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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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409 Squadron Crest
27.03.1942 No: 409 Squadron Beaufighter IIF T3142 Sq/Ldr. Hanbury

Operation: Training

Date: 27th March 1942 (Friday)

Unit: No. 409 Squadron Nighthawk (motto: Media nox meridies noster "Midnight is our noon")

Type: Beaufighter IIF

Serial: T3142

Code: KP-?

Base: RAF Coleby Grange, Lincolnshire

Location: Leverton, Lincolnshire

Pilot: Sq/Ldr. Bruce Alexander Hanbury C/1329 RCAF Age 31. Killed

Pilot 2: P/O. Philip Marcus Sweet J/6191 RCAF Age 21. Killed

Obs: Fl/Sgt. John William Dickson R/355A RCAF Age 33. Killed

We are extremely grateful to François Dutil (438 Squadron Archivist) for supplying photographs and information to Aircrew Remembered in October 2017. All photographs shown within this page are available to relatives at a higher resolution (as are most of those named within this page) - courtesy of François.


The pilot, Sq/Ldr. Hanbury had previously served in 112 Squadron RCAF and 1 Squadron RCAF. He had taken part in the Battle of Britain.

On this flight he had taken up the Beaufighter to show a new pilot to the squadron the characteristics of the aircraft. The aircraft went into a spin and crashed at Leverton killing all three crew members.

Above left: Sq/Ldr. ‘Jack’ John David Morrison (1). Right: Sq/Ldr. Bruce Alexander Hanbury

(1) Sq/Ldr. ‘Jack’ Morrison C/825, RCAF age 23 from Regina, Saskatchewan was killed flying Spitfire Vb whilst with 412 Squadron escorting Bostons. Claimed shot down by Oblt. Muncheberg of JG26. Also lost with him from the Squadron, P/O. A.T.A. Young J/5339 RCAF taken PoW also claimed by the same Luftwaffe pilot.

Burial details:

Sq/Ldr. Bruce Alexander Hanbury. Scopwick Church. Row 4. Grave 37. Born on the 11th April 1911 in Vancouver, the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Hanbury and husband of Nancy (née Burris) of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

P/O. Philip Marcus Sweet. Scopwick Church. Row 4. Grave 40. Son of Charles and Georgia Sweet, of Huron, South Dakota, United States of America. Grave inscription: “The Lord Is My Shepherd; I Shall Not Want Psalm 23.1”.

Fl/Sgt. John William Dickson. Scopwick Church. Row 3. Grave 27. Son of John W. Dickson, and of Alice Mills Dickson, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Grave inscription: “Until The Day Break And The Shadows Flee Away”.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to sources indicated below and also to Daff for the use of grave photographs from ‘Find A Grave’. Page made possible with thanks to François Dutil (438 Squadron Archivist).

KTY - 30.10.2017

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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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