MARCEL STEENBRINK COLLECTION
No. 9413. Fieseler Fi 156 C-3/Trop Storch Royal Air Force
Photographed at B3 ALG, Sainte-Croix-sur-Mer, Normandy, France, July 23, 1944, source unknown

Fieseler Fi 156 C-3/Trop Storch


07/31/2011. Remarks by Johan Visschedijk: "Contributor Doug Davidge discovered this photo of Churchill's visit to 'B3 ALG' among his uncle Rod Davidge's WW II momentos. Flight Leader Davidge flew Typhoons with RAF No. 193 Squadron from 1942 to 1944 and is now age 91. In the recently published book "193 Squadron, RAF" compiled by Chris Woodcock, Churchill's visit is documented as follows: "23 July 1944: Prime Minister Winston Churchill paid a morale boosting visit to 146 Wing at B3, St. Croix-sur-Mer, flown by AVM Harry Broadhurst in his captured Fiesler (sic) Storch."

11/30/2009. Remarks by Johan Visschedijk: "Serveral German and Italian aircraft were captured during the campaign in North Africa during WW II, one of them was this Storch (Stork) that became the personal aircraft of RAF Air Vice Marshal Harry "Broady" Broadhurst (Commanding Officer Western Desert Air Force, Allied Air Forces North Africa). In 1944 Broadhurst was assigned to command the 83 Group in 2nd Tactical Air Force in the UK in preparation for the oncoming invasion in France, and among other aircraft, this Storch was shipped to the UK.

It was in this aircraft that Broadhurst flew Britain's Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill as passenger to the RAF 'B3 ALG' (Advanced Landing Ground), just north of Sainte-Croix-sur-Mer, only 1.5 mls (2.5 km) from the beaches where some six weeks before the allied invasion of France was started on 'D-Day', June 6, 1944. Churchill addressed the troops gathered at 'B3 ALG' and later was visiting troops in the area by jeep. The 'B3 ALG' was operational from June 10 to September 4, 1944.

At Evere, Brussels, Belgium, in April 1945, Broadhurst's Storch had an engine failure just after takeoff and he crashed on a hangar, the plane went through the roof and was destroyed, however Broadhurst escaped injuries.

At least 48 of this type have carried RAF serials and a handful were assigned to the Communication Squadron of Broadhurst's 83 Group, so it is not certain the Storch in photo 345 is the same as in the photo shown above. The allotted s/n were: HK986, HK987, VG919, VH751 to VH756, VM291 to VM296, VM472, VM489, VM824 to VM846, VM873, VM874, VM897, VN266, VN267, VN877, VP546, and VX154."

Created November 30, 2009