Saturday, 1 November 2014

Chris Hayward

Welcome to the newsletter for November.

Again apologies to those waiting for items from the shop, although we are taking orders its taking us a while to get them dispatched, if you are still waiting please contact me direct on the email address at the end of this issue if you haven't done so already

One of the problems with doing a newsletter on what is rather a limited subject is that its very easy to run out of things to say, having said that if you dig a little deeper it is surprising what you can find, apart from many Whirlwinds being donated by organisations like the Fellowship of the Bellows both Squadrons had their fair share of Commonwealth pilots not only from Canada and Australia but also from India in this issue I will try to shed some light on who these men were.

P/o Dattatreva Anant Samant

P/o Dattatreya Anant Samant

P/o Samant joined 137 Squadron on the 21/1/42 and served with the Squadron until 9/10/42 when he was transferred to 263 Squadron he stayed with them till 18/1/43.
Nicknamed Sammy he was born in Bombay ( now Mumbai), at wars end he got a job with Indian Airlines as Area Manager. Here he can be seen in the cockpit of P7121.(see Whirlwind Stories below)

Copyright Google Earth

         Sgt Sayanapuram Duraiswamy Thyagarajan

Sgt S D Thyagarjan (Tiger or Billy)

Sgt Thyagarjan served with 236 Squadron from 20/10/42 till 25/5/43 after which he moved on to Typhoons when 263 also changed aircraft. Originally from Pondicherry in India he was killed in action on the 25/8/44 after his Typhoon was hit by flack he attempted to make a forced landing but hit some trees, his aircraft flipped over and blew up.

Sgt S D Thyagarjan next to a Typhoon of 263 Squadron.

Tigers headstone

The church cemetery in the  village of La Lande St. Léger in Normandy.
 His resting place is unique in many respects, his gravestone is uncommon because it has an inscription in three languages — Hindi, English and French. And his burial spot, near the south wall and the small entrance gate, is the only serviceman’s grave in the cemetery.

Copyright Google Earth
Pondicherry is now known as Puducherry in the Tamil region of India.

Thanks to DAVID MCMAHON for some of the above text.

 Sgt O Ramamurthy

Sgt O Ramamurthy
Also known as the Maharajah of Strawberry Jampot.

Although posted to 263 Squadron he was non operational, he was posted to 286 Squadron and finally 1624 Anti-Aircraft Co-operation flight.

Any Further information on him would be welcome.

The last survivor.

Copyright Westland Aircraft.
P7048 during her time with Westland as the Company plane

Copyright Westland Aircraft.
The dismantling of P7048 on the Westland site during 1951, you can see the radio hatch in the starboard side also the supporting frame work for the nose cannons, the full length fowler flap system and the pilots access ladder on the port side.

From the WWW origin unknown
P7048 in better times up where she belonged. (note lack of forward guns)

She was sent to 39MU on the 27th of May 1941, then joined 137 Squadron on the 8th of April 42 her tail wheel collapsed after hitting a drain at Matlaske. On the 17th of April 42 she was damaged by flack. She was sent to Westland for repair who retained her. She was sold to Westland on the 29th of March 1945.

Operational hours 123:25

Whirlwind Stories

Copyright Richard J Caruana.


Bellows Argentina No 7

Taken on charge by 39 MU on or about the 8th of December 1941. on the 6th of Feb 42 she was taken on charge by 137 Squadron at Matlaske as SF-C, on the 27th of Feb 42 she was damaged and again on 24th of May when she crashed.
On the 16 of April 43 she crashed again this time at Manston during dive bombing practice killing F/O John Hadlow.

Operational hours 90:40  Total flying hours 325:35.

Many thanks must go to Rob Bowater for the use of his fascinating book on 137 and 263 Squadron without which I could be well and truly stumped for information. 

Also to Niall Corduroy and his book Whirlwind Westlands Enigmatic Fighter.

And to Richard J Caruana for the use of his profiles.

Copies of Robs book can be purchased direct on.

Contact details.

Copyright Whirlwind Fighter Project 2011/2014

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