The Airmen's Stories - F/O G ASHFIELD
Glyn Ashfield, from Oxted, Surrey, was born in July 1912 in Chelmsford and joined the RAF in September 1928 as an Aircraft Apprentice. He passed out in August 1931 and later applied for pilot training.
He was granted a Permanent Commission in September 1939 and was posted to the Fighter Interception Unit at Tangmere in April 1940.
He had married Ruby Houghton-Williams in
October 1938 in Conway.
With thanks to the family of Sgt. EF le Conte, Ashfield's FIU colleague, who supplied the above photograph. It was annotated with his nickname 'Jumbo'.
In the early hours of 23rd July Ashfield was captain of an AI-equipped Blenheim, which shot a Do17 of 2/KG3 down into the sea off the Sussex coast. The other members of the Blenheim crew were Sgt. RH Leyland, Radar Operator, and P/O GE Morris, Observer.
It was the FIU's first successful interception leading to the destruction of an enemy aircraft at night.
Above: L to R: Sgt. RH Leyland, Sgt. EW Lesk, P/O GE Morris, F/Lt. G Ashfield, unknown, Sgt. EF Le Conte at FIU Ford.
Ashfield escaped unhurt when he made a forced-landing in Beaufighter R2059 at Tangmere on 9th September 1940 after his cockpit roof flew off during a night patrol and he collided with an unlit truck on landing. For his work at FIU Ashfield was awarded the AFC (gazetted 17th March 1941).
In early 1942 he was senior Flight Commander in 157 Squadron at Castle Camps. He probably destroyed a Do217 south of Dover on 30th May. Ashfield was awarded the DFC (gazetted 4th December 1942).
He was killed on 12th December 1942, aged 30, when his Mosquito II W4099 hit a tree during a low-flying exercise and came down at Radwinter, Essex.
F/O DD Beale was also killed.
Ashfield is buried in St Peter's churchyard, Limpsfield, Surrey.