World War One bomber pilot recounts incredible aerial exploits

In the August 1974 issue of Aeroplane Monthly, First World War bomber pilot Sqn Ldr C. P. O. Bartlett, DSC recounts his time flying biplanes between 1916-18

In September 1916, having completed my flying training at Chingford and a brief course of gunnery and bomb dropping at Eastchurch, I joined No 5 Wing of the Royal Naval Air Service on Coudekerque aerodrome, three miles inland from Dunkirk.

The Wing was then commanded by Squadron Commander Spenser Grey and consisted merely of A and B Flights, commanded by Flight Commanders B. L. Huskisson and E. T. Newton Clare, which became Nos 4 and 5 Squadrons RNAS respectively on December 31, 1916, No 4 being fighters and No 5 bombers. My story concerns the latter, though up to that date we were very intermixed, and I found myself sometimes doing fighter patrols and more often bombing raids.

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