No. 322 (Dutch) Squadron RAF

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No. 322 (Dutch) Squadron RAF
Burgwal bij de propellor.JPG
Members of No. 322 Squadron with a Spitfire. Part of the 3W squadron code can be seen, as well as the Royal Netherlands Air Force insignia by the cockpit.
Active 12 June 1943 – 7 October 1945
Country  UK
Allegiance Netherlands Dutch government in exile
Branch Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg Royal Air Force
Type Inactive
Role Fighter squadron
Motto Dutch: Niet praten maar doen
("Actions, not words" or "Don't prattle, act")
Mascot Polly Grey,[1] the parrot
Equipment Spitfire
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Bram van der Stok
Insignia
Squadron badge Perched on a Branch, a Parrot
Squadron codes VL Jun 1943 – Oct 1944
(Code taken over from No. 167 Squadron)
3W (Oct 1944 – Oct 1945)

No. 322 (Dutch) Squadron of the Royal Air Force was a fighter squadron during the Second World War.

Formed with Dutch personnel already flying with the RAF, during the war it formed part of the Air Defence of Great Britain and formed part of the defences against V-1 flying bombs. In the last year of the war, it moved to the continent. After the war, it was disbanded as an RAF unit, but the 322e Jachtvliegtuig Afdeling of the Netherlands armed forces was formed from the squadron.

History[edit]

No. 322 Squadron of the Royal Air Force was formed from the Dutch personnel[2] of No. 167 Squadron RAF on 12 June 1943 at RAF Woodvale. The squadron retained the code-letter combination VL which had been used previously by No. 167 Squadron until late June 1944, when it was changed to 3W. It served at RAF West Malling and other stations during the Second World War.

From 20 June to 9 August 1944, and equipped with Spitfire Mk XIVs, the squadron was tasked with intercepting the V-1 Flying Bomb "doodlebug" missiles launched from the Dutch and French coasts towards London.[3] Flying Officer Brugwal was the most outstanding pilot on these 'anti-diver' patrols, claiming five of the missiles in one 90 minute flight (8 July).[4] The total for the squadron was 108.5 destroyed.

On 7 October 1945, the squadron disbanded at Wunstorf in Germany as part of the RAF. In recognition of the squadron's wartime record, the squadron continued its existence at Twente Airbase on 27 September 1946 as the 322e Jachtvliegtuig Afdeling (Fighter Division) of the Royal Netherlands Army.


The Dutch No. 322 Squadron RNLAF is official considered as being the continuation of the No. 322 (Dutch) Squadron, including its motto and mascot "Polly Grey", the parrot.

Aircraft operated[edit]

From To Aircraft Version
June 1943 March 1944 Supermarine Spitfire Vb, Vc
March 1944 August 1944 Supermarine Spitfire XIV
August 1944 November 1944 Supermarine Spitfire IXb
November 1944 October 1945 Supermarine Spitfire XVIe

Commanding officers[edit]

From To Name
June 1943 August 1943 S/Ldr. A.C. Stewart
September 1943 September 1944 Maj. K.C. Kuhlmann, DFC
September 1944 November 1944 S/Ldr. L.C.M. van Eendenburg
November 1944 March 1945 S/Ldr. H.F. O'Neill, DFC
March 1945 October 1945 S/Ldr. Bram "Bob" van der Stok

Squadron bases[edit]

Ground crew service a Spitfire Mark VB of No. 322 (Dutch) Squadron at RAF Hawkinge, February 1944.
From To Base
12 June 1943 15 November 1943 RAF Woodvale
15 November 1943 30 November 1943 RAF Llanbedr
30 November 1943 31 December 1943 RAF Woodvale
31 December 1943 25 February 1944 RAF Hawkinge
25 February 1944 1 March 1944 RAF Ayr
1 March 1944 9 March 1944 RAF Hawkinge
9 March 1944 23 April 1944 RAF Acklington
23 April 1944 20 June 1944 RAF Hartford Bridge
20 June 1944 21 July 1944 RAF West Malling
21 July 1944 10 October 1944 RAF Deanland
10 October 1944 1 November 1944 RAF Fairwood Common
1 November 1944 3 January 1945 RAF Biggin Hill
3 January 1945 21 February 1945 RAF Woensdrecht (B.79)
21 February 1945 18 April 1945 RAF Schijndel (B.85)
18 April 1945 30 April 1945 RAF Twente (B.106)
30 April 1945 2 July 1945 RAF Varrelbusch (B.113)
2 July 1945 7 October 1945 RAF Wunstorf (B.116)[5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.defensie.nl/luchtmacht/cultureel/luchtmachtgeschiedenis/periode_1940-1945/polly_grey[dead link]
  2. ^ Rawlings 1976, p. 405.
  3. ^ Rafweb Retrieved 10 July 2007
  4. ^ Rawlings 1976, p. 404.
  5. ^ http://wikimapia.org/2374029/Wunstorf_Air_Base present day air photograph of Wunstorf Air Base

Bibliography[edit]

  • Appeldorn, Filip. 40 Jaar 322 Squadron, 1943–1983 (in Dutch). Klu 322, 1983.
  • 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, 2001. ISBN 1-84037-141-2.
  • Kock, W.J.E. 25 Jaar 322 (in Dutch). Klu 322, 1968.
  • Oxspring, Group Captain R.W. DFC. Spitfire Command. London: William Kimber, 1984 (republished by Cerberus Publishing in 2000 and 2005, ISBN 1-84145-033-2).
  • 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.
  • Sorgedrager, Bart and W.H. Lutgert. 322 Squadron, Sporen van zijn Verleden, Lijnen in zijn Geschiedenis (in Dutch). Ministerie van Defensie, 1993.
  • Van der Stok, Bob. Oorlogsvlieger van Oranje (in Dutch). Bussum, the Netherlands: Uitgeverij De Haan, 1980 (reprinted 1983). ISBN 90-228-3652-5.
    • Translated as War Pilot of Orange. Missoula, Montana: Pictorial Histories Pub Co, 1987. ISBN 0-933126-89-1.

External links[edit]