No. 127 Squadron (RAF): Second World War

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No.127 Squadron was a fighter squadron that spend much of the Second World War in the Mediterranean before returning to Britain to take part in the D-Day campaign.

The squadron was formed on 29 June 1941 around a detachment of four Hurricanes and four Gladiators that were to be based at Haditha in Iraq. The squadron few both reconnaissance and fighter missions during the Allied occupation of Syria in July 1941, but on 12 July was renumbered as No.261 Squadron.

A new No.127 squadron was formed on 2 August 1941 at Kasfareet, around a detachment of ground personnel from No.249 Squadron. Lacking aircraft and aircrew the new squadron was used as a service echelon for the rest of 1941 and into the spring of 1942.

The squadron finally gained aircraft in March 1942 when Hurricanes arrived. In June the squadron moved forward into the Western Desert, beginning fighter operations, but this was a short-term move, and in September it was back in Egypt, providing air defence for the area. 

The squadron remained in the Eastern Mediterranean after the front line moved west. Detachments were sent to Cyprus, and the squadron was used to cover the unsuccessful operations in the Aegean late in 1943, being based at Paphos during November.

In April 1944 the squadron returned to the UK, re-assembling at North Weald on 23 April. The squadron was now a fighter-bomber unit, equipped with the Spitfire. Operations began on 19 May 1944, and in August the squadron moved to France to support the Allied armies. Fighter bomber sweeps were flown until the squadron was disbanded on 30 April 1945.

June-July 1941: Gloster Gladiator II
June-July 1941: Hawker Hurricane I

March 1942-June 1942: Hawker Hurricane I
June 1942-October 1943: Hawker Hurricane IIB
January-October 1943: Supermarine Spitfire VC
August 1943-March 1944: Hawker Hurricane IIC
March 1944: Supermarine Spitfire IX

April-November 1944: Supermarine Spitfire IX
November 1944-April 1945: Supermarine Spitfire XVI

June 1941: K.3 Haditha
June-July 1941: T.1
July 1941: Tahoune Guemac

August-September 1941: Kasfareet
September 1941-February 1942: Hurghada
February-June 1942: St. Jean
June 1942: Shandur
June-July 1942: LG.92 Amriya
July-August 1942: LG.172
August-September 1942: LG.88
September-October 1942: Kilo 8
October 1942: LG.89
October-November 1942: LG.37
November 1942: LG.20
November 1942-January 1943: LG.08
January 1943: St. Jean
January 1943-April 1944: Ramat David
    November 1943: Detachment to Paphos

April-May 1944: North Weald
May-July 1944: Lympne
July 1944: Tangmere
July 1944: Southend
July-August 1944: Tangmere
August 1944: Funtington
August 1944: Ford
August-September 1944: B.16 Villons les Buissons
September 1944: B.33 Camp Neuseville
September-October 1944: B.57 Lille/ Wambrechies
October-December 1944: B.60 Grimbergen
December 1944-February 1945: B.79 Woensdrecht
February-March 1945: Fairwood Common
March-April 1945: B.85 Schijndel
April 1945: B.106 Twente

Squadron Codes: 9N

27 October 1942: Part of No.7 (S.A.A.F.) Wing, No. 212 Group, AHQ Western Desert, Middle East Command
10 July 1943: No.209 Group, HQ Air Defences Eastern Mediterranean, HQ RAF Middle East, Mediterranean Air Command
6 June 1944: No.11 Group; Air Defence of Great Britain, Allied Expeditionary Air Force


Gloster Gladiator Aces, Andrew Thomas. A look at the wartime career of the only biplane fighter still in RAF service during the Second World War. Covers the Gladiator's service in Finland, Malta, North Africa, Greece, Aden, East Africa and Iraq, where despite being outdated it performed surprisingly well.
cover cover cover
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 (13 December 2010), No. 127 Squadron (RAF): Second World War,

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