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The Airmen's Stories - P/O H R Allen


Hubert Raymond Allen was born on 19th March 1919 and joined the RAF on a short service commission in June 1939.

He commenced flying training in early June 1939 at 11 E&RFTS Perth. In late August he was posted to Hullavington after which he went to 15 FTS at Lossiemouth for further training.



Allen joined 66 Squadron at Duxford on 13th April 1940. He and two other pilots shared in damaging a Ju88 on 19th June. On 30th August Allen shared in destroying a Do17, on 9th September he shared a He111, on the 15th he shot down a He111 and damaged a Do17, on the 18th he destroyed a Me109 and probably one on the 30th.



In October Allen was appointed 'B' Flight Commander. On the 11th he got a probable Me109 and on 14th November he destroyed a Ju87 and damaged another. Over Edenbridge on the 28th, in Spitfire P7492, Allen collided with Sgt. Willcocks in P7491. Allen baled out and landed safely but Willcocks was killed.

On 11th December Allen destroyed a Me109. He was wounded in the right arm on 14th February 1941 after being jumped by Me109s. He crashed at Biggin Hill.

Allen shot down a Me109 and shared another on 20th June and on 20th August he shared in the probable destruction of a Me109 off the Dutch coast.

After being awarded the DFC (gazetted 22nd July 1941), Allen was promoted to Acting Squadron Leader in October 1941 and given command of 66 Squadron. He was posted away in December 1941 to 286 Squadron, which carried out anti-aircraft co-operation duties.

He married Anne Mary Cecilia Smyth-Pigott in July 1942 in Marylebone, London. The engagement announcement stated that Allen was 'of Cadet College Bangalore, Bombay, Delhi and Coventry'.

On 19th August 1942, flying in a Spitfire Vb as a supernumerary with 131 Squadron, Allen attacked and damaged a Do217 over the English Channel. It was his last operational flight.

After the war Allen remained in the RAF. He commanded No. 1 Squadron from January to October 1946 and 43 Squadron from December 1949 to February 1952. He was a graduate of the RAF Staff College and retired on 1st January 1965 as a Wing Commander.

Allen died on 31st May 1987.

His portrait was made by Olive Snell.

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