No. 547 Squadron (RAF): Second World War

Aircraft - Locations - Group and Duty - Books

No.547 Squadron was an anti-shipping and anti-submarine warfare squadron that largely operated over the Bay of Biscay from late 1942 until the autumn of 1944, and then off the coast of Norway from then until the end of the war.

The squadron was formed at Holmesley South on 21 October 1942, and became operational on 17 December. During this early period it flew a mix of air-sea rescue and convoy escort duties. The squadron then spent some months in Scotland taking part in training exercises.

In April 1943 the squadron moved back south and began operations over the Bay of Biscay. It now flew a mix of attack missions against enemy shipping (sometimes operating its Wellingtons as torpedo bombers) and anti-submarine warfare patrols. One U-boat was claimed sunk in July when its crew was seen to abandon ship.

At the end of October 1943 the squadron moved to Thorney Island, and began to convert to the Liberator (also gaining rocket projectiles at the same time). Operations with the new aircraft began in January 1944, and the squadron's main duty now was to fly anti-submarine patrols over the Bay of Biscay and into the Atlantic. In September the squadron briefly worked with SOE in France, but this ended later in the same month when the squadron moved to Scotland to begin operations off the Norwegian coast.

The squadron spent the rest of the war flying a mix of anti-U-boat patrols and anti-shipping strikes off the Norwegian coast and in the Baltic. This included a number of attacks on German surface warships. In the spring of 1945 the squadron's Leigh Light Liberators were used in attacks on the German U-boat training area in the southern Baltic, although without any success. The last major operations came as the surviving German U-boats attempted to escape to Norway towards the end of the war. The squadron was disbanded on 4 June 1945.

Aircraft
November 1942-May 1943: Vickers Wellington VIII
April-November 1943: Vickers Wellington XI
October-November 1943: Vickers Wellington XIII
October 1943-September 1944: Consolidated Liberator V
June 1944-June 1945: Consolidated Liberator VI
March-June 1945: Consolidated Liberator VIII

Location
October-December 1942: Holmsley South
December 1942-January 1943: Chivenor
January-March 1943: Tain
March-May 1943: Chivenor
May-October 1943: Davidstowe Moor
October 1943-January 1944: Thorney Island
January-September 1944: St. Eval
September 1944-June 1945: Leuchars

Squadron Codes: 2V

Duty
October 1942-April 1943: maritime reconnaissance
April 1943-September 1944: Anti shipping and anti-submarine warfare
September 1944-May 1945: Patrol/ anti-submarine warfare, Norwegian coast

Part of
15 February 1943: No.19 Group; Coastal Command

Books

 

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (21 February 2012), No. 547 Squadron (RAF): Second World War, http://www.historyofwar.org/air/units/RAF/547_wwII.html

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