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Possible 11 Sqn Personnel???


Buffnut453

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The following pics were received from a relative with no details about who they were.  They come from a former 11 Sqn pilot and so I suspect they may be mates of his from that Sqn.

 

The first looks to be a Flt Sgt (at least that's what I'd call him in RAF rank terms).  I've included close-ups of his arm and cap in case they provide any clues.  The triangular badge on his arm with '11' in it is something I'd never seen before...perhaps identification of his squadron?  I also can't identify the medal he's wearing.  I'm wondering if his cap badge is RNAS?

 

I suspect the man standing in the 4th photo is the same as the man in the first pic.  His facial features seem similar and his hat is cocked at a similar jaunty and rakish angle.  

 

The final pic shows a Sgt Observer but I have no further details about him.

 

Are there any clues from the uniforms to help identify more info about these men?  Does anybody out there, by some miracle, recognize any of them?

 

Many thanks,
Mark

 

Unidentified Flight Sergeant 1 - Poss 11 Sqn.jpeg

Unidentified Flight Sergeant 1 - Poss 11 Sqn (Arm).jpeg

Unidentified Flight Sergeant 1 - Poss 11 Sqn (Cap).jpeg

Unidentified Flight Sergeant 1 - Poss 11 Sqn.jpeg.jpeg

Unidentified Sergeant 1 - Poss 11 Sqn.jpeg.jpeg

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Dear Buffnet453,

The ribbon is the 1914 Star, and I assumed the cap badge was RNAS, too. The triangular patch is new to me, also.

Certainly the Sgt Obs was a rare bird; a very good portrait, indeed.

Thanks for posting these photos!

Kindest regards,

Kim.

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Thanks Kim.  Perhaps the 1914 Star and RNAS linkage will help narrow down an identity for the first man.  

 

Sadly, the photos I have are copies rather than originals, so I can't do much to improve the quality, particularly for the standing man.  If he's the same man as the Flt Sgt, then clearly the standing photo was taken much earlier.  However, that just adds to the confusion because the pilot who had these photos only joined 11 Sqn late in the war, and so there'd be little chance for him to know someone who progressed from Pte/AB to Flt Sgt.

 

Cheers,

Mark

Edited by Buffnut453
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Dear Mark,

Perhaps a list of 11 Sqn aircrew might pin down the name of Sgt Observers. However, I see the time-frame problem...

Kindest regards,

Kim.

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22 hours ago, Kimberley John Lindsay said:

Dear Mark,

Perhaps a list of 11 Sqn aircrew might pin down the name of Sgt Observers. However, I see the time-frame problem...

Kindest regards,

Kim.

 

Kim,

 

I don't have a comprehensive list of 11 Sqn observers.  However, access to Sqn records during the appropriate period revealed the following list of observers:

 

Ex-RNAS Observers:

Taylor, H C - 203786, Sgt Mech

 

 

Ex-RFC Observers:

Inglis, H H - 912, Sgt (according to FMP this was actually H T Inglis...incorrect initials probably a typo in the 11 Sqn record)

Oliver, A J - 110605, Sgt

Hampson, G H 110141, Sgt

 

Observers Straight into RAF:

Mathers, J - 177119 Sgt 

 

Other Observers - Prior Service Unconfirmed:

Downes, W G – 5431 Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

Ward, L K – 53762, Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

 

Other Personnel Flying Back-Seat - Prior Service Unconfirmed:

Allan – Sgt

Ball – Sgt

Bates – Sgt

Birch – Flt Sgt

Boshall – Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

Brewster – Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

Cooke – Sgt

Fawcett – Sgt

Gosling – Sgt

May – Sgt

Mitchell – Sgt

Perry – Flt Sgt

Retson – Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

Somers – Sgt – Can’t find this man in FMP

Wilkinson – Sgt

Williamson – Sgt

 

 

I realise there's still a lot of unknowns in the above list but it seems like the man with the RNAS cap badge is potentially 203786, Sgt Mech C H Taylor because he was the regular back-seater for the pilot whose family provided these photos.  The one downside to this analysis is that Taylor's record shows nothing about him being promoted to Flt Sgt.

Edited by Buffnut453
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Dear Mark,

Well done to pair the candidates  down to only a dozen or so Sgt-Observers. 

I know the sensation well, of having a photo of, say, an Officer, and knowing it is probably him - but not being sure! It is irrelevant, but as an example, I have the medals to Capt E. P. Yeates, 1/12/Pioneers, who was with (the later notoroius) A/Brig.-Gen. Dyer in Persia, 1915-16. I have 1) a grainy picture of Dyer and others, with possibly Yeates at left; and 2) a photo of a Pioneers reunion in 19265aee4a4e8300a_Poss.LtYeatesatleftwithGenDyer.jpg.912a118f41a3b58960167de4f8e371ef.jpg5aee4a5bdac0d_Poss.YeatesJan1926Agra2ndBombayPnrs.jpg.f7b533d158b281297e5cd0223a31ae51.jpg, when Yeates retired, showing a Yeates lookalike - but is it really him? One cannot be sure...

Kindest regards,

Kim.

Edited by Kimberley John Lindsay
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Yeah...part of the problem is that the back seat of the Brisfit was often filled by personnel other than Observers.  I had at least 4 other names on the list that I subsequently removed because I found the names repeated on other dates, but this time sitting in the front seat (ie they were pilots).  I'm sure some of the above list could also be maintenance personnel, particularly for test flights to check that the aircraft is ok after servicing or to ensure that a reported snag has been fixed.  

Edited by Buffnut453
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I think I've found a connection that would explain why my relative would have 2 photos of the same man even though both were only on 11 Sqn for a short time at the end of the War.  Both my relative and C H Taylor were at No.1 School of Air Gunnery in the summer of 1918, at which time Taylor was still an Air Mech I (G).  That would perhaps explain the photo of the standing man without any rank.  Sadly, it does not explain the apparent Flt Sgt rank on the other photo when, according to his service record, Taylor's ultimate rank was Sgt (reclassified from Sgt Mech on 1 Jan 1919).  

 

Would appreciate any other thoughts on the triangular "11" badge on the sleeve of the Flt Sgt from any other experts out there in cyberville.


Many thanks,
Mark

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Just to add to the confusion, I found this image reportedly of Henry Thomas Inglis who also served as an Observer on 11 Sqn at the same time as my relative.

 

cef36rib_large.jpg

 

Note the same cap badge as the first image in my OP and yet Inglis only ever served in the RFC and RAF (he enlisted in 1913).  Also note the triangular patch on his left sleeve with what appears to be a '2'.  Sadly, his service record provides no details of the squadrons on which he served, so I don't know if it correlates to a specific unit.  He appears to be wearing a Victory Medal to photo right but I'm not sure what the other medal (to photo left) is - it doesn't look like a BWM to me.  

 

My interest in Inglis is because my relative flew postwar with someone only identified as "Paddy" but who had served with my relative on 11 Sqn.  Inglis originated from Ireland and so might have been known as Paddy to his mates...but, again, that's just conjecture on my part.

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Dear Mark,

Excellent photo find: BWM and Victory Pair, as far as I can tell.

The cap badge is interesting!

Kindest regards,

Kim.

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Inglis' service number was 912...which is pretty low and hence hard to confuse! :)

 

He later remustered as a pilot but lost his life in 1933 in an aircraft crash while serving with 4 FTS at Abu Sueir.

Edited by Buffnut453
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Mark,

Returning to C.H. Taylor and the question as to whether he was a Flt. Sgt., there is a R.A.F. officer's service record in the Air 76 series (Air 76/496/85)

for C.H. Taylor stating that he was posted to C.D.D. as a Cadet with the rank of Temporary 2nd Lieutenant, date of effect 15 February 1919.

Regrettably, forenames and birthdate/place are not given, but if this is the 11 Squadron observer it would explain his listing as Flt Sgt.

The service record does not list any prior service, but I have found this to characterize a number of service records for NCOs who  became

cadets later.  Henry Thomas Inglis was indeed Irish--he was born at Abbeyleix, County Laoish, birth registered in the 3rd Quarter of 1899,

so he was a 14-year old schoolboy when he attested in 1913.

Josquin

 

Edited by josquin
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Hi Josquin,

 

Yes, Inglis joined as a boy entrant - his service record states this clearly.

 

Sadly, the C H Taylor commissioned in 1919 is not "my" C H Taylor.  According to 11 Sqn records, Sgt C H Taylor (3076) was posted from 11 Sqn to RP Arques on 25 July 1919 as part of the general drawdown of the Sqn.  Inglis and my relative were also part of that drawdown, both listed as Sgts.  There are no FS ranks identified. :(

 

Cheers,
Mark

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Just to add confusion to the original poster's question, re patch & cap.

 

The top three photos have been shown to a friend, who thinks the triangular badge may be for No.2 Armoured Car Company, RAF.  This might explain the RNAS cap, as they were initially running them before everything was transferred.  A Petty Officer (cap & badge) was equivalent to a Flight Sergeant (sleeve rank).

 

He also added that if this is not the case, the triangular badge could be an army division indicator, and not No 11 Squadron, RAF, as they didn't apparently wear any squadron identifiers.

 

As noted earlier, the medal ribbon is 1914 Star.

 

I have no knowledge on this matter, the above is "as related."

 

Sam

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On ‎5‎/‎7‎/‎2018 at 08:16, SamCurt said:

Just to add confusion to the original poster's question, re patch & cap.

 

The top three photos have been shown to a friend, who thinks the triangular badge may be for No.2 Armoured Car Company, RAF.  This might explain the RNAS cap, as they were initially running them before everything was transferred.  A Petty Officer (cap & badge) was equivalent to a Flight Sergeant (sleeve rank).

 

He also added that if this is not the case, the triangular badge could be an army division indicator, and not No 11 Squadron, RAF, as they didn't apparently wear any squadron identifiers.

 

As noted earlier, the medal ribbon is 1914 Star.

 

I have no knowledge on this matter, the above is "as related."

 

Sam

 

Hi Sam,

 

My relative had no connection to No.2 Armoured Car Company and so I'm at a loss to know why he would have a photo of a Flt Sgt from that unit.  Also, my relative never served in Egypt and, by the time of the Coy's formation in 1922, he was in the RAF Reserves.  

 

I'm pretty sure the triangular badge in the first photo is '11' and not a Roman numeral 'II'.  This idea is reinforced by the "2" apparent in the photo of Inglis at Post #9.

 

I'm wondering if these triangular badges were worn post-war.  Certainly, it would be an odd thing for an Observer to have on his uniform during wartime.  IIRC, the RFC removed squadron markings in early 1918 precisely because of the information imparted to the enemy from aircraft that had been shot down/captured.  Why, then, would personnel wear a patch with a squadron identification?  The wearing of such badges post-war would make much more sense, although clearly it was short-lived as nobody else seems to have noticed it before.

 

Cheers,
Mark

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On ‎5‎/‎4‎/‎2018 at 21:42, Kimberley John Lindsay said:

Dear Buffnet453,

The ribbon is the 1914 Star, and I assumed the cap badge was RNAS, too. The triangular patch is new to me, also.

Certainly the Sgt Obs was a rare bird; a very good portrait, indeed.

Thanks for posting these photos!

Kindest regards,

Kim.

 

HI Kim,

 

I'm beginning to think the cap badge may just be an early RAF variant.  All indications are that the photo in the OP and the later one of Inglis were probably taken in 1919.  

 

Cheers,
Mark

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Dear Mark,

I am inclined to agree with you, regarding the elusive Cap Badge. 

It is amazing how much detail was thrown up by the Great War, within a short space of time...

Kindest regards,

Kim.

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  • 8 months later...

Hi Buffnut/Mark

 

I'm also interested in 912 H. T. Inglis, as he later served as a pilot on 41 Sqn, for which unit I am the Historian.

 

I would be interested to know the period that he served with 11 Sqn, if you're able to tell me, please. As you've also noted from his service record, it does not state which units he served with, so all I have is:

 

Re-mustered Observer, 1 Jan 19; to Home Establishment, 14 Mar-14 May 19; svce in France, 15 May-30 Jul 19; svce in Home Establishment, 31 Jul-24 Oct 19; svce in India, 25 Oct 19-14 Nov 21; svce in Home Establishment, 15 Nov 21-20 Apr 22; Sgt, 1 Jan 22; svce in Iraq, 21 Apr 22-22 Dec 23; svce in Home Establishment, 23 Dec 23-7 Jan 32.

 

This implies, in the least, that Inglis did not become an Observer until 1919 (though he was ground crew from 1913-1918), and would have ended when he became a pilot in 1925 - a 6-year window. As such, I would appreciate anything you might be able to add with regard to his time with 11 Sqn, please.

 

For your own interest, though, I can add that he re-mustered as an under-training pilot in March 1925 and was awarded his pilot badge in December 1925. He was then posted to 41 Sqn, where he remained until a yet-to-be-established date in late 1927 or early 1928, when he undertook a flying instructors course at CFS. Upon graduation, he instructed for three years at Cranwell for which he was awarded an AFM in June 1931. He was then posted out to Egypt in January 1932, and was killed in a flying accident there during a flight test on 25 January 1933.

 

Regards

Steve

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12 hours ago, Steve Brew said:

Hi Buffnut/Mark

 

I'm also interested in 912 H. T. Inglis, as he later served as a pilot on 41 Sqn, for which unit I am the Historian.

 

I would be interested to know the period that he served with 11 Sqn, if you're able to tell me, please. As you've also noted from his service record, it does not state which units he served with, so all I have is:

 

Re-mustered Observer, 1 Jan 19; to Home Establishment, 14 Mar-14 May 19; svce in France, 15 May-30 Jul 19; svce in Home Establishment, 31 Jul-24 Oct 19; svce in India, 25 Oct 19-14 Nov 21; svce in Home Establishment, 15 Nov 21-20 Apr 22; Sgt, 1 Jan 22; svce in Iraq, 21 Apr 22-22 Dec 23; svce in Home Establishment, 23 Dec 23-7 Jan 32.

 

This implies, in the least, that Inglis did not become an Observer until 1919 (though he was ground crew from 1913-1918), and would have ended when he became a pilot in 1925 - a 6-year window. As such, I would appreciate anything you might be able to add with regard to his time with 11 Sqn, please.

 

For your own interest, though, I can add that he re-mustered as an under-training pilot in March 1925 and was awarded his pilot badge in December 1925. He was then posted to 41 Sqn, where he remained until a yet-to-be-established date in late 1927 or early 1928, when he undertook a flying instructors course at CFS. Upon graduation, he instructed for three years at Cranwell for which he was awarded an AFM in June 1931. He was then posted out to Egypt in January 1932, and was killed in a flying accident there during a flight test on 25 January 1933.

 

Regards

Steve

 

Hi Steve,

 

I got your PM (and your response to this thread...obviously! :)).

 

'Fraid the only 11 Sqn records I have relate specifically to my relative, Sgt James Gamble.  However, I have found the following regarding Inglis (all sorties in Bristol F2b Fighters) providing date, aircraft serial number and pilot:

 

26 June 1919, F4894, Lt Cox

3 July 1919, E8206, Sgt Franklin (serial could be F6206 as the original page was overtyped).

4 July 1919, F6206, Sgt Franklin

16 July 1919, E2605, Sgt Gamble

25 July 1919, H1579, Sgt Gamble

 

There's also a list of personnel movements with Inglis listed as "posted to RP Arques" on 25 July 1919.

 

Like I said...not much to go on, but hope it helps a little.

 

Cheers,
Mark

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Quick update...Inglis' service record does provide durations of service in different theatres.  That might provide some additional insights:

 

Home 13/10/13-21/8/18

France 22/8/18-13/3/19

Home 14/3/19-14/5/19

France 15/5/19-30/7/19 - Clearly this is his period with 11 Sqn

Home 31/7/19-24/10/19

India 25/10/19-14/11/21

Home 15/11/21-20/4/22

Iraq 21/4/22-22/12/23

Home 23/12/23-7/1/32

Middle East 8/1/32-25/1/33

 

He remustered as an Observer 1/1/19.  Other remusterings included:

1/5/20 - ACII

1/9/23 - AC Crew

12/7/24 - ACC/DP

20/3/25 - D Pilot

15/12/25 - Pilot

I'm afraid others more knowledgeable than I will have to translate the acronyms.

 

Cheers,
Mark

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Mark,

 

Regarding the cap badge query from your photo, this was the badge worn by all RAF ranks below WO1 in 1918. For Airmen it was embroidered in red, for NCOs and WO2s it was gold wire on black. It was based on the RNAS ratings cap badge, but with the fouled anchor in the centre replaced by an eagle in flight.

 

In May 1919 the (now) familiar gilt metal badge was introduced for NCOs and Airmen, with a gilt metal eagle badge for WO2. WO1s wore the same cap badge as Officers from 1918.

 

Jon

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Dear All,

A super story to go with the excellent portrait.

The fact that H. T. Inglis was awarded the AFM in 1931 speaks volumes for his ability as a flying instructor. 

Sadly his "pilot's luck" ran out in Egypt...

Kindest regards,

Kim.

Edited by Kimberley John Lindsay
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Thanks Mark, Jon and Kimberley

I figured his time as an observer with 11 Sqn would need to be in 1919, given his move to India later that year, but what has thrown me is that he was in France or at home most of 1919, whereas I understand 11 Squadron was based in Spich, Germany from May to September 1919.

 

Inglis' service record has him serving in France, India and Iraq, but not in Germany, so his time with 11 Sqn must have been prior to May 1919. If he was in France 22 Aug 18-13 Mar 19, and then home again from 14 Mar-14 May 1919 (roughly when 11 Sqn moved to Germany), I guess he must have been with 11 Sqn prior to 14 Mar 1919.

 

I'll have to try to locate the 11 Sqn ORB for the period to see if it provides any clues.

 

Thanks for your insights

 

Steve

 

Steve Brew

41 (F) Squadron RAF at War & Peace, April 1916-March 1946 http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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6 hours ago, Steve Brew said:

Thanks Mark, Jon and Kimberley

I figured his time as an observer with 11 Sqn would need to be in 1919, given his move to India later that year, but what has thrown me is that he was in France or at home most of 1919, whereas I understand 11 Squadron was based in Spich, Germany from May to September 1919.

 

Inglis' service record has him serving in France, India and Iraq, but not in Germany, so his time with 11 Sqn must have been prior to May 1919. If he was in France 22 Aug 18-13 Mar 19, and then home again from 14 Mar-14 May 1919 (roughly when 11 Sqn moved to Germany), I guess he must have been with 11 Sqn prior to 14 Mar 1919.

 

I'll have to try to locate the 11 Sqn ORB for the period to see if it provides any clues.

 

Thanks for your insights

 

Steve

 

Steve Brew

41 (F) Squadron RAF at War & Peace, April 1916-March 1946 http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

 

Hi Steve,

 

Inglis doesn't appear on any of the Daily Flying Returns for 11 Sqn prior to June 1919 (at least not the ones I've seen).  It's possible he was there earlier but I have grave suspicions.  Sadly, there aren't any records prior to October 1918 but those that have survived should indicate whether Inglis arrived on the Sqn prior to 15 May 1919.  FWIW the box containing the Daily Flying Returns is AIR 1/2010/204/305/3. 

 

11 Sqn only moved to Spich on 20 May 1919 so it's entirely logical for his posting on 15 May of that year to reflect France rather than Germany.  

 

Kind regards,

Mark 

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