Weir, James Chapman

Personal Information

Rank P/O
Forename(s) James Chapman
Surname Weir
Gender M
Age 22
Date of Death 24-06-1942
Next of Kin Son of James Douglas Chapman and Annie Edith Prosser Chapman (née Edwards), of Regina, Saskatchewan

Aircraft Information

Aircraft Avro Lancaster I
Serial Number R5675
Markings OF-H

Memorial Information

Burial/Memorial Country Netherlands
Burial/Memorial Place Bergen General Cemetery
Grave Reference Plot 1. Row C. Grave 20.

IBCC Memorial Information

Phase 1
Panel Number 113

Enlistment Information

Service Number C/15021
Service Royal Canadian Air Force
Group 5
Squadron 97 (Straits Settlements)
Trade Air Gunner
Country of Origin Canada

Miscellaneous Information

James was born on 12 January 1920 in Regina, Saskatchewan. His father was born in Paisley, Scotland and was gassed in France during WWI. Although returning home to Canada he later sadly died from the effects. His mother was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He attended Gordon Bell High School between 1936 and 1938 where he acquired a Junior Matriculation degree. His sport interests were Canadian rugby and track events and hobbies reading and making model aircraft. James was with the Queen’s Own Cameron Highland Cadets, Winnipeg Battn. as a Company Sgt Major, between 1936 and 1938. Also with 112 Auxilliary Sqn RCAF. from March-September 1939 as an AC2. He was working as a news agent at C.P.R. between July 1938-February 1939 and then for Jewel Stores , a grocery chain, February-September 1939 as a messenger and assistant.
James enlisted on 4 September 1939 - the day after the outbreak of war- and progressed through 400 Sqn 28 August 1941, 22 OTU 14 October 1941, 97 Sqn 1 March 1942 and then from CGS back to 97 Squadron on 10 June 1942.

Fellow Servicemen

Last Operation Information

Start Date 27-06-1942
End Date 27-06-1942
Takeoff Station Woodhall Spa
Day/Night Raid
Operation Bremen
Reason for Loss Shot down over Holland by a night fighter, the crashing aircraft narrowly missing houses at Avenhorn, near Alkmaar

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Casualty Pack

IBCC is delighted to introduce a unique facility to link the Losses Database to the relevant RAF Casualty Pack on the National Archives website. This project is the result of on-going collaboration between IBCC, the MOD Records Office and National Archives, Kew. This document describes what Casualty Packs are, when they were created, the process of making them available to the public and then goes on to describe the process by which you can view the contents of the packs. Casualty Packs (CPs) were created by the RAF whenever there was serious injury or loss of life associated with operational activity within the RAF. This includes operational flying losses, enemy action due to air raids, road accidents either on station or even off-station if they involved RAF vehicles. Deaths due to natural causes in service or accidents that did not involve RAF vehicles did not generally give rise to a CP.

CPs were originally given a unique reference number by the RAF. Each begins with the letter ‘P’ and is followed by six digits, then an oblique (forward slash) and the finally the year in which the incident took place- for example P396154/42.

The CPs are in the process of being made available to the general public as they are passed from the MOD Records Office, Portsmouth to National Archives, Kew. This process requires some rework to the files which is very time consuming, so the process of making them all available to National Archives will take several years. They are being made available in increasing date order.

Once CPs arrive at National Archives they are assigned a unique AIR81 number, so each CP has both a P-number and an AIR81 number. Both are searchable on the National Archives website under ‘Search the catalogue’ and both are included on the IBCC website.

The AIR81 reference on the IBCC website is a link to the file on the National Archives website. When you click on it, the relevant page will open in a new tab on your browser.

There is currently no plan to digitise AIR81 files, partly because they are fragile and partly because the information they contain can at times be sensitive, even harrowing, since they may contain exhumation reports and even photographs of corpses. Family members wishing to read the AIR81 files relating to their ancestors are advised to exercise caution and be guided by National Archives warnings where appropriate.

There are two means for accessing AIR81 files- to attend in person or to order a copy by post.

To attend in person, the attendee should first create a Reader’s Ticket. This can be done online by following this link: Then click on the AIR81 reference on the IBCC website and click Order in Advance. Enter your Reader’s Ticket number and state the date on which you intend to visit. National Archives will have the file ready for you when you arrive, saving you time. When you visit Kew, you must quote the Reader’s Ticket number and take along two forms of ID- one bearing your signature and one bearing your address. When you view the files, you are permitted to take photographs of each page, should you wish.

Alternatively, if you wish to order a copy by post, please be aware that there is a charge for this service based on the number of pages in the file. Click on the AIR81 reference on the IBCC website and then click Request a Copy. There is an £8.40 charge for National Archives staff to access the file and give you a quotation for the copying service. The process takes around 24 days to complete and can be expensive.

IBCC wishes to thank the staff at the MOD Records Office and National Archives for their engagement and assistance in making this facility available to our website users.