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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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78 Squadron badge
22/23.06.1943 No. 78 Squadron Halifax II W7930 Fl/Sgt. Tipler

Operation: Mülheim

Date: 22/23rd June 1943 (Tuesday/Wednesday)

Unit: No. 78 Squadron

Type: Halifax II

Serial: W7930

Code: EY-W

Base: RAF Breighton, Yorkshire

Location: Kasteelbos woodland on De Wetering farm, Renswoude, Holland

Pilot: Fl/Sgt. Ernest Arthur Tipler 656206 RAF Age 24. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Leslie David Lingwood 573996 RAF Age 21. Killed

Nav: Sgt. James Ernest Woodward 1333246 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Air/Bmr: Sgt. Walter A. Anderson 1219022 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Charles Phillip Johns RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Thomas Hylton Bell 1163588 RAFVR Age 22. Killed


Taking off at 23:16 hrs from RAF Breighton, Yorkshire to bomb the German city of Mülheim - a bomber force made up with 242 Lancasters, 155 Halifaxes, 93 Stirlings, 55 Wellingtons and 12 Mosquitoes - 557 aircraft in total.

The city was seriously damaged, the bombing had cut all communications with Oberhausen, which Mülheim was linked for air-raid purposes. No one could get through, not even cyclists, the only possible way in which they could communicate was with foot messengers. 


                   78 Squadron Halifax II flying out of RAF Breighton, Yorkshire (courtesy I.W.M)

The total damage was reported as 578 people killed on the ground, 1,174 injured. 1,135 houses were destroyed with a further 12,637 damaged. Various other buildings were hit including 41 public buildings, 27 schools, 17 churches and 6 hospitals. It has been reported that 64% of the town was destroyed.

This came at a huge loss to the allies with 35 aircraft being lost. 202 aircrew killed, 34 being made p.o.w's with 3 aircrew evading capture. 

Halifax W7930 was hit by the fierce anti-aircraft fire and crashed in Kasteelbos woodland on De Wetering farm, Renswoude, Holland


                   The four .303 machine guns on a 78 Squadron Halifax II (courtesy I.W.M)

78 squadron also lost another crew on this night:

Halifax II JB855 EY-H Flown by Fl/Lt. Lesley H. Knight, a 28 year old married man from East Cosham, Hampshire. Killed with 4 other crew, 1 evading capture and 2 taken PoW.

Left the recently cleaned up Amersfoot Cemetery in Holland (courtesy C.W.G.C.)

Burial details:

Fl/Sgt. Ernest Arthur Tipler. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of Ernest Frank and Florence Edith Tipler, of Forest Gate, Essex, England.

Sgt. Leslie David Lingwood. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of Henry Alfred and Frances Elizabeth Lingwood, of Little Dumnow, Essex, England.

Sgt. James Ernest Woodward. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of James and Casserear Ethel Woodward, of Addlestone, Weybridge, Surrey, England.

Sgt. Walter A. Anderson. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of Stanley and Clara Anderson, of Leeds, Yorkshire, England.

Sgt. Charles Phillip Johns. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of Charles and Charlotte Gladys Johns, of Newhaven, Sussex, England

Sgt. Thomas Hylton Bell. Amersfoot (Old Leusden) General Cemetery. Plot 13, Row 8. Coll. grave 147-149. Son of Thomas William and Florence Elisabeth Bell, of Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew following contact made by Ms Jean Podbury, niece of Sgt. Woodward.  Sources used as quoted below.

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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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