Traces of World War 2 
RAF - No. 24 Squadron
01/01/1940 - 30/06/1940

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24 SQUADRON - Transport

History | Operations and losses | Sources | Links | Books | Questions and/or remarks

No. 24 began its wartime career with a wide variety of aircraft of civil design, including Rapides taken over from civil airlines which were later impressed. For the first nine months of the war, communications and mail flying between the U.K. and France was a major task but after June, 1940, flying was confined to the U.K. with the exception of a few special flights.

Station: Hendon (the entire war)

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Operations and losses 10/05/1940 - 31/05/1940
Not all operations listed; those with losses are.

23/05/1940: 2 Planes lost, 2 KIA, 1 POW
: Bristol Bombay crash, East Dean, Sussex? 5 KIA

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LOSSES 01/01/1940 - 09/05/1940

13/01/1940, Vega Gulf III, P1752 of 24 Sqn, crashed in forced landing Wentworth GC (Gliding Centre), Surrey.

Source: Henk Welting, (Old) RAF Commands Forum, 'Unaccounted' airman 13-1-1940

Sergeant (Pilot) Raymond C. Edwards, RAFVR 904369, 24 Sqdn., age 30, 21/03/1940, Hucknall Cemetery, UK

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23/05/1940: ?, France

Type: DC3
Serial number: ?, OO-AUI
Operation: ?
Lost: 23/05/1940
Sergeant (Pilot) Raymond Chartier (Belgium), BAF (VR), servicenr 258/2226, initially buried at Arcques, exhumed and reinterred 5-9-1950 at Ixelles, Belgium.
Plt Off Benson Freeman - PoW
Captain John M.H. Hoare, British Overseas Airways Corporation, age unknown, 23/05/1940, Arques Churchyard, France
Over Calais it was hit by anti-aircraft and part of the left wing was torn off. The pilot (Raymond Chartier) made a forced landing near Arques. The navigator was killed and two of the passengers wounded, while Chartier was shot by German troops as he tried to reach French lines. The remaining passengers were taken prisoner including Plt Off Benson Freeman of 24 Squadron. The engineer, Piet Vrebos, survived the crash of OO-AUI. The German troops took him POW, but released him and sent him at home because he was a civilian.

Captain Hoare was the skipper of Armstrong Whitworth Ensign G-ADSZ "Elysean". This machine was straffed on the ground at Merville by Bf-109s earlier that day. So Hoare became a passenger to come back to U.K.

Type: Armstrong Whitworth Ensign
Serial number: ?, G-ADSZ (Boac)
Operation: strafed on ground
Lost: 23/05/1940

Source: RAF Commands Forum

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17/06/1940: Bristol Bombay crash, East Dean, Sussex?

These five airmen's deaths are registered at Chichester:

Aircraftman 1st Class Leonard Bradburn, RAF 550047, 24 Sqdn., age 21, 17/06/1940, Tangmere (St. Andrew) Churchyard, UK
Leading Aircraftman Wilfred A. Harper, RAF 540221, 24 Sqdn., age 23, 17/06/1940, Tangmere (St. Andrew) Churchyard, UK
Pilot Officer (Pilot) Hedley E. Large, RAF 41795, 24 Sqdn., age 23, 17/06/1940, Tangmere (St. Andrew) Churchyard, UK
Flying Officer (Pilot) Colman O. Murphy, RAF 39892 (Ireland), 24 Sqdn., age 27, 17/06/1940, Chichester Cemetery, UK (DOW?)
Leading Aircraftman Ernest Wragg, RAF , 24 Sqdn., age unknown, 17/06/1940, Tangmere (St. Andrew) Churchyard, UK

They could have been the crew of Bristol Bombay Mk I L5852 of 271 Squadron, which flew into high ground at East Dean, Sussex (in the administration of Chichester). 271 Sqdn - also a transport squadron - didn't suffer casualties this day.

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24 Squadron Association
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
RAF - Campaign Diary - The Battle of France (May-June 1940)
RAF Museum: British Military Aviation in 1940
RAF Order of Battle, France, 10th May 1940
Royal Air Force History Section
The Royal Air Force, 1939-1945
The Second World War - a day by day account

War over Holland

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Air Aces
Airwar over Denmark
Allied World War II Casualties in the Netherlands
Australian Wargraves
De Belgen in Engeland 1940-1945 (in Dutch)
Belgian Aviation History Association Archaeological Team
British Aviation Archaeological Council - Books and research links
CWGC Cemeteries Netherlands
Czechoslovak airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
Håkans aviation page (from Sweden, in English)
'High flight', poem by John Gillespie Magee
An Irish Airman Foresees His Death, poem by W.B. Yeats
Jagdgeschwader 27 (in German)
Luchtoorlog ('Arial War', in Dutch, with many photos)
The National Ex-Prisoners of War Association
Nordic Aviation during WW2 aircraft of WW2
Polish Air Force 1940-1947 Operations Record Books
RAF Battle of Britain
De Slag om de Grebbeberg
Warbird Alley
World War II Aircraft wrecksites in Norway

The Aerodrome - Aces and Aircraft of World War 1

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This page is dedicated to the men of 24 Squadron.

© Bart FM Droog / Rottend Staal Online 2008. Permission granted for use of the data gathered here for non commercial purposes, if this source is mentioned with a link to