Concept

Sydney Dowse

Summary
Flight Lieutenant Sydney Hastings Dowse MC (21 November 1918 – 10 April 2008) was a Royal Air Force pilot who became a prisoner of war and survived The Great Escape during the Second World War. Early life and RAFVR Born in Hammersmith, Sydney was educated at Hurstpierpoint College. In July 1937, he joined the recently formed Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and learnt to fly at weekends. At the outbreak of war in September 1939, he was called up for regular service and completed his pilot training. He was commissioned as a pilot officer on 21 October 1940, with seniority from 9 August 1940. He joined No 608 Squadron attached to Coastal Command flying Avro Ansons on anti-submarine and convoy escort operations. At the end of 1940, he volunteered to join No 1 Photographic Reconnaissance Unit (PRU) flying Spitfires. He was mentioned in despatches on 11 June 1942 and promoted to flight lieutenant on 21 October 1942, with seniority from 9 August 1942. Dowse was shot down on 15
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