Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation

 

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Air Marshal Sir Victor Goddard


(Robert) Victor                   b:  6 Feb 1897               r: 8 Apr 1951                        d: 21 Jan 1987

KCB - 12 Jun 1947 (CB - 2 Jun 1943), CBE - 11 Jul 1940, MiD - 1 Jan 1941, MiD - 14 Jun 1945, DSM (US) - 27 Oct 1944, MA (Jesus College, Cambridge), AFReS, DL (Bedfordshire) - 27 Feb 1953 - 1 Sep 1954.

For a list of foreign decoration abbreviations, click here

(RN): - Mid'n:  xx xxx 1910, Act Sub-Lt: xx xxx xxxx, Flt Sub-Lt: 15 May 1916, Flt Lt: 31 Dec 1916.

(RAF): - (H) Capt [Lt]: 1 Apr 1918, (T) Capt: 22 Jul 1918, Capt: 21 Jan 1919,  Flt Lt: 1 Aug 1919 [1 Apr 1918], Sqn Ldr: 12 Dec 1928, Wg Cdr: 1 Jul 1935, Gp Capt: 1 Jan 1939, (T) A/Cdre: 1 Dec 1940, Act AVM: 3 Mar 1943, (T) AVM: 1 Jun 1943, A/Cdre: 1 Dec 1943, AVM: 1 Jan 1946, Act AM: 16 Nov 1943 - 8 Apr 1944; 1 Oct 1944 - 7 Mar 1946, Act AM (unpd): 7 Mar 1946, AM: 1 Jul 1948.

xx xxx xxxx:             Attended Britannia Naval College.

xx xxx xxxx:                Free Ballooning Course, Roehampton.

1915                           Airship Officer, Barrow in Furness Airship Station. 

1915                           Airship Officer, Capel Airship Station.

24 May 1919:             Airship Officer, Airship Construction Station, Barrow-in-Furness.

 1 Aug 1919:               Awarded Permanent Commission in rank of Flight Lieutenant. (gazetted 26 Sep 1919)

22 Jan 1920:               Removed from the Navy Lists on being awarded Permanent Commission in RAF

16 Mar 1920:             Staff, RAF Airship Base, Howden.

 5 Oct 1921:               Attended Cambridge University.

 1 Oct 1923:               Attended London University.

15 Jul 1924:                QFI, No 2 FTS.

 4 Sep 1925:               QFI, Cambridge UAS.

22 Oct 1928:              Staff, Deputy Directorate of Staff Duties.

21 Jan 1929:               Attended RAF Staff College.

18 Jan 1930:               Officer Commanding, No 30 Sqn. (Wapiti Mosul)

xx xxx 1930 - xx xxx 1930:       Officer Commanding, 'Composite' Sqn.

17 Sep 1931:              Supernumerary, RAF Depot.

 1 Dec 1931:               Staff, Home Aircraft Depot.

 5 - 7 Jan 1934:           Placed on half pay list, scale A.

 16 Jan 1934:              Attended RN Staff College, Greenwich.

 1 Jan 1935:               Air Staff Officer, HQ Western Area

1 Jul 1936:                  Air Staff, Deputy Directorate of Intelligence (3)

22 Dec 1938:              Deputy Director of Intelligence (3).

 2 Sep 1939:               Senior Staff Officer, 'Z'

 3 Sep 1939:               SOA, Air Component of the BEF.

xx Apr 1940:               SASO, Air Component of the BEF.

19 Nov 1940:              Director of Military Co-Operation.

29 Sep 1941:               CAS, New Zealand/Commander, RNZAF South Pacific.

16 Sep 1943:               AOA, HQ Air Forces in India.

 8 Apr 1944:                AOA, HQ ACSEA.

 7 Mar 1946?:               RAF Representative in Washington.

16 Aug 1948:               Air Member for Technical Services

During the Battle of the Somme in 1916, he was tasked with assisting the RFC by using his airship to drop agents behind enemy lines at night.  The 'Composite' Sqn comprised one flight from No 55 Sqn and two flights from No 30 Sqn.  Originally set up in 1938 at the time of the Munich crisis, 'Z' was the code name given to the 'shadow' Air Staff' intended to continue the work of the Air Ministry, i.e. liaison between the Government and the operation commands, in the event of the Air Ministry in London being destroyed.  The day before war was declared in 1939, Victor Goddard assumed responsibility for establishing the facilities for 'Z', at the Building Research Establishment at Garston near Watford.  However, he was only to spent a day in this post as the following day he was told to report to the AOC RAF Component, BEF as a staff officer for the new command.  Retiring in 1951, he was appointed Principal of the College of Aeronautics at Cranfield, a post he held until 1954. He also sat on the Governing bodies of St George's School, Harpenden (1948 - 64) and Bryanston School (1957 - 78) as well as writing a number of books.  He also found time to act as a broadcaster from as early as 1934.

Further reading: -  

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