36 Squadron RAF Seletar


On the 7th July 1928 The Coast Defence Torpedo Flight was formed, without aircraft, at Donibristle, on the north shore of the Firth of Forth near Dalgety Bay, Scotland.

One month later, on the 7 august, Three Horsley T.B. Were flown from Henlow to Donibrisle by Squadron leader Hughes, Flight Lt. Smythes, Flying Officer Thomson and crews.

The first dummy torpedoes were dropped on 16th August which marked the beginning of training on the new aircraft.

On the 9th October 1928  The flight was renamed NO 36 (Torpedo Bomber) Squadron.


During August 1930 preparations for for the move to Singapore began.

At the beginning of the month the all metal type of Horsley, which was to be equipped at Singapore, was tested. During the later part of the month the Sqdn. Pilots ferried the new all – metal Horelys from Brooklands to Sealand where the aircraft were dismantled and packed for shipping by the depot personnel.

On the 8th Sept Flight Lieutenant W Plenerleith went to Birkenhead to supervise the loading of the squadron's aircraft on board the SS City of Barcelona. Eight aircraft were shipped. Unfortunately one, S1441, slipped from the lifting cable and fell on the ships rails. The damage, chiefly to the centre section, was small and was repaired at Karachi.

On the 13 September The SS City of Barcelona sailed, with Flight Lieutenants Brown & Plenderleith aboard, from Birkenhead to Karachi.

On 16th Sept ten Airmen of the Advanced Party Sailed from Southampton on H.M.T. Somersetshire and disembarked at Karachi on 8th October.

Advanced Party

363975 Sgt. Hart J. (pilot – Fitter Aero Engine )

364886 Sgt. Lincoln G. F. (pilot – Fitter Aero Engine )

363372 Sgt. Clift A.E. (pilot – Fitter Aero Engine )

350624 Cpl. Holmes T. E (Carpenter – Rigger)

343272 Cpl. Dykes W. N (Carpenter – Rigger)

241295 Cpl. McArole W. ( Fitter Aero Engine )

365954 A.C 1 Street C .K. ( Wireless Operator Mechanic)

363412 LAC Harris A. ( Fitter Aero Engine )

359705 A.C.1 Middleton W. (Carpenter – Rigger)

347508 L.A.C. Patrick J. (Carpenter – Rigger)

On 19th Sept  The remaining Officers of the advanced party: Squadron Leader A W Milne, Flying Officers J. A. Ayling, B. A. Oakley, E.G. Sharp. Pilot Officer K. W Nibett & Sergeant Major T.E. Pavitt, Sailed from Tilbury in the S.S. Narkunda for Karachi.

On the 14th October 1930 the second draft, consisting of 4 Officers:(Flight Lieutenant C.W.P. Bullock, Flying Officers C.V. Pratt & S.A. Davis and Pilot Officer Ian B Newbigging.) and 78 Airmen embarked on H.M.T. Lanarkshire at Southampton. Flying Officer Pratt disembarked at Bombay on 8th November and reported at Karachi to take the place of Flt. Lt. T.W.S. Brown who had fallen sick. The remainder disembarked at Singapore on 14th November.

The aircraft were assembled and tested at Royal Air Force Depot Drigh Road. and two flights were formed.

B Flight

Horsley - S 1443

Flt. Lt. W N Penderton – Pilot & Flight Commander.

F.O. B. A. Oaley – Navigator.

365959 AC1 Street C. R. - Wireless Operator.

Horsley - S 1444

Flying Officer J. R. Ayling – Pilot

363412 LAC Harris A. F. - Fitter Aero Engine

Horsley - S 1441

Flying Officer C. V. Pratt – Pilot

343272 LAC Patrick J. S. - Carpenter Rigger

Horsley - S 1442

363975 Sgt. Hart J. - Pilot and Fitter Aero Engine

343272 Cpl Dykes W. H. Carpenter Rigger.

A Flight

Horsley - S 1437

Squadron Leader A. W. Mylne – Pilot and Flight Commander

Pilot Officer K. W. Niblett – Navigator

314995 S.M.I Pavitt T.E. Wireless Operator

Horsley - S 1438

Flying Officer E. G. Sharpe – Pilot

359705 A.C Middleton W. - Carpenter Rigger

Horsley - S 1439

363372 Sgt. Clipt A. E. - Pilot & Fitter Aero Engine

241295 Cpl. McArdle W. N. - Fitter Aero Engine

Horsley - S 1440

364886 Sgt. Lincoln G. P. - Pilot & Fitter Aero engine

The Itinerary for the flight to Singapore was:


B Flight

December 1930

3rd Karachi to Jodhpur

4th Jodhpur to Allahabad

5th Allahabad – 10 Hour inspection

6th Allahabad – Dacca

7th Dacca – Akyab

(Change parking Plugs)

8th Akyab – Rangoon

9th Stay at Rangoon (10 hour inspection)

10th Rangoon – Tavoy

11th Tavoy – Victoria Point

11th or 12th Victoria Point – Alor Star

12th or 13th Stay Alor Star. 10 Hour inspection

13th or 14th Alor Star – Singapore

Owing to the Early morning fog at Tavoy this flight was not able to take off until 08.30. After refuelling at Victoria Point, insufficient time remained for the flight to reach Alor Star in daylight. The escorting Flying boat from 205 Sqdn caused a fair amount of delay both in flight & when Refuelling. This lost time was made up at Alor Star by working late on inspections, and the Flight reached Singapore on 13th

A Flight

December 1930

7th Karachi to Jodhpur

8th Jodhpur to Allahabad

9th Allahabad – 10 Hour inspection

10th Allahabad – Dacca

11th Dacca – Akyab

(Change parking Plugs)

12th Akyab – Rangoon

13th Stay at Rangoon (10 hour inspection)

14th Rangoon – Tavoy

15th Tavoy – Victoria Point

15th or 16th Victoria Point – Alor Star

16th or 17th Stay Alor Star. 10 Hour inspection

17th or 18th Alor Star – Singapore