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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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485 Squadron Crest
02.08.1942 No. 485 Squadron Spitfire Vb BM247 Sgt. Norman M. Langlands

Operation: Rhubarb

Date: 02nd August 1942 (Sunday)

Unit: No. 485 Squadron RNZAF (12 Group)

Type: Spitfire Vb

Serial: BM247

Code: OU-?

Base: RAF Kings Cliffe, Northamptonshire

Location: North Sea off Belgium

Pilot: Sgt. Norman Mathew Langlands NZ/412702 RNZAF Age 21. Missing - believed killed


With the great research carried out by Errol Martyn on the Royal New Zealand Airforce losses we have been able to compile this page. If you have further information and or photographs we would welcome contact from you.

Taking off at 14:36 hrs from RAF Kings Cliffe in Northamptonshire on a Rhubarb operation, refuelled at RAF Martlesham in Suffolk before crossing the coast to Belgium - sweep attacking trains. Thought to have been hit by flak during the return trip and crashed in the North Sea - sadly his body was not recovered and he is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial.

Also hit was Spitfire BM200 flown by 23 year old, P/O. Douglas Gordon Elliot Brown (1) NZ/131589 RNZAF. However he managed to return to base with the aircraft being repaired.

(Note: This aircraft was later lost on the 27th July 1944 whilst with 234 Squadron, the pilot, 24 year old Fl/Lt. William Colthart Walton DFC 119499 RAFVR survived, but taken PoW.)

(1) Wine, Woman and song - A Spitfire Pilot's Story, written by Hamish Brown, son of the pilot, published by Fonthill Media (21 June 2012) ISBN: 978-1781550359. Sadly Doug passed away on the 28th September 2013 age 94.

Burial details:

Sgt. Norman Mathew Langlands. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 117. Son of Arthur Campbell Langlands and Effie Langlands, of Tirau, Auckland, New Zealand. 290 flying hours logged and completed 15 operational sorties.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to the research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Weekly News of New Zealand, other sources as quoted below:

KTY - 10.12.2017

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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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