Czechoslovakian Air Force in exile in Great Britain, Polish Air Forces in exile in Great Britain, No. 149 Squadrons), alongside two reserve squadrons (No. You must be logged in as a Bronze, Silver or Gold Osprey member to comment on this post. 1 (Air Defence) Group RAF, a group of auxiliary bomber squadrons formed in 1926, was renamed No. RAF Bomber Command Night Raid Reports, RAF Bomber Command Loss Cards 1939 – 1945 Form 78 Movement Cards for Hampden, Manchester, Lancaster, Halifax, Wellington, Stirling Form 1180 Aircraft Accident Report Cards for Order your copy here. 9, No. 149 Squadron dropped the This website uses cookies to provide all of its features. 37 No. On the blog today, Michael Napier examines the Vickers Wellington, the subject of his upcoming Combat Aircraft book Vickers Wellington Units of Bomber Command. 6 (Auxiliary) Group. The Wellington bomber was developed from a proposal for an aircraft utilising geodetic structure, submitted by Vickers in response to Air Ministry Specification B.9/32. 38, No. The main bomber in use was the Blenheim. Because the Wellington holds a unique and fascinating place in Bomber Command history. Two more Squadrons, Nos. By using our website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Cookie Policy. 38 Squadron was one of the few RAF squadrons to use the Vickers Wellington from the beginning to the end of the Second World War. The last bomber operation carried out by front-line Wellington squadrons was in October 1943, although the aircraft continued in front-line service as an aerial minelayer with 300 (Polish) Squadron until March 1944. 37, No. It was operated by a number of nations and service branches around the world. The last bomber operation carried out by front-line Wellington squadrons was in October 1943, although the aircraft continued in front-line service as an aerial minelayer with 300 (Polish) Squadron until March 1944. This page was last edited on 1 August 2020, at 01:09. The fact that over one-third of the Wellingtons which participated in that raid were provided by the Operational Training Units (OTUs) reflects the importance of the Wellington as an operational training aircraft. 300 Polish Bomber Squadron "Land of Masovia", No. See more ideas about Wellington bomber, Wellington, Royal air force. 6 (Bomber) Group initially was an operational bomber group. 304 Polish Bomber Squadron "Land of Silesia", No. To see how we use this information about you and how you can unsubscribe from our newsletter subscriptions, view our, Vickers Wellington Units of Bomber Command. At first the night raids were penny-packets of aircraft operating against a number of targets each night, but gradually the tactics matured into massed raids against a single target. One of the most interesting facets of the Wellington in Bomber Command service was its use in OTUs. My book tells the history of the Wellington aircraft and the units that operated it during its service within RAF Bomber Command, from its conception as an Air Staff specification in 1931 through to its final operational sortie in the spring 1944 and beyond as the mainstay of the OTUs - and it is a fascinating story! 215 squadrons), that were equipped with a mixture of Wellington Mk I and Mk IA aircraft. Why? 218 Squadron as cadre, forming at RAF Driffield in Yorkshire. +44 (0)1865 727022. 99, No. 3 Group of Bomber Command comprised eight squadrons (No. 148 Squadron was based on Malta from December 1940 to March 1941. Wellington crews attacked the German industrial heartland in the Ruhr Valley as well as oil production and storage facilities and the naval infrastructure. It even meant that new airfields had to be constructed to accommodate these new units. All Rights Reserved. 57 Squadron returned from it’s period flying North Sea sweeps from … © 2017 Osprey Publishing Limited. The squadron had a quiet start to the war, flying a few sweeps over the North Sea but not getting involved in the costly daylight raids over the German coast. These two attributes made the aircraft ideal as an operational training machine, so it became the aircraft of choice at the Bomber Command OTUs. After entering service with 99 Squadron in the autumn of 1938, the Wellington was involved in a number of interesting pre-war trials and exercises, which helped to prepare the aircraft and its crews for the coming war. Meanwhile, the expansion of Bomber Command which had started before the war continued apace. The Wellington remained in the forefront when Bomber Command switched to night operations in April 1940. Wellington was a twin-engined British aircraft manufactured by Vickers-Armstrongs, which was mainly used as a bomber during the Second World War. I could have written about the Wellington in any of its many theatres or roles, but I decided to concentrate on the Wellington units within Bomber Command. Between 1941 and 1942, it was primarily the Wellington that gave Britain and its allies the ability to take the offensive into Germany itself. 115 and No. 214 and No. In particular, much of the effort of the Wellington crews was directed at German capital ships Scharnhorst, Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen while they lay in port in Brest during 1941 and early 1942. 99 and 149 Squadrons were among aircraft despatched in Bomber Command’s first attack on Berlin, which took place on 25/26 August 1940; and on 1 April 1941, a Wellington of No. The transformation from Blenheim Reconnaissance/Light Bomber squadron to Wellington medium bomber squadron began at RAF Wyton soon after No. It used B Flight, No. But in terms of aircraft numbers alone, each OTU was a large unit - the equivalent strength of four operational squadrons - which meant that staffing, and to a certain extent equipping, the OTUs represented a huge drain of resources from the front line. For the next eight months the Wellington squadrons took part in daylight bomber operations against the German fleet, including the disastrous Wilhelmshaven raid of 18 December 1939 when half the attacking force was shot down. Briefing for the crew of a heavy Stirling bomber of the RAF Bomber … On 3 September 1939, the eve of the outbreak of the Second World War, No. Between 1936 and 1945 11,461 aircraft of different versions were produced. The OTU system, therefore, represented a massive commitment in personnel, logistics and equipment - and the Wellington was central to its success. Initial aircraft received were four Vickers Virginia night bombers and two Avro Ansons. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser.


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