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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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158 Squadron Crest
21/22.02.1945 No. 158 Squadron Halifax III MZ813 NP-Y F/O. R.J. Hampshire

Operation: Worms

Date: 21/22nd February 1945 (Wednesday/Thursday)

Unit: 158 Squadron

Type: Halifax III

Serial: MZ813

Code: NP-Y

Base: RAF Lissett, Yorkshire

Location: Belfield Hall Farm, Knodishall, Suffolk

Pilot: F/O. R.J. Hampshire RAFVR Injured - survived

Fl/Eng: Sgt. K.D. Baracatt RAFVR Injured - survived

Nav: P/O. Thomas Frederick Morrison 190400 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. D.R.C. Glossop RAFVR Injured - survived

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Eric Dixon 2207089 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. John William Kenny 1624620 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Alan Ainsley 1596266 RAFVR Age 23. Killed

Relatives of Fl/Sgt. John Kenny are seeking any photographs of either the crew or aircraft. If you are able to assist please contact us in the first instance.

Wonderful that Mr John Williams contacted us in August 2016 and supplied a great crew photograph.


On the night of Wednesday 21st February 1945 Bomber Command carried out 1,110 sorties. A total of 373 aircraft from No’s 1, 6 and No.8 Group were briefed to attack Duisburg, 349 aircraft were briefed to attack Worms and 177 aircraft from No.5 Group were briefed to attack the Mittelland Canal section near Gravenhorst. A total of 211 aircraft carried out Minor operations: 77 aircraft to Berlin, 66 aircraft on R.C.M’S, 35 aircraft on patrols, 28 aircraft on Resistance work and 5 aircraft to Bremen.

The cost was high, a total of 70 aircraft (6.31%): 42 Lancasters, 25 Halifaxes, 1 Liberator, 1 Hudson and 1 Mosquito would be struck off charge with 427 aircrew casualties; 237 died, 7 airmen injured, 176 airmen became Prisoners of War and 7 airmen evaded capture.

L-R: Fl/Sgt. Glossop, Sgt. Ainsley, P/O. Morrison, F/O. Hampshire, Sgt. Baracatt, Sgt. Kenny, Sgt. Dixon. (courtesy John Williams - submitted to Aircrew Remembered August 2016)

Halifax Mk.III MZ813 coded NP-Y which took off at 17:26 hours from RAF Lissett, Yorkshire briefed to attack Worms. The aircraft failed to return home, having crashed at 19:45 hours into trees at Belfield Hall Farm, Knodishall, 1 mile WSW of Leiston, Suffolk, bursting into flames.

Note: Aircraft was one of 360 Halifaxes built by English Electric Co. Ltd. Preston under Contract No.ACFT2553 & Requisition No. HA9/E11/41. Deliveries commenced March 1944 and completed in August 1944. MZ813 was first delivered to No.424 ( (Tiger) Squadron RCAF, coded QB-B (Bambi) and then transferred to No.158 Squadron.

The memorial at Lissett, unveiled in 2009. Made from 12 mm steel, engraved with all the names of of every one lost from 158 Squadron (courtesy David Brown)

Burial details:

P/O. Thomas Frederick Morrison. Dalziel Cemetery (Airbles). Sec G. Grave 470. Son of Thomas and Florence Gertrude Morrison, of Motherwell, Lanarkshire, Scotland.

Fl/Sgt. Eric Dixon. Windermere Cemetery (Bowness) New Part. Grave 692.Son of Bruce Dixon and of Doris Agnes Dixon, of Windermere, Cumbria, England.

Fl/Sgt. John William Kenny. Bradford Cemetery (Scholemoor) Cons. Sec N. Grave 1858. Son of Michel and Rosina Kenny, of Bradford, Yorkshire, England.

Sgt. Alan Ainsley. Morpeth Churchyard (SS. Mary and James) Old Ground, Right of park. Son of Ella Ainsley, of Morpeth, Northumberland, England.

Researched by Paul Kenny, nephew of Fl/Sgt. John Kenny and submitted to Aircrew Remembered -June 2016. Also to John Williams for crew photograph - August 2016. Grave photo of P/O. Thomas Frederick Morrison courtesy David McNay of the Scottish War Graves.

KTY 11.06.2016

KTY 17.08.2016 Crew photo added - courtesy J. Williams

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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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