No. 207 Squadron (RAF): Second World War

Aircraft - Locations - Group and Duty - Books

No. 207 Squadron was one of the small number of squadrons that survived the post-First World War cull, serving as a day bomber squadron from 1920. At the start of the Second World War it was a Group training squadron equipped with the Fairey Battle, and on 8 April 1940 it became part of No.12 Operational Training Unit.

The squadron was reformed on 1 November 1940 as one of the few squadrons to use the troubled Avro Manchester. By the summer of 1941 the situation was so bad that the squadron was given a number of Handley Page Hampdens. Despite its problems the squadron soldiered on with the Manchester until March 1942, when it converted to the Avro Lancaster. The squadron was part of Bomber Commands' main force until the end of the war. Once again it survived a post-war cull, remaining in existence until 1984.

Aircraft
April 1938-April 1940: Fairey Battle I
July 1939-April 1940: Avro Anson I
November 1940-March 1942: Avro Manchester I
July 1941-August 1941: Handley Page Hampden I
March 1942-August 1949: Avro Lancaster I and III

Location
24 August-9 December 1939: Cranfield
9 December 1939-5 April 1940: Cottesmore
5-8 April 1940: Cranfield

1 November 1940-17 November 1941: Waddington
17 November 1941-20 September 1942: Bottesford
20 September 1942-12 October 1943: Langar
12 October 1943-30 October 1945: Spilsby

Squadron Codes: EM

Duty
1939-April 1940: Training Squadron
November 1940-May 1945: Bomber Command

Books

Bomber Offensive, Sir Arthur Harris. The autobiography of Bomber Harris, giving his view of the strategic bombing campaign in its immediate aftermath. Invaluable for the insights it provides into Harris’s approach to the war, what he was trying to achieve and the problems he faced. Harris perhaps overstates his case, not entirely surprisingly given how soon after the end of the war this book was written (Read Full Review)
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Lancaster Squadron 1942-43, Jon Lake. This book looks at the early career of the Avro Lancaster. During this period the Lancaster was just one of a number of aircraft used by Bomber Command, important amongst them the Wellington, the Stirling and the Halifax. Only by the end of this period do we see the Lancaster begin to emerge as the most important aircraft in Bomber Command. Lake covers the wide range of activities performed by the Lancaster squadrons during this squadron, including the famous Dam Busters raid. [see more]
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Lancaster Squadrons 1944-45, Jon Lake. A well balanced look at the career of the Avro Lancaster in 1944-45, the period most famous for the systematic night bombardment of German cities. This was also the period that saw the Lancaster used to support the invasion of France, and the period that saw 617 Squadron drop Barnes Wallis's huge streamlined bombs with great precision. [see more]
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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (24 March 2007), No. 207 Squadron (RAF): Second World War, http://www.historyofwar.org/air/units/RAF/207_wwII.html

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