No. 76 Squadron (RAF): Second World War

Aircraft - Locations - Group and Duty - Books

No. 76 Squadron went through three incarnations during the Second World War. The first had been formed in 1937 from B Flight of No. 7 Squadron. In June 1937 it became a pool training squadron, until in April 1940 it became part of No. 16 Operational Training Unit.

The second incarnation was very short lived, only lasting from 30 April-2 May 1940, before being disbanded.

The third incarnation was formed from C Flight of No. 35 Squadron, and was equipped wit the Handley Page Halifax, retaining that aircraft to the end of the war. Bombing operations began on 12 June 1942, and the main squadron remained with Bomber Command until May 1945.

In July 1942 a detachment from No. 76 Squadron was sent out to Palestine, where it joined with No.454 Squadron to create a heavy bomber force in the Middle East. On 12 August 1942 the composite unit became No.462 Squadron.

Aircraft

Handley Page Halifax B.Mk I of No. 76 Squadron
Handley Page Halifax B.Mk I of No. 76 Squadron
March 1939-April 1940 :  Handley Page Hampden I
May 1939-April 1940: Avro Anson I
May 1941-Feb/ March 1942 : Handley Page Halifax B.I
October/ November 1941-March/ April 1943: Handley Page Halifax B.II
February/ April 1943-February 1944: Handley Page Halifax B. V
January/ February 1944-April 1945: Handley Page Halifax B. III
March 1945-August 1945: Handley Page Halifax B.VI

Location
12 April 1937-23 September 1939: Finningley
23 September 1939-22 April 1940: Upper Heyford
30 April-20 May 1940: West Raynham
1 May-4 June 1941: Linton-on-Ouse
4 June 1941-September 1942: Middleton St. George
detachment: 12 July-7 September 1942: To the Middle East
17 September 1942-16 June 1943: Linton-on-Ouse
16 June 1943-6 August 1945: Holme in Spalding Moor

Squadron Codes: MP

Group and Duty
26 September 1939: Pool bomber squadron with No. 6 Group
March 1941-7 May 1945: Bomber squadron with No. 4 Group
7 May 1945: Transfered to Transport 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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Review of Halifax Squadrons by John lake Halifax Squadrons of World War II , Jon Lake. This is a very good book on the combat record of the Handley Page Halifax. It covers much more than just its role as a front line bomber, with chapters on the Halifax with Coastal Command, the Pathfinders and SOE, amongst others. [see more]
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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (19 March 2007), No. 76 Squadron (RAF): Second World War, http://www.historyofwar.org/air/units/RAF/76_wwII.html

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