No. 220 Squadron RAF


No. 220 Squadron RAF
No. 220 Squadron
Information
Role Reconnaissance and Anti-Shipping
Aircraft Operated non currently extant
Home Station non currently extant
Motto "We Observe Unseen"
History
Date Founded September 1918
Badge On a pellet between two eight-pointed stars, a torch inflamed
Notable Battle Honours

No. 220 Squadron of the Royal Air Force was originally founded in 1918 and disbanded in 1963 after four separate periods of service. The squadron saw service in both the First and Second World Wars, as a naval patrol unit, and finally as part of Britain's strategic nuclear deterrent.

Contents

First World War

The squadron was initially founded in September 1918 by merging No. 475, 476 and 477 Flights, and operated on fighter and reconnaissance duties as part of No. 62 Wing. It flew Sopwith Camels during this period. Following the end of hostilities, the squadron was disbanded in December 1918.

Second World War

Hudson of 220 Squadron flying reconnaissance over the Dunkirk beaches during the British evacuation (Operation Dynamo), 1940

During the buildup to the Second World War, No. 220 Squadron reformed at RAF Bircham Newton in 1936 as a reconnaissance squadron flying Ansons. With the outbreak of war it flew patrols from RAF Thornaby as part of No. 18 Group, transitioning to Hudsons in November; it flew anti-shipping missions with these in the North Sea from May 1940 onwards. In April 1941, still in the anti-shipping role, it moved to RAF Wick to fly strikes against Norwegian coastal traffic, and began to operate the Fortress in November. In February 1942 it moved to RAF Nutts Corner under No. 15 Group, then to RAF Ballykelly in June; in March 1943 it transferred to RAF Benbecula in the Outer Hebrides. Detachments operated from RAF Bircham Newton, RAF St Eval and RAF Detling in 1940, and from RAF Shallufa in Egypt in early 1942.

In October 1943 the squadron was moved to RAF Lagens, in the Azores Islands, where it came under No. 247 Group and, in December 1944, was re-equipped with Liberators. From 1943 until the end of the war the squadron flew anti-submarine patrols across the South Atlantic.

In June 1945 the squadron returned to the UK as part of Transport Command, and flew troop flights to India from October 1945 to April 1946. After this final service, the squadron was disbanded in May 1946.

Cold War

In September 1951, the squadron was reformed as part of Coastal Command, based at RAF St Mawgan, equipped with Shackleton aircraft and operating in the maritime reconnaissance role. In 1953 the Squadron aircraft flew in formation in the flypast on the occasion of the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. At that time the Shackleton was fitted with a mid upper gun turret, the last RAF operational aircraft so equipped. This Bristol turret with twin 20 mm Hispano cannon was later removed. The squadron was redesignated as No. 201 Squadron in October 1958.

The squadron was again reformed as No. 220 (SM) Squadron RAF[1] in July 1959, equipped with three Thor ballistic missiles, carrying a 1.4 megaton W-49 nuclear warhead, as part of the UK-US strategic deterrent, Project Emily. It was based at RAF North Pickenham in Norfolk until it was disbanded, along with the other Thor squadrons, in 1963.[2]

Air Training Corps

220 squadron is also the local ATC squadron in St Albans. They are renowned for their drill prowess. As of June 2010, they have won the wing drill competition 9 years running. They are furtherly renowned for their unsimiling appearance in team photographs, part of the 'hardcore' facade.

See also

References

Notes

  1. ^ SM standing for "Strategic Missile"
  2. ^ RAF Thor Missile Units 1959-63, Ravi Rikhye. In History at Orbat.com, vol 4, no. 46.

Bibliography

  • Halley, James J. The Squadrons of the Royal Air Force & Commonwealth, 1918 -1988. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air Britain (Historians) Ltd., 1988. ISBN 0-85130-164-9.
  • Jefford, Wing Commander C.G., MBE,BA,RAF (Retd). RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive Record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912. Shrewsbury: Airlife Publishing, 1998 (second edition 2001). ISBN 1-84037-141-2.
  • Rayner, Ted. Coastal Command Pilot, 1939-1945: Wartime Experiences with 220 & 269 Squadrons. Bognor Regis, West Sussex, UK: Woodfield Publishing Ltd., 1994. ISBN 1-873203-29-2.
  • Rawlings, John D.R. Coastal, Support and Special Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Jane's Publishing Company Ltd., 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0187-5.

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • No. 201 Squadron RAF — Official Squadron crest for No. 201 Squadron RAF Active 17 Oct 1914(RNAS) 21 Jun 1915 6 Dec 1916 1 Apr 1918 1 Apr 1918(RAF) 31 Dec 1919 1 Jan 1929 28 Feb 1957 …   Wikipedia

  • No. 233 Squadron RAF — Active 31 August 1918 15 May 1919 18 May 1937 – 15 December 1945 1952 1957 1 September 1960 – 31 January 1964 Country …   Wikipedia

  • No. 269 Squadron RAF — The official No. 269 Squadron badge Active 6 October 1918 – 15 November 1919 7 December 1936 – 10 March 1946 1 January 1952 – 24 M …   Wikipedia

  • No. 92 Squadron RAF — Active 1 September 1917 (RFC) 1919 1939 1946 1947 1994 2009 present Country United Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • No. 550 Squadron RAF — Active 25 Nov 1943 31 Oct 1945 Country United Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • No. 576 Squadron RAF — Active 25 Nov 1943 13 Sep 1945 Country United Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • No. 217 Squadron RAF — was originally formed on 1 April 1918, from the No. 17 Naval Squadron at Bergues, near Dunkerque[1]. It conducted daylight raids using Airco DH.4s on enemy bases and airfields in Belgium. The squadron was disbanded on 18 October 1919, after the… …   Wikipedia

  • No. 16 Squadron RAF — Active 10 February 1915 – Present Role Elementary Flying Training …   Wikipedia

  • No. 41 Squadron RAF — Official Squadron Badge of No. 41 Squadron RAF Active 14 July 1916 Country …   Wikipedia

  • No. 99 Squadron RAF — No. 99 Squadron Royal Air Force Official squadron crest for no. 99 squadron RAF Active 15 Aug 1917 2 Apr 1920 1 Apr 1924 15 Nov 1945 17 Nov 1947 7 Jan 1976 1 Jan 2002 Present Day …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.