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Lancaster ED702

P/O C T Anderson, Sgt R C Paterson, Sgt J P Nugent, Sgt W D Bickle, Sgt A W Buck, Sgt G J Green, Sgt E Ewan,

T/o Fiskerton 1934 landing 0337 Target Duty Berlin

Berlin 2330 hrs 20,000 ft. Window 12 packages offed (?). Monica workign well. Indicated target area was a mass of flames which could be seen despite could for over 200 miles. PFF marking excellent and well concentrated.
Part of the station ORB for 3/4 September 1943
3/4 Sepember 1943

Because of recent heavy losses suffered by Halifaxes and Stirlings when attacking Berlin, only Lancasters were sent on this raid. Some damage was caused by the 316 Lancasters but most bombs fell short of their target. Again losses were heavy with 22 lancasters going down.

The Squadron put up 13 aircraft, but F/Sgt Barnes (DV238), returned early withthe rear turret u/s. Many fighters were evident as F/Sgt Kirton (ED416) confirms:
extract from
The Bomber Command War Diaries
By Middlebrook & Everitt
3/4 Sepember 1943
lancaster_bombers025002.gif hcnext_b.gif hchome_b.gif
extract from
Beware Of The Dog At War
By John Ward
3/4 Sepember 1943

316 Lancasters and 4 Mosquitoes; because of the high casualty rates among Halifaxes and Stirlings in recent Berlin raids the heavy force was compossed only of Lancasters. 22 Lancasters were lost, nearly 7.0% of the Lancaster force. The Mosquitoes were used to drop "spoof" flares well away from the bombers route to attract German night fighters.

The raid approached Berlin from the north east but the marking ans bombing were, once again, mostly short of the target. That part of the bombing which did reach Berlin's built up area fell in residential parts of Charlottenburg and Moabit and in the industrial area called Siemensstadt. Several factories were hit and suffered serious loss of production and among 'utilities' put out of action were majot water and electricity works and one of the Berlin's largest breweries. 422 people were listed as killed - 225 civilians, 24 servicemen, 18 men and 2 women of the air raid services, 123 foreign workers - 92 women and 31 men. 170 further civilians were 'missing'. The Berlin records also mention the deaths of another soldier and 7 'criminal' assistants when the two delayed action bombs on which they were working exploded; these 'criminals' could earn remission of their sentences by volenteering for this work on un-exploded and delayed action bombs.
" An ME 110 made 3 attacks on us just after 'bombs gone' at 23.35hrs. The gunners returned fire and the fighter's portengine was seen to catch fire and he disapeared from view. Another enemy aircraft made a single attack, but we did not open fire on this."
On return from Berlin, the Lancasters were diverted to bases in Northern England. This was the last thing F/O Harold Coates and crew needed after nursing their badly damaged Lancaster back from Berlin, where JB126 had been hit by flak 10 seconds after bombs away!

When 15 miles from Blyth off Tynemouth, in heavy mit, the struggling pilot was forced to ditch his crippled plane. Such were the sea conditions that the aircraft broke up on impact. Sadly Sgt Pawson, Kendrew and Jack died before the Rescue launch arrived. The unfortunate flight engineer , Sgt Sacre, was seen in the water but subsequently lost. The pilot was last seen in his cockpit under the water. Sgt Underwood the bomb aimer and Sgt Nelson RAAF air gunner were both taken to hospital with slight injuries and shock. The ditching occurred at 03.57 hrs. Of the remaining Squadron aircraft, six landed at Middleton St George, one at Croft, one at Wyton and three at base.