AR banner
Search Tips Advanced Search
Back to Top

• Kracker Archive
• Allied Losses
• Archiwum Polish
• Paradie Canadian
• Searchable Lists

Info LogoAdd to or correct this story with a few clicks.
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.
Check our Research databases: Database List


We seek additional information and photographs. Please contact us via the Helpdesk.

616 Squadron Crest
28.04.1945 No. 616 Squadron Meteor III EE252/EE273 Sq/Ldr. Watts / Fl/Sgt. Cartmel

Operation: Recce

Date: 29th April 1945 (Sunday)

Unit: No. 616 Squadron

Type: Gloster Meteor III

Serial: EE252 / EE273

Code: YQ-G / YQ-K

Base: Faßberg, Germany

Location: Lüneberg

Pilot: Sq/Ldr. Leslie William Watts DFC. 117728 RAFVR Age 28. Killed (1)

Pilot: Fl/Sgt. Brian Cartmel 1512014 RAFVR Age 24. Killed


On a recce patrol in the evening when collided in cloud with another 616 Squadron Meteor (2) EE273 YQ-K flown by Fl/Sgt. Brian Cartmel. Both aircraft crashed near Lüneberg killing them both.

(1) Sq/Ldr. Leslie William Watts DFC. had been Commanding Officer of 616 Squadron from July 1943 until July 1944. On the 23rd May 1943 as a Fl/Lt. during a "Roadstead" (3) he survived, when the Spitfire VI was hit by flak north of Guernsey he managed to crash land the aircraft with no injuries. The aircraft was later struck off charge. (note) Sq/Ldr. Watts DFC. was a former pupil of Moseley Grammar school

(2) On July 12th 1944 616 Squadron became the first Squadron in the RAF, and that of the Allies, to become operational with Jet aircraft. They received the Gloster Meteor 1, which saw its first action on July 27th on 'anti-diver' patrols. The Meteors were very special aircraft, their construction was in the same all metal tradition that the war had started but the massive innovation of the engines caused them to be banned from operating deep into enemy territory. The fear was that even at this late stage in the war a captured Meteor engine would provide the germans with sufficient information to copy the metals which were vital to the operation and longevity of the jet engines.

(3) "Roadstead" - a fighter operation against shipping.

Burial Details:

Sq/Ldr. Leslie William Watts DFC. Becklingen War Cemetery. Joint grave 19.B.1-2. Son of William Charles Watts and of Gertrude Watts (née Horton), husband of Joy Watts, of Sandbanks, Bournemouth, Hampshire, England.

W/O. Brian Cartmel. Becklingen War Cemetery. Joint grave 19.B.1-2. Son of Frederick and Grace Cartmel, of Fulwood, Preston, Lancashire, England.

Researched for and with thanks to Keith Townsend, historian of Moseley Secondary/Grammar school memorial records. (note) Sq/Ldr. Watts DFC. was a former pupil of Moseley Grammar school. We are working very closely with the school's historians to remember all the ex pupils who died whilst serving with the RAF and recorded on the school memorial. Other sources as quoted below.

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
Concept of Colonial Discrimination  •  Unauthorised First Long Range Mustang Attack
RAAF Bomb Aimer Evades with Maquis •  SOE Heroine Nancy Wake •  Fane: Motor Racing PRU Legend
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.
Click any image to enlarge it

Click to add your info via ticket on Helpdesk •Click to let us know via ticket on Helpdesk• Click to buy research books from Amazon •Click to explore the entire site
If you would like to comment on this page, please do so via our Helpdesk. Use the Submit a Ticket option to send your comments. After review, our Editors will publish your comment below with your first name, but not your email address.

A word from the Editor: your contribution is important. We welcome your comments and information. Thanks in advance.

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon
All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© Aircrew Remembered 2012 - 2024
Last Modified: 05 April 2021, 15:10

Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor