No. 124 'Baroda' Squadron (RAF): Second World War

Aircraft - Locations - Group and Duty - Books

No.124 Squadron was a fighter squadron that served as a high-altitude interception unit, before joining Fighter Command to carry out bomber escort duties, ending the war attacking V-2 sites.

The squadron reformed at Castletown on 10 May 1941 with eighteen Spitfire Is. It became operational on 29 June as part of the defences of the naval base at Scapa Flow. The Spitfire Is were replaced by IIBs in October, but were only retained for a month. In mid-November the squadron moved south to Biggin Hill where it took over some Spitfire Vs and began to fly convoy patrols. During this period the squadron took part in the attempts to stop the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau moving up the channel from French to German waters. The convoy patrols were replaced by bomber escort missions over France, and this role continued to the end of 1941.

During the summer of 1942 the squadron received the high altitude Spitfire VI, becoming operational in July 1942. The squadron briefly moved to Drem at the end of the year, returning south to Northolt in January 1943. Once there it absorbed SS Flight, which had been engaged in the interception of high altitude Junkers Ju 86Ps. The Spitfire VII entered service in March 1943, and the squadron spent most of the next year scattered across the West Country.,

In March 1944 the squadron joined No.141 Wing at Church Fenton, part of the Second Tactical Air Force. The squadron flew escort missions for the bombers of No.2 Group and B-17s of the USAAF until D-Day.

In July 1944 the squadron received the Spitfire IX, and in August it joined Fighter Command. For the rest of 1944 it carried out bomber escort duties, before in February 1945 switching to attacks on V-2 sites in the Netherlands and shipping reconnaissance. The last war operations came on 24 April 1945.

In July the squadron received the Meteor jet, becoming operational on 2 October 1945. On 1 April 1946 it was renumbered as No.56 Squadron.

Aircraft
May-October 1941: Supermarine Spitfire I
October-November 1941: Supermarine Spitfire IIA
November 1941-July 1942: Supermarine Spitfire VB
July 1942-March 1943: Supermarine Spitfire VI
March 1943-July 1944: Supermarine Spitfire VII
July 1944-July 1945: Supermarine Spitfire IX
July 1945-April 1946: Gloster Meteor F.3

Location
May-November 1941: Castletown
November 1941-May 1942: Biggin Hill
May-June 1942: Gravesend
June-July 1942: Eastchurch
July 1942: Martlesham Heath
July 1942: Gravesend
July-August 1942: Debden
August 1942: Debden
September-October 1942: Tangmere
October-November 1942: Westhampnett
November-December 1942: North Weald
December 1942: Martlesham Heath
December 1942-January 1943: Drem
January-March 1943: Martlesham Heath
March 1943: Croughton
March 1943: Duxford
March-July 1943: North Weald
    April-May 1943: Detachment to Colerne
    May-June 1943: Detachment to Exeter
    June-July 1943: Detachment to Ibsley
    July 1943: Detachment to Exeter
    July 1943: Detachment to Fairwood Common
    July 1943: Detachment to Exeter
July-September 1943: Northolt
September 1943-March 1944: West Malling
March-April 1944: Church Fenton
April-July 1944: Bradwell Bay
July-August 1944: Detling
August-September 1944: Westhampnett
September 1944-February 1945: Manston
February-April 1945: Coltishall
April 1945: Hawkinge
April-June 1945: Hutton Cranswick
June-July 1945: Bradwell Bay
July 1945: Hutton Cranswick
July-October 1945: Molesworth
October 1945-February 1946: Bentwaters
February-March 1946: Fairwood Common
March-April 1946: Bentwaters

Squadron Codes: ON

Duty
High Altitude Interception then Fighter Command

Books

Spitfire: Flying Legend - 60th Anniversary 1936-96, John M. Dibbs. A beautifully illustrated book focusing on surviving flyable Spitfires, with some very impressive modern colour photos backed up by a good selection of archival pictures and a good selection of relevant quotes from wartime Spitfire pilots [see more]
cover cover cover

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (10 December 2010), No. 124 Squadron (RAF): Second World War, http://www.historyofwar.org/air/units/RAF/124_wwII.html

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