Air Observer Schools – The Last Flight

At the end of the war, BCATP schools published a souvenir edition and I have two Air Observer Schools, which contain hundreds of photos, etc.

The Air Observer Schools were designed to train the Navigator and Air Bomber while flying in an Anson with a Flying Instructor pilot. This was a most important part of forming a WWII Bomber aircrew, the beginning.

I have selected just a few images to show the readers.

Clarence Simonsen

The Last Flight

The Point of it all
The Training Story

The Training Story 2

get in your details

aircraft recognition

practice bombs

bombing up




Ansons and Cessna Cranes




night flight


navigation instructors
late for briefing

The course at Initial Training School lasted four weeks, and here is where a recruit was selected for a trade, the top trades being pilot and navigator. The most important was finding a target in Europe and bombing it. There were seven I.T.S. in Canada numbered from 1 to 7. Some Leading Aircraftmen (LACs) were tested and selected for Air Bomber trade.

After I.T.S. Leading Aircraftmen would be posted to a bombing and gunnery school for six weeks, which was followed by another six weeks at Air Observer school where Leading Aircraftmen learned to read maps, night and day training. In July 1942, Bombing and Gunnery School training was increased to twelve weeks. The RCAF had ten B&G schools in Canada, and this training should be twelve weeks’ total. The RCAF had ten Air Observer schools, and this training should be six weeks. Then came graduation to the rank of Sergeant. and then they were posted overseas.

The story of one bomb aimer will be continued here


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