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Battle of Britain RAF Operations Record Books (ORBs) released on TheGenealogist

To mark the 80th anniversary of the start of the Battle of Britain (10 July 1940 - 31 October 1940)  TheGenealogist is releasing over 2 million new RAF records. These records not only cover this important fight for Britain’s survival, but also encompass all of the Second World War period for a number of squadrons. This release brings the total ORBs records to 3.7 million and are part of TheGenealogist’s extensive Military records collection.

 

The ORBs are fully searchable by name, aircraft, location and many other fields, making it easy for researchers to find their aviation ancestors. These ORBs are the latest release to join TheGenealogist’s large military records collection which is always being expanded.

 

Hawker Hurricane I R4118 of No 605 Squadron,  Image: Arpingstone / Public domain

 

The fascinating pages from these diary-like documents tell the stories of brave aircrew, including those at the time of the Battle of Britain, 10 July 1940 - 31 October 1940. Recording patrols flown, the daily journal records give insights into the everyday lives of the personnel on bases. Researchers can use the collection to follow an airman’s war time experiences from these fully searchable Air Ministry Operations Record Books which cover various Royal Air Force, dominion and Allied Air Force squadrons that came under British Command. Sourced from The National Archives the AIR 27 records allow the family history researcher an interesting insight into relatives who had served in air force units under wartime conditions. 

 

The ORBs provide a summary of daily events. Some are ordinary entries, such as the names of new pilots posted to the squadron, entertainment on the base, or even noting the fact that an officer has become engaged. Sadly, these ORBs also record the death of pilots, crashes, or names of airmen that were missing in action. As names of personnel are recorded in these reports, for a family history researcher wanting to follow where an ancestor was posted to and what may have happened to them in the war, ORBs are often very enlightening documents. 

 

Use these records to: 

  • Read the war movements of personnel in air force units
  • Discover if a pilot, navigator, radio operator or gunner is mentioned in the action
  • Find if an airman is listed for receiving an Honour or an Award
  • Add colour to an aircrewman’s story 
  • Note the names of squadron members wounded, killed, or did not return
  • Easily search these National Archives records and images


Read TheGenealogist’s article: Ace in a day

https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/featuredarticles/2020/ace-in-a-day-1278/

 

These records and many more are available to Diamond subscribers of TheGenealogist.co.uk

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Over One Million RAF Operations Record Books released on TheGenealogist

 

TheGenealogist has expanded its unique collection of searchable RAF Operations Record Books with the addition of 1.2 Million new records for aircrew operations.

 

Airmen - planning their next mission. Public domain

 

Operations Record Books (ORBs) are official air force documents chronicling an air force unit from the time of its formation. They were intended to be an accurate daily record of the operations that the squadron carried out in peace and at war. The ORBs are for squadrons primarily after the First World War, but there are a few early squadron records from 1911 to 1918. TheGenealogist uniquely has made the Operations Record Books fully searchable by name, year and keywords.

 

This collection also includes some record books for Dominion Air Forces (Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa) as well as Allied Air Force squadrons under British Command and can be used to find the stories of brave aircrew, giving insights into the operations that they carried out. The ORBs follow a daily diary format giving summaries of events and can reveal the death of aircrews, crashes, as well as less disquieting entries such as the weather for flying, promotions and the decorations men of the squadron received. ORBs also detail the areas that the fighter planes patrolled, or the bombers targeted, as well as where the squadrons were based as the war wore on. These duties and assignments include bombing the enemy, patrolling the skies, convoy escorts, submarine hunts, attacking docks & shipping, dive bombing raids, and more.

 

As aircrew personnel are named in these reports, those wanting to follow where an ancestor had been posted to and what may have happened to them will find these records extremely informative. 

 

Use these records to: 

  • Add details to an aircrewman’s story 
  • Study the war movements of personnel in air force units
  • Discover if a pilot, navigator, radio operator or gunner is mentioned in the action
  • Note dates airman received promotions, medals, or other honours
  • See the names of squadron members wounded, killed, or who did not return
  • Easily search the transcribed records and images licensed from The National Archives

This latest release expands TheGenealogist’s extensive Military records collection and is available to all Diamond subscribers.

 

You can read their article about a famous fighter ace and a bomber pilot who flew more than 120 operations: 

https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/featuredarticles/2020/air-27-operations-record-books-capture-airmen-from-fighter-and-bomber-squadrons-during-ww2-1261/



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