A pilots' war




 No. 27 Squadron RFC,  1916 continued

May 5 (7269)       2 hrs 35 min      12,000 ft

Comment: " Patrol, self leader others Taylor, Joy and Basden"

May 10 (7269)    30 mins

Comment: " Aire to St Omer and return to test sights for top gun. Engine failed"

May 18 (7269) 3 hr patrol 

Comment: "Saw explosion of German ammunition in Hohenzollen redoubt."

May 19 (7269) 2 hr 40 min patrol

Comment: "Photographs of half German second line trenches opposed to 1st Army ie a point  North of Vimy to a point North of Hulloch."

Martinsyde G100 serial 7290

27 Sqn RFC Martinsyde G100, 7290, 1916

Extract from ROYAL FLYING CORPS Communiqué 37

May 20th 1916

2/Lt. M D Basden, 27 Sqn, in a Martinsyde Scout, was brought down in the German lines as the result of a combat in the air.

Note: 2/Lt. Basden was in Capt Smith's flight, flying Martinsyde 7278. He was brought down on 20 May by a Roland two-seater while on a reconnaisance patrol. [He is buried at Y Farm Military Cemetery, Bois-Grenier]. 2/Lt. Thomas of 27 Sqn was brought down on 8 April flying Martinsyde 7267. He is buried at Ecoivres Military Cemetery, Mont-St. Eloi.

May 21 (7269)   3 hrs   15,000 ft

Comment: "Patrol,  drove down German aeroplane over Lens"

Extract from ROYAL FLYING CORPS Communiqué 37

May 21st 1916

Eighteen encounters took place, all of which were inconclusive.

May 22 (7269)   2 hrs (evening patrol after 2hr 45 min morning patrol)

Comment: "Ascended in rain. Spotted many German guns firing around Lens especially at (Sheet 36,e M.28) near Chateau.

May 24 (7269) 50 mins

Comment: "Forced landing at Auchel (25 sqn), cap came off end of jet."

No 27 Sqn Pages  1  3

Copyright © 2004 in the diary text and photos from 1915 and 1916 is held by Major Smith's family. Copyright © 2004 www.airwar1.org.uk