Memories of a Different World

My tribute to all those who served in Bomber Command

Seventy two years ago, at the age of 18, I joined the RAF
April 1942 - World War 2.

Vivid memories are accurately supported by my Flying Log Book and letters home.

Memories of a Different World

"February 1943 - the Germans had failed to take Moscow and turned their armies south to the Russian oilfields. Japan had been checked at Midway and Italy wanted peace. Britain no longer stood alone and Bing Crosby sang White Christmas..."

Events always interesting: the serious, the fun, the ridiculous, frequently exciting, and occasionally fear.

Standing tall amongst them all – the comradeship and sense of humour of the Crew – six of the finest men I have known. We were fortunate – 55,573 men of Bomber Command did not come home.


Flying Officer G C K Gallagher DFC 191699

Born Wilford Rectory, Nottingham, 1924.
In 1930 his father moved to Dartmoor to become vicar of St. Petroc's Church at South Brent, Devon.
Educated at Montpelier School, Paignton and Blundells School, Tiverton.

Charles has been married to Mary for 62 years, has 3 daughters, 7 grand-children and 1 great-grandchild.


RAF Bomber Command

Charles joined the RAF from Cambridge University through the University Air Squadron in April 1942.
Trained in South Africa on the Empire Air Training Scheme.
Qualified as a Navigator/Bomb Aimer during 1943.
Returned to the UK in January 1944 for Operational Training.
Joined 76 Squadron Bomber Command and completed an Operational Tour during the last winter of the war. Based at Holme-on-Spalding-Moor, Vale of York.
Of the five years in the RAF, the last was in India.


Civvy Street

After his service, Charles joined British South American Airways for a period of years, followed by thirty five years in Procter & Gamble.


A selection of Pictures

A note from the Author

It started off as a bit of a hobby a couple of years ago - jotting down a few memories, thinking the next generations might be interested - and evolved, with much encouragement from the family, into a book. Memories of people and events I hadn't thought of in any detail for 70 years.

It has been a wonderful experience.

In memory of those I had the honour to serve with and for those who gave their lives, my small contribution in keeping their story alive. I hope you will enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed writing it.


Reader's Reviews

Thank you to everyone who has been in touch.

January 2015 Dear Charles, Thank you so much for sending me a copy of your book 'Memories of a Different World'. I have needed to travel to visit one of our Branches in Europe this weekend and brought your book with me, and in the quiet minutes I have read and thoroughly enjoyed it from cover to cover.
I really must congratulate you for having drawn these memories together, and pass my gratitude to your family for having encouraged you to do so, and for helping in the final publication. It truly is a gem of a read and as well as recalling your experiences for the benefit of others who, without this work, could never hope to understand the world you grew up in. Of particular importance, and so well captured in your book, are the enduring relationships with your colleagues, something the modern world could do well to emulate but alas, beyond the armed forces, seems unwilling or unable to try to recapture.
Thank you most sincerely Charles. You clearly enjoy the support of a doting family but please let me know directly if there is ever anything the RAF Association can do for you. Very best wishes.
Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller,
President, Royal Air Forces Association

March 2015 Dear Mr Gallagher, Thank you very much for sending me your book 'Memories of a Different World' which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. The book gives a real sense of life in a Bomber Command Squadron and your story is conveyed with a great sense of humour throughout.
I will be submitting a review of your book in the next edition of 'FlyPast' and will be pleased to send you a copy.
Thank you once again for taking the time to send me your book; it was a pleasure to read.
Yours sincerely, Nigel

FlyPast review
A wonderful self-published account that sees the author reflecting on his days in Bomber Command during World War Two. His vivid memories are supported by notes from his wartime logbook, along with letters home and photographs. Charles' memoir captures the challenges and thrills of travel, along with the comradeship and sense of humour displayed by his crew. It also revisits the fear and the danger, and pays tribute to the 55,573 men of Bomber Command who did not survive the war. Charles also reflects on his post-war career, which included a stint with British South American Airways.
Nigel Price,
Senior Editor Historic Aviation,
Editor of FlyPast

October 2014 Dear Charles, Thank you for the wonderful copy of your book. Fabulous to see it in print and a great addition to our library of "Old Boy's Books". Thank you.
Amber Oliver, Development Director, Blundell's School, Tiverton (UK)

December 2014 Dear Mr Gallagher, Thank you so very much for your book. The title is most apt! I was indeed transported to a "Different World". Incredible insights. Terrifying, captivating at once. The bravery of Mac, you and the rest of the "Mutinous Crew" and countless others never ceases to astonish! Thank you.
Best wishes, Romana, London (UK)

November 2014 Dear Charles, A short note to tell you how much we both enjoyed reading "Memories of a Different World", such a heartfelt account of your time in Bomber Command. You certainly had some amazing experiences, all in the most admirable cause of defending our country. Your memories had us laughing and crying, sometimes at the same time! Fabulous that you put pen to paper so that these facts will never be forgotten, a fitting thought this week - having celebrated Remembrance Day. Much love,
Sarah & James, Essex (UK)

February 2015 I was given this book as a gift from Rosanne Hellyer-Gallagher about her amazing Father.Everyone needs to read it..majority of these incredible heroes are unfortunately no longer here and we need to keep their memory alive. Beautifully written and executed. Thank you Charles, a brave and real Gentleman x
Maxine, Javea (Spain)

November 2014 Dear Charles, What a delightful read! Good, because amongst the horror there was fun and relaxation. Most interesting and thank you for the memories. Very best wishes,
Kit & Maggie, Essex (UK)

December 2014 Congratulations on your book. A very interesting read.
Peter Blockley, Benenden (UK)

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