WONZ 189 – Ted Edwards

Guest: Edward Francis “Ted” Edwards, NZZ412303, RAF 59653
11th of Sept 1917 – 20th of Jan 2014

Host: Dave Homewood

Recorded: 17th of July 2012

Released: 7th of September 2018

Duration: 59 minutes 49 seconds

This episode is a 2012 interview with the late WWII and postwar pilot Ted Edwards. Dave Homewood met and interviewed him in the Whangarei RSA, so there is the occasional bit of background noise from the kitchen, the lift and the gale that was blowing outside, but hopefully it does not detract from the fascinating discussion.

Ted volunteered for the RNZAF in October 1940 and went into camp in April 1941. After initial training on the de Havilland Tiger Moth at No. 4 Elementary Flying Training School, Whenuapai, he set off for Canada to complete multi-engined training at Saskatoon in Canada. He then proceeded to England, and after short stays at Bournemouth and Grantham, he proceeded to a Bomber Command Operational Training Unit at RAF Upwood in Cambridgeshire, and he began flying Bristol Blenheims there.

He was then posted to No. 614 Squadron RAF in North Africa, and he ferried a Bristol Bisley out there to join his unit. Later he joined No. 18 Squadron RAF, flying the Douglas Bostons, bombing Sicily and Italy on night intrusion raids. Eventually he was based at Foggia in Italy fighting the retreating Germans.

Having flown 72 operations, Ted returned to England after that tour, where he became an instructor at an No. 13 Operational Training Unit at Finmere, on training new crews on North American B-25 Mitchells.

Then he opted to return to New Zealand for his second tour to fly in the Pacific war zone, and joined No. 41 Squadron flying Lockheed Hudsons and Douglas Dakotas all around the islands on transport duties.

When the war ended he continued with the squadron fora while, but then secured a commission with the Royal Air Force, joining No. 511 Squadron in RAF Transport Command flying the Avro York. He flew dozens of operations during the Berlin Airlift.

Ted Edwards during WWII

Above: One of the Douglas Bostons that Ted flew over Italy with No. 18 Squadron RAF

Below is a selection of interesting pages from Ted’s Flying Logbooks.

1 comment to WONZ 189 – Ted Edwards

  • denis pothan

    ted and jean became very close friends and very loyal customers i was priveliged to do the painting on the cover of his book that the family published after his death rip ted & jean

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