Wednesday, 3 October 2012

RAF 164 Argentine British Squadron
Royal Air Force Squadron 164 formed by Argentine volunteers.
Historically, the 164 squadron was originated and first training the June 1, 1918 during the First World War, but only on paper because it did not have aircrafts under its sphere until its dissolution on July 4 of that year.
On April 6, 1942, was re-constituted in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire as a fighter squadron and reached operational status in early May with the allocation of Supermarine Spitfires Mk Va using the code FJ squad. On May 5th of that year is transferred to Skeabrae, Orkney to return to Peterhead only on September 10th but this time with the Spitfires Mk Vb.
On 29th January 1943 it was moved to the 164 Fairwood Common, Glamorganshire with Spitfires, but the 8th of the following month, it became an attack unit and was moved to Middle Wallop, Hampshire where it changed its Spitfires by Hawker Hurricanes Mk IV and begun the necessary training to the new role of attack.
On June 1943, the 164 Sqn. starts to operate against enemy shipping and German coastal targets. With the Hurricanes, the 164 moved to Warmwell, Dorset (6/20/43) and Manston, Kent (06/08/43) until September 22nd when transferred to Fairlop in Essex in January 1944 and was reequiped with Hawker Typhoon Mk Ib, faster, more robust and with great more firepower than the Hurricane. By March 8, the Sqn. was in Acklington, Northumberland, for just nine days since the 16th of that month, then is transferred to Thorney Island, Hampshire.
On June 6, passed to Sussex, Funtington, commanded by Squadron Leader Ian Waddy, then the 22nd is moved to Hurn, Hampshire. Using the Typhoon rockets and cannons the 164 Sqn. combat sorties atacked numerous sites, reaching communications, radar stations, and supply lines among others as a prelude to the invasion of mainland Europe which then triggered the famous Normandy operation.
After providing support for the landing operations during D-Day and then operating from southern England, on July 17th the squadron was transferred to its first seat in France on one of the "Advanced Landing Grounds" or "ALGs" British, in Sommervieu B.8 (semiprep track of 1200 x 40 meters) and four days later passed to B.7 in Martragny. During this period the 164 Sqn. continued its close air support mission against German armor and after breaking the front continued to provide services in support of Army Group 21 through northern France and Belgium operating as part of the 136th Wing, Group of 84 of the Second Tactical Air Force (2TAF) commanded by Arthur Coningham AVM.
On December 12, 1944 the squadron passes the area of ​​123 Wing and returns to England at Fairwood Common airfield in Glamorganshire, with its Hawker Typhoons Mk Ib but not it didn´t remain in England for a long time, and just after Christmas of 1944 would be transferred back to continental Europe, to the ALG B.77 Gilze Rijen, its first seat in Germany under Allied control, this happened on December 26.On March 21st, 1945, 164 Squadron is transferred to the airfield B.91 Kluis near Nijmegen in the command of Squadron Leader PL Bateman-Jones, who had taken over the 164 in January of that year. On April 9, during a mission to attack a German artillery positions, the enemy reaches AAA S / L Bateman-Jones in command of SW523 Typhoon, with the badly damaged aircraft attempting to land at the aerodrome in Heesh B.88 but fails and dies in the crash. Other riders who fell in battle during the stay were the Warrant Officer B.91 DW McCulloch (aircraft MN853), the Flight Leader Mammond-Hunt (SW410) and ME Jones (JR363) and Flight Officer R.J.M. Wilson (MN896) and W.T. Lawston (RB265). On the 17th of the next month, all the way to the airfield B.103 squad.
During the last months of the war, the squadron came to play reconnaissance and air interdiction stalking armored transport. After the surrender of Germany, the unit was retracted by the UK based in Turnhouse, Mid Lothian where it changes its flight code FJ at UB and is re-equipped with Supermarine Spitfire IX from 453 Squadron. On 31 August 1946 the Squadron is changing its name restructured to number 63.Recent research published soon by a team of researchers of Bahia Blanca, Argentina, determined, among other things, that approximately 554 Anglo Argentines pilots were registered as volunteers in the Royal Air Force during World War II. About 122 lost their lives in the battlefield.


Daniel Arias said...

A pity we Argies and you Brits were to become enemies in time. But if we bled for your islands 60 years ago, shouldn't we bleed for our own ones? I hope we don't have to come to grips again with a country I rather admire, the only one that defeated us in Argentina's short history. But we'll be ready in a couple of decades. And what next?

Diego Ezequiel Bianchi said...

No sabía que existía este escuadron argentino británico. Gracias por la info y por tan buenos trabajos que tuve el privilegio de ver personalmente y es fantástico!!!