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Peter Inman WW2

Peter Inman. WO/Air Gunner, 214 Squadron, RAF Bomber Command. Killed in action, 3rd July 1942, shot down over Holland, age 20yrs.

Peter Frederick Inman was born on 31st July 1921. His parents were Joseph F. ("Fred") and Margaret Inman. Peter lived in Cartmel until he joined the RAF.

He attended Cartmel School and Ulverston Grammar. After leaving school he worked for Grange Motors, in the office at "Lymehurst" and booking office at Crown Hill, organising coach tours around the country and helping to run the local bus service. He also did duty as bus conductor.


Peter joined the RAF from home at Garrett Houses and went to Wilmslow and Blackpool, for basic training. He was then posted to Wellesbourne-Mountford a Number 6 Group Operational Training Unit (OTU), Abingdon - 6 Group Headquarters, to Manby, Yorkshire for air-gunnery training, then Haverigg for three months, back to Abingdon and, finally to his operational base, Stradishall in Suffolk.

Sgt. Inman, just a month short of his 21st birthday, took off from Stradishall, on the night of 2nd July 1942, in a 214 Sqdn. Short Stirling Mk. I, probably between 11.00pm and midnight.

A Short S.29 Stirling of 214 Squadron.

The Stirling was not a popular aircraft. The first of the four engined "heavies", it was slower, less manoeuvrable and flew lower than the Lancaster or Halifax. The crew of BF313, coded BU-T consisted of W/C K D Knocker, Sgt T E L Palmer, Sgt J W C Underwood, P/O D Malofie RCAF, Sgt P F Inman, F/S R H Ritchie, Sgt R Fairhurst and F/S E G Wilson RCAF. Sgt. Palmer had been a student at the Royal Academy of Music, being awarded a Bronze Medal. Wing Commander Kenneth 'Duke' Knocker was the son of The Baroness de T' Serclaes, who won the Military Medal as a front-line nurse in the First Word War.

325 aircraft were scheduled to attack Bremen, 34 of them Stirlings.

265 aircraft bombed in good visibility. A Bremen report states that over 1,000 houses and 4 small industrial firms were damaged. In the port 3 cranes and 7 ships were hit. The 1,736 ton steamer Marieborg was sunk and became a danger to navigation. Five people were killed and four injured.

Thirteen aircraft were lost, 8 Wellingtons, 2 Hampdens, 1 Halifax and 2 Stirlings.

BF313 was shot down by a night fighter piloted by Ofw Karl-Heinz Scherfling of II./NJG2 and crashed at 0150hrs 3rd July 1942 onto mud flats 22km NNW of Groningen, Holland. All the crew were killed. Peter and his comrades are buried in Eenrum (Westernieland) General Cemetery, Holland.

This was Sgt. Inman's 9th mission, four of them the famous 1000 bomber raids. He would have arrived back to enjoy a long, 2 month, leave.

214 Squadron, motto "Ulto in umbris" ("Avenging in the shadows"), was based at Stradishall from Feb. 1940-Jan.1942, briefly at Honington, Suffolk in Jan 1942, then Stradishall from Jan.-Oct. 1942 as part of Number 3 Group, in September 1941, the squadron was honoured by being adopted by the Federated Malay States. It flew Stirlings from April 1942 to January 1944.

Peter is fondly remembered locally, most people saying, "He was a nice lad, Peter." His mother died in 1966, his father in 1974. Peter's brother died a few years ago.

Joseph F. Inman, Peter's father, was a member of the 1st Bn. Border Regiment, being conscripted in 1917. He won the Military Medal in 1918, as a Lewis gunner, probably in the heavy fighting in August of that year. The people of the area where Peter's aircraft came down sent a miniature Dutch flag to Cartmel, as a token of gratitude. Mr Inman placed this flag on the War Memorial every Remembrance Day.