Post by Dave Homewood on Jan 12, 2006 0:06:35 GMT 12
Though no official recognition is given to this being a NZ squadron, did you know No. 830 Squadron Fleet Air Arm, when it reformed in 1943, was made up mostly of Kiwis?
They came from the EATS scheme just like our RNZAF squadrons in the UK. 830 Sqn operated Fairey Barracuda II's from May 1943-Oct 1944.
Notably they flew from HMS Furious for a successful dive-bombing attack, Operation Tungsten, on 3 April 1944 with No.s 827, 829 and 831 squadrons which crippled the German battleship Tirpitz in Kaa Fjord, north Norway. One aircraft was lost.
They sank a convoy in May 1944 off Norway, and in July 1944, they again attacked the Tirpitz, this time flying from HMS Formidable. They were unsuccessful this time, due to smoke screens the enemy put up.
So I guess if you're looking for an interesting NZ-related modelling or research project, this is an option. I guess it also explains the excllent model at the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Motat, of Barracudas attacking the Tirpitz.
258 Squadron After reforming in November 1940 most of the pilots were New Zealanders and they painted the fernleaf as an unofficial badge on the Hurricanes. When they left UK in the Autumn of 1941 only five New Zealand pilots remained in the unit.
243 Squadron Mostly New Zealand pilots from formation in March 1941 to the fall of Singapore.
67 Squadron Mostly New Zealand pilot from formation in March 1941 down to about 2/3rd New Zealanders during the spring of 1942.
605 Squadron Had a New Zealand Flight during the last days of the defence of Java.
I have just picked up book on this very subject (Kiwi's in the Fleet Air Arm) called Memoirs of a Reluctant Batsman - New Zealand Servicemen in the Fleet Air Arm 1940-45 by AO "cappy" Masters. Published by Janus Publishing Company London 1995, ISBN 1857561481, 400 odd pages, some photos, and a few appendices. I have not read it yet but it does look very good.