- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Sgt. D.C. Plaunt
- Background to story:
- Royal Air Force
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 19 August 2005
Operations carried out by Sgt. D.C. Plaunt while with 97 Squadron. A total of 12 Operations.
7th February 1943
4 aircraft detailed to attack Lorient. The op reported highly successful, weather good and target bombed with good results. Many large fires observed in town and target area.
7th / 8th February 1943 : Lorient
R5559W Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, .Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. 14 SBC. Up 1916 Down 0048. Primary target Lorient successfully bombed. Thin cloud. Identified southern point of town isually. Saw at least 15 good fires burning. Bombs released and seen to burst in midst of fired area. One very yellow fire seen
13th / 14th February 1943 : Lorient
13th February 1943
Fighter affiliation. 14 Lancasters detailed for ops. 12 aircraft successfully attacked Lorient under good weather conditions. Numerous fires seen. 2 aircraft returned early owing to technical failures.
13th / 14th February 1943 : Lorient
W4249L Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. 14 SBC. Up 1849 Down 0147. Primary Lorient target successfully bombed. Visibility good, very clear. Pin-pointed target visually — rear gunner saw bombs explode on aiming point. Many large fires observed.
14th February 1943
14 Lancasters detailed for night ops. 13 aircraft successfully raided Milan in good weather. 13 photos were also taken and two plotted within 2000 yards of the target. 1 aircraft returned early owing to technical failure. Operation was highly successful.
14/15 February 1943 : Milan
W4825H Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. 14 SBC. Up 1830 Down 0353. Primary Milan target successfully bombed. Visibility good except for smoke haze. Target identified visually. Bombed where red markers had been burning. Own bomb bursts seen. Lots of good fires observed
16th February 1943
8 Lancasters for ops tonight. All successfully attacked Lorient in good weather. Many fires seen. On return to base W4197A was badly damaged when the aircraft swung off the runway, trying to avoid overshooting. The undercarriage collapsed. No one was injured.
R5915Q Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. Up 1855 Down 0129. Primary target successfully bombed. Bombed TI markers which were confirmed visually as being in correct position. Stick of incendiaries seen to straddle town.
17th February 1942
The following message received from AOC 5 Group ‘The last attack on Milan was one of the most concentrated attacks which Squadrons of the Group have yet carried out — 14 Aiming Point pictures have so far been recorded with another 28 within the target area and many further ones showing a mass of fires have yet to be plotted. One squadron have achieved the record with 6 Aiming Point photos. All crews deserve the highest praise. Again it shows that the squadrons in the Group beat all others. If squadrons can maintain the standard I am certain it will have profound effect on the whole war.’ No flying today — ops stand down.
19th February 1943
6 Lancasters detailed to attack Wilhelmshaven. All aircraft attacked the target and fires were seen. Weather, haze and low cloud 5-10/10ths. One aircraft also on night cross country and one on night bombing.
R5612R Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. 1 x 4000lb 12 SBC. Up 1818 Down 2245. Wilhelmshaven attacked from 15,000’. Cloud over target area. Pin-pointed coast visually just north of target. Bombed on red markers, own bomb bursts seen. One large and many smaller fires seen.
3rd March 1942
11 aircraft detailed to bomb Hamburg. 8 aircraft attacked the town and all but one crew saw the marker bombs. Many good fires were observed and the glow was visible some distance from the target. One aircraft bombed a last resort, Friedrichskoog owing to technical failure. Two aircraft jettisoned jettisoned bombs and returned due to technical failures. No cloud but considerable ground haze over the target. R5490B Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, Whiting. Up 1917 Down 0023. Hamburg attacked 17,000’. No cloud. Green TI markers confirmed by outline of River Elbe — this we bombed and observed own burst. Number of good fires. We bombed late in attack. Ground detail obscured by smoke from fires.
5th March 1943
12 Lancasters detailed to attack the Krupps Works at Essen. All aircraft reported successfully having attacked the target or target area and all crews agreed the raid was well concentrated. There were many large fires and explosions, smoke reaching a height of 6,000’. Weather was fine but hazy. R5483D Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, W.Lochrie. Up 1847 Down 0001. Primary objective bombed. 18,000’, thin cloud and haze. No TI markers after making run from yellow Tis. Bombed farthest edge of fires. Large number of concentrated fires observed.
8th March 1943
12 Lancasters detailed to attack Nuremburg. 10 aircraft reported success. PFF markers were scattered, there being three distinct concentrations, most of the crews bombed the largest cluster. Numerous scattered fires were reported, some being particularly good. Two aircraft returned early owing to technical failures.
8th / 9th March 1943
Nurnburg — Bomb laod 1 x 4000lb 12 SBC unless stated R5607X Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, Baggs. 1 x 8000lb. Up 1920 Down 0303. Primary objective attacked. 13,000’. Clear — hazy. Built up area observed visually. Bombed on green TI markers. Number of good fires seen, one particularly large one.
9th March 1942
9 Lancasters detailed to attack Munich. 9 aircraft successfully attacked target. Many fires reported, one particularly large in the south east of Munich. Most crews report having seen a very large explosion followed by fire and smoke. One aircraft returned early due to technical failure after jettisoning bombs. 10.3.43 Three Lancasters detailed to lay mines in Privet Area and one in Spinach Area. All report successful laying of mines. Weather was fine with good visibility.
9th / 10th March 1943 : Munich
R5612R Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, R.Frank, A.W.Taylor, Dillon. 1 x 4000lb 12 SBC. Up 2045 Down 0358. Munich attacked from 17,000’. Slight ground haze. Too late for TI markers so bombed built up area where fires were burning. One very large explosion seen as we approached target. Few scattered fires.
11th / 12th March 1943 : Stuttgart
Bomb load 1 x 4000lb 12 SBC unless stated 11.3.43 12 Lancasters detailed to bomb Stuttgart. 9 aircraft report bombing the target. Bombing did not appear to be too concentrated, though some good fires were seen. Weather over target was good, there being no cloud but some haze. One aircraft bombed a last resort target owing to engine trouble. This target was an airfield and bursts were believed to have been on runways. Two aircraft returned early due to technical failure. R5915Q Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, S.S.Ramsden, A.W.Taylor, Dillon. Up 1941 Down 0107. Last resort, believed aerodrome attacked at 49.05N 05.09E. Cloudy with ground haze. Saw lights believed aerodrome. Bombs believed to have fallen on aerodrome. Starboard engine u/s and unable to maintain height — bombed first suitable target. 12/13 March 1943 Essen — Bomb load 1 x 4000lb 12 SBC unless stated
12th March 1943
11 Lancasters detailed to bomb Essen. 7 aircraft report successful bombing of the target and large fires and one outstanding explosion were seen.
Weather was good with ground haze. One aircraft (Sgt Plaunt) is missing. Three aircraft returned earky due to technical failures. R5607X Sgts D.C.Plaunt, T.L.Williams, P/O A.J.Smith, Sgts J.L.Viau, W.Burr, A.W.Taylor, Dillon. 1 x 8000lb. Up 1907 — aircraft and crew missing.
This story was submitted to the People’s War site by Becky Barugh of the BBC Radio Shropshire CSV Action Desk on behalf of Des Evans and has been added to the site with his permission. The author fully understands the site's terms and conditions.
See more of Des’s stories:
- Bale out!
- Missions from Woodhall Spa
- Tracers coming through the thatch
- I didn’t quite get the chop
- Little humour in adversity
- Ted Porters Crew
- The ‘Augsburg Raid’
- S/L Sherwood’s recommendation for the Victoria Cross
- The worst night of the War…
- The worst night of the War (Part 2)
- The worst night of the War (Part 3) - Crew
- The worst night of the War (Part 4) - Losses
- The worst night of the War (Part 5) — Extract from ‘the Berlin’ Raids’
- The worst night of the War (Part 6) — Bombers over Berlin
- The worst night of the War (Part 7) — Combat Report
- A Dedication to Skipper Wing Commander Ted Porter - Pause for Thought
- A Dedication to Skipper Wing Commander Ted Porter — A Navigators View of the Route to Heaven
- Did you know?
- Flight Operations carried out by Sgt. J.J Johnson
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ after baling out on 9th — 10th June 1944
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ after baling out on the 9th - 10th June 1944 - Continued
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ - 11th June 1944
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ - 12th — 15th June 1944
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ - 16th - 18th June 1944
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ - 19th — 23rd June 1944
- The experiences of ‘Taffy’ — 24th August 1044
- ‘Our Heroes’
For further stories read ‘ACHIEVE YOUR AIM’ by Kevin Bending
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