Post by Dave Homewood on Oct 5, 2011 10:50:18 GMT 12
I have read recently several accounts by NZ soldiers at Gallipoli who mention the Allied aeroplanes that patrolled in pairs above them, spotting for their guns and also dropping bombs.
What sort of Allied aeropllanes were there in action above our trenches? And where did they operate from? Did they have strips on outlying islands or were they perhaps operating off carriers? Were they RFC or RNAS? Or other?
the Seaplane Carrier HMS Ben-My-Chree saw service during the Gallipoli campaign, launching short 184 Seaplanes for spotting duties. the remains of one of the Gallipoli - veteran 184s is held by the FAA Museum Yeovilton.
The Short at the FAA Museum is the centre fuse only; it was the one that Frederick Rutland, "Rutland of Jutland" spotted the German fleet from during the Battle of Jutland on 31st May 1916. it's on long term loan from the IWM. It was bombed during WW2 (not the plane specifically, although stranger things have happened, when bombs landed in Wimbledon Common, the Germans have since been accused of trying to kill the Wombles and the rest of the plane has been destroyed. Shame really, the Short was huge in size and would have been a real sight.
In the magazine "Over the Front" in 1994 there was a series of articles called "Over the wine dark sea" that focussed on aerial operations by all sides over the Dardanelles in 1915. If I can remember correctly there is specific reference to a German/Ottoman reconnaissance unit Fliegerabteilung 1 in operation over Gallipoli during the assault. Allied forces were also bombed. I'll hunt out the articles for more info.