January 30,1943

P/O S. Murrell--425 Squadron
While on a daylight operation to Oldenburg on January 30,1943, Wellington III X-3872 coded KW-A, flown by P/O S. Murrell from 425 Squadron was attacked at 54:00N-06:00E at 15:52 on the homeward journey at 1,500 feet. 

Two ME-109s when first sighted at about 2,500 feet approaching the Wellington from the port and starboard quarters. The ME-109 to starboard made a dummy attack and sheared off and the one to port flew up level with him. Then both ME-109s made simultaneous cross over attacks. 

The Wellington kept its course until the enemy aircraft were practically within range, then made a steep diving turn through about 30 degrees.  These double cross over attacks were repeated 3 or 4 times, with the Wellington adopting the same tactics for each attack with both gunners getting in first at the ME-109s. 

By the end of the second attack the Wellington was down at sea level and there after had to climb again after each attack to gain height to maneuver for the next. After these double attacks the ME-109s came in on curve of pursuit attacks, one at a time, once or twice following each other in on the attacks. 

The fight went on for approximately 15 minutes. The ME-109s were never flying below 300 feet or within 200 yards of the Wellington until the last attack, when one flew right over within 40 yards. 

Both gunners, Sgt B. Grey on the beam and Sgt R. Robinson, in the rear clearly saw several of their streams of bullets enter the ME-109s and as one of them was turning in to attempt a final attack white smoke was seen to be pouring out from itís engine and it peeled off without completing its manoeuver. Neither aircraft was seen again. 

About half way through the fight, the Wellingtonís fuselage was hit by a cannon shell and fire broke out behind the navigatorís seat. The W/Op beat it out with his helmet with help from a fire extinguisher. The handling of the Wellington was noticeably but not seriously affected. Neither enemy aircraft were claimed destroyed but one claimed damaged.

Fire was opened between 600 to 700 yards by bandits ceasing at 200 yards except on the last attack when fire was ceased at approximately 150 yards. Our gunners opened fire at 350 yards and ceased at 200 yards except on the final attacked when they ceased at 100 yards. The total number of rounds fired was 4,000 by the rear gunner at 1,500 from the beam guns. Beam guns can in very handy and most probably stopped enemy fighter from carrying out beam attacks on one side while the other was attacking from the rear like we had before on one such occasion.