Norman Edwards
A Pictorial History

Portrait of F/Lt Norman Edwards

Notes on the these web pages

My father, Norman Edwards, started writing these memoirs during his retirement. He typed up the text and included it with photographs in an album. He made photocopies, page by page, which he passed on to me and my sister, Elizabeth Ann. I do not know what his intentions were, whether he hoped to publish them (he was a professional writer, as you will see).  The story goes as far as the end of World War II in Burma. I do not know whether he planned to take the story further. However, after a heart attack in 2006 he no longer had the energy to write and he died on 8th January 2008.

The title page of the album originally read 'A brief pictorial history', but the 'brief' has been crossed out - evidently it became longer than anticipated.

In transferring it to web pages, I have tried to remain as close to the original format as possible. I have maintained the pagination and the relative positions of the pictures (though they may not be correct if you are viewing on a small screen). I have added some internal links to references within the text. I have also added some external links (obviously not in the original) to sources of additional information. I have tried to be sparing with these, not marking every possible reference to anything that's on the web; you can use Google as well as I can. All these external links are marked with an icon . I have re-touched some of the photos to a small extent, to remove blemishes.

In January 2012 I found another album, which evidently was an intended continuation. There are further pages of commentary (from 151 Indian OTU Peshawar to the end. There were also several pages of more pictures, some without commentary, evidently incomplete. These merge into more recent photographs, including some of Aircrew Association members and then merging into family pictures. I have included only the ones relating to the airforce service here.

One thing my father taught me was to take care with spelling and grammar. Thus, there were few errors in the original and I have only corrected the most obvious slips. The pictures and text have all been scanned from the originals, but I hope I have corrected all errors in scanning.

Contact

If you would like to make contact with me, having read these page, you can email me.

Contents

For efficiency I have split the contents into a number of pages organised roughly chronologically.

Timeline

1888 4 June Sarah Spencer Gale born
1891 2 May Joseph Thomas Edwards born
1918 30 September Joseph Edwards and Sarah Spencer married
1921 15 May Thomas William Edwards born
1922 16 October Norman Edwards born
1924 26 October Walter Edwards born
1936 Began work as Office Boy at the Manchester Press Exchange
1940 December Started working as a journalist
1941 29 May Volunteered for the RAF
12 October Reported to Aircrew Receiving Centre at Lord's cricket ground
27 October Initial Training at RAF Finningley
1942 5 February Promoted to Leading Aircraftsman. Posted to Brighton.
4 March Posted to 26 Elementary Flying Training School (EFTS), Theale
6 March First flight, in a Tiger Moth
23 March First solo
17 April Arrived Halifax, Nova Scotia
20 May Posted to 35 EFTS, Manitoba
6 August Transferred to 14 SFTS, Aymer, Ontario. First flight in a Harvard.
17 August First solo in a Harvard
27 November Commissioned as Pilot Officer
18 December Posted to Harrogate Personnel Dispersal Centre
1943 6 January Posted to Number 7 Elementary Flying School, Braunstone, Leicester
20 April Posted to 5 Advanced Flying Unit at Tern Hill, Shropshire
24 May Posted to 58 Operational Training Unit, Grangemouth
31 May First Spitfire flight
17 June Crashed and baled out
11 July Transferred to Balado Bridge, Kinrosshire
11 September Boarded the Mooltan to India.
12 October Disembarked to Worli Reception Depot.
December Moved to Poona
1944 1 January Joined 155 Squadron in Calcutta.
14 January First flight, in a Spitfire Mark VIII
20 September Squadron moved to Baigachi
7 November Course 20 at Amarda Road Air Fighting Training Unit
14 December Returned to 155 Squadron, Sapam
1945 24 February Last operational flight with 155
10 March Posted to 151 Operational Training Unit (OTU), Peshawar
1946 22 May Last flight in RAF, Bhopal to Ambala, via Agra, in a Harvard.
1952 4 January Birth of Elizabeth Ann Edwards
1955 22 September Birth of Alistair Douglas Norman Edwards
1968 September Death of Joseph Edwards
2008 8 January Death of Norman Edwards RIP

Alternatively, all the pages are available in one file - which may take a long time to load.

Links

Three Brothers At War
An extract from the book Winged Chariots, edited by Norman Edwards. This chapter is reproduced on a BBC website and concerns the three brothers, Tom, Norman and Walter.

Alistair Edwards
3 April 2010 & 26 January 2012