No. 607 Squadron RAF

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No. 607 (County of Durham) Squadron
Active 17 March 1930 – 31 July 1945
10 May 1946 – 10 March 1957
Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Branch Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg Royal Air Force
Part of Royal Auxiliary Air Force
post 1951 aircraft insignia RAF 607 sqn.svg
Battle honours France & Low Countries, 1939–40
Battle of Britain, 1940
Fortress Europe, 1941–42
Channel & North Sea, 1942
Arakan, 1942–44
Manipur, 1944
Burma, 1944–45
These seven honours are emblazoned on the squadron standard
Commanders
Honorary Air Commodore The Marquess of Londonderry (1932–1945)
Walter Leslie Runciman, 2nd Viscount Runciman of Doxford (1946–1957)
Insignia
Squadron Badge heraldry A winged lion salient, the hind legs also winged[1]
Squadron Codes LW (Mar 1939 – Sep 1939)[2]
AF (Sep 1939 – May 1945)[3]
RAN (Jun 1946 – 1949)[4]
LA (1949 – Apr 1951)[5]

No. 607 (County of Durham) Squadron was a squadron of the Royal Air Force. It was formed in 1930 as a bomber unit in the Auxiliary Air Force and changed in 1936 to the fighter role. It fought in that role during World War II on the European front and in Asia. After the war the squadron reformed as a fighter unit of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, disbanding with all the other flying units of the RAuxAF on 10 March 1957.

History[edit]

Formation and early years[edit]

No. 607 Squadron was formed on 17 March 1930 at the then new airfield of RAF Usworth, County Durham[6] as a day bomber unit of the Auxiliary Air Force (AuxAF).[1] They became operational in the summer of 1933, having received their first aircraft in December 1932, flying Westland Wapitis. First Commanding Officer was Walter Leslie Runciman (later the 2nd Viscount Runciman of Doxford). In September 1936 the squadron was re-equipped with Hawker Demons and the squadron was told that the role of the squadron was changed into that of a fighter squadron. For that role it later received Gloster Gladiators, which arrived in December 1938. The squadron took these to France, being part of the Air Component of the BEF in November 1939.

World War II[edit]

The squadron operated during the early part of World War II from various locations in France, including Saint-Inglevert. It was active as a fighter squadron during the Battle of France and the Battle of Britain. By this time the squadron was equipped with Hawker Hurricanes, which had arrived from March 1940. The squadron moved to RAF Manston in October 1941 and remained there until going to India in 1942. There it joined No. 166 Wing RAF on 25 May 1942, still equipped with Hurricanes. These were replaced with Supermarine Spitfires in September 1943, making the squadron the first unit in SEAC to operate this aircraft. It re-equipped with the Spitfire Mk.VIII in March 1944, and flew these until disbanding on 19 August 1945 at Mingaladon, Burma.

Post-war[edit]

On 10 May 1946 No. 607 Squadron reformed at RAF Ouston as a day fighter squadron of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. After flying Spitfire F.14 and F.22s for five years, it converted to De Havilland Vampires, flying these until February 1957 when, along with all the other flying units of the RAuxAF, it was disbanded on 10 March 1957.[7]

607 Squadron is now the squadron number used by the Air Cadet Squadron based at Seaburn near Sunderland.

Aircraft operated[edit]

A Spitfire F.22 from No. 607 Squadron with the squadron badge on the cowling and racing number "4" for the Cooper Trophy race of 1948[8]
Aircraft operated by no. 607 Squadron RAF, data from[7][9][10]
From To Aircraft Version
December 1932 January 1937 Westland Wapiti Mk.IIa
September 1936 August 1939 Hawker Demon
December 1938 May 1940 Gloster Gladiator Mks.I, II
March 1940 September 1941 Hawker Hurricane Mk.I
June 1941 November 1941 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIa
July 1941 March 1942 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIb
June 1942 February 1943 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc
February 1943 September 1943 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIb
September 1943 March 1944 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vc
March 1944 July 1945 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.VIII
November 1946 March 1949 Supermarine Spitfire F.14
January 1949 June 1951 Supermarine Spitfire F.22
March 1951 March 1957 De Havilland Vampire FB.5
April 1956 February 1957 De Havilland Vampire FB.9

Squadron airfields[edit]

Airfields used by no. 607 Squadron RAF, data from[7][8][10][11]
From To Airfield
17 March 1930 12 August 1939 RAF Usworth, County Durham
12 August 1939 24 August 1939 RAF Abbotsinch, Renfrewshire, Scotland Annual Summer Camp only.
24 August 1939 9 October 1939 RAF Usworth, County Durham
9 October 1939 14 November 1939 RAF Acklington, Northumberland (Det. at RAF Drem, East Lothian, Scotland)
14 November 1939 15 November 1939 RAF Croydon, Surrey
15 November 1939 13 December 1939 Merville, France
13 December 1939 12 April 1940 Vitry-en-Artois, France (Dets. at Abbeville and Saint-Inglevert)
12 April 1940 26 April 1940 Abbeville, France
26 April 1940 18 May 1940 Vitry-en-Artois, France
18 May 1940 22 May 1940 Norrent-Fontes, France
22 May 1940 4 June 1940 RAF Croydon, Surrey
4 June 1940 1 September 1940 RAF Usworth, County Durham
1 September 1940 10 October 1940 RAF Tangmere, West Sussex
10 October 1940 8 November 1940 RAF Turnhouse, Fife, Scotland
8 November 1940 12 December 1940 RAF Drem, East Lothian, Scotland
12 December 1940 16 January 1941 RAF Usworth, County Durham
16 January 1941 2 March 1941 RAF Macmerry, East Lothian, Scotland
2 March 1941 16 April 1941 RAF Drem, East Lothian, Scotland
16 April 1941 27 July 1941 RAF Skitten, Caithness, Scotland
27 July 1941 20 August 1941 RAF Castletown, Caithness, Scotland
20 August 1941 10 October 1941 RAF Martlesham Heath, Suffolk
10 October 1941 21 March 1942 RAF Manston, Kent
21 March 1942 25 May 1942 en route to British India
25 May 1942 23 August 1942 RAF Alipore, Bengal
23 August 1942 16 December 1942 RAF Jessore, Bengal
16 December 1942 23 January 1943 RAF Feni, Bengal
23 January 1943 2 April 1943 RAF Chittagong, Bengal
2 April 1943 1 October 1943 RAF Alipore, Bengal
1 October 1943 15 October 1943 RAF Amarda Road, Bengal
15 October 1943 29 November 1943 RAF Alipore, Bengal
29 November 1943 25 February 1944 RAF Ramu, Bengal
25 February 1944 21 March 1944 RAF Nidania, Bengal
21 March 1944 17 April 1944 RAF Rumkhapalong ('Rumkha'), Bengal
17 April 1944 27 April 1944 RAF Wangjing, Manipur
27 April 1944 6 July 1944 RAF Imphal, Manipur
6 July 1944 24 November 1944 RAF Baigachi, Bengal
24 November 1944 11 December 1944 RAF Sapam, Manipur
11 December 1944 16 January 1945 RAF Tulihal, Manipur
16 January 1945 5 April 1945 RAF Tabingaung, Burma
5 April 1945 19 April 1945 RAF Dwehla, Burma
19 April 1945 28 April 1945 RAF Kwetnge, Burma
28 April 1945 8 May 1945 RAF Kalaywa, Burma
8 May 1945 14 May 1945 RAF Thedaw, Burma (Det. at 'Tennant' airfield, Burma)
14 May 1945 19 August 1945 RAF Mingaladon, Burma
10 May 1946 10 March 1957 RAF Ouston, County Durham
16 July 1951 20 August 1951 RAF Thornaby, North Yorkshire
20 August 1951 10 September 1951 RAF Linton-on-Ouse, North Yorkshire
10 September 1951 10 October 1951 RAF Acklington, Northumberland
10 October 1951 10 March 1957 RAF Ouston, Northumberland

Commanding officers[edit]

Officers commanding no. 607 Squadron RAF, data from[12][13]
From To Name
March 1930 January 1939 S/Ldr. W.L. Runciman
January 1939 May 1940 S/Ldr. L.E. Smith

May 1940 May 1940! S/Ldr G.M.Fidler Sqd OB May 1940

May 18 1940 !! October 1940 S/Ldr J.A. Vick Sqd OB May 1940 

-

October 1940 March 1941 S/Ldr. A.W. Vincent
March 1941 November 1941 S/Ldr. G.D. Craig
November 1941 December 1941 S/Ldr. H.C. Dawson
December 1941 October 1942 S/Ldr. N.J. Mowatt, DSO
October 1942 March 1943 S/Ldr. R.H. Holland, DFC
March 1943 April 1943 S/Ldr. N.J. Mowatt, DSO
April 1943 March 1944 S/Ldr. P.J.T. Stephenson, DFC
March 1944 May 1945 S/Ldr. G.G.A. Davies
May 1945 June 1945 S/Ldr. C.M. Humphreys
June 1945 August 1945 S/Ldr. C.O.J. Pegge, DFC
May 1946 1949 S/Ldr. J.R. Kyall, DSO, OBE, DFC
1949 1951 S/Ldr. J.M. Bazin, DSO, DFC
1951 September 1953 S/Ldr. A.B. Dunford, DFC
September 1953 June 1956 S/Ldr. J.A. Stephen
June 1956 March 1957 S/Ldr. G. Gray

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Halley 1988, p. 423.
  2. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, p. 14.
  3. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, p. 16.
  4. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, p. 138.
  5. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, p. 66.
  6. ^ Moyes 1976, p. 277.
  7. ^ a b c Halley 1988, p. 424.
  8. ^ a b Rawlings 1978, p. 490.
  9. ^ Rawlings 1978, pp. 490–491.
  10. ^ a b Jefford 2001, p. 100.
  11. ^ Jefford 2001, pp. 270–271.
  12. ^ Rawlings 1978, p. 491.
  13. ^ Hunt 1972, pp. 163–181.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Bowyer, Michael J.F. and John D.R. Rawlings. Squadron Codes, 1937–56. Cambridge, UK: Patrick Stephens Ltd., 1979. ISBN 0-85059-364-6.
  • Dixon, Robert. A Gathering Of Eagles London: PublishAmerica, 2004. ISBN 1-4137-3498-7.
  • Dixon, Robert. 607 Squadron: A Shade Of Blue. Stroud, Gloucestershire: The History Press, 2008. ISBN 978-0-7524-4531-1.
  • Dixon Robert. 'Men Of The North A Few Of the Few' Wolf's Nick Publishing, 2011. ISBN 978-1-4664-4683-0.
  • Flintham, Vic and Andrew Thomas. Combat Codes: A full explanation and listing of British, Commonwealth and Allied air force unit codes since 1938. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing Ltd., 2003. ISBN 1-84037-281-8.
  • 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, 1981–1988. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air Britain (Historians) Ltd., 1988. ISBN 0-85130-164-9.
  • Hunt, Leslie. Twenty-One Squadrons: The History of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, 1925–1957. London: Garnstone Press, 1972. ISBN 0-85511-110-0.
  • Jefford, C.G., Wing Commander 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 Ltd., 1998 (second edition 2001). ISBN 1-84037-141-2.
  • Moyes, Philip J.R. Bomber Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Macdonald and Jane's (Publishers) Ltd., 1964 (Second edition 1976). ISBN 0-354-01027-1.
  • Rawlings, John D.R. Fighter Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Macdonald & Jane's (Publishers) Ltd., 1969 (2nd edition 1976, reprinted 1978). ISBN 0-354-01028-X.

External links[edit]