Despite the elements
Our aim as a small group of local amateur historians:
History – We wish to search and pass historical information, to try to link up to the future in a digital area, that way preserving and applying new found data in an effort to complied history’s unspoken answers.
Respect – We cannot pay more tribute to them who have fallen, than to pay respect for them. In our research, we always respect the family's wishes and also the privacy of those who are left behind.
Remembrance - We wish to ensure that the people who fell, military and civilian are never forgotten. There for, each year, we lay a wreath at the monument of a crashed Lancaster.
Education – We support initiatives as; school projects and private quests, enabling us to understand the reasons for the freedom we have today and look to the future in a positive manner.
Future generations must be reminded of what happened in WWII so that they never forget that their freedom was gained by acts and sacrifices of these men and women in history.
Members, Geert Bourguignon, Filip Doms, Erwin Sollie, Danny Van Den Broeck, Dirk Vermeulen.
|Losses over Belgium.|
|Roll of Honour.|
1940 - 1941 - 1942 - 1943 1944/45
|Research – Who can help ?|
|New pictures – New faces.|
2017 - 2018
|The story of |
"The Y's 'Owells"
|TV reportage & slideshows.|
Sgt. Eldrett F.
Fl. Eng. serv. no. 1397252
via Mellissa Shepherd
Family Howell handing the Y's 'Owells Emblem over to Sue Aldridge at the 115 Memorabilia museum at Witchford.
Mail your photo's of former members of 115 squadron during WW II. Every contribution is welcome.
24 April - Gazet van Antwerpen Remembering Lancaster DS734, Sint-Katelijne-Waver.
24 April - photo's with thanks to Bob Lams - Facebook
8 September 2018. Thanks to Ken Delve we can show you following photos of Ollar and his fellow crewmembers.
I came across a photo collection for Plt Off Ollar, and selected images are shown here. Some documents have this as Oller and some as Ollar; former is correct.
Born in Calcutta in 1910, enlisted in 1939 as Observer but became an Air Gunner.
of 115 Sqn on 26th July 1942 - there were 6 airmen in this aircraft; the pilot was Wg Cdr F. W. Dixon-Wright and the target was Hamburg.
The Squadron lost 4 aircraft that night; 13 aircrew surviving to become POW and 8 being KIA.
Mid Upper Gunner. Serv .No 1897348 (+ 2015)
31 Operations 115 Squadron Group 3
Witchford - Cambridshire
Age 19 - 20
Below right: Gillain "I made a promise to the man who brought my Dad home safe and sound that I would never forget. The 31st of March marks the second year since Pat Kerrins "Skipper" fired starboard outer, port outer, starboard inner, port inner "All four engines.... we're away." and he left this mortal coil to join his Mid Upper for a cleansing ale. I always keep promises."
Rest In Peace
Lest We Forget
F/O Pat Kerrins, Pat was the old man he was 21.
I did meet the Navigator Bill Oliver. He was the Headmaster or the Orotary School for Boys in Reading.
A thorough gentleman and of course a Scholar.
Bomb Aimer Bob Barratt
Navigator - Bill Oliver
Engineer - Stan Kaye / Larry Green
MUG - Roy Clark
Wireless Op - Jack Ernshaw
Rear Gunner - George Clapton
They marched under the Odd Bods banner for mixed crews. The Bomber Command Banner was in G for George Hall in the Australian War Memorial Canberra. The young men pushing them are their Grandsons
Chris Rice sent following story: I have just inherited some ww2 relics/items from a crashed Wellington bomber T2563 which crashed on 12/13 Aug 1941 in Ashmanhaugh killing one of the crew, I have found some information on internet about the crash, I was wondering if you had anymore information on this or could point me in the right direction? I am happy to send pictures if required and the information I was told by my nan and grandad who both witnessed it in 1941 Many thanks.
The aircraft was had been on a raid to Essen Germany 12/13 August 1941 it took off at 2135 from Marham, on one web page it say it crashed at 2200 on another it say 0220 but it must of been 0220 as it was trying to get to RAF Coltishall after being damaged by a night fighter flown by Peter Laufts.
It crashed in a small village in Norfolk called Ashmanhaugh not Scottow as on one web page, this is where my nan lived she was 14 years old, it crashed just down the road from their house and caught fire.
The next morning she went to the crash site and went inside it and took the items as a souvenir which she has kept in a cupboard ever since she told me this story many times.
Two pieces of parachute one is burnt from the fire when it crashed, a piece of Perspex from a window and Aluminium foil strips to jam the radar.
My grandad went over next day to view the crash next day aswell. My nan and grandad did not meet till 1945 then they married.
My grandad trained as an RAF rear gunner in a Wellington bomber then he trained on Lancaster's but then the war finished so he never saw action but he went to German in 1945 to help in a stores.
< The one man who died on plane is Sgt B. G. Evans a rear gunner.
The rest of crew all survived but had minor injury's.
photo taken at the Centenary dining-in night last November next to the Squadron Standard..
With thanks to Squadron Leader Andy Tagg, the current OC 115 Sqn.
Crew photo send by Sgt Geoff Payne R/G taken at Witchford, February 1944.
back row L to R
Sgt Sid Longhurst - W/op
Sgt Cyril Bridges - F/eng
Sgt Dick Hollis - M/U Gunner.
Sgt John Henry RAAF - Nav
Front row L to R
Sgt Geoff Payne - R/G
F/lt Bill Martin - Pilot DFC
Sgt Joe Waple - Bomb Aimer
21 July 2018. Thanks to Jonathan Cooper we can at a new face to the Roll of Honour.
On the evening of 21st July 1942, at 23:49HRS, crews from 115 Squadron took off from RAF Marham, Norfolk. Target Duisburg, Germany.
One crew were carried in 'Wellington Mk III ~ X3726 - KO-A', and was hit whilst over the target by flak while flying at 8,000 feet which set the flares alight. The fire was soon out of control which forced the crew to bale out.
Five of the six crew members survived and became PoW's. The sixth; 1265631 Sgt Maurice James Colclough was killed in action, and is buried at the Reichswald Forest War Cemetery - 9. B. 9.
This is the last photograph taken of these particular crews of 115 Squadron and it fell into my hands quite unexpectedly through the miracle that is Facebook one December evening, and it's significant in so many ways. The events that occurred after (and even before) this photograph was taken, changed so many lives forever, particularly of course the members of 'Maurice's' family, whose son I spoke to soon after this photo was unearthed in December 2017.
The crew boarding their Wellington on 21 July 1942, the evening they were shot down.
Sgt Maurice Colclough and Sgt Fred Cooper stand together in the far right of the photo, Sgt Colclough extreme right.
Source: Jonathan Cooper.
As always ... 'Blue Skies Gentlemen' 💙💙💙💙
|Sgt M. J. Colclough. KIA
Front Gunner - 1265631.
|Flight Sgt K. J. Stanford.
DMF. Pilot - NZ 401293.
|Sgt F. Cooper.
Wireless Op - 1112152.
Sgt R. F. Butler - 2nd Pilot -1376499.
Sgt L. F. G. Darlington - Observer - 126698.
Sgt D. Gardiner - Rear Gunner - 1344495.
115 Squadron lost also on this mission,
Wellington Mk III X3561 KO-X - 3 KIA, 2 POW
Wellington Mk III X3750 KO-B - no survivors.
The following articles and pictures on the website have all been written and supplied by my father and are all copyright to me as from 2008 when he passed away.
I convinced him that his stories should be shown to keep the history alive. These are a few of the many memories that he has. I will add to this menu page as time permits.
115 Squadron Roll of Honour. Who can help?
A total of 163 pages plus Glossary of terms used together with a Table of Contents which lists all names and all aircraft for easy reference.
There are also reproductions of 24 photographs each with an explanation.
The cost of the publication is £30.00 plus £4.50 postage and packing in UK.
Unfortunately I DO NOT NOW SEND ABROAD as postage is prohibitive. I would have to charge over £10.00.
All profits from the Roll of Honour go to the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund.
I HAVE NO MORE COPIES LEFT. THE NEXT PUBLICATION WILL BE WHEN I CAN FIND A PUBLISHER WHO CAN DO A REASONABLE DEAL SO THAT I DO NOT HAVE TO INCREASE THE PRICE, SORRY FOR ANY INCONVENIENCE THIS MAY CAUSE.
To purchase a copy, please contact Sue Aldridge via email at:
Barry passed away peacefully in Soham Lodge Care Centre on Friday 1st January 2016, aged 68.
All profits will go to the RAF Witchford Display of Memorabilia and Soham Lodge Residents Fund.
Visit the RAF Witchford Display of Memorabilia at the Lancaster Way Business Park - the former RAF Witchford airfield.
Info on Traces of War.com