The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. N P G Barron
Norman Percy Gerald Barron was born on 1st January 1919 in Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire. His father was a clergyman. NPG Barron's home address is shown in the 1939 register as 25 Beaconsfield Road, St Albans, Hertfordshire.
His occupation was recorded as Aeronautical Engineer, RAFVR Sergeant Pilot. He was a student with de Havilland from 1936 to 1939.
Above: Barron postwar in KLM uniform.
Above image courtesy of Susan Shekleton (god-daughter).
He had joined the RAFVR in January 1938, as an Airman u/t Pilot and trained at No. 1 E&RFTS Hatfield. He was one of a group of fifty VR u/t Pilots who were offered six months of continuous flying training with the regular RAF. He went to 2 FTS Brize Norton on 15th July 1939 and with his training completed, he joined 236 Squadron at St. Eval on 16th December 1939.
He served throughout the Battle of Britain.
Commissioned in November 1940, Barron was involved in combat with a Blohm and Voss Bv138 floatplane on the 30th of the month. He led a section of three Blenheims against the German off SW Ireland, they expended all their ammunition but the Bv138 (which was armoured) escaped into cloud with one engine smoking. Barron's Blenheim was damaged and two of his crew wounded.
Posted away on 7th October 1941, Barron went to 19 Group, firstly to a drogue-towing unit at Roborough and later to an Armament Practice Camp at Carew Cheriton, where he flew Lysanders.
On 1st August 1942 Barron was posted to 172 Squadron at Chivenor, flying Leigh-Light Wellingtons on anti-submarine work. He went with a squadron detachment to Malta on 9th June 1943.
In early September he was sent to 22 PTC Almaza, Cairo, from where he was posted to Southern Rhodesia. After an instructors course at 33 FIS Norton, Barron went to 22 SFTS Thornhill on 9th January 1944. He instructed there on Havards until returning to the UK in September 1945.
Barron spent a further year instructing, firstly at 17 SFTS Spitalgate and then at 19 FTS Cranwell before he was released in April 1947.
He joined KLM in January 1948 and flew with them until retiring in 1978.
Barron died on 15th February 2001 in Pembrokeshire.
Barron's elder brother, W/Cdr. Oswald James Milman Barron, DFC (and bar), was lost on 11th April 1944 while commanding 248 Squadron based at Portreath. During an attack on flak ships off St. Nazaire his Mosquito was shot down by anti-aircraft fire. He is remembered on Panel 200 of the Runnymede Memorial.