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The Airmen's Stories - Midshipman (FAA) G W Roberts


George William Roberts was born in October 1920 in Warwick, the son of James Edmund and Eleanor Mary Roberts.

He must have trained at 7 FTS Peterborough as the photo below (from his album) shows Hawker Hart K3133, which collided with K3131 at 7 FTS while both were attempting to land on the same runway. Both pilots survived.



Roberts was serving with 808 Squadron at Wick in early July 1940, flying Fulmars on dockyard defence.

He embarked with the squadron in HMS Ark Royal on 22nd October 1940 and served with it in the actions in the Mediterranean in 1941.



On 11th October 1941 Roberts was posted to 800 Squadron in HMS Indomitable. The mostly uncaptioned photos from this time suggest that he took part in 'Operation Pedestal', the relief of Malta in August 1942.

He later served at Macrihanish and then went to HMS Khedive on 31st December 1943 for air gunnery duties.

Its possible that he returned to Indomitable as he married Jean Cook in Colombo, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) on 4th July 1945. The carrier had docked there two days earlier to embark the F6F Hellcat fighters of 1839 and 1844 Squadrons, the first of their type to enter service with the FAA.



The photos below are from his album, any captions are included.


No. 4 RN Flight Wing.


HMS Khedive.


HMS Indomitable.



HMS Khedive.










Roberts was killed on 30th May 1946, whilst serving with 736 Squadron FAA as a Gunnery Instructor at HMS Vulture, a training airfield near St. Merryn, Padstow, Cornwall.

Fairey Firefly MB677 flew into a hill in bad visibility, exploded and disintegrated at Trenance Downs, near St. Austell.



He was 25 and is buried in St Merryn churchyard, Cornwall.


Additional research and all images above courtesy of Barbara Susan Roberts (daughter) via Helen Voller.







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