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Wallace Cunningham DFC

Cunningham, Blake and Brinsden at Fowlmere, September 1940. By permission of the Imperial War Museum. IWM CH 001459

Many of you will have seen the sad news that Wallace “Jock” Cunningham passed away recently. Cunningham (on the left in the above photograph) flew with No. 19 Squadron during the Battle of Britain, and as such features very heavily in our work on Duxford’s history.

Back in 1999 we interviewed “Jock” to find out more about his experiences. Particularly memorable was his description of the relentless nature of the combat operations at the height of the Battle:

You could be up in the air and climbing at a thousand feet above the aerodrome and wondering how the hell you got there, because you’d been asleep, you were up and you did all the right things, and you were up in the air… Complete blank as to how you got there.

He is also frequently mentioned in No. 19 Squadron’s Operations Record Book, including this entry for 15 September – what we now know as Battle of Britain Day:

Another party along with Wing, led by S/ldr. Lane and F/Lt. Clouston . When we arrived the formation had already been broken up by 11 Group. S/Ldr. Lane a probable Me.109, P/O. Cunningham an Me.109, F/Sgt. Unwin two Me.109’s. Sub/Lt. Blake an Me.109 and shared a He.111, F/Lt. Clouston a Do. 17, F/O. Haines an Me.110 and Me.109, P/O. Vokes a probable Me.110. F/Sgt. Steere a Do.17. Sub/Lt. Blake and Sgt. Roden shot down but force landed safely. Sgt. Potter missing.

An obituary of Cunningham can be found here.

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2 comments
  1. Julie says: October 9, 20142:47 pm

    I am trying to find out more about my father Clifford Davies, who I think may have been shot down on 28th August 1941 with Wallace Cunningham – 19th squadron – taken prisoner – POW # 39371 and RAF # 1106853. He was in Stalag 111 and finally took part in The March at the end of the war.

    Any info would be greatly appreciated

    Thank you
    Julie
    Prince Albert
    South africa

  2. Carl says: March 9, 20155:23 pm

    Hi Julie, very sorry that it has taken so long to get back to you – I need to check my settings so that it emails me when we get a new blog comment! If your father was Sergeant Clifford Davies, I have seen reference to his loss on 29 August in the Squadron Operations Record Books. If you email duxford@iwm.org.uk, and mark it for my attention (carl Warner) we can correspond further.

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