1943

The squadron operated as a heavy bomber squadron (Path Finder role) throughout 1943

Stationed at:

  • RAF Graveley (Huntingdonshire)
RAF GRAVELEY copy

RAF Graveley


Role

  • To prepare and despatch aircraft and crews(*) capable of accurately marking the aiming point at a specified time, to enable main force crews to identify the release point during their bombing runs

(*) The number of aircraft required for each operation was contained in the “scale of effort” which was issued by HQ Bomber Command on a daily basis


Command

  • Pathfinder Force (No. 3 Group), Bomber Command
  • 01/1943: Renamed No. 8 [Pathfinder Force] Group, Bomber Command.

Squadron Command

  • Commanding Officer:
    • Wing Commander BV Robinson DFC
    • 01/05/1943: Handed over to Wing Commander DFEC Dean DSO DFC
    • 17/11/1943: Handed over to Wing Commander SP Daniels DSO DFC

Strength

July 1943 [Colin Hewlett [Credit - Friends of the Pathfinders]].jpg

July 1943 [Courtesy of Colin Hewlett / Friends of the Pathfinders]


Activities:

Air Crew

  • Ground Training
  • Flying Training (incl. air Exercises, such as Bombing, Fighter Affiliation and Cross Country)
  • Operational Sorties

Ground Personnel

  • Daily inspection, servicing and preparation of squadron aircraft, in readiness for air operations
  • Other Squadron related Technical and Administrative Duties

[#] It is worth noting that personnel on strength of No. 9035 Servicing Echelon were attached to No 35 Squadron to assist with the daily servicing of squadron aircraft and equipment from 3rd November 1943 until 3rd March 1945

LogBook2

Extract from EC Brown’s Log Book


Events

MEMORIES OF A DITCHING

This is a true story about the experiences of a Pathfinder crew of No. 35 Squadron (No. 8 Group Pathfinder Force Bomber Command) – read more –


BOMB EXPLOSION AT GRAVELEY

On 25th July 1943 a 1,000lb GP bomb exploded during the fusing operation in a Fuzing Shed at RAF Graveley
– read more –


2nd BOMB EXPLOSION AT GRAVELEY

A bomb exploded at RAF Graveley on 25th November 1943, killing three airmen (RC Boak, C Crane and M Shaw) and injuring two others (E Webster and  AC Muller)
– read more –

Note: Photograph of Fuzing Shed not taken at RAF Graveley


Aircraft

The squadron, was equipped with the following aircraft types (from its own establishment:

:

Halifax HP59 B MKII (Series 1 / Series 1 Special)

Profile © Malcolm Barrass


HP59 Halifax B MKII [Series 1a]
(version with modified tail fin)

Profile © Malcolm Barrass


HP61 Halifax B MKIII

Profile © Malcolm Barrass

The following link provides more details on the aircraft that were on charge of the squadron, including information on known losses and incidents:

Handley Page Halifax


ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Memories of 1943 (Ronald Gayner)

Ronald Gayner [Courtesy of Dick Gayner]

“It was a long time ago, and funny how we remember the things that happened way back, yet we sometimes have a job to remember what happened yesterday – read more –