Oral History collection: Squadron Leader Johnny Foster, former personnel of RAF Fairwood, interviewed by Peter Hall. DVD entitled “Interview with Group Captain John Foster DFC AFC”. John Foster was a student studying medicine in Belfast at the beginning of the Second World War. He left his studies to join the Royal Air Force as a pilot. This DVD interview outlines his service in the Royal Air Force. He was awarded the DFC AFC for his distinguished service. He was stationed at RAF Fairwood Common just after the Second World War.

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  • Reference
      GB 216 D/D Z 717/22
  • Dates of Creation
  • Language of Material
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      1 dvd

Scope and Content

[00:00:01] Personal Details: Sqdn Ldr Johnny Foster. [00:00:12] Personal Details: Medical student, Queens, Belfast, volunteered, deferral. [00:00:52] RAF: Initial Training UK. [00:00:58] RAF: SFTS Canada, 2-3 months. [00:01:10] RAF: Montrose: conversion training, Miles Masters. [00:01:31] RAF: OTU north Wales, thence to ops. [00:01:42] RAF: CO 65 Sqdn, Norfolk, August 1945. [00:02:02] RAF Fairwood: 3 weeks armament training, after VJ day. [00:02:19] RAF: Armament training. [00:02:50] RAF Fairwood: "Hell of a switchback runway". [00:02:57] RAF Fairwood: Officers Mess now golf club. [00:03:10] 65 Sqdn: 12 pilots, 12 a/c. [00:03:17] 65 Sqdn: Drink at Commercial, Killay; and Langland Bay Hotel. [00:04:05] 65 Sqdn: 3 weeks at Fairwood, return to Norfolk. [00:04:27] RAF: Post-marriage posted to Japan, 2 years separation. [00:04:44] RAF: Married quarters Eta Jima (IJN College, Britannia equivalent). [00:05:03] 65 Sqdn: Return to Norfolk: Spitfires, Hornets, Mosquitoes. [00:05:14] 65 Sqdn: Pre-Fairwood had Mustang IVa fighters, escorting Coastal Command Beaufighters & Mosquitoes on strikes off Norway [Mustang IVa was RAF designation of North American P-51K, a variant of the P-51D using Aeroproducts propellers, due to a shortfall in the airscrew production of Hamilton Standard]. [00:05:28] 65 Sqdn: Operations off Norway. [00:06:06] Coastal Command: Reconnaissance. [00:06:16] Coastal Command: Shipping targets: iron ore from Sweden. [00:07:04] Coastal Command: Briefing & strike procedures, need for Mustangs due to range requirement (Spitfires too short-legged). [00:07:55] Luftwaffe: Me 109 opposition. [00:08:07] Coastal Command: Strike procedures, below radar. [00:08:16] Kriegsmarine: Flak ships. [00:08:26] Coastal Command: Heavy losses on anti-shipping strikes, c50%. [00:08:46] 65 Sqdn: Escort procedures. [00:09:33] Luftwaffe: Interception tactics. [00:09:55] Johnny Foster: Flying experience. [00:10:02] 65 Sqdn: Operational routines. [00:10:22] 65 Sqdn: Homing procedures, IFF. [00:11:06] 65 Sqdn: Move to Essex, from Peterhead, May 1945. [00:11:34] 263 Sqdn: Gloster Meteor display team led by Johnny Foster, based RAF Horsham St Faith, Norfolk. [00:12:06] 263 Sqdn: 4 pilots: won competition to form display team. [00:12:29] 263 Sqdn: 1950 Farnborough display. [00:13:23] Johnny Foster: Air Attache, Rome, 1972-75, retired 1978