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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.

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576 Squadron Crest
20/21.02.1945 No 576 Squadron Lancaster I NF975 UJ-J2 F/O. R.S. Bastick

Operation: Dortmund

Date: 20/21st February 1945

Unit: 576 Squadron

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: NF975

Code: UL-J2

Base: RAF Fiskerton

Location: Not known - target area?

Pilot: F/O. Richard Stanley Bastick 184678 RAFVR Age 24. Missing - believed killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Frederick George James Martin 1324045 RAFVR Age 23. Missing - believed killed

Nav: Fl/Sgt. William Gordon Frost AUS/428286 RAAF Age 23. Missing - believed killed

Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. William Victor Bibby 1579109 RAFVR Age 25. Missing - believed killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Jack Coates 1622241 RAFVR Age 21. Missing - believed killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Henry Alfred Sargent 1474901 RAFVR Age 23. Missing - believed killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Robert Leslie Swaffer 1898320 RAFVR Age 20. Missing - believed killed


Took off at 21:41 hrs. from RAF Fiskerton to bomb the Rhenania Ossag oil refinery in the Reisholz district. 514 Lancasters and 14 Mosquitoes took part in this final operation of the war on Dortmund.

The object was to destroy the southern part of Dortmund which according to Bomber Command was achieved. No reports are available from the local archive on the damage caused to the city.

No claims for the loss according to the Nightfighter War Diaries, but at this stage of the war records were difficult to find/evaluate. Most aircraft were shot down in the target area and over Duisburg.

Note: Fl/Sgt. Jack Coates, a standby for this operation and not with his usual crew, survived an earlier incident on the 25th July 1944 on Lancaster III PB265 UL-V2.

Burial details:

F/O. Richard Stanley Bastick. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 266. Son of Horace Gordon and Rose Lilian Bastick, of Woolwich, London, England.

Sgt. Frederick George James Martin. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 276. Son of Frederick Richard and Lily Maud Martin, husband of Esther Martin, of Sacriston, Co. Durham, England.

Fl/Sgt. William Gordon Frost. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 284. Son of Lindsay and Elsie Frost, of Willans Street, Narrandera, New South Wales, Australia. Born on 02nd December 1921 at Albury, New South Wales, Australia.

Fl/Sgt. William Victor Bibby. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 270. Son of William Victor and Catherine Jane Bibby, of Narberth, Pembrokeshire, Wales.

Fl/Sgt. Jack Coates. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 270. Son of William and Elizabeth Coates, of Accrington, Lancashire, husband of Margery Coates, of Accrington, Lancashire, England.

Sgt. Henry Alfred Sargent. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 276. Son of John F. and Florence M. A. Sargent, of Dagenham, Essex, England.

Sgt. Robert Leslie Swaffer. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 277. Son of Frederick William James Swaffer and Florence Ellen Swaffer, of Chiddingstone Hoath, Kent, England.

With thanks to Simon Weir for crew photograph. Other sources as quoted below.

Acknowledgements: Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives and Fred Paradie - Paradie Archive (both on this site), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 15 December 2015, 23:44

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