Correctly named 211683 1AM W Berwick RAF
William was born in Southwark in March 1892. He was working as a printers warehouseman and living at 21 Brymer Road, Camberwell when he enlisted into the Royal Navy Air Service in February 1916. His service number there was F11683. He served in the Mediterranean theatre with No2 Wing RNAS. He served in the Dardenelles, Greece, Serbia, Malta, Egypt and Austria in all. He worked as a storeman for the RNAS. He served aboard HMS Ark Royal from October 1917 until he was transferred into the Royal Air Force with the new service number 211683 on April 1st 1918.
No. 2 Wing, R.N.A.S., the HQ of which was H.M.S. Ark Royal at Mudros, was known as the Aegean Group. It flew seaplanes and landplanes from aerodromes situated on various small islands in the Aegean Sea off the Turkish, Bulgarian and the Greek coasts. This including bases at Mudros, Stavros, Thasos and Imbros. The aircraft used at this time were usually a mixed bag of types and many aircraft obsolete from use on the Western Front. For example, a typical raid flying from Thasos in in late 1916 consisted of four Henri Farmans, a Nieuport two seater and one or two Bristol Scouts! Pilots were often involved flying for long distances over the sea and rugged enemy held territory in Thrace and Macedonia, bombing strategic targets in the eastern Mediterranean. The problems of flying in this area were compounded by heat and dust which often meant overheated and clogged engines.
We find him in 1939 living with his wife Maude (French) at 71 Willow Walk, Bermondsey.
The pair is his full entitlement.
Both medals are on nice original silk ribbons.