No. 294 Squadron RAF

Summary

No. 294 Squadron RAF
Active24 Sep 1943 – 8 Apr 1946
CountryUnited Kingdom United Kingdom
BranchEnsign of the Royal Air Force.svg Royal Air Force
RoleAir-sea rescue
Part ofRAF Middle East Command
Motto(s)Latin: Vita ex undix abrepta
(Translation: "Life snatched from the waves")[1]
Insignia
Squadron Badge heraldryAn eagle volant, carrying in the claws a lifebelt[1]
Squadron CodesFD (Sep 1943 - Apr 1946)[2]

No. 294 Squadron was a Royal Air Force air search and rescue (ASR) squadron active under RAF Middle East Command. During the second world war the unit operated rescue missions for Allied aircraft and aircrew over the eastern Mediterranean and later the Persian Gulf and Arabian sea.

History

No. 294 Squadron was formed at Berka, near Benghazi, Libya on 24 September 1943 from a former air-sea rescue flight. Equipped with the Vickers Wellington and Supermarine Walrus in the ASR role. The squadron's aircraft were detached to various airfields around the eastern Mediterranean. In October 1943 the squadron moved to Landing Ground 91 (LG.91), but still provided detachments to other airfields. In March 1944 the squadron moved to Idku, still in Egypt, and re-equipped with the Wellington Mk.XI and later also the Wellington Mk.XIII and the Vickers Warwick. In June 1945 the squadron moved to RAF Basra, Iraq to provide rescue cover in the Persian Gulf and Arabian sea until it was disbanded on 8 April 1946.

Aircraft operated

Aircraft operated by no. 294 Squadron RAF, data from[1][3][4]
From To Aircraft Variant Notes
September 1943 March 1944 Vickers Wellington Mk.Ic Twin-engined bomber operated in the search and rescue role.
September 1943 April 1946 Supermarine Walrus Mks.I, II Single pusher-engined biplane rescue amphibian
March 1944 November 1944 Vickers Wellington Mk.XI Twin-engined bomber operated in the search and rescue role.
May 1944 April 1946 Vickers Wellington Mk.XIII Special ASR version of the twin-engined bomber
November 1944 April 1946 Vickers Warwick Mk.I Twin-engined bomber operated in the search and rescue role.

Squadron bases

Bases and airfields used by No. 294 Squadron RAF, data from[1][3][4][5]
From To Base Remark
24 September 1943 5 October 1943 Berka, Libya Dets. at RAF Limassol, RAF Lakatamia Cyprus; LG.07; Mellaha, Libya; Derna, Libya; Gambut, Libya
5 October 1943 29 March 1944 LG.91/Amriya South, Egypt Dets. at RAF Lakatamia Cyprus; Berka III, Libya; Derna, Libya; Mellaha, Libya;
RAF Castel Benito, Libya; LG.07; RAF St Jean, Palestine and RAF Hergla, Tunisia
29 March 1944 6 June 1945 RAF Idku, Egypt Dets at Gambut 3, Libya; Berka III, Libya; RAF El Arish, Egypt and RAF Nicosia, Cyprus
6 June 1945 8 April 1946 RAF Basra, Iraq Dets. at RAF Sharjah, Trucial States; RAF Masirah, Oman and RAF Muharraq, Bahrain

Commanding officers

Officers commanding No. 294 Squadron RAF, data from[5]
From To Name
September 1943 December 1943 F/Lt. S.A.M. Morrison
January 1944 February 1945 W/Cdr. R.G.M. Walker, DFC
February 1945 June 1945 W/Cdr. D.B. Bennett, DFC

See also

References

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d Halley 1988, p. 351.
  2. ^ Flintham & Thomas 2003, p. 71.
  3. ^ a b Rawlings 1982, p. 252.
  4. ^ a b Jefford 2001, p. 86.
  5. ^ a b Franks 2003, p. 183.

Bibliography

  • Flintham, Vic; Thomas, Andrew (2003). Combat Codes: A Full Explanation and Listing of British, Commonwealth and Allied Air Force Unit Codes since 1938. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1-84037-281-8.
  • Franks, Norman (2003). Beyond Courage: Air Sea Rescue by Walrus Squadrons in the Adriatic, Mediterranean and Tyrrhenian Seas, 1942-1945. London: Grub Street. ISBN 1-904010-30-X.
  • Halley, James J. (1988). The Squadrons of the Royal Air Force & Commonwealth, 1918–1988. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. ISBN 0-85130-164-9.
  • Jefford, C.G. (2001). RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912 (2nd ed.). Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1-85310-053-6.
  • Rawlings, John D.R. (1982). Coastal, Support and Special Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Jane's Publishing Company Ltd. ISBN 0-7106-0187-5.
  • The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985). Orbis Publishing.

External links

  • squadron histories for nos. 291-295 squadron
  • squadron history on MOD site