Flight Lt Alex Ackworth - RNAS 4 - Coudekerque - 30 July 1916 (Mission 28)

This one was a hot one !
It all started in the early afternoon when four of us under command of Cdr Whealdon were sent to bomb an enemy airfield near the coast in Nieuwmunster. Weather was nice with a few clouds around 6000 ft. All was quiet when we crossed the front line over the sea a few miles after Nieuwpoort.

Then between Ostende and our target, we found a big cloud across the way, so I decided to go around right and catch up with my flight on target. As I was doing this, I saw a flight of three Fokkers coming my way. A quick look around showed me my flight was out of the cloud but far to my left ! I had three Fokkers to play with by myself !

I immediately dropped the bombs to lighten the plane and headed straight for the cloud. I heard John behind me firing a few bursts at the enemy planes. Once I crossed the cloud, I headed west along the coast full speed in a small descent at 100 knots. I didn't stop before passing Nieuwpoort, and once over Koksijde airfield I made a 360 turn. No one behind ! It worked !

I reduced the throttle to 75% to stabilize the plane and we flew to Dunkirk. At 6000 ft over the town I put the throttle on idle and we glided all the way down to Coudekerque.

It turned out that the other guys had some fighting, two landed in Koksijde and Cdr Whealdon had again to ditch his plane which was destroyed. Both him and his observer are OK, and they filed a claim as well as Lamport. I just hope for them the RNAS won't send them a bill for the planes they ruined since a few days !

PS : The CO gave us all a day off for tomorrow 31 July !

Last edited by corsaire31; 07/31/14 10:27 AM.

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