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Information from Prisoner of War in Stalag Luft III

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This article was originally one of a set of memoranda available only on paper in The National Archives' reading rooms. It acted as a signpost to records of interest on a particular historical subject. It may have been compiled many years ago and could be out of date. Please feel free to edit this page to improve the information


  1. The information contained in this note was received from a prisoner of war (P/W) recently repatriated from Stalag Luft III. It contains the loss of 97 aircraft whose pilots were fellow prisoners of the informant. The information is offered without comment; it appears to be generally reliable. It should be noted that it is subject to the usual bias of information received only from survivors.
  2. Since the P/W had reduced his information to a number of set statements about each aircraft, see below. The information can be found in AIR 40/1552. :-
List 1 Complete list of information regarding each aircraft.
List 2 Totals of different aircraft types, causes of loss etc.
List 3 List of targets represented
Table 1 Aircraft Type X cause of loss
Table 2 Aircraft Type X final cause of loss
Table 3 Aircraft Type X Method of Abandonment
Table 4 Aircraft Type X Miscellaneous Information
Table 5 Position of fighter at time of attack
Table 6 Cause of Loss X Final Cause of Loss
Table 7 Cause of Loss X Month of Loss
Table 8 Number of upward firing gun attacks X Month of Loss
Table 9 Cases of difficulty in abandoning X Month of Loss
Table 10 Aircraft on Fire in Air X Month of Loss


Contents

February 1944

19/20 102 Sqdn. F/Sgt. K. Cummings. Halifax. Fighter from stbd. 21,000 ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft condition unknown. Radio apparatus on when shot down.


March 1944

15/16 622/J F/Sgt. P. A. Thomson. Lancaster. Bombs from above. 21,000ft. Abandoned a/c in the air, due to loss of control. Aircraft condition unknown.
15/16 9 Sqdn. S/Ldr. R. Bakewell-Smith. Lancaster. Fighter from port quarter below, by front gun. 20,000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
22/23 100 Sqdn. P/O K. Evans. Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. attack from below with front gun. 20,000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition of aircraft unknown. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
30/31 166 Sqdn. F/Lt. F.Taylor. Lancaster. Heav Flak. 18,000 ft Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate ause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.

April 1944

10/11 90 Sqdn. F/LT. S. Gay. Stirling. Light Flak. 500 ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Crash-landed. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Aircraft destroyed.
24/25 78 Sqdn. F/O J. McCartney. Halifax. Fighter. 15,000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
27/28 431 Sqdn. Lt. J. K. Earman. Halifax. Fighter. 14,000 ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed.

P/O J. H. Smith. Lancaster. Heavy Flak. 5000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed.


May 1944

3/4 50/U F/Lt. T. H. Blackham. (124922) Lancaster. Light Flak. 5000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed. Tanks blew up.
3/4 207 Sqdn. F/Sgt. L. Lissett (NZ. 391011) Lancaster. Fighter 7000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire due to loss of control. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
3/4 576/B2 P/O R. Whalley (173131) Lancaster. Engine trouble. 4000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed
6/7 466/G P/O Hourigan (AUS.420882). Halifax. Fighter from stbd. 10000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft not destroyed.
24/25 158/A P/O M.V. Lawrence (Can.19574). Halifax. Fighter from below by upward firing gun. Aircraft on fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning aircraft. Aircraft condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
24/25 192/P F/O R. K. Hicken (1451199) Halifax. Fighter. 19000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft condition unknown. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
27/28 239 Sqdn. F/O R. K. Bailey (40730). Mosquito. Debris from destroyed fighter. 9000ft. Aircraft abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Difficulty in abandoning. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
31/1 625 Sqdn. P/O Tanner (171646). Lancaster. Light Flak. 7000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire, due to loss of control. Aircraft condition unknown.


June 1944

2/3 405/O S/Ldr. E. Coldrey (J.4820). Lancaster. Fighter quarter attack from above by front gun. 12000ft. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire (explosion). Aircraft condition unknown. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
2/3 640 Sqdn. F/Sgt. G. Chambers. an.152703). Halifax. ?Fighter. 10000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft condition unknown.
2/3 no Sqdn. F/O A. A. Murray (145681). Halifax. Fighter quarter attack from above by front gun. 8000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft condition unknown. Tanks blew up.
7/8 640 Sqdn. P/O J. Hamilton (J.19966). Halifax. Fighter of light flak. 3000ft. On fire in air. Aircraft abandoned. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning. Aircraft condition unknown.
7/8 15 Sqdn. S/Ldr. P. J. Lamason. (NZ.403460). Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. Attack from below by front gun. 4000ft. On fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
7/8 432/M F/O W. K. Vickerman (J.26925). Halifax. Fighter from port quarter attack from below with front gun. 5500ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
7/8 427 Sqdn W/O E.F Foster. (R.136520). Halifax. Fighter attack from stbd. 8000 F A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C Destroyed. Radio apparatus on exce GEE, when shot down. P/O W. Reed. Halifax Fighter from stod. Attack from below by front gun. 6000ft. On fire in air. A/C abandoned in air, Ult cause of loss, due to fire. A/C destroyed
9/10 630 Sqdn F/O C. Houghton (1165631). Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. 6000ft. On fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
12/13 427 Sqdn F/O R.C Pearson (J.24435). Halifax. Fighter? 5000ft. A/c abandoned in air. Due to loss of control. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
12/13 419 Sqdn W/O E.F Foster. (R.136520). Halifax. Fighter attack from stbd. 8000 F A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C Destroyed. Radio apparatus on exce GEE, when shot down
21/22 463 Sqdn F/Lt E.A.L Smith (A415280). Lancaster. Fighter 18000ft. on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C condition U/k. Tanks blew up
22/23 78 Sqdn F/O D.L Irwin (J.24814). Halifax. Fighter from stbd. attack from below by front gun, 8000ft. A/C on fire in aire. A/C abandoned in air. Ult cause of loss due to fire. Due to loss of control. A/C destroyed
22/23 78 Sqdn P/O N. Mills (A.417883) Halifax. Light Flak. 8000ft. A/c on fire in air. A/C abandoned in air. ult cause of loss due to fire. A/c destroyed
24/25 463 Sqdn P/O Martin (A.16203). Lancaster. U/K. 8000ft. A/c on fire in air. A/C abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. Condition of a/cu/k tanks blew up.
27/28 12/G P/O M.A. Guilfoyle (172424). Lancaster.3 Engines U/S. 10000ft. A/C abandoned in air, A/c destroyed.
28/29 10 Sqdn F/O R.J Taylor (146434). Halifax. Fighter. 8000 ft. A/C on fire in a failure of warning devices A/C abandoned in air. Ult cause of loss due to fire. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on exce GEE, when shot down
28/29 582 Sqdn F/O S.A. Spierenburg (171436). Lancaster. Fighter quarter attack. 12000ft A/C abandoned in air, due to loss of control. A/C destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down

July 1944

30.6/1.7 100 Sqdn P/O W. Kay. Lancaster. Fighter 9000ft A/c on fire in air. A/c abandoned in air, Ult cause of loss due to fire. A/c destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
4/5 433 Sqdn F/O C. Baird Halifax. Fighter from stbd. 5000ft.Failure of warning devices. Loss due to pilot being killed A/C abandoned in air due to loss of control. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
4/5 433 Sqdn F/Lt. B.Junkers. Light flak or figheter quarter attack from A/c on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ult loss due to fire. A/c condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
4/5 35 Sqdn S.Ldr. G.F Lambert. Lancaster. Light Flak. 8000ft A/c on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ult loss due to fire. A/c condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down
4/5 419 Sqdn F/O J.N Stevenson. Lancaster. Fighter. 3000ft
7/8 57 Sqdn P/O N.T. Owen. Lancaster ?Fighter 1000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C abandoned in air. Cause of loss due to fire. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
7/8 106 Sqdn F/Lt. J Marchant. Landcaster. Heavy Flak & Fighter. 17000 ft. A/C on fire in air, abandoning a/c. A/C destroyed; tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
7/8 106 Sqdn F/O G.S. Mather. Lancaster. Fighter quarter attack from above from front gun. 8000 feet. A/C on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ult. cause of losdd due to fire. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
18th 432/J F/Lt. J.H. Gooper. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 9000 ft. A/C/ on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire & loss of control. A/C destroyed.
25/26 619/K W/Cdr. R. Maling. Lancaster. Fighter attack from below with upward firing gun. 1800 feet. A/C/ on fire in air. A/C abandoned in air. Ult/ cause of loss due to fire. A/C destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
25/26 431 Sqdn. W/Cdr. H.R. Dow. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 15000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. A/C destryoed.
28th 78 Sqdn. F/Lt. W.J. Hoffman. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 18000 ft. A/C on fire in air/ Abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire.
28/29 424 Sqdn. W/Cdr. D. Blaine. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 1800 ft. A/C on fire in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. A/C destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
28/29 622/K F/Lt. Peabody. Lancaster. Fighter 7000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. A/C condition u/k.
28/29 467 Sqdn. F/O S. John. Lancaster. Light Flak. 6000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Crash-landed (ditched). Ult. cause of loss due to fire. A/C destroyed.
28/29 576/H2 F/O E.J. Mann. Lancaster. Fighter (F?). 17000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C abandonedd in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning A/C. In A/C condition u/k. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
28/29 431 Sqdn. F/O J.F. Harris. Halifax. Fighter from stbd. 22000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning a/c. A?C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
30th 97 Sqdn. F/Lt. H. Baker. Lancaster. Light Flak. 20000 ft. A/C on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. A/C abandoned in air. Ult. cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning a/c. A/C condition u/k. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
P/O Rees. Lancaster. Fighter? stbd. attack from below from front gun. 12000 ft. Failure of warning devices. A/C abandoned in air, due to loss of control. A/C condition u/k.

August 1944

3rd 514/G2 P/O J. (178865). 15000ft. Crash-landing, due to loss of control. Aircraft condition unknown.
6/7 139 Sqdn. F/O B. E. Hooke. Mosquito. Heavy Flak. 7500ft. A/C abandoned in air. Due to loss of control. Aircraft condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
7/8 419 Sqdn. P/O B. Walker. Lancaster. Fighter. 20000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 434 Sqdn. P/O D. A. MacIntyre. Halifax. Fighter. 16000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 619/X S/Ldr. L. B. Gunter. Lancaster. Fighter attack from below by upward firing guns. 15000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft not destroyed.
12/13 101/V F/O J. M. Atyeo. Lancaster. Heavy Flak. 17000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandond in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft not destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 51 Sqdn. F/Lt. A. Hanney. Halifax. Flak. 16000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Crash-landed; aircraft destroyed. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 428 Sqdn. F/O McGregor. Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. Attack from below with front gun. 19999ft. Aircradt on fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire, due to loss of control. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 10 Sqdn. F/O J. H. Saynor. Halifax. Shot down by a 4 engined bomber. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning aircraft. Aircraft condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 196 Sqdn. F/O P. Cranmer. Halifax. Fighter quarter attack from below with front gun. 9000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Due to loss of control. Aircraft not destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 102 Sqdn. F/O S.W. Sambell. Halifax. Fire attack from below with upward firing guns. 17000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down (winds).
12/13 582 Sqdn. F/Lt. E.J. Trotter. Lancaster. ?Fighter. 14000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition unknown. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except when shot down (winds).
12/13 169 Sqdn. F/O W. H. Miller. Mosquito. Debris from destroyed Fighter. 15000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 640 Sqdn. W/Cdr. M.T. Mow. Halifax. ?Fighter. 17000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 115 Sqdn. F/O G.B. Hockey. Lancaster. Fighter 14000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed.
12/13 218 Sqdn. P/O V. L. Humphrey. Lancaster. Unknown. 18000ft.Aircraft on fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air, Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
16/17 57 Sqdn. F/Lt. S. Scutt. Lancaster. Light Flak. 500ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Aircraft abandoned in air, Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
??  ?? F/Lt. W. H. M. Carrington. Halifax. ?Fighter. 10000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
16/17 433 Sqdn. F/O J. A. W. Morgan. Halifax. Fighter from stbd. Attack from below by front gun. 15000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
18th 567/E2 F/O R. Bibby. Lancaster. Heavy Flak. 5000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Aircraft not destroyed.
18/19 428 Sqdn. F/O C. M. Corbet. Lancaster. Bombs from above. 17000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Condition unknown.
25/26 7 Sqdn. F/Lt. T. H. Strong. Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. Attack from below by front gun. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
25/26 419 Sqdn. F/O H. D. Witwer. Lancaster. Collision. 18000ft. Abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed.
25/26 61 Sqdn. F/Lt.E. R. Church. Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. attack from above with front gun. 3000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire, due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed.
25/26 115 Sqdn. F/Lt. A. C. Alldridge. Lancaster. Collision. 18000ft. Abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Difficulty in abandoning. Aircraft destroyed.
26/27 576/J2 F/O Linklater. Lancaster. Fighter from stbd. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition unknown.
26/27 57 Sqdn. F/O C. R. E. Russell. Lancaster. Fighter (Flak - Friend?) 10000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.
12/13 626 Sqdn. F/O R. S. Bennett. Lancaster. Fighter quarter attack from below with front gun. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except when shot down.


September 1944

23/24 166 Sqdn. F/O R. W. Miller. Lancaster. Heavy Flak. 17000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned n air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft condition unknown.


October 1944

15/16 408/M F/Lt. F. L. Smart. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 17000ft. Aircraft abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Aircraft condition unknown. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
25th 158/W F/Lt. Woodward. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 20000ft. Aircraft on fire in air and abandoned in air, due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed.


November 1944

1/2 425 Sqdn. F/Lt. N. J. Dugas. Halifax. Fighter attack from below with upwards firing gun. 19000ft. Aircraft on fier in air and abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Aircraft not destroyed. (?). Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
1/2 431 Sqdn. F/O D. D. Conner. Lancaster. Shot down by Bombers. 10000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
1/2 434/U P/O J. Halifax. Fighter from stbd. 15000ft. Abandoned in air due to loss of control. Aircraft destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
2/3 463/C F/O D. G. Smith. Lancaster. Fighter attack from below with upward firing guns. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire, and loss of control. Not destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
2/3 102 Sqdn. F/O Redmond. Halifax. Fighter. 10000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Condition unknown.
4/5 425 Sqdn. F/O D. E. Smith. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 17500ft. Aircraft condition abandoned in air due to loss of control. Condition of aircraft unknown.
4/5 433 Sqdn. F/O R. J. Mountford. Halifax. Fighter from stbd. attack from below with front gun. 15000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning aircraft. Not destroyed.
4/5 426 Sqdn. H/O H. W. Elder. Halifax. Fighter from stdb. 8000ft. Aircraft on fire in air. Failure of warning devices. Aircraft abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Destroyed. Tanks blew up. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.
4/5 426 Sqdn. F/O R. E. Jones. Halifax. Heavy Flak. 14000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire and loss of control. Difficulty in abandoning aircraft. Condition unknown. Tanks blew up(?).
6/7 463/Q F/O C. J. Lynch. Lancaster. Fighter attack from below with upward firing guns. 10000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Destroyed.
11/12 83/A F/Lt. B. J. Jennings. Lancaster. Heavy Flak. 18000ft. Aircraft on fire in air, abandoned in air. Ultimate cause of loss due to fire. Difficulty in abandoning aircraft. Not destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.


Appendum List 1

August 1944 W/O T.B. Sparrow. Halifax. Flak. 8000 ft. A/C on fire in air. A/C abandoned in air, due to loss of control. A/C destroyed. Radio apparatus on except GEE when shot down.

Details of crashes, etc, from RAF prisoners of war, February to November 1944 extract from AIR 40/1552.