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No. 635 Squadron (RAF) during the Second World War
Aircraft - Locations - Group and Duty - Books
No.635 Squadron was formed as part of the pathfinder force of Bomber Command and carried out that role from its formation in March 1944 until the end of the Second World War.
The squadron was formed on 20 March 1944 from 'B' Flight, No.35 Squadron and 'C' Flight, No.97 Squadron. It was part of No.8 Group from its formation onwards.
In July 1944 the squadron began the first operational trials of the Lancaster Mk VI. This aircraft operated alongside the more familiar Lancaster Is and IIIs until August 1945.
On 4 August 1944 Squadron Leader I. W. Bazalgette won a posthumous VC during an attack on a flying-bomb site at St-Maxim. His aircraft was set on fire during the approach to the target, but he continued on and dropped his markets. He was then able to regain control for long enough for four of the crew to bail out. The bomb aimer and mid-upper gunner were wounded or unconscious, so Bazalgette made a crash landing, but the aircraft exploded on the ground killing all three men.
The squadron took part in 189 raids, flying 2,225 sorties at a cost of 34 aircraft, a comparatively low 1.5%. After the end of the fighting the squadron performed transport duties for a few months before being disbanded on 1 September 1945.
March 1944-September 1945: Avro Lancaster I and III
July 1944-August 1945: Avro Lancaster VI
March 1944-September 1945: Downham Market
Squadron Codes: F2
March 1944 onwards: Pathfinder Squadron, Bomber Command
March 1944 onwards: No.8 Group; Bomber Command
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