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A Look at the Channel on D-Day

A Look at the Channel on D-Day

Mr. Fox describes the view of the English Channel on D-Day from a pilot’s perspective.

The New Spitfire 9

The New Spitfire 9

Mr. Warren receives a newer Spitfire 9 fighter which is the equal of German fighter aircraft. The new Spitfire can fly at much higher altitude, and with its auxiliary fuel tanks, has a much greater combat range.

The Spitfire was A Poor Night Fighter

The Spitfire was A Poor Night Fighter

Mr. Warren is in one of three squadrons trained for night fighting. He describes being nearly blinded by flames from his Spitfire's exhaust ports, which made takeoff and landing very difficult.

Fuel was Critical

Fuel was Critical

Mr. Warren describes several of his combat tasks; sweeps (searching for targets of opportunity), dogfighting and bomber escort. The length of these missions was short due to the Spitfire's small fuel capacity and high consumption rate.

Value of his Ground Crew

Value of his Ground Crew

Mr. Warren discusses the importance of his ground crew, and his sense that they were responsible for his safely completing his tour of duty.

Bombing alone

Bombing alone

Technology has advanced over the years, but during the Second World War sometimes it was more a distraction. Mr. West recalls during one bombing run that his pilot, annoyed by the static on the airwaves, ordered that the radios be turned off, subsequently missing the order to turn back to base. Mr. West's plane was the only one who made the target and dropped their bombs.

Dangers of close formation flying

Dangers of close formation flying

During bombing runs, air craft would fly dangerously close to one another. Mr. West talks about the dangers of bumping into another plane while large groups of aircraft were flying together.

The loss of two engines

The loss of two engines

Mr. West tells us how the plane he was travelling on lost two engines while taking enemy anti-aircraft flak. The pilot had prepared the crew to parachute from the plane but he managed to keep the aircraft in the air long enough to make a unannounced emergency landing back in Britain.

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