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Battle of Britain letter - Help please

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  • ian_st
    Rank 5 Registered User

    Battle of Britain letter - Help please

    I've come across a letter in a batch of correspondence which seems to describe an air - raid on an RAF base during the Battle of Britain. The letter has a Caterham stamp on it, though the date is not legible. There are mentions of that local area in the letter, so I assume the most likely candidate for this raid is Biggin Hill. Here are some relevant extracts from the letter:

    “They made a most unholy mess of the place that Sunday. Swept away all the hangars except one & damaged other buildings
    My fellows were in a shelter just outside the mess room. The trench was hit by bombs at both ends. One was badly cut in the thigh by corrugated & another was cut in the head. None of ours were killed but there were 4 airmen killed who were nearer the entrance
    …they took him to the hospital. That was bombed and the MO killed and one girl orderly nearly had her leg severed”

    I also note that the writer sent the letter to his son by the name of "Wheatland"

    Any inputs welcome

    Thanks

    Ian
    Last edited by ian_st; 8th August 2018, 07:50.
    pb::
  • Paul F
    Retired Lawnmower Racer

    #2
    Given the Caterham, postmark, then one of the raids on RAF Kenley might also be a possibility?

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    • WebPilot
      Rank 5 Registered User

      #3
      It'll be Kenley. The "Hardest Day" raid was Sunday August 18th during which the hangars were destroyed and the medical centre was damaged. The MO killed was Flt Lt Robert Cromie, along with two other medical staff.
      Last edited by WebPilot; 8th August 2018, 08:51.

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      • ian_st
        Rank 5 Registered User

        #4
        Thanks very much for the replies, so Kenley it was on a most memorable day during the Battle.

        I had a vague memory of reading a book about this and an MO being killed. It must have been in the book "The Hardest Day". I did have a copy but it was "borrowed" a few years ago. Must try and dig out another one!

        Interestingly he also talks about his job building blast pen walls out of sandbags and only having done three out of twelve by the time the letter was written. One would have thought they might have attracted a higher priority!

        Thanks Again

        Ian
        pb::

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        • Flying_Pencil
          Rank 5 Registered User

          #5
          So the letter is describing this is the raid described by wiki?
          Confirming.
          Last edited by Flying_Pencil; 8th August 2018, 16:31.
          Do17 recovery fund
          Since 2004 dedicated to researching Do-17, 1000+ period photos, manuals, history, technology to put aircraft in perspective.

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          • ian_st
            Rank 5 Registered User

            #6
            Yes, the evidence seems to be fairly conclusive that the letter was written by a contractor who was at Kenley that day
            pb::

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            • hampden98
              Rank 5 Registered User

              #7
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