RAF Marham postings, Washingtons era

work is in progress on this page

We are keen to recruit 207 Squadron Washington era members who were at Marham, including those who served as groundcrew on the Squadron who may not have been mentioned in the ORBs.

Please contact the editor, Frank Haslam: -

Some entries are recorded more fully than others in the Squadron ORBs. Whilst errors may have been made in transcription there are also errors and omissions in the originals.

An online listing for 207's Valiants era at Marham is already in place. Work has begun on postings in 207's Canberra era at Marham.

source: National Archives, Kew, London
AIR27/2661 207 Sqn ORB Jul 1951 - Feb 1956, including Form 449 Monthly Amendment Lists: microfilm

27 Jul 1951 Compiled by Flt Lt HF McNabb DFC

No.207 Squadron was re-formed from a number plate basis at RAF Marham on 29th May 1951 for the purpose of converting to 'Washington' aircraft. The conversion was completed in two months. The Squadron is commanded by Squadron Leader GW O'N Fisher OBE DFC and established for eight crews (nine members per crew) and eight aircraft.

On the 28th June 1951, one of the Squadron captains, Flt Lt LG Holmes DFC AFC was promoted to the substantive rank of Squadron Leader; Sqn Ldr Holmes is expected to remain with the Squadron for a few months.

The Squadron successfully completed the conversion course today 27th July 1951, aircraft have been allocated and flying will commence with the first available aircraft.

Strength of RAF Officers: 20
Strength of RAF Airman Aircrew: 56
Aircraft: Boeing B29A (Washington). Role: Long range night bombing Est: 8 Strength: 8
Operations/Exercises Policy: Part of Main Force Bomber Command

Nominal Roll of Officers No. 207 Squadron: Appendix No.1 to Form 540 No.207 Squadron for July 1951

Sqn Ldr GW O'N Fisher
Flt Lt WH Adams
Plt Off EM Balcombe
Flg Off JS Bennett
Flt Lt ADW Carroll
Flt Lt DE Coleman
Flt Lt GAW Cozens
Plt Off J Donovan
Flg Off DS Eedle
Flt Lt KM Flett
Flt Lt H StJ Garland
Sqn Ldr LG Holmes
Flt Lt HJ Lister
Flg Off DSH Lyons
Flt Lt HF McNabb
Flt Lt AED Murray
Flg Off CJ Petheram
Flt Lt AR Scott
Flt Lt R Van Toen
Flt Lt FG Barnes (Engineering Officer)

Nominal Roll of Aircrew 207 Squadron: Appendix No.1 to Form 540 No.207 Squadron for July 1951

Number Rank Name
1862974 F/SGT FOLLIT
1481222 F/SGT HAINES
2218592 F/SGT HILL
1622220 F/SGT HOWLEY
523583 F/SGT JONES
1672335 F/SGT McEWAN
[blank] F/SGT PALMER
1625139 F/SGT WARREN
1626735 SGT BAKER
705639 SGT BOYKO
2388505 SGT BROWN
4037542 SGT COWELL
1274144 SGT DAWSON
2210204 SGT EDGE
1396358 SGT FLYNN
1809362 SGT FORD
4030425 SGT HAINES
Number Rank Name
3038845 SGT HART
4037553 SGT JAMES
1106605 SGT KIDD
2502616 SGT LAING
2205945 SGT LAMB
579499 SGT LAMB
1899503 SGT LITTLE
1825133 SGT LOVIE
3130359 SGT MERRY
3131354 SGT MONEY
3010055 SGT MORTON
2499511 SGT MURPHY
3504785 SGT OWEN
3131544 SGT SAMUEL
3110211 SGT SEWELL
1809923 SGT TAYLOR
1459584 SGT WALTON


[not in orginal format, which was crew role across the page: forenames/nicknames have been added]

Blue & Blue
F/L Bill Adams
Red & Blue
F/O Petheram
Black Blue
F/O Mike Balcombe
Red & Blue
CO-PILOT P/O Donovan
Blue & Blue
Sgt Hart
Blue & Blue
Sgt Beverley
Blue & Blue
Sgt Spittle
Blue & Blue
NAVIGATOR P Sgt Nick Walton
Red & Blue
Sgt Flynn
Red & Blue
Sgt Ford
Brown & Blue
F/O Eedle
Brown & Blue
NAVIGATOR O F/S Paddy Sheppard
Red & Blue
F/S Howley
Red & Blue
Sgt Lamb
Blue & Blue
F/O Lyons
Brown & Blue
Green & Blue
F/S Hemmings
Red & Blue
F/L Murray
Black & Blue
F/S Palmer
Red & Blue
ENGINEER Sgt Ron Maynard
Blue & Blue
Sgt Hammond
Blue & Blue
Sgt Freeman
Blue & Blue
Sgt Martyn
Blue & Blue
GUNNER F/S George Warren
aka Bunny
Red & Blue
F/S Jones
Black & Blue
Sgt Dawson
Black & Blue
Sgt Lamb
Brown & Blue
GUNNER Sgt John Laing
Blue & Blue
Sgt Ivor Samuel
Green & Blue
Sgt Ronald Brown
Blue & Blue
F/S Richmond
Brown & Blue
GUNNER Sgt Peter Higgins
Blue & Blue
F/S Arthur Haines
Green & Blue
Sgt Jack Colliver
Black & Blue
Sgt Brian Challis
Blue & Blue
Sgt Norman Sewell
aka Sparky
Black & Blue


Blue & Blue
S/L Holmes
Blue & Blue
F/L Flett
Red & Blue
F/O Bennett
Brown & Blue
CO-PILOT Sgt Venables
Black & Blue
Sgt James
Blue & Blue
Sgt Cowell
Blue & Blue
Sgt Owen
Blue & Blue
Blue & Blue
F/L Cozens
Red & Blue
F/L Lister
Red & Blue
Sgt Maunders
Red & Blue
Red & Blue
Sgt Boyko
Green & Blue
Sgt Haines
Blue & Blue
F/L Judy Garland
Brown & Blue
Black & Blue
F/S Edwards
Brown & Blue
Sgt Lovie
Green & Blue
F/L Carroll
Black & Blue
ENGINEER Sgt Fissenden
Black & Blue
F/S Hill
Black & Blue
F/S McEwan
Green & Blue
Sgt Kidd
Black & Blue
GUNNER Sgt Morton
Brown & Blue
F/S Collin Follit
Red & Blue
Sgt Robertson
Black & Blue
F/S Gallacher
Red & Blue
GUNNER Sgt Merry
Blue & Blue
Sgt Norman Murphy
aka Spud
Blue & Blue
Sgt John Money
Blue & Blue
Sgt McDermott
Blue & Blue
GUNNER Sgt Little
Black & Blue
Sgt Sid Taylor
Black & Blue
Sgt Baker
Black & Blue
Sgt Watmough
Blue & Blue
Sgt Alf Edge
Red & Blue


Brown 7-12
Black 13-18
Green 19-24
Red 25+ months
NOTE: 1st colours shown are basic for tour in Bomber Command
2nd colours for tour on Washingtons

Oct 1951: Sqn Ldr LG Holmes was posted to WADDINGTON to command No.57 Squadron wef 21st October 1951.

Jan 1952: Flt Lt AR Scott was promoted to the substantive rank of Squadron Leader in the half yearly promotion list and posted to the training branch in No.3 Group wef 22nd January 1952

Jan 1952: Fg Off B Thomas and crew were posted to the squadron from Coningsby to replace Sqn Ldr Scott's crew which was dispersed to other units. [Scott crew: (Flt Lt AR Scott), P/O Donovan, Sgt Walton, F/S Paddy Sheppard, F/L Van Toen, Sgt Maynard, F/S Warren, Sgt Laing, Sgt Higgins: Thomas crew

Feb 1952: Flt Lt R Van Toen to 21 Group Advanced Signals Unit, Swanton Morley wef 25th February 1952.

Feb 1952: Fg Off J Donovan was posted on a course to No.35 Squadron wef 22nd February 1952.

Feb 1952: Sgt Colliver one of the Squadron's Air Gunners was sent to London as a mmeber of the Royal Air Force Contingent which marched in the funeral procession of His Late Majesty King George VI on the 15th February 1952.

Sep 1952: After an aircraft had returned from an abortive practice bombing exercise the armourer while taking the bombs off the racks accidentally allowed one to fall to the ground and explode. The airman suffered the loss of one eye and has now been released from the service.

Jan 1953: A new crew (captain) Fg Off Kay was posted to the squadron from the Washington Conversion Unit in anticipation of the posting and subsequent disposal of Fg Off EM Balcombe and crew.

Jan 1953: During the floods and high winds which were experienced on the East coast over the week-end 31st January 1953-2nd February 1953, Flt Lt AED Murray was given charge of a party of airmen which assisted in the evacuation and rescue of civilians marooned and drowned at Kings Lynn and Hunstanton. The party was able to give invaluable help in this task and rescued numerous people by troop transport and dinghies.

Feb 1953: Flt Lt AED Murray was commended to Group Captain CR Donaldson CBE DSO DFC, Officer Commanding, Royal Air Force Marham, by the Chief Constable of Norfolk for the important part which he, and the airmen under his command, took in the evacuation and rescue of residents marooned and drowned at Kings Lynn. From the 4th to 9th February the squadron provided 220 officers, NCOs and airmen, to assist in rebuilding the breach in the bank of the Ouse at Magdalene.

March 1953: Crew manning has been fluctuating a great deal for the past few weeks, due to the posting out of two crews, Flt Lt Adams and Fg Off Kay, gunners proceeding to other stations on runway controller duties and others being trained at the mobile training unit.

April 1953: Flt Lt Cunningham and crew were posted in from Coningsby to bring the squadron up to strength.

May 1953: Flt Lt PFJ Hillier and crew were posted to the squadron from Coningsby wef 4th May 1953. This addition brings the squadron strength in crews to nine.

May 1953: The squadron provided one Flight Sergeant, one Corporal and three Airmen for the Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on 2nd June 1953. The aeronautical magazine Flight published the history of No.207 Squadron from its formation as No.7 Squadron in 1916 to the present day. A copy of this has been retained for the squadron records.

June 1953: Coronation medals were awarded to Flight Sergeant RS Johnson who marched with the RAF contingent and to Sergeant RH Gudgeon who was recommended for his qualities as an NCO and the efficiency of his work in charge of the armament section.

September 1953: Flt Lt DE Coleman was promoted to acting Squadron Leader and posted as Squadron Leader Operations Royal Air Force Marham.

September 1953: Flying Officer Crawford and Flying Officer Wall joined the squadron

September 1953: Flying Officer RH Cunningham was posted for Lincoln conversion to RAF Upwood.

October 1953: Flt Lt J Slater was posted for Canberra conversion to Weston Zoyland.

November 1953: Flt Lt CJ Petheram was posted wef 23rd November 1953 as ADC to the AOC No.3 Group.

November 1953: Air Gunners Sgt A Edge and Sgt SEW Taylor were posted to No.7 Squadron Upwood for duties in the Far East

December 1953: During March 1954 the squadron will be re-equipped with Canberras. One Pilot and eight Navigators are converting with the squadron; all the remaining officers and aircrew are to be posted in the near future. The squadron has been flying Washington aircraft since re-forming in June 1951 and is now in the process of completing the return of these aircraft to the USA.

December 1953: The following postings were effected during the month:

Flt Lt EM Stewart to CFS wef 29th December 1953
Flt Lt KM Flett as RAF Liaison Officer to the 30th Brigade in Kenya wef 31/12/53
Gunners: Flt Lt LC Young to RAF Upwood as Flying Wing Adjutant
Sergeant DH Shepherd to No.49 Squadron at Wittering
Signallers: Master Signaller L Walker and F/Sgt Lovie, R to No.242 OCU Dishforth
Navigators: Fg Off TL Parsons to Lindholme for a BCBS course

January 1954: Flt Lt HF McNabb promoted to Sqn Ldr and posted to Bircham Newton OATS Course 4.1.54
Flt Lt PFJ Hillier Detached Jet Conversion Course Marham 6.1.54
Navigators: Flt Lt HF Lister posted to AHQ Malta 23.1.54
Fg Off Denham, AFH detached to Nuneham Park 5.1.54
Fg Off GD Mitchell, Fg Off J Moore, Fg Off AK Wilmshurst, Fg Off DSH Lyons, F/Sgt EE Stevens, F/Sgt DA Maunders, F/Sgt T Howley, detached to Lindholme 13.1.54
Engineers: Sgt DA Southall & F/Sgt J McEwan posted 230 OCU Bassingbourn 4.1.54
Sgt N Fissenden posted to SGB Leconfield 6.1.54
F/Sgt J Harrison posted to Lindholme 13.1.54
Signallers: M/Signaller L Hemming & Sgt PG Crawley posted to Hemswell 27.1.54
Gunners: F/Sgt CHD Collin Follit & Sgt GS Owers posted to 230 OCU Bassingbourn 4.1.54

Feb 1954: Sqn Ldr PH Gibbs assumed command of the Squadron on 15.2.54 vice Sqn Ldr GWO'N Fisher
Flt Lt Hillier detached to 231 OCU Bassingbourn 24.2.54

Feb 1954: Navigators: Fg Off DSH Lyons, Fg Off AK Wilmshurst, Fg Off GD Mitchell, Fg Off J Moore, F/Sgt EE Stevens, F/Sgt JA Riley, F/Sgt T Howley, F/Sgt DA Maunders ceased to be detached to Lindholme 10.2.54
Fg Off GD Mitchell & F/Sgt DA Maunders detached to 231 OCU 24.2.54

Feb 1954 Gunners: F/Sgt J Rough & F/Sgt posted to S of MR St Mawgan 19.2.54
Sgt Lamb detached to Hornchurch 3.2.54 RTU 9.2.54
Sgt Washbrook demobbed 16.2.54
Sgt KG Farmery, Sgt RF Illingworth, Sgt PT Walker posted Mildenhall 8.2.54

March 1954: A Ceremonial Parade was held on Thursday 16th March in the form of an official 'Farewell' parade to the last Boeing B.29 Washington aircraft which was to return to the USA after the parade. All Squadron personnel were on the parade, which was commanded by Group Captain CR Donaldson CBE DSO DFC. Air Marshall Sir George H Mills KCB DFC and Brigadier General PH Robey reviewed the parade. After a speech by General Robey and a reply by Air Marshall Sir George H Mills, the Washington, with Flt Lt Cooke and his crew, taxied out and took off, bound for the USA. The press was fully represented and newsreel cameras from the BBC Television Service and Pathe News were active throughout the parade.

page last updated, Frank Haslam, 17 September 2006
additional name information: John Laing