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No 605 Squadron was a Royal Auxiliary Air Force Squadron. It was one of the most successful participants of the Battle of Britain.

History

Formation and early years

No 605 Squadron was formed on 5 October 1926 at Castle Bromwichmarker as a day bomber unit of the Auxiliary Air Force, recruiting in the Birminghammarker area. Initially equipped with DH.9As it received Wapitis in April 1930 and Harts in October 1934. The latter were replaced by Hinds in August 1936. On 1 January 1939 No 605 was redesignated as a fighter squadron and re-equipped with Gladiators.

World war II

Hurricanes began to arrive a few weeks before the outbreak of World War Two and the squadron took up its war station at RAF Tangmeremarker with a mixture of six Hurricanes and ten Gladiators, completing re-equipment during October 1939. In February 1940 the squadron moved to Scotlandmarker, but returned south in May to fly patrols over northern France for a week before moving back to Scotland at RAF Dremmarker. It again moved south again in September for the closing stages of the Battle of Britain. It then continued to operate from bases in the south, carrying out escort duties and fighter sweeps until posted overseas.

To the east

In November 1941, the squadron flew off the carrier HMS Argus to Maltamarker, where it was retained as part of the island's defences, prior to continuing its journey to the Far East. Arriving in Singaporemarker too late to prevent its capture, it moved to Sumatramarker and then to Javamarker, in the event caught up in the Japanese invasion. It operated any aircraft it could fly until it ceased to exist with its personnel either escaping in small groups or being captured. A small detachment of the squadron had been left on Malta during the transit journey to the Far East and a unit there which began operations on 10 January 1942 used the squadron number in its reports, which ended the following month, on being absorbed into No. 185 Squadron RAF.

Reformation as night intruders

A new No 605 squadron was formed at RAF Fordmarker on 7 June 1942, equipped with Havocs and Bostons in the intruder role. These were replaced with Mosquitoes from February 1943 and it continued to operate this type until the end of the war, moving to Belgiummarker in March 1945 and the Netherlandsmarker in April. The squadron disbanded by being re-numbered to No. 4 Squadron RAF on 31 August 1945 at Volkel Air Basemarker.

After the war

With the reactivation of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, 605 was reformed on 10 May 1946 at RAF Honileymarker as a night fighter squadron. But its initial equipment of Mosquitoes NF.30s did not arrive until April 1947. In July 1948 its role was changed to that of a day fighter squadron, for which it received Vampire F.1s replacing them with FB.5s in May 1951, but along with all the flying units of the RAuxAF, it was disbanded on 10 March 1957.

Aircraft operated



Squadron bases



Commanding Officers



References

Notes

  1. Thomas 2003, pp. 68-69 and 46.
  2. Thomas 2003, pp. 29 and 46.
  3. Halley 1988, p. 423.
  4. Base overview on 605 website
  5. Base overview on RAFcommands website
  6. Piper 1997, pp. 239-240.

Biliography

  • Halley, James J. The Squadrons of the Royal Air Force. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd., 1980. ISBN 0-85130-083-9.
  • 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, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1988 (second edition 2001). ISBN 1-85310-053-6.
  • Piper, Ian. We Never Slept: the Story of 605 County of Warwick) Squadron, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, 1926-1957. Kingsbury, Tamworth, Staffordshire, UK: Ian Piper, 1996 (reprinted in 1997). ISBN 0-9529516-0-6.
  • Rawlings, John. Fighter Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Macdonald and Jane's Publishers Ltd., 1969 (second edition 1976). ISBN 0-354-01028-X.
  • Thomas, Andrew. Hurricanes Aces: 1941-45. Botley, Oxford, UK: Osprey Publishing Ltd., 2003. ISBN 1-84176-610-0.


External links



Related content

From
To
Aircraft
Version
Oct 1926
Jun 1930
Airco DH.9
DH.9A
Apr 1930
Dec 1934
Westland Wapiti
Mk.IIa
Feb 1934
Aug 1936
Hawker Hart
Aug 1936
Feb 1939
Hawker Hind
Feb 1939
Oct 1939
Gloster Gladiator
Mks.I, II
Aug 1939
Dec 1940
Hawker Hurricane
Mk.I
Dec 1940
Aug 1941
Hawker Hurricane
Mk.IIa
Aug 1941
Mar 1942
Hawker Hurricane
Mk.IIb
Jul 1942
Oct 1942
Douglas Havoc
Mks.I, II
Jul 1942
Mar 1943
Douglas Boston
Mk.III
Feb 1943
Jul 1943
de Havilland Mosquito
Mk.II
Jul 1943
Aug 1945
de Havilland Mosquito
Mk.VI
Apr 1947
Jan 1949
de Havilland Mosquito
NF.30
Jul 1948
May 1951
de Havilland Vampire
F.1
Apr 1951
Mar 1957
de Havilland Vampire
FB.5
From
To
Name base
Remark
5 Oct 1926
27 Aug 1939
RAF Castle Bromwichmarker, Warwickshiremarker
First formation
27 Aug 1939
11 Feb 1940
RAF Tangmeremarker, Sussex
11 Feb 1940
27 Feb 1940
RAF Leucharsmarker, Fifemarker
27 Feb 1940
21 May 1940
RAF Wickmarker, Caithnessmarker
21 May 1940
28 May 1940
RAF Hawkingemarker, Kentmarker
28 May 1940
7 Sep 1940
RAF Dremmarker, Lothian
7 Sep 1940
26 Feb 1941
RAF Croydonmarker, Surreymarker
26 Feb 1941
31 Mar 1941
RAF Martlesham Heathmarker, Suffolk
31 Mar 1941
1 Jul 1941
RAF Ternhillmarker, Shropshiremarker
1 Jul 1941
4 Sep 1941
RAF Bagintonmarker, Warwickshire
4 Sep 1941
31 Oct 1941
RAF Honileymarker, Warwickshire
Left to Far East from here
12 Nov 1941
27 Feb 1942
RAF Hal Far, Maltamarker
Detachment, 605 personnel joining No.185 Squadron 27 Feb.
3 Feb 1942
10 Feb 1942
Batavia, Javamarker, Netherlands East Indiesmarker
10 Feb 1942
14 Feb 1942
Palembangmarker, Sumatramarker, Netherlands East Indiesmarker
605 personnel joined forces with Nos. 238 and 242 Squadrons on 14 Feb.
14 Feb 1942
Feb 1942
Tjililitanmarker, Javamarker, Netherlands East Indiesmarker
Feb 1942
28 Feb 1942
Tasik Masala, Javamarker, Netherlands East Indiesmarker
Dispersed from here
7 Jun 1942
15 Mar 1943
RAF Fordmarker, Sussex
Second formation
15 Mar 1943
6 Oct 1943
RAF Castle Campsmarker, Cambridgeshire
6 Oct 1943
7 Apr 1944
RAF Bradwell Baymarker, Essex
7 Apr 1944
21 Nov 1944
RAF Manstonmarker, Kent
21 Nov 1944
15 Mar 1945
RAF Hartford Bridgemarker, Hampshire
Airfield name changed to RAF Blackbushemarker, 12/44.
15 Mar 1945
28 Apr 1945
Koksijdemarker (B.71), Belgiummarker
28 Apr 1945
31 Aug 1945
Volkelmarker (B.80), the Netherlandsmarker
10 May 1946
11 Mar 1957
RAF Honileymarker, Warwickshire
Third formation and last disbandment
From
To
Name
Oct 1926
Mar 1936
S/Ldr. J.A.C. Wright, AFC, TD
Mar 1936
Dec 1939
S/Ldr. Lord Willoughby de Broke, MC, AFC
Dec 1939
May 1940
S/Ldr. G.V. Perry
May 1940
Jun 1940
F/Lt. R.G. Grant-Ferris, MP (acting)
Jun 1940
Sep 1940
S/Ldr. W.M. Churchill, DSO, DFC
Sep 1940
Nov 1940
S/Ldr. A.A. McKellar, DFC
Nov 1940
Nov 1940
F/Lt. C.F. Currant, DFC (acting)
Nov 1940
Sep 1941
S/Ldr. G.R. Edge, DFC
Sep 1941
Jan 1942
S/Ldr. R. Reid
Jan 1942
Feb 1942
S/Ldr. S.E. Andrews, DFM (Maltamarker)
Feb 1942
Feb 1942
F/Lt. D.W.A. Stones, DFC (Malta)
Feb 1942
Jun 1942
S/Ldr. E.W. Wright, DFM (Batavia)
Jun 1942
Aug 1942
W/Cdr. P.W. Townsend, DSO, DFC
Aug 1942
May 1943
W/Cdr. G.L. Denholm, DFC
May 1943
Sep 1943
W/Cdr. C.D. Tomalin, AFC
Sep 1943
Apr 1944
W/Cdr. B.R.O'B. Hoare, DSO, DFC and Bar
Apr 1944
Sep 1944
W/Cdr. N.J. Starr, DFC
Sep 1944
Mar 1945
W/Cdr R.A. Mitchell, DFC & Bar
Mar 1945
Apr 1945
S/Ldr A.G. Woods, DFC (acting)
Apr 1945
Jul 1945
W/Cdr A.W. Horne, DFC, AFC
Jul 1945
May 1946
S/Ldr I.F. McCall, DFC (acting)
May 1946
Dec 1947
S/Ldr R.J. Walker, DSO
Dec 1947
Jul 1949
S/Ldr R.C.T. Goodwin, TD
Jul 1949
Aug 1951
S/Ldr J.A. Timmis
Aug 1951
Nov 1955
S/Ldr P.M.R. Walton
Nov 1955
Mar 1957
S/Ldr R.E. Tickner

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