No.45 Squadron

A winged camel
Badge
A winged camel
Motto
Per ardue surge - Through difficulties I arise
Formed
01 March 1916
Disbanded
Current

No 45 Squadron was formed at Gosport on 1 March 1916 as a fighter unit. In October 1916 it moved to France. In November 1917 it was sent as reinforcements to Italy. It returned to France in September of the following year and joined the Independent Force. At the end of the war the unit claimed 164 enemy aircraft destroyed, the highest total of any Sopwith equipped squadron. In February 1919 it returned to the UK and on 31 December 1919 it disbanded.

On 1 April 1921 the unit was reformed at Helwan, Egypt. It pioneered some of the Middle Eastern air routes before being transferred to Iraq in March 1922.
On 1 November 1925 the unit was reduced to a single flight an on 17 January 1927 this was absorbed by No 47 Squadron.

On 25 April 1927 the squadron reformed. The unit operated on general reconnaissance and patrol duties in the region for many years. In June 1940 after Italy declared war the squadron began attacks on Italian targets in North Africa and Italian East Africa. In February 1942 the unit was transferred to the Burma. Caught up in the longest retreat in British military history the unit became dispersed. Brought together again in India in March it was not until July that it was able to resume operations against the Japanese. In may 1946 the unit moved to Ceylon. In August 1948 a detachment began operations against communist terrorists in Malaya. The unit converted to jets in 1955. In November 1957 the squadron returned to the UK an converted to Canberra bombers. It disbanded on 13 January 1970.

On 1 August 1970 No 45 Squadron reformed at RAF West Raynham as a ground attack training unit. On 4 June 1976 it disbanded.

In May 1977 the Multi-Engine Training Squadron (METS) formed at RAF Leeming and moved to RAF Finningley in April 1979. It was awarded Reserve Sqn status as No 45 (R) Sqn on 1 July 1992. The squadron moved to the RAF College to join No 3 FTS in September 1995 as part of the closure of RAF Finningley.

In March 2004 45 (Reserve) Squadron started to take on charge the Beechcraft King Air B.200s that replaced the unit’s Jetstreams, the last Jetstream being retired on 22 March 2004. The King Airs continue the Jetstream’s work of training multi-engine, non-jet pilots.


AIRCRAFT

1½ Strutter 1916 - 1917
Nieuport 12 1917 - 1917
Camel 1917 - 1919
Snipe 1918 - 1919
Vimy 1921 - 1922
Vernon 1922 - 1927
DH9A 1927 - 1929
IIIF 1929 - 1935
Hart 1935 - 1936
Vincent 1935 - 1937
Gordon 1936 - 1936
Wellesley 1937 - 1939
Blenheim I/IV 1939 - 1942
Vengeance 1942 - 1944
Mosquito VI 1944 - 1946
Beaufighter 10 1946 - 1950
Brigand 1949 - 1952
Hornet 1951 - 1955
Vampire 11 1955 - 1955
Meteor 7 1955 - 1955
Vampire 9 1955 - 1957
Venom 1955 - 1957
Canerra 2/15 1957 - 1970
Hunter 9 1972 - 1976
Jetstream 1992 - 2004
Beechcraft King Air B.200 2004 - current (30 June 2006)


Reference Sources

The Squadrons of the Royal Air Force James J Halley Air Britain (Historians) Ltd 1988

RAF Squadrons Wg Cdr C G Jefford Airlife 2001

Bomber Squadrons of the RAF and their aircraft Phillip J R Moyes Macdonald & Jane’s 1976

Fighter Squadrons of the RAF and their aircraft John D R Rawlings Crecy Books 1993

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