Home
12th June     29th July     11th August      13th August     15th August     18th August
The End     Accident Report     In Memory     Epilogue


Prologue

Adrian Laws was born in 1912 in East Dereham, Norfolk. Little is known about his childhood for he has no surviving relatives (author's note 14th Aug 2001: I have just been contacted by Adrian Laws' daughter, born two weeks after his death - I hope to add more detail in due course). But one can imagine the effect The Great War had on his rural farming community and how the newly emerging Royal Air Force would feed a small boy's imagination.

Since military aeroplanes have existed, Norfolk has been dotted with military airfields. The flatness of the terrain offers less for the inexperienced or tired pilot to hit on the descent to the landing strip. Laws would have seen and heard many aircraft on an everyday basis and, like the generations of schoolboys that followed him, revelled in the ability to identify type from different type.

64 Squadron was also born in Norfolk, being formed in August 1916 at Sedgeford RFC station near Fakenham. In October 1917 they took their DH5's to the larger airfield at Bircham Newton, just ten miles down the road. 

Possessed of matinee film star looks, Laws came of age halfway between the war that would end all wars and the war that would prove the false hope in that. At the age of nineteen he enlisted in the ranks of the RAF.

64 Squadron was reformed at Heliopolis in 1935 during the Abyssinian crisis. Equipped with two-seater Demons they were to return to the UK within 15 months.

By late 1939 Laws was flying Blenheims out of Church Fenton in the Leconfield sector. War had started, yet nothing seemed to be happening on the wider front. By now an extremely accomplished pilot, Laws could not have been unhappy when 64 Squadron converted to the new Spitfire Mark I.

His first recorded patrol in a Spitfire on 18th April 1940 ended prematurely with engine trouble. Many subsequent patrols would mean trouble only for the enemy.

The most famous battle the world would ever see was about to begin in earnest. It would challenge the perceptions of those that sought to subjugate the world.

aflenglish.GIF (115341 bytes)

aflgermans.GIF (126351 bytes)

aflraf.GIF (122821 bytes)

Click to enlarge
Punch Ltd.
Click to enlarge
Punch Ltd.
Click to enlarge
Punch Ltd.

Top of Page     Next Page