Place. Date. Time. Summary of Events. References to
Appendices.
MARHAM. 1/9/39. 1000. Orders were received to disperse aircraft.
It is learnt that GERMANY has taken DANZIG and assumed the offencive against POLAND by bombing towns and invading het frontiers.
P.S. The King signed an order for General Mobilisation.
BRITAIN and FRANCE sent ultimatums to GERMANY declaring that if GERMANY did not withrow all her forces from POLAND they would declare war on her.
MARHAM. 2/9/39. GREAT BRITAIN and FRANCE sent a final ultimatum to GERMANY stating that unless GERMANY sent a favourable reply by 11 o'clock on 3rd. September GREAT BRITAIN and FRANCE would be at war with her.
MARHAM 3/9/39. No reply had been received from GERMANY when the hour of 11 o'clock struck and so GREAT BRITAIN and FRANCE are at war with GERMANY.
1100. GREAT BRITAIN and FRANCE declare war on GERMANY.
Pilot Officers G. L. CROSBY and F.N. LINES posted to No. 215 Squadron for flying duties.
MARHAM 4/9/39. 0325. Air raid warning sounded. The moon shone from a cloudless sky.
0340. After 15 minutes the 'raiders passed' signal was given, no raid having taken place.
MARHAM. 5/9/39. 04.00 Warning received that the Squadron is to bomb-up and stand by to attack fleeting targets at sea.
1100. Four G.R. navigators attached to assist in the attacks against fleeting targets at sea.
1500. Pilot Officers J. N. HARRIS and H. R. JAGGARD posted to No. 9 Squadron w.e.f. 6th. September, 1939 for flying duties.
Pilot Officer F. A. H. LAMBART posted to No. 99 Squadron w.e.f. 6th. September, 1939 for flying duties.
1600. Aircraft have all bombs taken off.
MARHAM. 6/9/39. 0655. Air raid warning sounded.
0715. 'Raiders passed' sounded.
0730. Squadron standing by at two hours notice.
Bombing up carried out as fast as possible, it is thought that the GERMAN Fleet have left port.
1200. Aircraft bombed up.
Group now cancel Exercise, Fleet have put into port again.
All bombs taken off.
MARHAM. 7/9/39. 0715. Bombing up commences, Message from Group that the Squadron is to be bombed up all ready for Form B.
All pilots meet in 'A' Flight crew room to discuss Form. B and final arrangements.
Exercise cancelled.
0200. Pilot Officer CRAIGEN and Flying Officer CHIVERS posted to 148 Squadron w.e.f. 8/9/39.
Sergeant TAYLOR posted to 38 Squadron w.e.f. 8.9.39.
Harrow K.7012 tested.
Bombs it is decided will be left on for the night.
 
Harrow K.7012. tested.
Bombs, it is decided will be left on for the night.
2000. Orders to move to rearward aerodrome at ELMDEN and fire at BERNERS HEATH on the way there at 0600. 8/7/39.
2015. Bombs ordered to be taken off.
2115. Orders cancelled. Squadron to remain MARHAM but firing to carry on.
MARHAM. 8/9/39. 0500. Orders for using the range at BERNERS HEATH starting 0700.
0800. First two details had to be cancelled due to early morning mist.
Next details fired. Satisfactorily carried out.
Aircraft bomb up and are at 2 hours notice.
Air Gunners practice on the aerodrome stop butt.
1600. Group order that 115 Squadron is to be ready to operate at 'Daylight' tomorrow.
Same targets as for last order.
1800. Group order stand by to take off at one minutes notice from 0600. tomorrow.
2115. Meeting in Operational room when C.O. details of attack.
MARHAM. 9/9/39. 0430. All pilots get up and have breakfast.
0600. Stand by.
0620. Stand off until 0930.
0930. Stand off until 1030.
1030. Stand off altogether for the day. Bomb distributors being fitted on aircraft.  
Bomb distributors being fitted on aircraft.
1130. Orders for aircraft to move to rearward aerodrome at ELMDEN as soon as possible.
Any training required to be done to be carried out there.
1500. Aircraft commence to depart at 10 minute intervals with skeleton crews and maintenance parties.
CAREW SHERITON AND MARHAM.
1830. Orders from Group that four aircraft are to carry out air firing at CAREW SHERITON in SOUTH WALES commencing at 1300. hours on 10/9/39.
1900. In communication with EMLDEN and arrangements are made for four aircraft to return MARHAM 10/9/39. meet full crews and leave for CAREW SHERITON.
MARHAM. 10/9/39. 1045. Two aircraft arrive from Rearward aerodrome to pick up crews for the air firing at CAREW SHERITON.
1100. Another aircraft arrives from rearward aerodrome (i.e. ELMDEN) to have the bomb winch secured.
It is found that this will take longer than anticipated and the aircraft stays the night.
The remainder of crews and those personnel not required allowed out on day pass.
New bomb distributors are being fitted by VICKERS men and two have been completed today.
2000. Group ask us if we require BERNERS HEATH tomorrow.
We refuse because we have to fit Bomb distributors and canvas bags in place of the shoots.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
11/9/39. 1100. Two aircraft leave for rearward aerodrome.
These have bomb distributors fitted and are being returned for two more for fitting.
1130. Gale warning and probable thunderstorms.
1145. Group inform us that crews and personnel not required for work can stand off until 11.00 tomorrow.
1149. Wing Commander ROWE and Flight Lieutenant VINCENT left in L.4221. for rearward aerodrome.
1230. L.4221. reported forced landed at SYWELL dinghy cover had blown off.
Cover was found and brought back to SYWELL.
Aircraft flown back to MARHAM landed 1600. hours.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
12/9/39. 0930. Weather changed considerably in the night. Wind northerly reaching gale force at times. Rain during the night and in the morning. Weather cleared almost midday to low cumulus clouds.
1400. One aircraft took off for ELMDEN with bomb distributors fixed to be exchanged for one without.
L.4334. and L.4306. came back.
Group have just ruled that one aircraft at a time can stand down for 48 hours at a time, so that each one will take it in turns.
1415. L.4321. left for VICKERS to have a new turret fitted.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
13/9/39. 1115. Six aircraft arrive singly from the rearward aerodrome to pick up ammunition and personnel for firing at CAREW SHERITON.
We have the range from 1300. hours onwards today.
Arrangements made with Group late yesterday night to use the range tomorrow afternoon.
Three aircraft from the rearward aerodrome to go to CAREW SHERITON.
'A' Flight are to stand by tomorrow to cooperate with six aircraft from No.38 Squadron.
1500. No. 38 Squadron given 'stand by' at one minutes notice.
1515. Two aircraft get ready to leave for rearward aerodrome L.4333. and L.4299.
These aircraft have been fitted with bomb distributors.
The Squadron is averaging about two aircraft a day fitted completely with distributors.
1815. ELMDON rang up to say that Flying Officer PRINGLE and Flying Officer GIBBES had not arrived there from VICKERS and were now an hour overdue.
Overdue action was taken from MARHAM, the weather apparently was bad over BIRMINGHAM whereas here it had been fine although low cloud at 1,000 feet.
At 19.15 news came through that L.4221. had landed at BICESTER and would return here first thing in the morning as we were standing by at 0900. hours.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
14/9/39. 0830. L.4221. arrived from BICESTER and had been forced down the day before due to bad weather.
Stand by for DOVER Barrage.
The weather today is not very good still low cloud and occasional showers, but clears in the afternoon.
1115. News arrives by phone that 115 Squadron is getting three IA. WELLINGTONS and will be eventually re-equipped this item.
1530. Mr. FLETCHER from Bomber Command arrived to see the Commanding Officer.
115 Squadron is getting the three 1A aircraft ferried to them this afternoon.
1530. Two aircraft are being ferried to ELMDON and one to MARHAM.
1545. Pilot Officer GAYFORD takes off for rearward aerodrome to take personnel as required.
1800. The new IA aircraft arrived and is placed in 'A' Flight hanger.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
15/9/39. Weather still cold with slight Northerly wind. Occasional showers throughout the day.
0815. Maintenance and electricians have been working hard stripping essential gear from the Wellington I and fixing it on the Wellington IA.
1200. Little activity today.
Stand down for the day.
1645. Wellington aircraft L.4295., L.4317., L.4325., L.4324., L.4301. and L.4323. took off for ELMDON at 1645., 1715., 1725., 1735., 1745., and 1755. respectively.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
16/9/39. 0815. Weather the same as yesterday.
Work continues on re-equipping the IA aircraft, and urgent work is carried on fitting manual bomb distributors and fixing azimuth brackets on the bomb sights.
Stand down period.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
17/9/39. 1130. Wellington L.4318. with Wing Commander ROWE piloting took off for ELMDEN returning after lunch.
1800. Work carried on new IA Wellington aircraft and fitting of bomb distributors.
Mr. H. N. C. SMITH, V.R. posted to 115 Squadron for administrative duties with 115 Squadron.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
18/9/39. 0830. Weather fine with light North wind.
1000. Practice for Air Gunners on Stop Butts.
All crews arrive from Rearward Aerodrome.
1015. Lecture on new FRAZER NASH turrets by Captain FLETCHER from Air Ministry.
1100. Rearward crews take off to fire CAREW SHERITON taking place at 1300. hours.
1400. Demonstration of firing from bucket position of IA Wellington aircraft by Captain FLETCHER on ground.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
19/9/39. 0830. Weather fine similar to yesterday with low Cumulus clouds.
1000. An aircraft of 38 Squadron appeared to be on fire.
It was later ascertained as oil burning on the exhaust after the aircraft had damaged its screw and reduction gear by being taxied into a fence.
Work continues on Azimuth brackets and manual bomb distributors.
1600. Squadron informed that they will have to stand by tomorrow.
1800. Rearward party of six aircraft and crews recalled.
Rearward party arrives this aerodrome at approx. 5 minute intervals.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
20/9/39. 0830. Weather good few low cumulus clouds about.
There is news that the C in C and A.O.C. are coming to lunch.
20/9/39. 0830./td> Work continues fixing Azimuth brackets, bomb distributors, and the training of Air Gunners on front and rear turrets and practice on the handling of the centre turret on the IA Wellington.
1215. A.O.C. arrives by Air.
1220. BLENHEIM aircraft arrives with Squadron Leader DRURY from BOSCOMBE DOWN.
1225. C in C Bomber Command arrives in a Q 6 piloted by Flight Lieutenant SIMMONS.
(The Percival Q.6 was a 1930s British communications aircraft built by Percival Aircraft Limited at Luton.)
1430. Flight Sergeant BOORE in L.4325. took off for ELMDON.
Squadron now at four hours notice and not two hours as before.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
21/9/39. 0830. Weather good low cumulous clouds no high clouds.
No flying took place today either here or at rearward aerodrome.
The day confined to training on the ground, firing on the butts and from new IA Wellingtons.
1100. & 1400. Two start lectures on IA turrets and Azimuth brackets respectively by Captain FLETCHER and Flying Officer LASLETT.
1600. Stand down and 38 Squadron to stand by and be duty Squadron.
1800. 38 Squadron returning.
Too late for 115 Squadron to get to BIRMINGHAM so remain dispersed to leave in the morning.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
22/9/39. 0800. Weather clear few cumulous clouds.
Aircraft leave at Short intervals for stick bombing at BERNERS HEATH.
0830. Lecture by Sergeant EVANS on the LEICA Camera.
0900. Practice with the LEICA Camera photographing the results of the stick bombing.
1000. Bombing up practice.
1200. Squadron Leader GLENCROSS took off in the MAGISTER for ELMDON taking pay for the airman.
1500. Test of IA Wellington aircraft as compared to a Wellington I up to heights 15,000 feet.
Authority 3G/S.8082/E., letter 3 Group.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
23/9/39. 0830. Weather poor. Low cloud occasional rain, Northerly wind.
1200. Flying LASLETT, Flying PRINGLE, leave for rearward aerodrome.
1230. Firing at CAREW SHERITON aircraft take off (3).
Engine trouble at CAREW SHERITON - one aircraft unable to fire.
1600. Aircraft return from CAREW SHERITON.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
24/9/39. 0830. Weather cold and fine, few clouds.
No flying takes place today.
General leave for recreation and organized games for those not required.
1000. Orders to stand by as Duty Squadron.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
25/9/39. 0830. Weather still cold low cumulous cloud.
0915. Stand by at two hours notice from 1100. hours. Form B.43. to be used.
Four G.P. 11,1/2 secs delay.
1315. Flying Officer CLARKE took off for KEMBLE to take over Wellington IA N.2448. and deliver L.4306. Wellington I.
1600. Stand down for the day.
1730. Flying Officer CLARKE returned KEMBLE with new IA aircraft.
MARHAM, ELMDON AND CAREW SHERITON.
26/9/39. 0830. Weather. Morning mist. Fine with Northerly wind. Medium stratus clouds breaking to cumulus in the afternoon.
Flight Lieutenant GUTHRIE, Flying Officer NEWMAN, Flight Sergeant GROVES, Flying Officer DONALDSON, Flying Officer GARDINER, Flight Sergeant BOORE take off for rearward aerodrome.
Air firing BERNERS HEATH. First aircraft takes off.
Flying Officer DONALDSON overshot and damaged tale and turret by swinging round into hedge at ELMDON.
Wing Commander ROWE departed to Rearward Aerodrome to inspect damage.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
27/9/39. 0830. Weather fine N.E. wind.
Bombing programme commences SUTTON BRIDGE.
Lecture on Gun Turrets.
Group Captain SUMMERS and Group Captain LLOYD arrive for lunch.
Group Captain LLOYD assumes command of R.A.F. station, MARHAM vice Group Captain DALY.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
28/9/39. 0830. Fine weather Northerly wind.
1430. Lecture on War Regional Control by Flying Officer DONALDSON.
1700. Flying Officer CLARKE, and Flying Officer DONALDSON took off for ELMDON.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
29/9/39. 0830. Low cloud N.E. Wind.
Flight Sergeant POWELL took off for stick bombing and camera practice.
0900. Flying Officer WELLS took of for Air Firing.
1000. Flight Sergeant POWELL takes off for stick bombing and photography at SUTTON BRIDGE.
1030. Flying Officer WELSS takes off for stick bombing and photography at SUTTON BRIDGE.
1200. Flight Sergeant POWELL takes off for stick bombing and photography at SUTTON BRIDGE.
1210. Flying Officer WELLS takes off for stick bombing and photography at SUTTON BRIDGE.
1400. 4 aircraft returned from ELMDON.
1545. Squadron Leader GLENCROSS takes off for Formation and avoiding action.
Flying Officer WELLS takes off for Formation and avoiding action.
Flight Sergeant POWELL takes off for Formation and avoiding action.
MARHAM AND ELMDON.
30/9/39. 0830. Low medium cloud N.E. wind 10 - 20 m.p.h.
1155. Flight Sergeant BOORE arrives MARHAM from Rearward Aerodrome.
1500. Pilot Officer WARDLAW takes off in Magister to take C.O. to MILDENHALL.
1520. Squadron Leader GLENCROSS takes off to attack 'B' Flight.
1525. Squadron Leader BOWLES takes off Formation flying.
Flying Officer WOOD takes off Formation flying.
Flying Officer DONALDSON takes off Formation flying.