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[Home] [Profiles 103 Sqn N to Z] [Cecil H Ogden and crew 103 Sqn]

P/O Cecil H Ogden DFC RAFVR and crew – 103 Squadron – RAF Elsham Wolds – 1944

Failed to Return – 14/15th July 1944 – Avro Lancaster III – NE136 – Op Revigny

also

Ditched on return – 24/25th April 1944 – Avro Lancaster III – JB278 – Op Karlsruhe

Cecil Ogden and crew were posted to 103 Squadron at RAF Elsham Wolds from Heavy Conversion Unit in March 1944. They had an eventful tour and this most experienced and determined crew were sadly lost on their 27th operation. See below :-

15-Mar-44 – Stuttgart – Lancaster – JB732 – F/S CH Ogden - Landed at Foulsham

10-Apr-44 – Aulnoye – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

11-Apr-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

18-Apr-44 – Rouen – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

20-Apr-44 – Cologne – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

22-Apr-44 – Dusseldorf – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

24-Apr-44 – Karlsruhe – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden - Ditched on return. Damaged over the target by two twin engined night fighters. One destroyed. Ran out of fuel. Ditched in the sea off Kent coast in Pegwell Bay on the Goodwin Sands. Crew uninjured and rescued by lifeboat. I was told years ago by a 103 Squadron veteran that when the crew were found it was low tide and the crew were playing football on the sand !

21-May-44 – Duisburg – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

22-May-44 – Dortmund – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

24-May-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

27-May-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

09-Jun-44 – Flers – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

12-Jun-44 – Gelsenkirchen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

14-Jun-44 - Le Havre – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

16-Jun-44 – Sterkrade – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

17-Jun-44 – Aulnoye – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden - Aborted by Master Bomber due to cloud cover over target. Jettisoned long delay bombs and returned to base

22-Jun-44 – Mimoyecques – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

23-Jun-44 – Saintes – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

25-Jun-44 – Flers – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

28-Jun-44 - Chateau Benapres – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

29-Jun-44 – Domleger – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

30-Jun-44 - Oisemont Neuville au Bois – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

02-Jul-44 – Domleger – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

05-Jul-44 – Dijon – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

07-Jul-44 – Caen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

12-Jul-44 – Revigny – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden - Diverted due to rain and low cloud at base

14-Jul-44 – Revigny – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden – FTR - Night fighter victim. Crashed at Biencourt sur Orge, France.

Reported to have been the victim of Maj Werner Hoffmann Stab I/NJG5 - 5km East of Thonnance-les-Joinville: 3,000m at 02:01.

The aircraft crashed just outside the village of Biencourt-Sur-Orge in France. The aircraft had exploded in mid air and wreckage and remains were scattered over a wide area. The remains and some personal effects, papers and ID cards were collected and one of the deceased, Sgt F T Armstrong RAFVR was identified. There were rumours in the area of another airman being hidden nearby but it is thought he came from another bomber that came down in the vicinity. The airman was discovered hiding in a wood by a local farmer who took him to his farmhouse. The airman was suffering from a burnt hand and gave his name as William John, probably his first names, and was an Australian. He left the farm the same day saying that he would head for Switzerland. He was very vague about the place he had crashed and it is possible that he came from any of the three aircraft that crashed in the vicinity the previous day

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P/O Cecil Harold Ogden DFC RAF – 103 Sqn - Son of Harold and Cicely Ogden; husband of Muriel Gladys Ogden of Bedford – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France.

Ogden's DFC was gazetted in June 1944.

Sgt Ernest Thomason RAF – Flight Engineer - 23 – 103 Sqn - Son of William and Annie Thomason – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

F/S George Clarke Mitchell RAFVR – Air Bomber - 23 – 103 Sqn - Son of George Blackwood Mitchell and Elizabeth Mitchell of Gilmerton, Edinburgh; nephew of Janet Mitchell, Gilmerton, Edinburgh – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

W/O Oliver John Lancaster Pratlett RCAF ( see newspaper cutting and photo below ) – Navigator - 103 Sqn - Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

F/S Kenneth Arba Brooke RAFVR – Wireless Operator - 22 – 103 Sqn - Son of Irvine and Clarice M. Brooke of Son of Gildersome, Yorkshire – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

Sgt Francis Thomas Armstrong RAFVR – Air Gunner - 20 – 103 Sqn - Francis and Margaret Armstrong of Bootle, Lancashire – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

P/O Frank Farnham DFM RAFVR – Air Gunner - 21 – 103 Sqn - Son of Fredrick Percival and May Farnham; husband of Jean Farnham, of Ilfracombe, Devon – Biencourt-Sur-Orge Communal Cemetery, France

Farnham was on his second tour. His DFM was awarded whilst serving with 192 Squadron and gazetted in November 1943

103 Squadron Pratlett Ogden photo

103 Squadron Pratlett Ogden

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14-Jul-44 – Revigny

103 Squadron detailed 12 aircraft for this attack on the French railway yards at Revigny. The weather for take off was 10/10ths low cloud and continued the same the whole route and after the master Bomber investigated the conditions were such that an accurate attack was impossible and the operation was abandoned. All crews jettisoned their Long Delay bombs in the designated safe area in the Channel on return and returned to base. P/O Green, P/O Gibbons, F/O Forbes, P/O West, F/O Moss and F/S Shean were diverted. P/O Ogden and P/O Anthony are missing

For this attack on railway yards at Revigny and Villeneuve in France Bomber Command detailed a total of 242 Lancasters and 11 Mosquitos of Nos 1, 5 and 8 Groups. The raid on Villeneuve was carried out and the railways were hit, though much of the bombing fell to the east of the target. The raid to Revigny was abandoned because the railway yards could not be identified due to cloud. 7 Lancasters lost from the Revigny raid.

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Lancaster – JB278

103 Squadron Remains of Lancaster JB278

Pegwell Bay and all that is visible of JB278

This machine was lost on its 13th operation. See below :-

24-Feb-44 – Schweinfurt – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon - Combat with single engined night fighter. Gunners fired short burst. No return fire. No claims

15-Mar-44 – Stuttgart – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

18-Mar-44 – Frankfurt – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

22-Mar-44 – Frankfurt – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

24-Mar-44 – Berlin – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

26-Mar-44 – Essen – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

30-Mar-44 – Nuremberg – Lancaster – JB278 – P/O BB Lydon

10-Apr-44 – Aulnoye – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

11-Apr-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

18-Apr-44 – Rouen – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

20-Apr-44 – Cologne – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

22-Apr-44 – Dusseldorf – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden

24-Apr-44 – Karlsruhe – Lancaster – JB278 – F/S CH Ogden - Ditched on return. Damaged over the target by tow twin engined night fighters. one destroyed. Ran out of fuel. Ditched in the sea off in Pegwell Bay off the Kent coast. Crew unhurt and rescued by lifeboat.

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Lancaster – NE136

This machine was lost on its 25th operation 20 of which were with the Ogden crew. See below :-

19-May-44 – Orleans – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O LJL Green – Early return – Port inner engine unserviceable.

21-May-44 – Duisburg – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

22-May-44 – Dortmund – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

24-May-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

27-May-44 – Aachen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

03-Jun-44 – Wimereaux – Lancaster – NE136 – F/L JTA Marsden - Landed at Killingholme

05-Jun-44 – St-Martin-de-Varreville/Crisbec – Lancaster – NE136 – F/L JTA Marsden

06-Jun-44 – Vire – Lancaster – NE136 – F/O DA Josey

09-Jun-44 – Flers – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

12-Jun-44 – Gelsenkirchen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

14-Jun-44 - Le Havre – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

16-Jun-44 – Sterkrade – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

17-Jun-44 – Aulnoye – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden - Aborted by Master Bomber due to cloud cover over target. Jettisoned long delay bombs & returned to base

22-Jun-44 – Mimoyecques – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

23-Jun-44 – Saintes – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

25-Jun-44 – Flers – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

28-Jun-44 - Chateau Benapres – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

29-Jun-44 – Domleger – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

30-Jun-44 - Oisemont Neuville au Bois – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

02-Jul-44 – Domleger – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

04-Jul-44 – Orleans-les-Aubrais – Lancaster – NE136 – F/O JPD Bartleet

05-Jul-44 – Dijon – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

07-Jul-44 – Caen – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden

12-Jul-44 – Revigny – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden - Diverted due to rain and low cloud at base

14-Jul-44 – Revigny – Lancaster – NE136 – P/O CH Ogden – FTR - Night fighter victim. Crashed at Biencourt sur Orge, France.

Item compiled by David Fell with thanks to John Jones. Newspaper cutting courtesy of the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.

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