DATA BASE REF: M/R 1002
HAROLD EDWARD HILTON
BORN 5TH DECEMBER 1922 AT MAIN STREET AILSWORTH
I joined the R.A.F in 1940 and did my first training at Skegness including square bashing, bayonet practice and P.T. Afterwards I was posted to Elsham Wolds in Lincolnshire as an A.C.I. Ground Gunner Airfield Defence.
My next posting was in 1941 to India sailing from Gurrock in Scotland, on the troopship “MALOJA”. Our destination was Bombay calling at Freetown and Durban on the way. We were stationed at St Thomas’s Mount (Madras) and later sent to Colombo (Shri Lanka) Ceylon where we formed the R.A.F. Regiment – which I did not take to – and in 1943volunteered for Aircrew. I was accepted and sent to
El Balla – in the desert close to the Suez Canal and it was there I learned to swim!
Here also I did Educational and Flying training and in 1944 was sent to Palestine joining my future Aircrew – a group of us combining to become the crew of a Wellington Bomber. Our posting from here was to Foggia in Italy, where we carried out 35 operations over enemy territory bombing mostly Northern Italy and Austria and also, supply dropping over Yugoslavia.
In 1945 I was interviewed by the C/O who told me the Squadron was going to the Far East but I would not be included as my time overseas had expired. As a result I was told to pack my kit in preparation for a 6am flight to St Morgan in Cornwall! From here I was sent to Bicester finally being demobbed in July 1946. I finished my
Service as a Flight Sergeant – Air Gunner – with a total flying time of 344 hours.
I must say I enjoyed my time in the R.A.F. seeing places and people that I would have not seen otherwise. In peacetime it would have cost thousands of pounds to do so.
I am now retired and living with my wife Joyce in Silvester Road, Castor. We are parents of twin sons.