BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

BBC Homepage
BBC History
WW2 People's War Homepage Archive List Timeline About This Site

Contact Us

Flying out P.O.W.s and Flying in Bailey Bridges

by BBC Southern Counties Radio

You are browsing in:

Archive List > Royal Air Force

Contributed by 
BBC Southern Counties Radio
People in story: 
Derrick Hull
Location of story: 
Burma
Background to story: 
Royal Air Force
Article ID: 
A4380671
Contributed on: 
06 July 2005

This story was submitted by a volunteer from Brighton on behalf of Derrick Hull and has been added to the site with his permission. Derrick Hull fully understands the site's terms and conditions.

I was one of the many ground crew servicing aircraft during the War. I worked on the planes' instruments and often flew with aircraft that were being delivered, or to get to aircraft that needed servicing. One of my many memories is that of the prisoners of war who were released from Japanese camps in Burma and Thailand in August 1945.

I was part of the 267 Squadron who were charged with flying these sick, emaciated men to Akyab Island from where they joined a ship home, or if very sick, were sent to hospital in Calcutta. Normally a Dakota would take 25 passengers, but these men were so thin and wasted that we were able to fly them out 60 on board at a time. The planes flew missions whatever the weather, and were even flown through torrential rain and thunderstorms. One day the ground crew at the airfield saw a Dakota land with parts of a Bailey Bridge sticking out of it! The Dakota had been caught in severe turbulence and the plane suddenly dropped 500 feet. There were no doors on the delivery planes, and cargo was just strapped down. The incredible drop had dislodged the cargo so that parts were sticking out of the plane. The pilot had to do a very amazing landing.

© Copyright of content contributed to this Archive rests with the author. Find out how you can use this.

Archive List

This story has been placed in the following categories.

Royal Air Force Category
icon for Story with photoStory with photo

Most of the content on this site is created by our users, who are members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site's House Rules, please click here. For any other comments, please Contact Us.



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy