, [about 5 miles east of the Isle of Man] magnetic course as 137°, height as 6000 ft. ETA as 0330 and the time of origin was 0230 hours. Nothing was heard until seven minutes before ETA i.e. 0325 when Bramcote D/F [direction finding] Station passed the aircraft a QDM of 115 3rd class. [QDM: magnetic bearing to the station]

The aircraft replied that he would call again. Nothing further was heard of the aircraft and at 0450 full overdue action was taken by the Duty Flying Control Officer. At approximately 1330 hours, 22 August, Worcester Police reported a Wellington aircraft had crashed near Halesowen, Worcester. CTO [Chief Training Officer] and Flight Commander immediately visited the site to find that this was the aircraft missing and apparently aircraft had been lost and flown into ground killing all the crew immediately. Court of Enquiry is being held.

Report of Appropriate Specialist Officers

The CTO accompanied by OC., S & DI. Squadron (Tech (E)) visited the scene of the incident at approx. 1500 hrs 22 August 1944. The aircraft had undoubtedly flown at very high speed into some trees which was the first point of impact. The aircraft wreckage indicates that it was flying a little above ground level at the time of the impact. The wreckage inertia is very considerable - being spread in a forward direction over a vast area, some pieces being about 400-500 yards from pint of impact. Other than trailing aerial, there was no indication that the aircraft had touched the ground before impact with the trees. Damage was so extensive that it was not possible to determine if any technical cause had been responsible, but there is definitely NO indication of Fire amongst the wreckage. No adverse technical report or comment was received from Crew whilst airborne. No adverse report received from witnesses.

A. R. Clark W/Cdr

CTO RAF Bramcote 23 August 1944.






Proceedings of the Court of Enquiry into the flying accident at Newtown Farm - Rubery, Halesowen near Birmingham of 22 August 1944, convened on 23 August 1944 at RAF Bramcote are as follows:

Composition of the Court

S/Ldr A. J. Douch

S/Ldr K. R. Midmer

F/O. W. J. Archer

All of 105 (T) OTU

Witnesses

S/Ldr. V. G. Daw

F/Lt. J. G. Roberts

F/O. R. E. Robinson

F/O. G. C. G. Warburton

S/Ldr. F. A. L. Harding

F/O. D. F. Tait

F/Lt. E. Howgate

All the above of 105 (T) OTU

Mr. J. T. Jones - Civilian

Mr. W. E. Field - Civilian

S/Ldr. E. F. G. Burton - 3 (O) AFU

S/Ldr. J. Sutton - 105 (T) OTU

Flying experience of Pilot F/O. Fox Age 29 8/12

Types flown within 6 months prior to accident

DH82 - solo night 1.40 hours (Dual zero) - solo day 25.35 hours (Dual 10.50)

Oxford - solo night 13.14 hours (Dual 6.35) - solo day 21.31 hours (Dual 23.40)

Wellington - solo night 11 hours (Dual 8.15) - solo day 31 hours (Dual 1.35)

17 EFTS [Elementary Flying Training School] Peterborough - Assessed above average

2 FIS [Flying Instructors School] Montrose - Below average

33 SFTS [Service Flying Training School] Carberry - Above average

7 FIS [Flying Instructors School] - Shawbury - Average

6 (P) AFU [Pilot Advanced Flying Unit] - Little Rissington - Average

Time and location of crash:

0330 at Newtown Farm Rubery

Exact location of crash including height where relevant

(i) 660 feet

(ii) Tree 6 feet from ground

Weather conditions at time and place of crash: Considerable cloud with base 500/1000ft above highest ground strong NE wind - dark night - good visibility below cloud.

Flight properly authorised

Pilot had recent regular flying practice and dual instruction

All inspections carried out and sufficient fuel carried

Engine log card examined and found in order

Police Report - Attached as Appendix (b) [not included in file]

We have visited the scene of the accident before aircraft was removed and have found the following material facts.

Aircraft completely disintegrated following impact of starboard mainplane [wing] with a tree. The aircraft then struck the ground at a flat angle probably on a right hand turn. The aircraft was under power and travelling fast at time of impact. A drawing of the scene of the accident is enclosed as Appendix "C" [not found in the file]




Conclusion

(a) The aircraft struck high ground approximately 20 miles west of base whilst in a diving turn to the right. This has been established by impact marks on the ground and damage to adjacent trees. The speed of the aircraft was high and both engines appear to have been under power at the moment of impact. There is no evidence to show that the aircraft was out of control. The whole aircraft was totally destroyed, the wreckage stretching for 250 yards.

(b) The evidence of the fifth witness (Senior Flying Control Officer) states that at 02.30 hours the ETA base was sent out by W/T as 03.30 hours. The evidence of the eighth witness (Mr. J. James) states that the accident occurred at 03.30 hours. At 03.23 hours the W/op was in contact with the Bramcote D.F. station, but the pilot does not appear to have acted on the third class bearing which he was given.

The evidence of the third witness (F/O. Robinson) states that the pilot was ordered during briefing to locate himself by the SBA Beam, and to descend through the cloud under W/T control. These orders were disobeyed.

It is highly probable that the pilot descended through cloud at his ETA, without having first located himself accurately. Further, it seems that the pilot was either not aware that he had broken cloud or he did not realise he was over high ground.

Signed 25 August 1944

S/Ldr A J Douch

S/Ldr K R Midmer

F/O. W J Archer


We are informed by Stuart Smith, Romsley Parish Paths Warden that:

Although the Form 765 and the Proceedings of the Court of Enquiry refer to Newtown Farm being in Rubery , Newtown Farm and much of the land associated with it including the crash site is in the parish of Romsley.






Propeller blade socket from Wellington MF517 which crashed near Newtown Farm, Romsley on 22 August 1944


Items recovered from Wellington X MF517 which crashed on 22 August 1944 with the loss of all crew near Newtown Farm Romsley.

The two photographs above kindly provided by John Mantle



BIOGRAPHICAL DETAILS OF THE CREW



(1) F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox Kenneth Wilson Fox was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on 26 December 1914 the son of Wilfred Reginald Fox (known as Reginald) and Lillian Fox née Wilson.

His father Reginald, originally from Twerton in Bath, had moved to Liverpool with his parents by 1901 and later moved to 51 Durning Road, Liverpool, the same road as Lillian Wilson, who lived with her parents, Thomas and Elizabeth Wilson and her elder sister May, at number 7.

By 1912 Reginald had emigrated to Toronto and a year later Lillian joined him and they were married on Friday 1 August 1913 at York, Ontario.

On 7 June 1919, having sailed from Montreal, the 4 year old Kenneth Fox arrived with his mother, Lillian Fox, at Liverpool aboard the SS Grampian of the Canadian Pacific Ocean Services Steamship Line. Lillian and Kenneth were recorded as intending to reside with Lillian's parents at 7 Durning Road, Liverpool . Reginald Fox, also sailed for the UK during 1919, the date of the voyage is unknown but was paid for by R.G. Dun, Mercantile Agents of King and Yonge [Street] Toronto. Reginald is recorded as a Financial Reporter and was presumably employed by R.G. Dun. As his employers paid for the trip, he was presumably coming to the UK on business.

Reginald, Lillian and Kenneth Fox, having sailed home together, disembarked in Canada on 24 October 1919.


During Ken's childhood the family moved to various addresses in Toronto and he attended two schools in the city, the North Toronto Collegiate Institute and R. H. King Academy, formerly known as Scarborough High School, Scarborough Collegiate Institute and R.H. King Collegiate Institute.

Kenneth Fox had one sibling, a brother, Terrence Wilson Fox, born 17 May 1928. Terrence idolised his elder brother and later named his son after him.

Early in 1939 Kenneth applied to join the RCAF at Trenton Ontario but was turned down because he did not have a college education. Determined to become a pilot, he worked his passage on a cattle boat to England where he applied for enlistment in the RAF just four days after the outbreak of war. At the time of the National Registration of 29 September 1939, he was recorded as living with his Uncle Thomas Pierpoint and his Aunt May Pierpoint née Wilson, (his mother's elder sister), at 12 Archerfield Road, Liverpool and where he had taken employment as a Clerk whilst waiting to be called up by the RAF.

On Thursday, 6 March 1941 he enlisted at 2 RC (Recruitment Centre) at Cardington in Bedfordshire and henceforth became, 1234177 Aircraftman 2nd Class, Fox, Kenneth Wilson. He was described as being 5'7½" tall with a fresh complexion, blue eyes and light brown hair

Just over a week later, on 15 March he was posted to 1 RW. (1 Receiving Wing) at RAF Babbacombe, Devon where he undertook basic training until 19 April 1941 when he was transferred to 2 ITW (Initial Training Wing) at RAF Paignton in Devon where he received ground instruction for basic flying, including mathematics, navigation and principles of flying.



The photograph above is believed to have been taken in 1941 at Oldway Mansion, Paignton, which during the Second World War was used to house RAF cadets training to be aircrew.


On 21 June 1941 he was posted to 17 EFTS (Elementary Flying Training School) at RAF North Luffenham, Rutland until 17 July when the school was transferred to RAF Peterborough in Cambridgeshire. While at 17 EFTS he learned the basics of how to fly the de Havilland Tiger Moth and would have also made his first solo flight.

Though details are not given in his service record, he probably embarked for Canada in late July, and on 7 August 1941 commenced training on Avro Anson twin engine aircraft at 33 SFTS (Service Flying Training School) at RCAF Carberry in Manitoba. A week later he was posted to 35 SFTS at RCAF North Battleford in Saskatchewan where training was conducted on the Airspeed Oxford twin engine aircraft.

On Friday 7 November 1941 Ken was awarded his Flying Badge, the much coveted 'Wings' and promoted from Leading Aircraftman to Sergeant.

Returning to the UK, he disembarked on 18 December 1941 and the following day was posted to 3 Personnel Reception Centre at Bournemouth in Dorset.

On 5 January 1942 he was posted to 2 SFTS (Service Flying Training School) at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire for further training on Airspeed Oxfords.



On 21 March 1942 he was posted to 11 (P) AFU ((Pilot) Advanced Flying Unit) and was immediately sent to RAF Upavon, in Wiltshire for flying instructor training at 7 Flying Instructor School (FI Course C (HE))

After completing the course it seems that Kenneth commenced duties as a flying instructor at 11 (P) AFU at RAF Shawbury in Shropshire but was soon involved in a serious accident

AIR 81/14536 records that Sergeant K. W. Fox, Sergeant, A. F. Hilderbrabt (RCAF)[? Hildebrandt J/17801]: injured. Oxford V3399,[of] 11 Advanced Flying Unit (Pilots), aircraft accident at Bratton aerodome, Shropshire, 26 May 1942. Hit ground after night t/o from Bratton.

Bratton was a relief landing Ground for RAF Shawbury. It was an all grass airfield. The airfield lies 2 miles NE. of Wellington, 6½ miles SSW. of R.N.A.S. Hinstock and 8 miles E. of Shrewsbury.

His service record continues:

26 May 1942 11 (P) AFU (NES) - Re-posted [non effective strength i.e. hospitalised]

Though the extent of his injuries are unknown they were clearly severe as 7 weeks later on 2 July 1942 he was still recorded as AtBt [Temporarily unfit for flying and ground duty (implies sick leave / hospital)] but on 8 July, A2h [limited flying duties home service].

At some stage in his recuperation, he was posted to 2 ACD [Airmen Convalescent Depot for NCOs, at The Leas, Hoylake, Wirral, Merseyside].



The above photograph was taken at 2 Airmen Convalescent Depot , The Leas, Hoylake, Wirral, Merseyside in 1942. A caption on the reverse reads: 'The 5 older Canadian residents do the officiating. I had just come from a swim, still wet.'


On 13 October 1942 he was posted back to 11 (P) AFU.

On 2 November 1942 two entries in his service record appear to be contradictory: 'A' [A = fit for flying duties] and Bh (A2h Bh) light aircraft only. [ i.e fit for limited flying duties as noted and ground duties].

On 25 November 1942 he was posted to 50 Group Pool [50 Group was part of Flying Training Command] and the following day to a 'Conversion Course Cat. B (Elementary) 26 November 1942 - 12 February 1943.'

1234177 F/Sgt Kenneth Wilson Fox was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on probation (emergency) on 25 April 1943 with the new serial number of 149226 as promulgated in the London Gazette of 7 September 1943.

On 25 April 1943 he was also posted to 29 EFTS at RAF Clyffe Pypard in Wiltshire - 'Posted/Fly on Appt'.

[Opened in August 1941, training at 29 EFTS was initially conducted on Tiger Moths and later on Miles Magisters and Fairchild Cornells. This station was used for training purposes only. Women were a key part of daily life here, and many local girls were employed on aircraft handling duties alongside WRAF colleagues.]

On 25 October 1943 he was confirmed in his appointment as a Pilot Officer and promoted to Flying Officer (war subs) (London Gazette 10 December 1943) and from 25 October 1943 to 29 November 1943 he attended ACOS (Aircrew Officers School) located at Sidmouth in Devon. Result 69% Average

[Opened in March 1943. The school provided four weeks of general duties instruction for up to 1,500 students at a time. The course was primarily intended for newly commissioned EATS (Empire Air Training Scheme) graduates who were supposed to attend between PRC and AFU – although this was neither essential nor exclusive; some EATS graduates by-passed the course while some officers promoted from the ranks in the UK were able to attend.]

On 21 March 1944 he was posted to 6 (P) AFU at Little Rissington in Gloucestershire for advanced flying training on the Avro Anson [i.e. final pilot training for pilots who had completed basic training and prior to posting to Operational Training Units] and on 13 June 1944 he was posted to 105 (T) OTU (Transport) Operational Training Unit) at RAF Bramcote in Warwickshire for operational flying training.



(2) Sgt. George Firth was born on 2 February 1915 at Bradford, West Riding of Yorkshire, the son of Percival Firth (a Wool Sorter) and Beatrice Firth nee Robinson. Percival and Beatrice Firth later moved to Langbar, a small hamlet near Ilkley

George was a school teacher, and in 1939 was lodging at the home of Gertrude Fosdike at 3 St Mary's Street Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire. He was a popular teacher at the local Junior Mixed School.

He enlisted in the RAF in 1940 and later trained as a navigator in South Africa, returning to the UK in March 1944.

On 8 April 1944 he married his fiancée, Violet Crissie Fordham, at St. Mary's Parish Church Whittlesey and afterwards they had a brief honeymoon in Devon

Like all young couples at the time they were looking forward to the end of the war and getting back to normal life. They planned to settle in Langbar.

At the time of her husband's death, Violet was a Lance Corporal in the Auxiliary Territorial Service and based in Oxfordshire.




George and Violet had only been married for 4 months and one can imagine the grief when Violet's mother met her daughter off the train from Oxfordshire after receiving the news.

Violet was the eldest of 9 children, her youngest sibling, Jean, being only 2 years old at the time that George died, so her family had a lot to deal with.

His funeral took place at Bradford with full military honours and was attended by his widow Mrs Violet Firth, his father Mr Percival Firth, Miss M Firth, Mrs. Fordham and Mr G. Fordham. About 40 of his airmen friends also attended, to pay their respects.

After the war Violet married a local man with whom she later had a daughter. She died in 1999,

George Firth is commemorated on the Ilkley Town War Memorial, Ilkley in the West Riding of Yorkshire.











(3) P/O. Stanley Clarkson Walker was born on 23 January 1913 at Toronto, Ontario Canada the son of Yorkshire born parents, Clarkson Walker (a Salesman) and Mary Emma Walker nee Chapman of 88 Chatham Avenue Toronto. His parents were married at Shipley Yorkshire on 26 July 1905.

Stanley Walker had five siblings: Doris Emily Walker born c 1908, Marjorie Carell Walker born c. 1916 Charles Verdun Walker born c 1917 (RCAF Lachine Quebec) Douglas Alfred Walker born c. 1921 (Canadian Army) and Clifford Walker born c 1923 (Canadian Army)

He attended Earl Grey School (1918-1927), Eastern High School (1927-1928) and Central Technical School (1929-1931) and after leaving school he was employed by George R. Morton as a Farm Hand (1931-1935), Nock Bros and Ayre Co. as a Machine Repair Man (1935-1938) and Scarboro' Farm Dairy as a Milk Salesman from 1938 until enlisting in the RCAF.

He played hockey and softball extensively, badminton, boxing and lacrosse occasionally and his hobby was photography.

On 16 April 1938 he married Gladys Eva Taylor at Toronto but the couple had separated by mutual consent before 4 June 1941. They had a daughter, Arlene Marjorie Walker born 10 December 1938

When he enlisted at Toronto on 4 June 1941 Stanley Walker was described as being 5' 9" tall weighing 150 lbs with a dark complexion, brown eyes and black hair.

After training at 16 Service Flying Training School at RCAF Hagersville, Ontario, 4 Wireless School at RCAF Guelph and RCAF Burtch, Ontario and 5 Bombing and Gunnery School, RCAF Dafoe Saskatchewan he was awarded his Air Gunners Badge and promoted to Sergeant on 31 August 1942.

He was then posted to 34 Operational Training Unit at RCAF Penfield Ridge New Brunswick on 15 September 1942 and later RCAF Greenwood, Nova Scotia on 13 October 1942.

He embarked for the UK on 26 January 1943 and on disembarking was posted 3 Personnel Reception Centre at Bournemouth on 5 February. He was promoted to Flight Sergeant on 28 February 1943.

On 11 March he was posted to 11 Radio School and on 20 April to 1 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit at RAF Thornaby, North Riding of Yorkshire

On 26 June 1943 he enplaned for North Africa where he joined 500 Squadron on 30 June at Tafaraoui, Algeria and on 17 August posted to 52 Squadron at Protville (Tunisia).

Stanley Walker was promoted to Warrant Officer 2nd Class on 28 August 1943.

On 7 November 1943 the Squadron re-located to Borizzo in Sicily where it remained until 7 March 1944 when it was relocated to Gibraltar. The Squadron was disbanded on 31 March 1944.

He embarked for the UK on 10 April 1944 disembarking on 19 April and after the Squadron was disbanded, was posted to 3 Personnel Reception Centre. On 5 May he was posted to 69 Squadron at RAF Northolt, Greater London and on 13 June to 105 (T) Operational Training Unit at RAF Bramcote, Warwickshire.

He was commissioned as a Pilot Officer with effect from 21 August 1944

Stanley Walker's remains were identified by personal clothing, correspondence and identity cards. A letter to his father of 31 August 1944 informed him that: 'Funeral took place at 2 p.m. on August 28 at the Royal Air Force Regional Cemetery, Chester, Cheshire.



BURIAL DETAILS, MEMORIALS AND EPITAPHS


Funeral of F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox and P/O. Stanley Clarkson Walker held at Chester (Blacon) Cemetery , Chester, on 28 August 1944







F/O. Kenneth Wilson Fox was buried at Chester (Blacon) Cemetery - Sec. A. Grave 805.

His epitaph reads

Greater love

Hath no man

Who lays down his life

For his country


Sgt. George Firth was buried at Bradford (Scholemoor) Cemetery - Cons Sec. 5. Grave 2.

His epitaph reads

The Lord lift up

His countenance upon thee

And give thee peace


P/O. Stanley Clarkson Walker was buried at Chester (Blacon) Cemetery - Sec. A. Grave 940.

His epitaph reads

I often see his smiling face

As he bade his last goodbye

He left his home forever

In a distant land to die








ROMSLEY REMEMBERS!


On 29 October 2020 Aircrew Remembered was contacted by Stuart Smith, the Parish Paths Warden for Romsley. Stuart informed us that he was planning to commission an information board to be placed on a footpath nearby, in order to both inform path users of the event and as a recognition of the three airmen who lost their lives there. To this end he requested copies of the photographs from our memorial page, which we were more than pleased to provide.

In August 2021 Stuart provided the following update.

At 11 a.m. on Sunday 22 August 2021 a small ceremony was held near to the crash site at Romsley to honour the three aircrew who died in the accident involving Wellington MF517.

Members of the Parish Council together with local residents were addressed by the Chairman of the Council who used the information from the Aircrew Remembered archive report to give a brief summary of events and to name the three airmen. A memorial plaque was then unveiled. The Last Post was played by a local bugler and 2 minutes silence was held followed by Reveille and the laying of flowers at the memorial.

Stuart added:

Hopefully this ceremony along with the memorial plaque and your report will serve as a reminder of what happened and the sad event 77 years ago today will not be forgotten.

Todays event is more or less the culmination of over ten years wondering what really happened all those years ago and a determination to dispel the many varied and incorrect stories that I have heard from local people.







A video and transcript of the ceremony can be seen here:

https://romsleyparishcouncil.gov.uk/council-news/p...


FURTHER DETAILS AND PHOTOGRAPHS ADDED

In March 2024 Roy Wilcock was contacted once again by Stuart Smith forwarded photographs, service record and biological details relating to Kenneth Wilson Fox provided by his nephew also named Kenneth Fox and whom Stuart had assisted with the research. Stuart also sent photographs and biological details of George Firth provided by Adrian Woollard, nephew of George Firth. On behalf of Aircrew Remembered Roy Wilcock would like to thank Kenneth Fox and Adrian Woollard for providing details of their relatives and Stuart Smith for his continued support of Aircrew Remembered


Researched by Aircrew Remembered researcher Roy Wilcock for all the relatives and friends of the members of this crew - February 2020

With thanks to the sources quoted below.

RW 14.02.2020

RW 24.02.2020 Photographs of relics courtesy John Mantle added.

RW 24.08.2021 Details of the ceremony dedicating a memorial to the crew added, courtesy Stuart Smith

RW 30.03.2024 Biological details and photos re Kenneth Wilson Fox and George Firth added, courtesy Kenneth Fox and Adrial Woollard

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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', 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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