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Alan Bentley

Flight Lemnos to Bucharest

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Alan Bentley

In a very rare account of my father's service with the RNAS in the Dardanelles (1915 - 1917) he wrote;

 

"Two years service in the Dardanelles and Salonica operations included work on the machines which were the first to bomb the vicinity of Constantinople and work on the machines which flew from Lemnos to Bucharest".

 

The Constantinople incident is fairly well documented but the flight from Lemnos is a bit puzzling. Does anyone have dates and what a/c & units were involved in this flight?

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pete-c
On ‎11‎/‎11‎/‎2018 at 10:28, Alan Bentley said:

In a very rare account of my father's service with the RNAS in the Dardanelles (1915 - 1917) he wrote;

 

"Two years service in the Dardanelles and Salonica operations included work on the machines which were the first to bomb the vicinity of Constantinople and work on the machines which flew from Lemnos to Bucharest".

 

The Constantinople incident is fairly well documented but the flight from Lemnos is a bit puzzling. Does anyone have dates and what a/c & units were involved in this flight?

 

Hi Alan,

The first flight to Romania, following the Romanian government's appeal to the Allies for assistance, occurred on October 25th 1916.  The pilots were:

 

Flt Cdr. H Stanley Adams, Nieuport 11 '3978', Flt Lt LA Hervey in Henri Farman F.27 'N3008', Flt Lt AFF Jacob, Nieuport 12 '8525', Flt Lt GA Cox, Nieuport 12 '8524', Flt Sub Lt HV Reid, Nieuport 12 '8514' - all taking off from Imbros.   Flt Lt RY Bush in Henri Farman N3007 failed to get away. (See below)  

 

A second flight of reinforcements followed on November 21st.

 

Flt Lt CE Brisley, Nieuport 12 '8731', Flt Sub Lt Mills, Nieuport 12 '8513', Flt Sub Lt Barrington, Henri Farman F.27 'N3004' - these three machines taking off from from Mudros.   Bush finally got away from Imbros on the same day in Henri Farman 'N3007'.

 

All the machines involved in these flights were initially prepared at the Repair Base on Lemnos (Mudros) - hence your Dad's involvement.   It would seem that all these aircraft operated as 'S' Flight of 2 Wing whilst in Romania.

 

 

Edited by pete-c

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Alan Bentley

Once again many thanks for the info.

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Alan Bentley

I have an account in a British newspaper ,dated18th Sept 1916 - "Four machines left Salonika …… on a military mission ….. to drop bombs on Sofia"

Two of the aircraft flew on to Bucharest and two landed "in Rumanian territory" These were French pilots.

So the Brits and the French were bombing in the area.

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pete-c
10 hours ago, Alan Bentley said:

I have an account in a British newspaper ,dated18th Sept 1916 - "Four machines left Salonika …… on a military mission ….. to drop bombs on Sofia"

Two of the aircraft flew on to Bucharest and two landed "in Rumanian territory" These were French pilots.

So the Brits and the French were bombing in the area.

 

Flight, September 21st 1916.

 

Carrying a message from General Sarrail to the French Minister at Bucharest, Sub Lieut. Noel - so well known at Hendon - and Lieut. Leseur on September 14th flew from Salonika to Bucharest, a distance of 350 miles, after dropping several bombs and a parcel of proclamations on Sofia.  Two other French machines also started from Salonika with a similar mission, and landed in Roumania safely.  Details, as given by one of those which reached Bucharest, are as follows.

 

"Four machines left Salonika at 20 minutes past six in the morning on a military mission, and with orders to drop bombs on Sofia as a reprisal for the recent bombing of Bucharest.  "We arrived over Sofia at 20 minutes to 10 without having met with any adventures on the way.  The gilded dome of the Royal Palace glittered in the brilliant sunshine and served as a splendid mark.  Several fires broke out.  We were heavily shelled without being hit.  A German aeroplane also attempted to attack us, but met with no success.  At 20 minutes past 11 the first aeroplane arrived at the Bucharest aerodrome.  The second reached the same place at 3 o'clock while the other two landed in Roumanian territory."

 

A translation of the proclamation which was dropped is as follows:-

 

"People of Sofia!  The soldiers of the Entente do not fight against the civil population.  Our airmen bomb only military establishments.  Zeppelins and German aeroplanes throw bombs on Salanika and Bucharest, assassinating old men, women and children.  The Germans alone are capable of such deeds.  Such crimes call for vengeance.  People of Sofia!  Your town to-day expiates the crimes of your allies.  If such crimes are again committed, they will be followed by the same punishment."

 

 

 

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Alan Bentley

The newspaper goes on to say-

The public has not yet been informed of this flight, but there was great enthusiasm in official and diplomatic circles and the daring airmen were overwhelmed with compliments to which they replied with their customary modesty.

The first machine was piloted by Lt. Leseur  with Second -Lt. Noel as observer. The second carried Sergeant Lamprous with Gunner Mason as observer, and the third Lieut. Philbri with Sergeant Rouery. The name of the fourth airman will be declared later.

 

Funny thing is that I cannot find anything about UK pilots going to Rumania in the UK press.

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