RSS

Tag Archives: bomb disposal

26 December 1940: British Fleet Unchallenged in Mediterranean

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

 

ConvoyCONVOY PASSES THROUGH ITALIAN WATERS TO NORTH AFRICA WITH NO ATTACKS

Ships of the Mediterranean Fleet have brought another convoy successfully through the entire Mediterranean without a single challenge from the enemy.  Although the Allied vessels passed close to the Pantelleria Islands and Sicily, no opposition was encountered from the Italian navy or air force.  The convoy was carrying reinforcements and supplies for Allied forces in North Africa.  In recent days British warships have also launched attacks in the Adriatic and the RAF have attacked air bases in Tripoli.

AIR RAIDS DAWN 26 DECEMBER TO DAWN 27 DECEMBER 1940

Weather  Continuous rain. 

No air raids.

OPERATIONS REPORTS THURSDAY 26 DECEMBER 1940

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS Bomb Disposal UXB  Reported 1; dealt with 1 (Italian 43lb).

 

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed.  For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 26, 2020 in 1940, December 1940

 

Tags: , , , ,

6 December 1940: Royal Engineers to Tackle All Unexploded Bombs

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

 

NEW ORDERS FOR DEALING WITH UNEXPLODED BOMBS IN MALTA

New orders were issued today to military commanders,  the police and civil defence across Malta for dealing with  unexploded bombs:

A Bomb Disposal Unit Royal Engineers has been formed to deal with the disposal of all unexploded bombs on land other than that belonging to Royal Navy or RAF, under the orders of the Chief Engineer through the Bomb Disposal Officer (BDO).

NWMA Malta

NWMA Malta

Reports of unexploded bombs will be made to the General Staff either by military formations and units or through the civil police.  Reports of will contain the following information:

  1. Number of unexploded bombs
  2. Location of each and whether in an area vital to the war effort.
  3. The bomb’s position, e.g.lying on surface, buried in the road, etc.
  4. If bomb can be seen, its type (ie high explosive or incendiary and approximate size.
  5. Name of the person finding it (civilian or police)or, if reported by the military, the name of nearest Unit (which will, if necessary, provide a guide to the location).
  6. Special features, if any.

The General Staff will indicate if the bomb is to be treated as high priority and will notify this to the BDO with a copy to the Chief Engineer.

Civilians finding an unexploded bomb are instructed to report it to the police, who will clear the area of people and fence off the bomb; no-one should be allowed near until the BDO arrives.  Bombs on military premises will reported to the relevant HQ and guarded by local personnel.

Details of the bomb will be collected as above and forwarded to police headquarters for transmission to General Staff, and onward forwarding to the Bomb Disposal Officer.  The BDO will make a reconnaissance visit, confirm the area to be cleared, decide on the action to be taken and mobilise the Bomb Disposal Section.

The Bomb Disposal Officer will provide a weekly report of unexploded bombs dealt with. (1)

AIR RAIDS DAWN 6 DECEMBER TO DAWN 7 DECEMBER 1940

Weather  Cold; fair.

No air raids.

OPERATIONS REPORTS FRIDAY 6 DECEMBER 1940

1st Bn KINGS OWN MALTA REGIMENT  Command physical training course.

2nd Bn KINGS OWN MALTA REGIMENT  Brigade Commander accompanied by the CO inspected Dingli.

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT  Inspection of a Fougasse, constructed by the Knights of St John in the hard rock.  Experiments are to be carried out in the softer rock. 

(1) UXB Malta, S A M Hudson, History Press 2010/2012

 

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed.  For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 6, 2020 in December 1940

 

Tags: , , , ,

18 November 1940: Malta Shops Re-open All Hours

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

Shopping hours extended

Shopping hours extended

NORMAL TRADING RESUMES

The Government today lifted restrictions on opening hours of shops across Malta. The move has been welcomed by retailers, whose businesses have been affected by commodity shortages as well as shorter opening times.  The civilian curfew hours will remain unchanged.

The restrictions, introduced on 29 May, required shops to close one hour before the 8.30pm curfew time and to remain closed until the curfew lifted at 6 o’clock in the morning. With the lifting of these restrictions shop owners are free to return to their normal trading schedules, making it easier for civilians to shop outside of their own working hours.

AIR RAIDS DAWN 18 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 19 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather   Fine.

No air raids.

OPERATIONS REPORTS MONDAY 18 NOVEMBER 1940

ROYAL NAVY HMS Newcastle arrived with RAF reinforcements. She developed boiler and condenser defects and remained for repairs. 

KALAFRANA  Marine Craft Section rescued two crew of a Swordfish from a rubber dinghy three miles off Benghaisa.

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS  Responsibility for bomb disposal assigned to Lt E E Talbot, Bomb Disposal Officer, RE.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS Bomb Disposal taken over by Bomb Disposal Officer, Royal Engineers and so ceases to be responsibility of Inspecting Ordnance Officer.

2nd Bn ROYAL WEST KENT REGIMENT  Battalion handed over guard duty at War HQ Lascaris and Barracca to 3rd Bn Kings Own Malta Regiment. 

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 18, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , , ,

13 November 1940: New RE Bomb Disposal Officer Gets to Work

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

ROYAL ENGINEERS OFFICER TACKLES BOMB IN RESERVOIR

Lt E E C Talbot, GC, RE

Lt E E C Talbot, GC, RE (1)

The RAOC officers called on Malta’s new Royal Engineers Bomb Disposal Officer to tackle his first bomb on the Island today. Lt E E Talbot, GC, RE, who arrived on Sunday from the UK was decorated three months ago for his bravery in dealing with an unexploded bomb (UXB) with an unknown fuze in South Wales.

His first UXB in Malta was found when water was drained from the reservoir at Luqa. Inspecting Ordnance Officer Captain R L Jephson Jones, RAOC, identified the bomb as a 250lb Italian high explosive.  

Lt Talbot was only too ready to get back to work; he would need some assistance.   Sapper Tom Meager had been manning a Lewis gun on the harbour bastions until that morning:  “Never volunteer for anything, they used to say in the army. I went on Parade one morning and they said ‘We need volunteers to deal with an unexploded bomb. Nobody has to volunteer. So if you don’t want to volunteer just fall out.’  And they all went and left me standing there.  He said, ‘Are you sure?’ and I said ‘Yes, I’ll have a go at anything.’ 

Tom Meager was sent out to Luqa:  “The first bomb we went on was an Italian 500 pounder and it landed in the surface reservoir by the airfield. There was about a foot of mud on the bottom of the reservoir and the bomb must have skidded in because it ended up in one corner and didn’t go off.

We waded through the mud to the bomb. At this stage we knew absolutely nothing about bomb fuzes, so we were completely ignorant of what could happen if we dealt with a bomb at all. Not knowing anything, we just went over, unscrewed the fuze and took it out, and that was it.  Nothing happened, because I’m still here.  It wasn’t until afterwards when we got more information about these things that we realised how close we had come to being blown up.” (1)

BARS DECLARED ‘OUT OF BOUNDS’ TO TROOPS

Troops of the Kings Own Malta Regiment have been informed today that the following bars have been placed out of bounds to all Other Ranks: the Rexford, Maricho, Captain Caruana, Crocha and the Officers’ Bar of the Monico.  These bars are now set aside for the use of officers only – and officers are not to enter any other bar. 

The following premises are placed in bounds to all troops: Harbour Bar, St Paul’s Bay, the Sportsmans Rest Bar, St Anne Street, Valletta; White Swan Restaurant, Strait Street, Valletta

AIR RAIDS DAWN 13 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 14 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather  Fine.

No air raids.

OPERATIONS REPORTS WEDNESDAY 13 NOVEMBER 1940

AIR HQ  Arrivals 8 Wellingtons.

LUQA  Eight Wellingtons arrive.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS Bomb Disposal UXB  High explosive 1 from reservoir by Bomb Disposal Officer, Royal Engineers.

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS  A new Company HQ is established in Lintorn Barracks. The new formation consists of No 1 Section for Coast Defence (Engine Rooms), Nos 2 and 3 Sections for defensive works. Lt E E Talbot RE now joined the BD Section of the Company which continued its dangerous and valuable work.  Major Jacob left and Captain (A/Major) De Piro-Cowley assumed command.

(1) UXB Malta, S A M Hudson, History Press 2010/2012

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 13, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , ,

11 November 1940: Malta Reconnaissance Aids Successful Attack on Taranto

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

‘OPERATION JUDGMENT’ A SUCCESS

Taranto Harbour after the attack

Taranto Harbour after the attack (1)

Reconnaissance from Malta has played a key role in a long-awaited major offensive on the Italian port of Taranto. Aircraft of 431 Flight have been monitoring enemy shipping movements in the Mediterranean for several weeks, looking for convoys supplying the Axis armies in North Africa which could be targeted for attack.  Photographs in the past few days showed five battleships, fourteen cruisers and twenty-seven destroyers lying at anchor in the port of Taranto.  

Royal Navy Commander in Chief Mediterranean Admiral Cunningham decided that the time was right for an attack under ‘Operation Judgment’ which had been originally planned for last month. Ships involved in recent convoy manoeuvres through the Mediterranean were given orders to head for Taranto.  The frequency of such Allied shipping movements in recent days helped to disguise from the Italians the fact that a major attack was developing.

Earlier today Pilot Officer A Warburton took off for a final reconnaissance of Taranto prior to the attack. He circled the harbour several times but then his cameras failed.  He dived down, making a tour of the moored Italian fleet low enough for his observer to identify the ships by name, before returning to Malta.  A further reconnaissance of the area was made by a Sunderland flying boat after dark and the operation was confirmed.

The reconnaissance images and information were rushed to the aircraft carrier Illustrious, which was to lead the attack.  The remaining task force included heavy cruisers HMS Berwick and York, light cruisers HMS Gloucester and Glasgow, and destroyers HMS Hyperion, Ilex, Hasty and Havelock.

 Shortly before 9pm, the first wave of twelve Swordfish took off from the aircraft carrier: six carried torpedoes, and six were loaded with 250lb bombs; two carried flares.  A second wave followed an hour later.  Despite heavy anti-aircraft fire the attack was pressed home.  Italian battleships Cavour, Littorio and Duilio were successfully torpedoed and put out of action, a heavy cruiser and a destroyer were damaged and an aircraft hangar set on fire.

By 3am all the Swordfish had returned to Illustrious, except two.  Pilot Lieutenant Bayley, Fleet Air Arm, was in the second wave of attackers when he came under fire.  His aircraft crashed near the cruiser Gorizia; his body was found the next day, but that of his Observer Lieutenant Slaughter was never recovered.  The two crew members of the second Swordfish are believed to have been taken prisoner.

Sir Andrew Cunningham

Sir Andrew Cunningham

While the attack on Taranto was proceeding, another force was attacking an Italian convoy in the Mediterranean. At just past midnight, cruisers HMS Ajax, Orion and HMAS Sydney, and two destroyers, HMS Nubian and Mohawk, engaged and damaged four Italian merchant ships and a torpedo boat; their accompanying cruiser fled the scene.

Early reports suggest that the Italian fleet has lost half of its capital ships in a single night, altering the balance of naval power in the Mediterranean. Reviewing the operation, Admiral Cunningham said:

“Taranto, and the night of November 11–12, 1940, should be remembered for ever as having shown once and for all that in the Fleet Air Arm the Navy has its most devastating weapon.”

AIR RAIDS DAWN 11 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 12 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather  Warm; clear and fine.

0808-0835 hrs  Air raid alert; raid does not materialise.

OPERATIONS REPORTS MONDAY 11 NOVEMBER 1940

KALAFRANA  Sunderland on special moonlight patrol for naval co-operation in Taranto area.

4th Bn THE BUFFS (ROYAL EAST KENT REGIMENT)  Day spent organising the camp. Battalion medical examinations.

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS The following reported for duty: Major H D Tanner, Captain W Arthur posted to CRE (S); Captain S Oliver posted to CRE(N), 2/Lt G H Lee posted to 24 Fortress Company, RE, 2/Lt E E Talbot posted to HQ Fortress Royal Engineers for duty as Bomb Disposal Officer.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS  Unloading of ammunition from convoy begun. Contact anti-tank mines received in Malta for the first time. Bomb Disposal UXB 250lb bomb in reservoir Luqa. 

(1)  www.fleetairarmarchive.net

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
1 Comment

Posted by on November 11, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

10 November 1940: Massive Convoy Enters Grand Harbour

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

NO AIR RAIDS DESPITE CONVOY

A massive convoy codenamed MW3 reached Malta today bringing reinforcements and stores. Ships from Alexandria in the east and from Gibraltar in the west included five merchant vessels.  All reached the Island without major incident.

Illustrious with Swordfish

HMS Illustrious

The main convoy sailed from Alexandria on Monday included Devis, Plumleaf, Rodi, Volo and Waiwera, escorted by cruisers Calcutta and Coventry, and destroyers Diamond, Vampire, Voyager and Waterhen.  The operation was covered by the main Fleet, including the aircraft carrier Illustrious, four battleships, two cruisers and fifteen destroyers.  On the way to Malta Swordfish from Illustrious shot down four Italian aircraft.  Force H aircraft shot down another two. 

At the same time, troops and stores were brought from Gibraltar on board ships which were sailing to join the Mediterranean Fleet. The battleship Barham, cruisers Berwick and Glasgow, and destroyers Gallant, Greyhound and Griffin sailed from Gibraltar on Thursday. 

In all, some 2000 troops disembarked, including Royal Artillery Signal Section, Heavy and Light Anti-Aircraft Batteries, 4th Battalion The Buffs, and Royal Engineers personnel.  Supplies landed at Malta included additional guns and I-tanks for defence of the Island.

“A convoy arrived from Alexandria … a thrilling thing it was… And even so we were not bombed. It is almost incredible. All these ships passed up our narrow Grand Harbour…The battleships fastened themselves to buoys, and the smaller stuff went alongside the Dockyard walls just off the main harbour. Oilers presumable came alongside the big ships for re-fuelling. And yet we were not bombed. For the space of several hours some 16 ships were crowded into a space of about one square mile. Half a dozen resolute airmen could scarcely fail to hit something. What is the explanation? An officer in the inner circle of information said he was as mystified as myself. Either the Italians have cold feet, or they are short of materials. The Staff were saying “Hurry up with those oilers! Get these ships out of here”, while the Italians lay doggo.” (1)

After a rapid turn-around, Convoy ME3 left Malta for Alexandria, comprising the empty ships from previous convoy MF3, including Clan Ferguson, Clan Macaulay, Lanarkshire and Memnon.  They were escorted by ships of the Mediterranean Fleet which had escorted MW3 into harbour, including one battleship, one cruiser and two destroyers.  The monitor Terror and the destroyer Vendetta also sailed with them.

4th Battalion the Buffs were impressed by their welcome to Malta: “The people seemed overjoyed by our arrival. There were a number of representatives from the Malta command to greet the reinforcements.  On arrival at the billets we found everything ready including a hot meal for the men.”  

AIR RAIDS DAWN 10 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 11 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather  Fine.

0945-1010 hrs  Air raid alert for twelve Italian CR42 fighters which fly over Grand Harbour at 21000 feet. Anti-aircraft guns engage the raiders; no hits claimed.  Malta fighters are held back for an expected formation of bombers which does not materialise.

0708 hrs  Air raid alert for two formations of enemy aircraft which circle the Island before turning away.

1615-1745 hrs Convoy enters Grand Harbour, including HMS Barham, Norfolk, Berwick and Glasgow to disembark stores and personnel.

Enemy casualties Tenente Raffaele Brandi, 195a Squadriglia, 90o Gruppo, 30o Stormo, crewman of SM79 bomber missing in action; Sottotenente Umberto Gabrielli, Sottotenente, observer, missing in action.

OPERATIONS REPORTS SUNDAY 10 NOVEMBER 1940

ROYAL NAVY Operation ‘Coat’ successfully completed with the sailing of Convoy ME3 of four ships and the refuelling of Fleet units. Hero and Hereward remained to refit. 

KALAFRANA  229 Squadron permanently attached to Kalafrana; remainder of Squadron personnel arrived by sea from Middle East. A large draft of approximately 100 men arrived and were accommodated at Marsaxlokk pending disposal to units.  These are the first personnel to occupy the buildings at the new station.

4th Bn THE BUFFS (ROYAL EAST KENT REGIMENT)  Companies billeted as follows: A and HQ Coys and Bn HA at Attard RAOC camp.  B Coy at the RASC camp near Attard.  C & D Coys at Parris England Farm, Hamrun and Tal Handaq.

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS  Major H D Tanner, Captain W Arthur, Captain S Oliver, 2/Lt G H Lee, 2/Lt E E Talbot and two other ranks arrived from UK.

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT  New mortars arrived Ta Saliba. E Coy moved to Strickland House. 

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS  Arrival of a second convoy with ammunition. Bomb Disposal Officer, Royal Engineers, arrives in Malta from UK.

(1)  Extract from diary of Reverend Reginald M. Nicholls, Chancellor of St.Paul’s Anglican Cathedral, Valletta.  Courtesy of website: Malta Family History

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 10, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , , ,

2 November 1940: Villagers Surround Crashed Italian Plane

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

CIVIL POLICE SLOW TO REACT SAY MILITARY CHIEFS

Civil police were the target of criticism today after crowds of civilians flocked unimpeded to the site of a crashed Italian aircraft. The Macchi 200 was engaged in an air raid over Malta today when it was attacked by a Hurricane and crashed between Zeitun and Hompesch.  Villagers from both communities immediately rushed to the scene and surrounded the wreckage, before a protective cordon could be established.  Military chiefs questioned the efficiency of the police who, they said, had not acted quickly enough to secure the area and keep the public away.  

The body of the Italian pilot was found near his aircraft; observers reported that he baled out but his parachute failed to open fully. He was confirmed dead by the military inspecting officer, who commented on the inferior quality of the parachute equipment.  The pilot has since been named as Abramo Giuseppe Lanzarini; his rank is unknown.

Adrian Warburton

P/O Adrian Warburon

QUICK THINKING NAVIGATOR SAVES RECONNAISSANCE PILOT

A RAF navigator saved the life of himself and his pilot today after their Maryland was attacked by four Italian fighter aircraft. The Maryland of 431 Flight was on a reconnaissance mission to photograph Taranto harbor when the Italian fighters attacked.  A bullet struck the nose of the aircraft and hit Pilot Officer A Warburton, knocking him unconscious. 

As the aircraft plunged into a steep dive, Observer/Navigator Sergeant Frank Bastard acted fast, manoeuvering the unconscious pilot aside and grabbing the controls himself. He managed to stabilise the aircraft and keep it on a steady course until the pilot regained consciousness.  F/O Warburton was sufficiently recovered to fly safely back to Malta. (1)

AIR RAIDS DAWN 2 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 3 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather  Fine.

1228-1336 hrs Air raid alert for five Italian formations totalling 20 SM79 bombers accompanied by some 30 Macchi 200 and CR42 fighters which approach from the north and fly over the Island. Bombs are dropped four miles in front of Fort St Elmo.  Anti-aircraft guns open fire, splitting the first bomber formation.  Six Hurricanes and two Gladiators are scrambled and attack the raiders in several dogfights at 17000 feet. 

One Macchi 200 is brought down by a Hurricane between Zeitun and Hompesch. The pilot bales out but his parachute fails to open fully and he is killed.  A second Macchi is possibly destroyed by another Hurricane.  Two CR42s are also damaged by fighters.  Ack Ack guns split the formations and shoot down one enemy aircraft.   After a brief lull bombers and fighters cross the coast and drop bombs on Luqa hitting a hangar on the aerodrome, and on Zabbar, demolishing four houses.  2nd Bn Royal West Kent Regiment carries out a search for unexploded bombs on the aerodrome: three are reported.  No military or civilian casualties are reported.

Military casualties Sergente Abramo Giuseppe Lanzarini, 72a Squadriglia, 17o Gruppo, 1o Stormo, pilot of Macchi C200 fighter.                                                   

OPERATIONS REPORTS SATURDAY 2 NOVEMBER 1940

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT  Fatigue parties cleaning Strickland House.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS  Despatch of Italian machine guns to UK. Bomb Disposal UXB High Explosive 1 Luqa.

2nd Bn ROYAL WEST KENT REGIMENT  Molotoff cocktail trials. 1800 hrs Cycle patrol mounted at Luqa. 

(1) For his actions Sergeant Bastard was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal.

 

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 2, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

1 November 1940: Malta Aircraft Bomb Naples

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

Naples bombing 1 NovMALTA-BASED AIRCRAFT BOMB NAPLES

Aircraft from Malta were involved in a heavy bombing raid on Naples today. Main targets were the seaport, industrial zones and railways to the east of the City, and a steel mill to the west.  The mission was part of a co-ordinated British attack against the ports of Naples and Brindisi.

SUNDERLANDS UNDER ATTACK

One Sunderland flying boat of 228 Squadron is believed destroyed and another seriously damaged after they were attacked by Italian fighters today. The aircraft of Squadron Leader Menzies and Flying Officer S M Farries was on patrol over Sicily when it was intercepted by Italian fighters which launched a determined attack.  The Sunderland was severely damaged and was observed falling into the sea.  There were no reported survivors.

In a separate incident, a second Sunderland piloted by F/Lt Ware left Kalafrana to search for the crew of a Wellington aircraft which had failed to arrive in Malta. The flying boat was attacked by Italian Macchi 200 and CR42 fighters. Despite being riddled with large bullet holes, the Sunderland managed to limp back to Kalafrana. On landing, the pilot reported that Air Gunner Leading Aircraftsman R J Barton had continued firing at the enemy aircraft despite severe gunshot wounds to his neck and ankle. (1)  

AIR RAIDS DAWN 1 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 2 NOVEMBER 1940

Weather  Fine.

No air raids.

0655-0735 hrs Wellington bombers land at Luqa.

OPERATIONS REPORTS FRIDAY 1 NOVEMBER 1940

AIR HQ  Aircraft casualties  1 Sunderland.

KALAFRANA A Sunderland piloted by F/Lt Ware, 228 Squadron attacked by Italian Macchi 200 and CR42 fighters: two airmen wounded and the aircraft damaged. Officers S/L Menzies and F/O Farries, four NCOs and four airmen of 228 Squadron have been reported missing after their aircraft failed to return from patrol off Sicily.

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT  Tests carried out on petrol bombs; a solution was made which prolonged the life of the flame.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS B omb Disposal UXB  High Explosive 3, Zabbar, Latnia, Luqa.

2nd Bn ROYAL WEST KENT REGIMENT  1130 hrs GOC inspected bomb dumps. Nightly patrols of aerodrome mounted to prevent sabotage of Wellingtons. 

(1) Leading Aircraftsman R J Barton was awarded the DFM for his actions.

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 1, 2020 in 1940, November 1940

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

23 October 1940: Swordfish Forced to Land Off Malta

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R) 

Swordfish

Swordfish

CREW RESCUED BY TRAWLER

The crew of a Swordfish aircraft had to be rescued by a trawler today after their aircraft was forced to land in the sea within sight of Malta today. The Swordfish, of 830 Squadron Fleet Air Arm, was returning from reconnaissance of the Ionian Sea, searching for enemy surface forces. A recovery vessel was sent to the area to retrieve the stricken aircraft. After a thorough search it was concluded that the Swordfish had sunk.

AIR RAIDS DAWN 23 OCTOBER TO DAWN 24 OCTOBER 1940

Weather  Fine and fresh.

No air raids.

OPERATIONS REPORTS WEDNESDAY 23 OCTOBER 1940

ROYAL NAVY Clearance sweep continued by Oropesa; no result. 1150-1535 hrs Skua Fleet Air Arm reconnaissance Malta to 25 miles north of Tripoli; nil report.

AIR HQ Reconnaissance of Ionian Sea for enemy surface forces by Blenheim attached 431 Flight and Swordfish 830 Squadron; nil reports by all aircraft. Reconnaissance Glenn Martin 431 Flight reported one small merchant vessel, possibly hospital ship at 1240 hrs.

KALAFRANA Operations by Sunderland aircraft of 228 and 230 squadrons. High speed launch returned from Dockyard after repair of damage sustained in air raid on 21 July.

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT C and D Coys sent a working party to the Castille for the removal of Ack Ack ammunition.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS Work of unloading ammunition completed. Of 45000 cartridges QF40mm 8000 are found to be marked for issue in emergency only. Bomb Disposal One week bomb disposal course started by Inspecting Ordnance Officer with assistance of Lt W M Eastman. The course was attended by two officers and six senior NCOs of the Royal Engineers.

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 23, 2020 in 1940, October 1940

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

10 October 1940: A Full Hurricane Squadron For Malta

Malta – World War 2. First visit to maltagc70? CLICK HERE  

Get daily updates direct to your computer – sign up to follow maltagc70 (see R)

AIR CHIEFS OF STAFF IN LONDON TO SEND FIGHTERS

Hurricane squadron for Malta

Hurricane squadron for Malta

The Air Chief of Staff in London is preparing to make representations to the War Cabinet on the question of reinforcements of air forces in the Middle East and Malta. As winter approaches it is believed that air raids on Britain may diminish. At the same time, recent troop movements have shown that the Axis powers are turning their attention to the Middle East theatre, where it is believed a ‘most serious danger’ is developing.

Plans are already in hand to increase the existing flight of Hurricanes in Malta to a full squadron of 16 aircraft plus reserves. An additional 12 aircraft will soon be on their way to the Island. In addition, the existing Glenn Martin unit at Malta is to be brought up to a full flight of twelve with the delivery of six additional aircraft.

However, the Air Chief‘s report stresses that the rapid delivery of reinforcements by air would not be easy. The air route to Malta is liable not only to enemy attacks but to adverse weather. Reinforcements also require maintenance personnel and equipment which must be transferred by sea – currently involving a three month time lag as ships have to travel the long sea route round the Cape to reach Egypt.

DECEASED ITALIAN AIRMAN PICKED UP FROM THE SEA

Authorities in Malta have been trying to identify a deceased Italian pilot brought into Malta today. The body of the airman brought into Grand Harbour on board a Royal Navy vessel was examined by a doctor and an officer of the RAF. No identification documents were found, only the initials F A marked on his clothes. However, official papers found in the pockets included a report signed by Lt Adolfo Ferrari, which is thought to be his name. His aircraft is believed to have left Castelvetrano to conduct reconnaissance including over Kalafrana in Malta.

AIR RAIDS DAWN 10 OCTOBER TO DAWN 11 OCTOBER 1940

Weather  Fine.

No air raids.

0430-0630 hrs Submarine sanctuary in force.

OPERATIONS REPORTS THURSDAY 10 OCTOBER 1940

Il-fawwara

Il-fawwara

KALAFRANA Operations by Sunderland aircraft of 228 and 230 squadrons. 0953-1655 hrs Sunderland 230 Squadron on patrol reported seeing at 1546 hrs a submarine which submerged immediately. 1130-1620 hrs Glenn Martin 431 Flight reported disposition of Italian fleet in Taranto Harbour same as yesterday with the addition of two destroyers, one 2000 ton cargo ship at sea and in Syracuse two 2000 ton merchant ships; at Augusta three 1500 ton merchant vessels and two sloops, at Catania nil. 1215-1640 hrs French Latecoere reconnaissance reported seeing one hospital ship in harbour, along with two small cargo ships, one 3000 ton, two 1500 tons , one large tanker, two flying boats, two Cant Z506 and one 1000 ton escort vessel. Intense anti-aircraft fire prevented good photographs being taken. 0430-0905 hrs Glenn Martin 431 flight reconnaissance of Ionian Sea. 0440-1617 hrs Sunderland 228 Squadron reconnaissance of Ionian Sea reported one Greek 7000 ton merchant vessel loaded with ballast.   0515-1615 hrs Sunderland 230 Squadron reconnaissance reported three French merchant vessels Athos, Florida and Djeanne.

NORTHERN INFANTRY BRIGADE Wardia reports mines off il Fawara; Admiralty informed.

ROYAL ARMY ORDNANCE CORPS Bomb Disposal UXB  High Explosive 1 HE 250lb Casal Paola.

All written content © maltagc70 unless otherwise attributed. For conditions of use contact bdmalta@btinternet.com

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 10, 2020 in 1940, October 1940

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,