Paterson Clarence Hughes Memorial Tablet
Plaque and history of 39461 Flight Lieut. Paterson Clarence Hughes D.F.C.
This memorial was erected in memory of
39461 Flight Lieut. Paterson Clarence Hughes
Killed in action 7th September, 1940
He was born on 19th September 1917 and attended Cooma Primary
School to the age of 12 years - thence Fort Street High School
joining the RAAF in 1936 at the age of 19 years and sailing to
England in 1937 on a short term RAF commission.
After serving in 64 Fighter Squadron he was promoted to Acting
Flight Lieutenant and posted to 234 Squadron as a Flight
Commander where he demonstrated his extreme virtuosity as a
leader and a pilot, being credited with 14 downed enemy
aircraft plus other shared and unconfirmed planes making him the highest
scoring Non-British Fighter Pilot in the Battle of Britain.
His victims are said to include the flamboyant German Ace Oblt.
Franz Von Wirra who safely landed his damaged aircraft in England.
Paterson Hughes' close-in and aggressive tactics led to his demise
on 7th September, 1940 with his aircraft being struck by debris from
an exploding bomber which he was attacking.
He was the driving force in the achievements of 234 Squadron RAF
and he lies at rest in St. James Church Yard, Sutton in Holderness,