- RAF Hornchurch during the Second World War -
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No. 65 Squadron was formed at Wyton in 1916 and went to France in November 1917. It operated variously in a fighter, light bomber and ground attack role until the armistice, and was disbanded in October 1919.
The Squadron was reformed as a fighter squadron in 1934, equipped with Gladiators, converting to Spitfires in 1939. At the outbreak of war it was based at RAF Hornchurch
28th October 1939 Defence
28th April 1940 Change of Duty
17th May 1940 Patrol over Belgium
23rd May 1940 Rescue
24th May 1940 In Action
25th May 1940 Dunkirk
25th May 1940 In Action
25th May 1940 Aircraft Lost
26th May 1940 Pilot lost
26th May 1940 In action over Dunkirk
26th May 1940 Protection Duty
27th May 1940 Aircraft Lost
28th May 1940 Patrols
28th May 1940 Aircraft Lost
28th May 1940 Aircraft Lost
28th May 1940 Gunnery training
1st June 1940 First Spitfire 'Ace'
5th June 1940 Return to Duxford
18th June 1940 Patrols over France
25th June 1940 air battle
28th July 1940 Move
9th Aug 1940 Defence
24th August 1940 Airfields bombed
27th August 1940 Relocated to Scotland
31st August 1940 Battle of Britain
2nd Sept 1940
2nd Sept 1940 Battle of Britain
3rd Sept 1940 In Action
3rd September 1940 Battle of Britain
3rd September 1940 Airfields bombed
3rd September 1940
5th Sept 1940 Black Day
11th Nov 1940 Relocation
23rd February 1941 Move
17th May 1941 New duties
28th July 1941 On the Move
16th Nov 1941 New role
17th Nov 1941 On the Move
31st March 1942 Temporary move
8th September 1942 Relocated
28th March 1943 Relocated
17th Sept 1943 Training exercises
9th Dec 1944 Air Raid
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Those known to have served at
during the Second World War 1939-1945.
The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List
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P/O Franklin 65 SquadronP/O Franklin was stationed at RAF Hornchurch in 1940. I believe he was killed shortly after. I am seeking any information about him, especially a photograph. There is a road in Hornchurch named after him....Why?Dr Garrod Hollis
P/O. William Henry Franklin DFM & Bar 65 Squadron (d.12th Dec 1940)William Henry Franklin is my uncle. I have been trying recently to find information on him. I have found out a little. He was one of the ace pilots in the Battle of Britain. He has a street named after him in Hornchurch where his squadron was based, which I thought was lovely. He was just 29 when he died on 12/12/1940. He was married, but had no children. I am hoping, as a near relation (niece), I will be ble to retrieve some information, records, photo, etc.
If anyone knows the best way to do this could they advise me, as I am new to this. I would appreciate any help with my search at this time. I will add more as I find out more information.Christine Hawkwell
F/Lt. Mervyn F.S. Young 129 Sqn, 72 SqnA good friend of mine was based at RAF Hornchurch in 1943 - Flt Lt Mervyn Young of 129 Sqn & later 72 Sqn in Italy & Europe. He flew Spitfire DV-R (Serial No MH384). Mervyn told me that he was inspired to become a fighter pilot after watching the Howard Hughes Movie Hells Angels about WW1 Fighter pilots. He said his flight commander ‘Wag’ Haw had the same thoughts after seeing the movie.
He flew many missions in Europe including Ram-rod missions in support of the daylight bombing raids, mostly B17’s including the famous Memphis Belle at one time. On one sortie his No 2 Sgt Carmichael was shot down & killed but in 2003 his aircraft was recovered & in Sept' 2003 Mervyn was among the memorial parade with full miltary honours for Sgt Carmichael; lost on a sortie over Belgium & located 60 years later, the fateful sortie was flown while Mervyn was based at RAF Hornchurch.
Sadly Mervyn passed away in March 2006, I enclose a photo taken at RAF Ibsley in his Spit' DV-R (MH384) complete with his mascot logo of Jiminy Cricket.David Perry
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