M.432 First Officer  William Lionel Godwin 

flag england

 b. 15 Jan 1914, Newport Monmouthshire  16 May 1941 to 30 Apr 1944

 ata william godwin 1939 1939

 ata william godwin ATA    

 Ed. The College, Weston Super Mare

Next of kin: (mother) Mary Selina Godwin

prev. Sergeant in RAF Class F Reserve Aug-36 to Sep-39 [Ser. No. 700650],

then an accountant for Somerset County Council, Taunton

prev. exp. 109 hrs on Hart, Tiger Moth, Swallow and Oxford.

Address in 1941: 15 Wilton Gardens, Weston Super Mare, Somerset

William originally applied in August 1940; "I have seen it stated in Flight that you are urgently in need of more pilots in A.T.A. and I have felt moved to write to you. On May 20th this year I was suspended from the RAF as being unlikely to to make a good service pilot because (a) I get air-sickness in violent manoevres (aerobatics etc), (b) ears give some trouble during rapid descents and I am ny nature rather cautious. ... If you want an interview, I should be able to come to London this week as I am on leave. However, if you think this is all rather bats - please say so, - gently, in the enclosed envelope."

 ATA did not think it entirely bats, but it took them until the following April to give him a flying test ("Flies and lands well. Is not flustered in an emergency, though he reacts rather slowly", and follow up his references ("I have much pleasure in testifying to the personal character of Mr W L Godwin, a member of the permanent accounting staff of this Council.") and offer him a position as a ferry pilot.

Postings: 6FPP, 1FPP, 8FPP

 "A keen pilot of average ability, slow to adapt himself and should consequently be progressed gradually on to subsequent types." "A quiet and likeable officer."

m. Mar 1942 WAAF Corporal Sylvia Mary [Earwicker] from the Dental Centre, School of Technical Training, RAF Henlow, Beds.

220px-613 Squadron Mosquito FB.VI at RAF Lasham June 1944

d. 30 Apr 1944 (Died in ATA Service), in Mosquito MT192, which crashed 2 miles S of Litchfield: "At about 8,000 ft, the A/C turned to port and then dived. At about 200 ft. the machine flattened out, hit the ground and was totally destroyed. Insufficient evidence to determine the cause of the accident but available evidence indicates that the pilot was not responsible."

His C.O., Norman Whitehurst, said "I have always regarded him as one of my most reliable and progressive pilots. He was a man of splendid character, whose discipline was of the highest order, and had he survived would undoubtedly have reached a much higher rank in this organisation. His flying was exceptional, and in this respect he set a first class example to his colleagues." 

 Download ATA Pilot Personal Record (.zip file):

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