Sidney "Sid" Linnard



Joined the RAF in August 1937.
Attended the Civil Flying School at Felton.
Completing his traiing at 4 FTS, Abu Sueir, Egypt.
Posted to 80 Squadron in December 1938.
Went with that unit to Greece 18 November 1940.
He was wounded in a battle on 21 December which resulted in a hospital stay at Yanina.
Took command of 274 Squadron in November 1941.
Promoted to W/C, 11 February 1942.
CO of 1 Middle East Fighter Training School, El Ballah.
Stayed there unitl May 1943 when he returned to the UK.
With 12 Group, Watnall from January to May 1944.
Sent to Australia to CO 54 Sqn., July 1944 to Jan. '45.
Stayed in the RAF post war.
West Raynham, 1948 to 1951.
Back to 12 Group HQ until 1954.
Locking from 1955 to 1959.
He retired as a W/C.
He died in the 1980's.
Sid Linnard

"... The photo attached is exactly how I remember him. He was my first CO (at Locking) when I was an Aircraft Apprentice. He awarded me my first recorded (on conduct sheet) punishment in the RAF.

The whole Wing had been paraded to find out who had been throwing fireworks out of the coach taking 30 odd of us back to camp after mid-term break. If nobody owned up then everybody on the coach would be punished. I, with my chum, Paul Luker, had stepped forward. We were the only ones to do so and were subsequently charged with the offence. Because of the seriousness of the offence we were remanded by our Flight Commander and subsequently the Squadron Commander to appear before the Wing Commander, (because of his greater powers of punishment). It looked as if we were destined to do time in the Glasshouse (cells) or perhaps even be remanded for Court Martial.

Sidney Linnard listened to our admission and then looking very stern said "Admonished! March them out ". I remember saying "Thank you Sir" and his barked reply. "Don't thank me young man that is a Punishment, it means you've had a good bollacking! What you did was very dangerous and has brought the good name of the RAF into disrepute." (I had been in all of 6 weeks and was still very green.) After we had been marched out we were ushered back into the CO's office. He told us "I know you were not the only culprits and that many others, all more senior than yourselves, were also involved. But at least you had the honesty and courage to own up rather than see the innocent punished. However, you cannot go completely unpunished. So for the next month you will both report, every evening, to Warrant Officer Parkes for fatigues in the gymnasium. Now go and let this be a lesson to you."

I certainly learned several lessons from that and thought what a wise and fair man the Wg Cdr was. I knew he had the DFC, and they didn't give that out with the rations, but, until today I had no idea that he was an ace.

And the punishment wasn't really that bad. Both Paul and I were in the Wing Boxing Team and would have been in the gym anyway. You see the Wing Warrant Officer, WO Percy Parkes, (between the wars the RAF Flyweight Champion), was also the wing boxing coach.




Acting S/L Sidney LINNARD (40179), Distinguished Flying Cross, No. 274 Sq.
London Gazette #35425, 16 January 1942

This officer has shown himself to be an exceptionally resolute leader. In December 1941, he led the squadron against a force of 15 Junkers 87s escorted by 16 fighter aircraft. The engagement resulted in the loss of 5 enemy aircraft while the remainder were dispersed. Two days later, Squadron Leader Linnard led his squadron as part of a wing escort to a formation of bombers detailed to attack enemy columns between El Adem and Sidi Rezegh. During the flight, some 30 enemy fighters were encountered but, under the skilful leadership of Squadron Leader Linnard, his squadron provided protection for the bombers for some time and, when the enemy finally attacked, 3 of their aircraft were shot down and many others damaged. Squadron Leader Linnard has participated in operational flying over a long period, including the campaigns in Greece and Syria, and has always shown courage and skill.


Victories Include :

8 Aug 1940
19 Nov 1940
4 Dec 1940
19 Dec 1940

7 Dec 1941

8 Dec 1941
13 Dec 1941

24 Jan 1942

12 Feb 1942
two CR42s
two CR42s
one u/i e/a
one S-79

one MC200
one MC200
one MC200
two MC200S
1/2 Ju88

one Ju87
one MC200
two Ju87s
unconfirmed *

probable &
damaged **


6.5 / 4 / 5

* Shown here as a probable in his final score

** 372 Sq., 153 Gruppo, lost 3 pilots in this encounter

Score from Aces High [Shores & Williams]


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Thanks go out to

Peter Woods for the photos & infos !

On these pages I use Hugh Halliday's extensive research which includes info from numerous sources; newspaper articles via the Canadian Museum of Civilization Corporation (CMCC); the Google News Archives; the London Gazette Archives and other sources both published and private.

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