No.69 Squadron

In front of an anchor, a telescope
Badge
In front of an anchor, a telescope
Motto
With vigilance we serve
Formed
28 December 1916
Disbanded
01 July 1958

No 69 Squadron formed on 28 December 1916 at South Carlton from Australian personnel arriving in the UK from Egypt. In September 1917 this corps reconnaissance unit moved to France. On 19 January 1918 it was redesignated No 3 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps.

On 10 January 1941 No 431 Flight was renumbered No 69 Squadron. The unit operated as a strategic reconnaissance unit based in Malta. In April 1944 the squadron left for the UK to join Second TAF. Equipped for night reconnaissance using flares it began work on 5 June 1944. In September it moved to France and then Belgium all the time maintaining its role as a night reconnaissance squadron. It suffered heavy losses, eleven aircraft, in the Luftwaffe attacks on New Years Day 1945. From May 1945 it undertook survey work over Denmark and Norway. The unit disbanded on 7 August 1945.

On 8 August 1945 No 613 Squadron was renumbered No 69 Squadron. This unit lasted for only a short time disbanding again on 31 March 1946. On the following day No 180 Squadron based at RAF Wahm, Germany was renumbered No 69 Squadron. It operated light bombers until it disbanded on 6 November 1947.

The squadron reformed for the last time on 5 May 1954 at RAF Laarbruch, Germany as a photographic reconnaissance unit. On 1 July 1958 this unit was renumbered No 39 Squadron.


AIRCRAFT

Various 1916 – 1917
RE8 1917 – 1919
Maryland 1941 – 1942
Beaufighter 1941 – 1942
Hurricane I/II 1941 – 1942
Spitfire IV 1941 – 1943
Beaufort 1941 – 1941
Blenheim IV 1941 – 1941
Mosquito I 1942 – 1942
Baltimore I/II/III/IV 1942 – 1943
Wellington I/VIII/XIII 1942 – 1945
Mosquito VI/XVI 1945 – 1947
Canberra 3/7 1954 – 1958


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

Coastal Support and Special Squadrons of the RAF and their aircraft John D R Rawlings Jane’s Publishing 1982

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