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F540 Operations Record Book March 1955 NO 93 SQUADRON.
PRO Kew No. AIR27 Piece 2636 Microfilm Row 1 Draws 52-71 from Duncan Curtis
Place Date Time Summary of Events                                  COMPILING OFFICER  Flying Officer G.E. Hickman REF. TO APPENDICES
     

GeorgeHickman.jpg, 8515 bytes

 
R.A.F. Jever 1st March
1955
            The weather was clear today but not many aircraft were available as several
were on inspections and harmonisations in preparation for our detachment to R.A.F.
Sylt.   Cine quarter attacks were flown on Radar flags towed by the Squadron, and
during the afternoon a six flew a combat sortie against 4 visiting Hunters from
D.F.L.S., which proved to be abortive due to false information regarding the Hunters'
take-off time from U.K.
 
  2nd.             After 'Met' briefing this morning we had a talk on the Hunter, and the tactics
to be used with it, by the O.C. D.F.L.S.   Four Sabres then took-off to 'dog fight'
with the four Hunters - this fight started at 45,000 feet and worked down to 20,000
feet before being broken off - in spite of the Hunters superior acceleration its
poor control system proved to be a great handicap.   The afternoon was devoted to
sports.
 
  3rd             Several cine details were made on the flag today as well as quarter attacks,
aircraft to aircraft.   Fg. Off. Revnell lost his flag not far from the airfield, but
it fell safely in a field and no damage was done.   A total of 27½ hours was flown.
 
  4th             The Squadron formation aerobatic team had it's first practice for several weeks
and showed that they have not lost their form in the meanwhile.   More sorties were
flown on the flag, and during the afternoon the three new pilots were given their
first battle formation trips, flying in a section of four aircraft.
 
  5th             The fine weather of the past two weeks, broke during the night and there were
snow showers this morning.   Two details were flown and the rest of the day was
spent doing compass swings, radar harmonisation and general servicing.
 
  6th             The Squadron was working in shifts today servicing and harmonising the aircraft.  
  7th Monday.           Snow storms prevented any flying from taking place today.   In the afternoon the
pilots had a briefing from Squadron Leader Browne on the coming Sylt detachment.
Fg. Off. Revnell left for Sylt with the advance party.
 
  8th             We spent today loading equipment on to the train which is due to leave for Sylt
tomorrow morning.   The M.T. is being sent by rail as well this time, to save wear
and tear on the vehicles and to prevent possible delay because of bad road conditions.
 
  9th             The main party left Jever at 07.15 and arrived at Sylt at approximately 22.00
hours.
 
  10th             This morning the equipment was unloaded from the train before the air party,
with 14 aircraft in Squadron formation, arrived.   During the afternoon the pilots
had a briefing from the Wing Commander Flying and the P.A.I. staff.
 
  11th             Flying did not start until 11.15 hours because of fog.   We began live shooting
in pairs straight away but there were no outstanding scores today.
 
  12th             The highest score this morning was 26% by Squadron Leader Browne before we
stood down at midday for the weekend.
 
  14th Monday           Fg. Off. Busby was the highest scorer with 19% when flying stopped for the day
at 11.30 hours because of low cloud and poor visibility.   The afternoon shift saw
some instructional films and carried out Squadron ground duties.
 
  15th             Poor visibility was the main reason flying did not start until 12.00 hours.
The weather remained fine and did not interrupt flying during the afternoon.
Fg. Off. Busby scored 19% and 14%, and Squadron Leader Browne had a 17%.
 
  16th             Bad weather conditions prohibited flying except for three hours at the end of
day.   Even then there were the occasional snow showers and only one effective sortie
was carried out.   The Squadron average now stands at 6.9%.
          Two radar sets have had to be re-harmonised as they were found to be feeding
incorrect ranges to the sight.   Aircraft and sight serviceability have not been
very good this week, but so far we have just managed to continue the programme.
 
  17th             Flying started at 10.00 hours when the runway was clear of ice, and the snow
had stopped falling.   The highest scorers were F.S. Shrubsole, 18%, and Sqn.Ldr.
Browne
, 16%.
 
  18th             We had a full day's flying, uninterrupted by weather.   The highest score was
20% by Fg.Off. Hickman.   The number of effective sorties for the day was 34, with
the total so far, 84.
 
  19th             The gun sight and aircraft serviceability were very good today, and at last
the troubles of the past week seem to have been overcome.   We were firing singly on
the flag to start with, but with the improved serviceability we returned to firing
in pairs by midday.   Firing in pairs rather than singly means an increase of two
sorties an hour.
          The top scorers were Fg.Off. Ritchie, 18% and 12%, and Fg.Off. Hickman 12.5%.
 
  Monday 21st           Although the fog cleared by 10.30 hours it was still very hazy making it
difficult to see the target.   However, Fg.Off. Chadwick recorded the highest
score of the detachment so far with 34%.   He also scored 29% and 12% on his other
two sorties.   The Squadron average is now 7.2%.
 
  22nd             Once again poor visibility and slippery runway prevented flying from starting
until 11.15 hours.   We then had a lot of gun sight trouble and three sorties were
aborted for this reason.   Only 9 effective sorties were flown, bringing the total
to 133.   Fg.Off. Hickman scored 17%, and Fg.Off. Leigh-Lancaster 16%.
 
  23rd             Weather conditions were unsuitable for flying throughout the whole day.   The
Pilots carried out various Squadron ground duties including assessing their own
cine film.
 
  24th             All hope of flying was abandoned at midday and an aircrew soccer match against
No. 5 Squadron was arranged, which 93 Squadron won after extra time with a score
of 6 to 5.
 
  25th             Fog persisted throughout the day and no flying was possible.   During the
morning there was a pilots' meeting concerning future Squadron parties.
 
  26th             For the fourth day in succession there was no flying due to fog, and the
Squadron stood down at midday for the week-end.
 
  28th Monday           In a full day's flying the highest scorers were Sqn.Ldr. Browne 16% and Fg.Off.
Leigh-Lancaster
with two scores of 15%.   Considerable trouble was experienced
with the gun sight and also with flags falling off.   Whilst waiting for flying
to start at 11.30 hours we had a lecture from the P.A.I.s on air firing followed
by a discussion, trying to iron out the faults.
          When flying started Fg.Off. Chadwick scored 34% and Fg.Off. Sanderson 32%
and 29%.   The Squadron average is now 7.7% with today's average being 11.9%.
 
  30th             A singles programme was in operation today with double Anning Reflectors on
the flag in the morning.   Thirteen sorties were aborted because of flags falling
off and not flying straight, so we changed over to Durgess flags in the afternoon
with improved results.   During the afternoon 6 more sorties were aborted because
of flag trouble.   The highest score was 33% by Sqn.Ldr. Browne.
 
  31st             The weather was unserviceable for firing for the whole day, and there were
no effective sorties.   No. 5 Squadron challenged us again at football, and
we won 3 - 1.
 
                                             Rounds fired                       -                 46,483
                                       Stoppages                           -                 8
                                       Stoppage Rate                    -                5810.

          Hours flown in March :-                         Hours                          Sorties
                                       Sabre                         345.20                            572
                                       Vampire T.II                 21.45                              30
                                       Prentice                        14.10                                4
                                       Meteor 9                            .30                                1  
                                       Total                            381.45                           607  
[No signature Block or last page - the last page(s) are missing from the microfilm.]
 
Also attached to this month's F540 was the following correspondence:


From:- Adjutant No. 93 Squadron Royal Air Force Jever
To     :- Directorate of Historical (Archives) Records Air Ministry
Date :-          March, 1955
Ref   :- 93E/C8/AIR

                                        No. 93 Squadron.
1.     It is requested that full details of the Squadron history
of No. 93 Squadron be compiled and forwarded to this unit.

2.     It is noted in our Squadron History that the Squadron was in
existence in 1917, but we have no indication as to the exact
date of formation, places where the Squadron has been located
since that date, or the types of aircraft which the Squadron
have flown.



                                                               D.H.H
                                                       (D. H. Harper)
                                                       Flying Officer
                                                       Adjutant
                                                       No. 93 Squadron.


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                                                                                                          SQUADRON HISTORIES

                                                       NO. 93 SQUADRON, R.A.F.


          No. 420 Flight formed on 29th September, 1940, under the command of Flt. Lt.
Burke
for the purpose of experimental work in connection with the use of aerial
mines
in intercepting enemy planes.   These experiments were carried out with Harrow
aircraft using Battle aircraft as targets.   On 26th October, the first practical
experiment took place against the enemy, one aircraft being probably destroyed.

          On 7th December, 1940, this Flight became No. 93 Squadron under the command of
Wing Commander J.W. Homer.   It consisted of 2 Havoc Flights and 1 Wellington Flight.
Experiments continued and on 23rd April, 1941, the 2 Havoc Flights became oper-
ational on night interception duties using mines and the third flight was taken to
form the Fighter Experimental Establishment.

          Wg. Cdr. MB. Hamilton assumed Command on 23rd April, 1941.

          During the following months the Squadron flew numerous operational sorties from
Middle Wallop with detachments operating at various times from Coltishall,
Hibaldston and Exeter.   There is no record of any enemy aircraft destroyed during
this period and towards the end of the summer few operational sorties could be
made owing to (i) the absence of enemy aircraft and (ii) the presence of friendly
aircraft.

          At the end of November a decision was taken to discontinue the use of aerial
mines in night interception and as a result of this decision No. 93 Squadron was
disbanded on 6th December, 1941.

          The Squadron was reformed at Andress, Isle of Man, on 1st June, 1942 as a
fighter squadron equipped with Spitfires, beginning its operational flying on
10th July, with a convoy escort patrol.   Then followed many such patrols as well as
scrambles and shipping protection patrols until 8th September when the squadron
moved to Wansford, Northants.

          No operations were flown from Wansford as the squadron was preparing for
service overseas its destination being North Africa.   Sixteen aircraft were flown
out by pilots arriving at Maison Blanche on 13th November and on 21st November were
flown to Souk-el-Arba commencing operations in support of forward troops.   The
ground party arrived at Algiers on 22nd November and proceeded to Souk-el-Arba,
arriving there on 7th December.   On 31st December the squadron was established on
the site of a new airfield at Soul-el-Khemis.

          There followed until the end of the campaign in N. Africa on 13.5.43 a period
of intense operational activity, escorts were provided to bombers, and tactical
reconnaissance and offensive sweeps and patrols made over the areas - Tunis -
Biserta, Pont du Faha and Mateur - Tabourba, considerable damage being inflicted
on M/T vehicles, roads, aerodromes and a number of enemy aircraft destroyed
and damaged.   On 13th May the Squadron moved to Sebala and continued operational work
on convoy patrols and on 26th May moved to Mateur for a rest.

On 12th June the squadron moved to Hal Far, Malta and began a series of
offensive sweeps over Sicily in preparation for operation 'Husky' (the invasion
of Sicily) on 10th July, 1943.   On the day of the landings cover was provided by
the squadron's Spitfires and numerous combats took place on that day and the
following two days, the number of enemy aircraft claimed to have been destroyed
was 8½ and probably destroyed 3.

           On 14th July the squadron advance party arrived at Comiso, Sicily and begun
patrols over Cantania, Syracuse and Cesaro.   The rest of the squadron arrived at
Comiso on the 20th July.   Operations consisted of escorts to dive bombers attacking
shipping in the Straits of Messina and roads north of Etna.


                                                                                              ............../Cont'd.
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                                                                      -   2   -

          The squadron moved to Pachino on 31st July, 1943 and from there to Cassale on
2nd September patrols continuing all the time.   On the 9th September the squadron was
located at Falcone from where on 26th September it embarked for Italy and was
located at Battipaglio.   Very little flying was done from Battipaglio owing to
unfavourable weather conditions and then on 12th October the squadron moved to
Capodochino, Naples, which had been occupied by the allies on 1st October.   Battle
line patrols and escorts to bombers as well as some convoy patrols were the
order of the day.

          On 16th January, 1944, a move was made to Lago airfield north of the Volturno
River mouth where the squadron was ready to provide cover for the landing at Anzio
and Nettuno beaches, on 22nd January and following days.   For the next few months
convoy patrols continued with bomber escorts as well as fighter patrols over the
Rome and Cassino areas.   The squadron claims to have shot down 5 enemy aircraft in
March and 6 in April with the loss of two pilots.

          On 5th June, 1944, the squadron was on then move again to Tre Canncelli a sand
strip 3 miles north east of Anzio where it remained 8 days and then moved to the
concrete runway at Tarquinia which had been heavily bombed by the Allies, the
craters having been filled in with rubble.   Operating from this runway a good deal
of undercarriage trouble was experienced, due mostly to dust.   On 25th June a
further move was made to Grosseto.   There were no engagements with the enemy during
the month and flying generally was on a reduced scale.

          At the beginning of July a number of battle line patrols were made and sweeps
as far north as Ravenna and Bologna were included.   On 5th July the squadron was
again on the move this time to Piombino where it stayed until 21st July carrying out
patrols over Leghorn, Pisa and Gargona areas and providing escort to bombers; a
good deal of opposition was encountered during the sorties.   On 20th July the
squadron aircraft flew to Calvi in Corsica to be followed by the ground
personnel.

           The first fortnight of August consisted of intensive patrols of southern
France in preparation for the landings which were made on 15th August.   Enemy radar
stations were attacked two days before the invasion.   Five days after the landings
had been affected the squadron aircraft left Calvi and landed at the newly constructed
strip at Ramatuelle, Southern France and carried out patrols, escorts and staffing
missions between Lyon and Macon.   On one of these missions on 29th August 3
locomotives were destroyed and other trucks damaged, a staff car was wrecked, six trucks
set on fire and four others badly damaged.   On 26th August the squadron moved to a
new landing strip in Sisterone.

          Armed recces and sweeps continued with successful attacks on trains and M.T.
vehicles over the Lyon - Chalon and Dijon - Belfort areas.   A move was made to Bron
airfield at Lyon on 10th September and then on 28th September the squadron aircraft
flew to La Jasse preparatory to moving back to Italy, where it arrived on 14th
October at Peretola.   Weather conditions were very bad during the remainder of the
month and few operational sorties were flown.

          Early in the following month the conversion of the squadron to a fighter/
Bomber squadron was commenced and by 20 November the first bombing mission was
carried out when Filo was bombed from 10-14,000 feet.   Direct hits were obtained
on houses and on roads west of Filo.   The squadron was then operating from Rimini
having moved there on 16th November.

          December saw a full month's flying, dive bombing results were excellent,
the squadron scoring the highest percentage of hits in the Wing.   The squadron
also began to do long range escorts to both medium bombers and Kittyhawks
attacking targets in Northern Italy and Jugoslavia.   These sorties continued in
1945 and in January the squadron again scored the highest percentage of direct
hits in the Wing.   Targets attacked were marshalling yards, road and rail bridges,
gun positions and barges.

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                                                                      -   3   -

          On 18th February a move was made to Ravenna from where targets were attacked at
Udine, Meolo, Cittadella, Gottingola, Bassano - Castel - Veneto, Treviso and long
range escorts provided to Gorizia, Longarone and Casarsa.

          The final offensive in the Italian Campaign which began on 9th April saw the
squadron working at full strength.   For the first 8 days of the month objectives were
mainly rail cuts on the Rouigo - Padova, Vicenza - Cittadella lines and many cuts
were affected.   Bombing and straffing attacks were also directed against enemy
occupied sites on Islands in Lake Commachio and near to Port Garibaldi and it
was during these operations that blaze bombs were used for the first time.   These
proved most effective.   The blaze bomb attacks were followed by H.E. bombs in the
same areas.   The 8th Army push began on 9th April and in the afternoon of that day
twelve aircraft of No. 93 Squadron in conjunction with aircraft of other squadrons
attacked an area on the Senlo River to prepare the way for advancing troops.

          Until the end of the month there was much activity and numerous sorties were
flown, mostly against buildings and strong points.   As enemy resistance began to
lesson, Army Support targets became few and armed recces and offensive patrols
became the order of the day.   On 30th April, the last day on which the squadron
was called on the attack the record number of 41 tanks, cars, and transport vehicles
were destroyed and 21 damaged.

          On 5th May the squadron moved to Rivolto airfield near Udine where some area
recces were flown, some extending to Austria.   On 15th May the squadron moved to
Klagenfurt, Austria.   Several Tac/R sorties were flown to
check up on transport concentrations and movements but these ceased after 18th May.

The squadron took part in the Desert Air Force fly past at Udine on 28th May.

The squadron was disbanded on 5th September, 1945.

          On 1st January, 1946 No. 237 Squadron was renumbered No. 93 Squadron.   It
was located at Lavariano, Italy, equipped with Mustang aircraft.   The squadron
moved to Tissano during the summer and finally disbanded at Treviso on 30th
December, 1946.

          The squadron reformed on 15th November, 1950 at Celle, B.A.F.O., equipped
with Vampire aircraft.



WORLD WAR I

          The squadron was in the process of forming as a fighter squadron but never
became operational.
Sqn numbers 91-97 were allotted to the Canadians (R.C.A.F.) originally although few
of these numbers became Squadrons in the first world war (auth and rep.? Flight). signed OPBer??56


7.12.40)
1.12.41)      1

1. 6.42)
5. 7.45)      3 1/12

   1.  1.46)
30.12.46)   1

15.11.50)
           56)
                   11

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                                                      COMMANDING OFFICERS

Wing Commander J.W. Homer                                                                          7.12.40
Wing Commander M.B. Hamilton                                                                      23.4.41 - 6.12.41
Squadron Leader G.H. Nelson-Edwards, D.F.C.                                            1.6.42
Squadron Leader W.M. Sizer, D.F.C.                                                                 13Feb43
Squadron Leader K.F. MacDonald                                                                    20.8.43 Killed 11.9.43
Squadron Leader D.F. Westenra, D.F.C. RNZAF                                            14.9.43
Squadron Leader J.H. Cleote                                                                             8.2.44
Squadron Leader L.E. Trenorden                                                                      19.9.44
Major A. Sachs, D.F.C., S.A.A.F.                                                                          28.9.44
Major T.R.J. Taylor, D.F.C., S.A.A.F.                                                                    16.2.45 - 5.9.45
                                                                                                                                  1.1.46

                                                 LOCATIONS


Middle Wallop                               England                                                            7.12.40 - 6.12.41
Andreas                                         Isle of Man                                                        1.6.42
Wansford                                       England                                                            8.9.42
Algiers                                            N. Africa                                                            22.11.42
Souk-el-Khemis                           N. Africa                                                            31.12.42
Sebala                                            N. Africa                                                            13.5.43
Mateur                                             N. Africa                                                            26.5.43
Hal Far                                            Malta                                                                 12.6.43
Comiso                                          Sicily                                                                  14.7.43
Pachino                                          Sicily                                                                  31.7.43
Kasale                                            Sicily                                                                  2.9.43
Falcone                                          Sicily                                                                  9.9.43
Battipaglio                                      Italy                                                                    28.9.43
Capodochino, Naples                  Italy                                                                    12.10.43
Lago                                                Italy                                                                    16.1.44
Trecancelli                                     Italy                                                                     5.6.44
Tarquinia                                        Italy                                                                    13.6.44
Grosseto                                        Italy                                                                    25.6.44
Piombino                                        Italy                                                                    5.7.44
Calvi                                                Corsica                                                             20.7.44
Ramatuelle                                    S. France                                                          21.8.44
Sisterone                                        S. France                                                         26.8.44
Peretola                                          Italy                                                                   14.10.44
Rimini                                             Italy                                                                    16.11.44
Ravenna                                         Italy                                                                   18.2.45
Rivolto                                             Italy                                                                   5.5.45
Klagenfurt                                       Austria                                                             15.5.45 Disbanded.
Lavariano                                       Italy                                                                   1.1.46 - 5.9.45.
Tissano                                          Italy                                                                   1.8.46
Treviso                                            Italy                                                                   30.12.46   Disbanded
Celle                                               Germany                                                          15.11.50   McGregor
Jever                                                    "                                                                            ?         Allen
                                                                                                                                                      Browne
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