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№ 632


13 December 2012

Hammer Price:

A rare Second World War Coastal Command D.F.M. group of five awarded to Flight Sergeant C. C. Mawer, Royal Air Force, who was decorated for gallant deeds as an Air Gunner in Sunderlands of No. 201 Squadron

Distinguished Flying Medal, G.VI.R. (577711 F./Sgt. C. C. Mawer, R.A.F.); 1939-45 Star; Atlantic Star; Defence and War Medals 1939-45, good very fine or better (5) £1800-2200

D.F.M. London Gazette 5 May 1944. The original recommendation states:

‘Flight Sergeant Mawer has been one of the most conscientious and reliable Air Gunners in his squadron. On 21 November 1943, he was a gunner in an aircraft which engaged and drove off at least two enemy aircraft which were attempting to bomb an Atlantic convoy. Despite the fact that Flight Sergeant Mawer was under return fire from a much better armed adversary, his shooting was so effective that the opposing aircraft jettisoned its bomb load without pressing home its attack. The casualties sustained by the convoy were low largely due to this and similar actions. Flight Sergeant Mawer is a keen and efficient member of aircrew.’

Cyril Charles Mawer was posted to No. 201 Squadron, a Sunderland unit operating out of Loch Erne at Castle Archdale in Northern Ireland, in May 1943, and remained similarly employed as an Air Gunner until November 1944, a period in which he flew around 40 or 50 anti-submarine and convoy escort patrols. In so far as his D.F.M.-winning exploits are concerned, the relevant entry from the Squadron’s O.R.B. states (copies included):

‘1616 hours - control diverted aircraft to Oban. As aircraft set course, enemy aircraft sighted - He. 177. 0/201 opened fire at 400 yards on one enemy A./C., hits registered and enemy A./C. which jettisoned rocket bomb - height of action 500 feet. Ten minutes later one Fw. 200 sighted and attacked at 500 yards, hits registered and enemy aircraft made off - height of action 3,000 feet. A few minutes later another Fw. 200 was seen to drop rocket bomb towards convoy. Unable to attack. Five minutes before P.I.E., approximately 1345, another He. 177 sighted at a height of 400 feet. O/201 opened fire at 200 yards range - hits registered.’