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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 226030
Last updated: 11 June 2019
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Date:21-APR-1940
Time:21:50 LT
Type:Vickers Wellington Mk 1a
Owner/operator:149 Squadron Royal Air Force (149 Sqn RAF)
Registration: P9218
C/n / msn: OJ-J
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 6
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Limfjorden, 500 meters east of the Aggersund bridge, Nordjylland -   Denmark
Phase: Combat
Nature:Military
Departure airport:RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk
Destination airport:RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk
Narrative:
Vickers Wellington B.Mk.1a P9218 (OJ-J) of 149 Squadron, RAF: Substantially damaged force landed during air operations to attack Aalborg Aerodrome, Denmark, 21 April 1940. Took off from RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk at 17:55 hours. During the attack on Aalborg West airfield Wellington P9218 was hit by flak from 5./Res. Flak Abt. 603 in one engine, and had to ditch in the Limfjorden 500 meters east of the Aggersund bridge, Nordjylland, Denmark, at 21:50 hours. All six crew survived, were captured, and taken as POWs

Crew of Wellington P9218:
Flying Officer (Pilot) Frederick T. Knight - POW
AC.2 (Wireless Operator) James J. Eldridge - POW
Sgt W.G.McDonald - POW
Sgt Gerald Edwin Forsyth - POW
AC.2 Philip Blackburn (Air Gunner) - POW
AC.1 William J.Thew - POW

As can be seen from contemporary photographs (see links #2 & #3) Wellington P9218 belly landed into water; it was substantially damaged but complete. After interrogation at Dulag Luft at Oberursel near Frankfurt the crew was passed on to various POW camps.

AC.2 Jesse James Eldridge was sent to XIIA Limburg in Westphalia where he stayed for two months. Then on to Stalag VIIIB Lamsdorf in Silesia where he stayed until May 1942. From October 1942 to October 1943 he was in Stalag Luft I and from October 1943 to July 1944 in Stalag Luft VI Heydekrug in East Prussia. Finally in Stalah Luft IV Gross Tyschow in East Pommeren from July 1944 to February 1945. To end up in Stalag 357 Fallingbostel near Hannover from March 1945 to April 16, 1945.

AC.1 William Thew was in June 1940 sent to Stalag Luft VIIIB Lamsdorf where he stayed for a month. Then on to Stalag Luft I where he stayed for about a year until he was sent to Stalag Luft III Sagan where he spend two years. Then to Stalag Luft VI where he spend a year before moving to Stalag 357 Fallingbostel.

Sgt Gerald Edwin Forsyth was sent to Stalag IIIB Lamsdorf where he stayed until August 1940. Then to Stalag Luft I Barth where he was until April 1942 when he was sent to Stalag Luft III Sagan. June 1943 saw him off to Stalag Luft VI Heydekrug where he stayed until June 1944 where he left for Stalag 354 Thorn. In August 1944 he was sent to Stalag Luft 354 Fallingbostel. He was liberated in April 1945.

AC.2 Philip Blackburn stayed in Dulag Luft Oberursel until 6/5-1942 when he left for Stalag Luft III Sagan in Silesia where he arrived on 9 May 1942. He stayed until 16 June 1943 when he travelled to Stalag Luft VI where he stayed from 19 June 1943 to 10 July 1944 when he left for Stalag 357 Thorn in Poland. Arriving on 12 July 1944 he stayed until August 1944 when he was sent to Stalag 357 Fallingbistel near Hannover where he stayed untill 7 April 1945.

On 12 May 1940 Sgt McDonald was sent Stalag 12A Limburg an Lahn where he stayed until 14/6-40. Then to Stalag 8B Landsdorf in Silesia where he spend a month until he (on 12 July 1940) continued to Stalag Luft I Barth Vogelsang where he was until 21 April 1942. Then on to Stalag Luft III Sagan where he stayed until 6 April 1943 when he left for Stalag Luft 354 Thorn. On 6 August 1944 he continued to Stalag 354 Fallingbostel where he was until liberated in April 1945.

Flying Officer Frederick T. Knight was sent to Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang where he became ill with tuberculosis. On 6 February 1945 he was repatriated to England, where he died shortly after.

Sources:

1. Royal Air Force Aircraft P1000-P9999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1979 p 51)
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR 81/160: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C14141939
3. https://imgur.com/r/warplanesnuffporn/UK17gtS
4. http://www.flensted.eu.com/194004.shtml
5. http://www.epibreren.com/ww2/raf/149_squadron.html
6. https://www.baaa-acro.com/crash/crash-vickers-408-wellington-ia-near-aggersund

Luftwaffe Officer poses with 149 Squadron Vickers Wellington Mark IA P9218 shot down by 5./Res. Flak Abt. 603 over Aggersund in Denmark - April 1940

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
10-Jun-2019 17:54 Dr. John Smith Added
11-Jun-2019 05:52 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]

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