I mangaged to open Frank's doors in his turret putting my hand and arm under his arm I stretched up and tried to break ice from his oxygen mask, could see lots of flares and lights outside talk about November 5th!! Just then some tracer shots by us below and behind luckily Frank although almost out turned his turret in the direction of the tracer on the port beam, so I was trapped by my armin between the turret and the rear of the fuselage I felt scared because I only had 2mins left in my oxygen bottle, I struggled out after what semmed to be ages and then I dropped my torch and lost it make matters worse.
After what seemed an ages I plugges in my Oxygen tube to the elson spare and recovered my breath a bit it was hellish cold although it was only 25 degrees below on the guage. I struggled back to my place forward and told Bob how hopeless things were with Frank we were still well in the flack and flares area in fact a flare just wizzed by our tail a near thing for us Bob gave me a long oxygen tube spare and taking two or three potable bottles and another torch I went down to see Frank, he was just all out, I got his doors open again and pulled him flat on his back on the wooden plank from his turret to the tail cross-member then I pulled his oxygen mask off an plugged in the spare one on to the elsan oxygen point and popped the new mask on his face.
After a bout 5 or 6 mins he began to flicker his eyes about and try to sit up but I made him lay still and told him to take his time then get back into his turret leaving the door open and still using the spare mask.
Throughout the diary, Poland notes many days on picket, and the state of the fighting around Petersburg. On duty as usual. He was later promoted to Corporal. The diary begins with a brief reminiscence back to Avery's enlistment in and has regular entries from January of until March of While saying the sergeant should be recognized for his valor if the Air Force narrative was correct, Chief Slabinski still expressed skepticism that the new evidence — gleaned from software that can isolate pixel representations of people and help track their movements — was reliable.
I then went up the front again and started to work agin. All this time we were getting away from Berlin and just missed Rostock and on to Denmark, across Denmark and out over the North sea lots of flack on the Danish coast but although Bob had come down several thousand feet to help Frank we dived through the barrage ok. Frank gradually got back to normal exept his electrical suit did not work and he was very cold, we carried on until we got just off the coast nr Cromer cloud only ft high se we kept it until we got back to base.
Base Gave us no 7 position and in we came to make a wizzard landing about 12 39 midnight, the ground crew cheered us in and we soon got down to breakfast after interrogation, we eventually got into bed at 2. So ended our first operational trip, Bob had already had his baptism of fire before at Leipzig. Glad to say Frank soon felt better; but was quite sick due to rushing about, I think without oxygen etc. Dec 17th Foggy again, we got out of bed, , lunchtime and Loyd was actually awake first!
Wonders will never cease! After lunch went out "Y" and cleaned her up inside and then Alan and I went into Lincoln to do some shopping; unfortunately by the time the bus came and we got to town the shops were already closing, we were unlucky. We had some tea in Boots' cafe, it was quite nice, Welsh Rabbit and chips.
Phil came in and we all went to the Ritz to see "Batann", which was quite a blood thirsty picture. Afterwards we just popped in for a quick drink and then met Frank before catching the bus, we all managed to climb on the bus at , it was always crowded, everyone trying to get on, it was terrible. We finally arrived back at camp around 11pm and fell into our beds. Dec 18th Thick fog again, no flying. Did the usual D I on "Y", checked all the helmets and had a look at the results of the raid.
Quite a good concentration on the target, although we lost 30 bombers in the process. Our photograph was quite good, another Lanc was flying quite a long way below us and it came out pretty good in the photo. It rained like blazers in the afternoon, came down form the flights at about 3pm. We all played cards for the rest of the afternoon and then about 5pm, Phil, Bill and I scrounged off to the mess. We managed to get a good supply of bread and butter and piping hot tea for our flasks by the time we arrived back at the billet. Loyd supplied us a spread from out of his Canadian parcels, smashing, we had toast and sardines and there was spam aplenty.
We finished it all off with a wizard fruit cake, stiff with fruit and nuts. We continued to play cards until 10 o'clock and I had amassed the princely sum of six shillings before we had finished. The weather has been awful this evening, wet and windy. I wonder whether it will be ops tomorrow? Our passes have all gone in to the orderly room, ready for our leave. So, off to bed. Dec 19th Fine morning but very cold. Went up to the flights and did the usual DI.
Fixed up to go to Waddington, stopped for an early snack before boarding the bus to Waddington. And two weeks pay! Caught the bus back to camp, had tea, met Bob, Alan and Frank and off we went to Southwold, roughly a two hour trip and we arrived at approximately We got back in the mess for supper and then on to the billets for bed. Did manage to ring Audrey from Waddington and when I got back a letter from her was waiting for me in the mess with the news about Brown being killed.
Dec 20th Up to the flights, very cold strong wind, did the usual DI in "Y". Rumour circulating that ops were on. Complete panic, ops are on, rush to check everything and then down for lunch. Briefing at and then we had bacon and eggs before we went back down to site for change underwear. Back for business, Frankfurt the target! Early take-off, all out to "Y" in good time. We have lbs of destruction on board, 1 cookie, 4x lbs and the rest incendiaries.
Take-off okay, what a relief to get off the deck, gained height and set off. Had some bad luck, three or four minutes had passed when the inner engine started bumping, M and G very jumpy so Bob decided couldnt go any further. Out to sea, jettisoned the bombs and bought back the incendiaries.
Turned round, heading back towards port all the time loosing height rapidly. Landed early. We then had supper and got ready for leave.
We heard that Frank was grounded by the MO, so we had young Chapman in the rear turret his 19th op. We were very disappointed, although it was better than pranging over there. Leave tomorrow, we hope. He then went on leave.
After his leave he completed 7 more operations. Warburton Bill Flight Engineer. Find out how you can use this. Most of the content on this site is created by our users, who are members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC. If success should ultimately attend them, I shall almost waver in my faith and doubt the Christian system. When you hear anything about Charles, then let me know their situation. I wish they were safe among their friends in England. Phillis and Charles are clearly in trouble and from the next letter dated 17 December we learn where and why:.
I feel serious pleasure in your having at last heard from your sister. In the present situation of affairs in that wretched country it is certainly infinitely satisfactory to know that they are well as ever in existence. I should have felt sincere delight in receiving a letter from her, but that happiness is denied me, none ever having come to my hand.
They are, however, best acquainted with their own concerns. Then on 28 May we learn that Phillis and Charles have indeed done what Henry would have recommended and escaped from France:. In the same letter she gives me a piece of intelligence, at which I do most sincerely rejoice. I shall be anxiously looking for it. Unfortunately they came back with their health seriously damaged by the ill-treatment they had suffered along with many other English known as the English Detainees at the hands of the French mobs.
By the 29th of April she had to write:.
Mrs Stables calld again this morning. Ellen a little better but our poor Meni almost gone. Constant convulsions all day Mr Sutton sent for me. Had sad intelligence to give him. Phillis who had sat up all Night was laid down. Dr Hulme here at noon. I was forced to remain in the next room with my afflicted Sister whom we had taken away about an hour before he died. On my return here two days ago from Philad. These in the course of nature we are prepared to part with as an event inevitable, however distressing it may be, but it goes hard to be separated from those of a less mature age.
Considering the weak state of your health, I fear much for the effects of you mental as well as bodily fatigues and distresses on this truly melancholy occasion. Your sufferings and afflictions must doubtless have been enough to overset you, even had your health been more robust. I hope in God that you may escape all serious consequences attending your exertions.
At this point Phillis was wealthy. When he met Phillis Cooper had already been married before, without children, to an heiress, so he must have been reasonably wealthy, but this was not enough for him. That he may have been, but he was undoubtedly also a man of enormous charm both to men and women. Indeed there is quite some evidence that Jemima was later also deeply attached to him.
The marriage settlement between Cooper and Phillis is dated 1 November She must have been well advised. However, exactly six months later, on 17 April , she wrote her will. In it she left everything to Cooper. There was not even a token bequest to her mother and sisters.
We can only speculate, because the documentation is very sketchy at this point, but it is not unreasonable to suppose that Cooper talked her into it by promising to look after her sisters and mother. At the time of her marriage settlement to Cooper, Phillis was living in one of the properties that she and Meniconi had owned — Batheaston Villa, near Bath. In , when her niece, Fanny started writing her diaries that is where she was living with her Aunt Powell Jemima and Aunt Neate Mary. Kitty Christiana was living elsewhere in Bath and she and Jemima were not on speaking terms.
Kitty was receiving letters from her son William Neate Chapman. I have received a very friendly Letter from him, full of nothing however. I wish when he dies, he may be persuaded like my Uncle Shirley, to leave his Fortune, if any remain, to those to whom it is due Frances and Emma Chapman — by the way I believe her name is Fanny instead of Frances.
The only reason such a document could have come into existence was that one or more of the three sisters had challenged the will. Perhaps a promise that he would make sure that the three girls and their children would be properly looked after. In he sold Batheaston Villa.
Chapman was a sgt. in the last days of the war and obtained a diary from a german officer, this diary had secrets that he would have to solve in order to find the. Sergeant Chapman had put the team into a degree position that would provide some security for the CH, and as we had not received any more fire since.
His sisters-in-law and his niece had to move out and from then on they lived in rented accommodation — no slums, but nothing of the same standard as Batheaston which still stands today and is one of the most beautiful houses in the beautiful city of Bath. We have already introduced you to Col John Hutton Cooper who married Phillis Meniconi, one of the Neate sisters and then had the good fortune, perhaps aided by vigorous use of charm, to inherit her considerable fortune. After she died in he took two of his surviving sisters in law, Jemima and Mary and his niece, Fanny into his magnificent house — Batheaston Villa — in Batheaston on the East side of Bath.
We know little of his first few years with them there, but in Fanny began her diary and his story comes to life. Fanny was then 33 and Cooper 43 and it is clear there was a strong attraction between them. But for Fanny the love is unrequited. The following is an entry in her diary from Sunday, 22 January, A deep snow, which is likely to last, as it continues snowing very fast.
Cooper in very good humour, speaking before breakfast of letting this house. The three women were devoted to Cooper, sewing his neck-cloths, cleaning the books in his library and looking after his wardrobe.
In he found a woman who could bring more money to him, Maria Charlotte Baker, daughter of Sir George Baker and they were married. In he was elevated to a Baronetcy — no doubt sponsored by the Duke. His obituary concluded:.
He died on the 24 th of December, about 63 years of age, leaving us a bright example of what may be done, though with humble means at the outset of life. He attained wealth, honours, distinction, by the force of his character alone, the leading features of which were disinterestedness, sincerity and steadiness in his friendships and attachments, added to great gaiety and cheerfulness, with a kind captivating manner. Jemima married well, or so it would seem. She married Arthur Annesley Powell. Arthur was born was born Arthur Annesley Roberts. His uncle, John Powell, died in without children, so he left his estate to his eldest nephew, Arthur, son of his sister Elizabeth Roberts, on the condition that Arthur change his name to Powell.
This put him in what today would be a billionaire category. The marriage must have seemed like a god-send to the embattled Neate family. On 1 March Jemima and Arthur entered an agreement separating their property and it seems likely this was also some sort of separation agreement. As a postscript to the Powell story, his character was confirmed by a very nasty episode.
In March , Powell and his drinking companion Lord Falkland quarrelled after two long nights out.