Play / pause Air Loadmaster

Air Loadmaster

  • Brian Conway
  • Interview by: Jess Boydon

Transcript

On the 24th of June, I think, the barriers went up.

And I flew out on the 26th,

and we had a squadron of York transports.

As soon as they were unloaded,

we'd started flying into Berlin.

We were very, very short of ground crew,

because for keeping a squadron of aircraft

in the air, more or less flying, and in bay,

maybe doing two or three trips a day into Berlin,

you want a ground crew of about 150.

And we did 30 odd.

So it was tough, very tough.

First six weeks, we slept

when it was fine under the wings of the aircraft.

And then we got more and more aircraft coming in,

of course, they were collected from various parts

of the world.

They came from as far away

as New Zealand, Canada, South Africa.

And the numbers of planes were increased,

and fortunately the number of ground crew also increased.

So, some of us who there were released

to do other jobs.

One of my jobs was to see that the,

I was the Load Master Assistant,

so I flew from Vinson into Gato

several times a week for a considerable time.

My job was to check goods on and check goods off

the other end.

More and more stuff was going in,

and it wasn't just called this paraffin,

it was diesel, it was medical supplies, it was flour.

So, gradually the tonnage going in to Berlin

every day increased.

And I think it was the 12th of March,

they had nearly 1,300 tons.

You imagine that going in by air,

where it landed at Gato.

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