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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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460 Squadron Crest
01/02.06.1942 460 Squadron Wellington IV Z1344 UV:W Fg Off. Allan J. Holland

Operation: Essen

Date: 1st/2nd June 1942 (Monday/Tuesday)

Unit No: 460 Squadron

Type: Wellington IV

Serial: Z1344

Code: UV:W

Base: RAF Breighton, Yorkshire

Location: Flushing (Vissingen) Western Schelde

Pilot: Fg Off. Allan James Holland 43286 RAF Age 23. PoW No. 683 * (1)

2nd Pilot: Sgt. Clifford Stanley Douglas 406349 RAAF Age 21. PoW No. 25085 ** (2)

Observer: Sgt. Arthur Patrick Dansey 400080 RAAF Age 21. PoW No. 811 *** (3)

WOp/Air Gnr: Sgt. Dudley Raymond Beinke 406136 RAAF Age 21. KiA

WOp/Air Gnr: Sgt. William Desmond Cheese 408046 RAAF Age 21. Died of Injuries

Air Gnr (Rear): Sgt. Thomas Lincoln Watkins 407308 RAAF Age 21. Died of Injuries

* Stalag Luft 3, Sagan-Silesia, Germany, now Żagań in Poland.

** Stalag 8b, in 1943 renamed Stalag 344, Lamsdorf (now called Łambinowice) in Silesia, Lamsdorf (now called Łambinowice) in Silesia.

*** Stalag Luft 6, Heydekrug, Memelland (now Šilutė in Lithuania)


Taking off at 23:21 hrs from RAF Breighton, Yorkshire to take part in the second large 1000 bomber raid on Essen, although the full quota could not be mustered on this night - 956 aircraft did take part made up of 545 Wellingtons, 127 Halifaxes, 77 Stirlings, 74 Lancasters, 71 Hampdens, 33 Manchesters and 29 Whitleys.

The ground was covered in haze or low cloud resulting in very scattered bombing. Reports from Essen stated that 11 houses were destroyed and 184 damaged. A PoW camp was burnt out - this all resulted in 15 people killed and 91 injured. The scattering of the bombing also killed 83 people in Oberhausen, 52 killed in Dusberg and 15 killed in Mulheim.

The raid took its toll on the bomber force with 35 aircraft lost. A total of 140 aircrew were killed and 47 made PoW.

Above: The usual crew of Z1344 left to right: 2nd Pilot George Grand, Thomas Watkins, Doug Hurditch, Dudley Beinke, Buff Cheese and Arthur Dansey - believed to have been taken at Breighton April/May 1942 (courtesy Doug Hurditch via Ronald Dean Munro)

22 year old Plt Off. George Albert Grand 402948 RAAF from Casino, New South Wales, Australia - Believed to have lost his life on Wellington Z1422 UV:W on a gardening operation when the aircraft lost in the sea near Quiberon, France on the 4th August 1942 - all 4 other RAAF crew also lost.

The Squadron lost second crew to Oblt. Dr. Horst Patuschka of 7./NJG3 at 02:34 hrs. Wellington Z1311 UV:Z, flown by 22 year old, Flt Sgt. John Francis Walsh 404701 RAAF from Gympie, Queensland, Australia - killed with all five other members of his crew. (See Kracker Luftwaffe Archive on this site for details of Oblt. Patuschka)

(1) Statement made by the pilot Fg Off. Allan Holland and sent via the Australian Red Cross on the 11th December 1942:

“On the night of the 1st June at about sea level, my aircraft was hit by enemy action and badly damaged and put on fire. Five or six seconds afterwards we hit the sea. The aircraft must have broken up on hitting the water and part of it sank immediately, while other parts remained out of the water.

I fought my way up tp the surface, as did Sgt’s Dansey, Cheese, Beinke and Douglas. Fire was still blazing on the surface but we managed to swim into open water. I am afraid that the rear gunner, whose name I think is Sgt. Williams was drowned, as I have heard nothing of him since.

A ship picked us up fifteen minutes later, but I am afraid that Sgt. Beinke died as he was taken from the water. We were taken to a Hospital at Bergen-op-Zoom, where we were given good medical attention.

Sgt Dansey and I both had a broken leg each and Sgt. Douglas had been wounded in the thigh and foot. Sgt. Cheese, who was suffering from severe concussion, and two broken legs, one of which had to be amputated died about six weeks later, although he was given every attention. He was buried with full military honours in the local cemetery.

I left Sgt. Dansey on the 09th September, still in hospital. I expect him to be there for another six weeks, when he will be able to move around sufficiently to be moved. Sgt. Douglas is quite recovered.

Will you please convey our sincere sympathies to the relatives of the above.”

Fg Off. Allan James Holland. Born in Australia on the 23rd January 1919 - next of kin: Mr. W.G. Holland of 84A Gibson Street, Bowden, South Australia.

(2) Clifford Stanley Douglas was born on the 8th June 1921. Prior to enlisting in the RAAF, on the 11th November 1940, he was employed as a clerk in Armadale in Western Australia.

Above left: Sgt. Clifford Stanley Douglas prior to leaving Australia and right Sgt. Douglas alongside the tail turret of a Wellington at 27 OTU at RAF Litchfield in 1941 (Courtesy of Bob Douglas).

After being rescued he was admitted to the Marine Lazarett in Bergen-op-Zoom where he was treated for his wounds and where he remained until the 27th July 1942.

After the statutory visit to Dulag Luft, Oberursel he was transferred to Stalag 8B, Lamsdorf arriving there on the 5th August 1942

In 1943, the Lamsdorf camp was split up, and many of the PoWs (and Arbeitskommando) were transferred to two new base camps at Stalag 8C Sagan (modern Żagań and Stalag 8D Teschen (modern Český Těšín). The base camp at Lamsdorf was renumbered Stalag 344.

On the 22nd January 1945, as the Soviet armies resumed their offensive and advanced into Germany, the camp was evacuated and force-marched to Stalag 3A, Luckenwalde arriving there on the 8th February 1945.

At this time some 1,000 PoWs from the Stalag 8C and Stalag Luft 3 were transported to Stalag 3A, along with PoWs from the Stalag 21C in Wolsztyn. Also at this time PoWs from Stalag 3B, Furstenberg were evacuated to Stalag 3A, adding to the already overcrowded and unhygienic conditions. Finally, as the Russians approached the guards fled the camp leaving the PoWs to be liberated by the Red Army on the 22nd April 1945. He Interviewed on the 14th May 1945.

(3) A statement made by Sgt. Arthur Patrick Dansey:

“Sgt. D.R. Beinke died from wounds received to his chest. He was picked up by and AA ship but died aboard. Sgt. W.D. Cheese died in hospital approximately five weeks after being shot down. He had an amputated right leg, wounds to the head and a broken left ankle. I can give no information about Sgt. T.L. Watkins except that his body was picked up in Boulogne river some weeks later.” (note: recovered on the 19th June from the delta of the Schelde)

Arthur Patrick Dansey was born on the 16th June 1921 and resided in Melbourne, Victoria prior to enlisting in the RAAF on the 27th May 1940.

After being rescued he was admitted to the Marine Lazarett in Bergen-op-Zoom where he was treated for his wounds and where he remained until the 19th October 1942 when he transferred to Dulag Luft, Oberursel arriving there on the 22nd October 1942.

On the 15th November he was transferred to Stalag Luft 1, Barth arriving there 2 days later.

On the 1st November 1943, it appears that upon being promoted to Warrant Officer (WO) he was transferred to Stalag Luft 6, Heydekrug, Memelland arriving there on the 6th November 1943.

Stalag Luft 6 was the closest to the Russian advance. On the 6th July 1944 the PoWs were transported to Stalag 20A by train. It was estimated that 100,000 PoWs took the northern route of force-marches. The route went to Stalag Luft 4 at Gross Tychow, Pomerania then via Stettin to Stalag 9B and Stalag 357 at Fallingbostel. Some prisoners were marched from here at the end of the war towards Lübeck, however, for most, including WO Dansey, Fallingbostel was their final destination.

He remained at Stalag 357, Fallingbostal (Oerbke) until the camp was liberated on the 16th April 1945. He was interviewed on the 7th May 1945.

Burial Details:

Sgt Dudley Raymond Beinke. Flushing (Vlissingen) Northern Cemetery, Row B, Grave 27. Inscription: 'HIS DUTY NOBLY DONE’. Son of Theodor Emil and Marie Antonia Beinke, of Prospect, South Australia,

Sgt. William Desmond Cheese. Bergen-op-Zoom War Cemetery 3.D.5. Inscription: 'STILL ON ACTIVE SERVICE’. Son of Arthur Reginald and Elsie Isabelle Cheese, of King Island, Australia.

Sgt. Thomas Lincoln Watkins. Flushing (Vlissingen) Northern Cemetery, Row B, Grave 32. Inscription: 'HE DID HIS DUTY . Son of Thomas George and Lena Myra Watkins, of Keswick, South Australia.

Researched by Kelvin Youngs (Webmaster) and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Ronald Dean Munro and the crews former pilot, Doug Hurditch. Thanks also to the daughters of the pilot, Katharina Holland and Delia Holland-Jones who contacted us in March 2017 with correct details and photograph. Thanks to Bob Douglas, the son of Sgt. Douglas, for his photographs (Oct 2023).

Other sources in addition to the Australian National Archives shown below:

RS 25.10.2023 - Reviewed, updated and photographs of Sgt. Douglas added.

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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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