“The flash of her close range weapons stabbed at us, as first one and then another along her length opened up… We were in the centre of an incredible mass of crossfire from the cruisers and battleships and shore batteries.” Lt F. Torrens-Spence, 819 Naval Air Squadron at Taranto
Operation “Judgement”, carried out exactly 77 years ago on the 4th May 1945, was the final offensive operation mounted by the Royal Navy in World War Two’s European theatre. It resulted in the sinking of two German surface vessels and a submarine for the loss of two FAA aircraft. The war in Europe ended three days later.
UPDATED to include information on F/O James M. Cartmell DFC, pilot of the featured Mosquito MM312.
In just 37 days between 1 May and 6 June 1944, No.140 Squadron, RAF flew 143 PR sorties over France. The foresight they helped provide saved countless lives on D-Day and after. This is the story of how they did it.
“They’re such fighters, if only they can get the stuff to fight with…” spoken by the BBC’s Stanley Maxted at Arnhem – the Tenth Bridge of Operation Market Garden.
G-George flew 89 sorties over occupied Europe with No.460 Squadron during a period when most operational Lancasters were shot down before they had even reached 20. In 107,085 total sorties flown by Lancasters, 2,687 went missing. Remarkably, G-George brought its crew home alive from every operation it flew on.
The Bottisham Four, 26th July, 1944; iconic images that spawned a hundred pages of discussion. Blue or not?
The Photo Recon pilot had no wingman, no flight, no formation. He flew alone in radio silence for hours at a time, navigating on dead reckoning all over mainland Europe; in his unarmed Spitfire he had only its altitude and speed, along with his wits and airmanship as protection.
JV44’s “Papagei” Staffel only existed as an operational unit for a couple of weeks, but they live forever (whatever one may think of that…) in plastic. Here’s mine.
The little told story of the USAAF’s 5th ASR and how they rescued war weary P-47’s and in turn, rescued almost a thousand downed airmen in the North Sea and English Channel.
Two brothers, two Spitfires; Ft/Lt. John Yarra and his brother, P/O Robert Yarra from rural NSW and their No.453 Sqn. Spitfires.