- Oliver, Cdr (E) H.G.D. , RAN
- Biographies and personal histories, WWII operations
- None noted.
- RAN Ships
- None noted.
- March 1984 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
On the wireless one evening we heard Mr. Churchill tell the Commons that ‘aircraft reinforcements were being sent to Singapore by all possible means, some of them quite hazardous,’ and wondered if ours was one of the hazardous ones.
On arrival at a spot near Christmas Island, just south of Sunda Strait, the Hurricanes were brought up, uncrated, assembled, manned and flown off in three squads (or flights or what not) of sixteen, each led by a Dutch bomber from an airfield in Java. Pretty to watch, both as a sight and as a mission completed.
Then we proceeded to Trincomalee, where our carrier had a much-needed boiler clean prior to going back for some more crated Hurricanes. But Singapore fell before the second lot got there.
Well now, I seem to be running out of space. I hope you have enjoyed reading this screed. It’s been quite fun writing it, though the English is a bit poor. I hope it illustrates the need for ‘The Rigimint’ and its supporting organisations to remain ‘versatile- minded’. Who would have thought, 40 years ago, that the Navy would come to spending most of its substance on operating aircraft, including those queer beasties with horizontal propellers?