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No. 65 (East India) Squadron Royal Air Force in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

The Wartime Memories Project

- No. 65 (East India) Squadron Royal Air Force during the Second World War -

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No. 65 (East India) Squadron Royal Air Force

   No. 65 Squadron was formed at Wyton in 1916 and disbanded in October 1919. It was reformed in 1934, equipped with Gladiators, converting to Spitfires in 1939.

In June 1940, No. 65 flew offensive patrols over France and the Netherlands to cover the evacuation from Dunkirk. It took part in the Battle of Britain until the end of August, when it moved to Scotland. In November 1940 the Squadron moved south conducted offensive sweeps over northern France in early 1941. In October 1941, No. 65 received Spitfire Vs which it used for low-level attacks on enemy transport and shipping reconnaissance until October 1942, when it moved back to Scotland. No. 65 moved down to Cornwall in March 1943 for fighter patrols and bomber escort missions. In December the Squadron converted to Mustangs which were used in the fighter-bomber role and in June 1944 No. 65 had moved to Normandy where it supported the army until September 1944. The Squadron was then moved to East Anglia to act as fighter escorts for Bomber Command's daylight raids over Germany until January 1945 when it moved back to Scotland to provide similar services to Coastal Command attacking shipping off Norway and Denmark. In May 1945, the Squadron moved to East Anglia.
Airfields No. 65 Squadron flew from.

  • RAF Hornchurch, Essex from 3rd September 1939
  • RAF Northolt, Middlesex from 2nd October 1939
  • RAF Hornchurch from 28th March 1940
  • RAF Kirton-in-Lindsey, Lincolnshire from 28th May 1940
  • RAF Hornchurch from 5th June 1940
  • RAF Turnhouse, Midlothian from 27th August 1940
  • RAF Tangmere, Sussex from 29th November 1940
  • RAF Kirton-in-Lindsey from 26th February 1941
  • RAF Westhampnett, Sussex from 7th October 1941
  • RAF Debden, Essex from 22nd December 1941
  • RAF Great Sampford, Essex from 14th March 1942
  • RAF Martlesham Heath, Suffolk from 9th June 1942
  • RAF Great Sampford from 15th June 1942
  • RAF Hawkinge, Kent from 30th June 1942
  • RAF Great Sampford from 7th July 1942
  • RAF Gravesend, Kent from 29th July 1942
  • RAF Eastchurch, Kent from 14th August 1942
  • RAF Gravesend from 20th August 1942
  • RAF Drem, East Lothian from 26th September 1942
  • RAF Lympne, Kent from 2nd October 1942
  • RAF Drem from 11th October 1942
  • RAF Macrihanish, Kintyre from 3rd January 1943
  • RAF Drem from 10th January 1943
  • RAF Perranport, Cornwall from 29th March 1943
  • RAF Fairlop, Essex from 18th May 1943
  • RAF Selsey, Sussex from 31st May 1943
  • RAF Kingsnorth, Kent from 1st July 1943
  • RAF Ashford, Kent from 5th October 1943
  • RAF Gatwick, Surrey from 15th October 1943
  • RAF Gravesend from 24th October 1943
  • RAF Ford, Sussex from 15th April 1944
  • RAF Funtington Sussex from 14th May 1944
  • Martragny, B7 from June 1944
  • Grimbergen, B60
  • RAF Matlaske, Norfolk from 29th September 1944
  • RAF Peterhead, Aberdeenshire from 3rd October 1944
  • RAF Matlaske from 4th October 1944
  • RAF Andrew's Field, Essex from 14th October 1944
  • RAF Peterhead from 16th January 1945
  • RAF Andrew's Field from 28th January 1945
  • RAF Peterhead from 1st February 1945
  • RAF Andrew's Field from 6th May 1945
  • RAF Bentwaters, Suffolk from 15th May 1945


If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.

Those known to have served with

No. 65 (East India) Squadron Royal Air Force

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 Squadron

P/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

F/O Owen Robison 65 Sqd

Owen Robinson was born in Jamaica he took a Banana boat to Ireland in 1941 then joined the RAF becoming a pilot in January 1943. He flew with 65 Squadron 1944-45. He had two brothers in the Canadian Air Force and another in the Army.

Hugh Robison

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. Frederick Thomas "Eric" Reynolds 65 Squadron (d.6th Mar 1945)

Flight Lieutenant Frederick Thomas Reynolds joined the R.A.F.V.R. in 1938, his original Service Number was 742592, This changed to 86373 on or around 29th September 1940 when he was promoted to 'Pilot Officer' (on probation) Ref 'London Gazette No 34986 Tuesday 5th November 1940'. He served in RAF No 65 Squadron and we know from a letter to his family he was stationed in with them at RAF Turnhouse near Edinburgh in the period August-November 1940. We also know from another letter he was with RAF Squadron 256 stationed February - March 1941 at Colerne near Chippenham, he flew Hurricanes at this time, and that he was involved in the defence of Liverpool. His sister (my mother) says she knew he destroyed a German aircraft in this period but we have no details, she also recalls he crashed his aircraft on Rhyl Beach but again we have no details.

In 1944/45 he was with 219 Squadron flying Mosquito NF30's under Wing Commander Peter Green based at Amiens-Glisy in France and he is recorded as destroying a Messerschmitt Me110 on night of 1-2 January 1945. He was killed when his Mosquito crashed in flames in the town of Amiens (eye witness account) on 6th March 1945. This was officially recorded as an Aircraft Accident but we do not know the cause or any details.

Peter L. Young

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