Traces of World War 2 
RAAF - No. 212 Squadron
10/05/1940 - 30/06/1940

      home - latest update 16 April 2008

212 SQUADRON - Reconnaissance. Supermarine Spitfire PR Mk 1C, Bristol Blenheim Mk IV and (?) Lockheed Hudson Mk I

History | Operations and losses | Sources | Links | Books | Questions and/or remarks

Experiments by the Photographic Development Unit in the use of unarmed Spitfires for photographic reconnaissance had lead to early examples being sent to France in February 1940. This detachment was given the designation No 212 Squadron on 10 February 1940.

On 10 February 1940, No.212 reformed at Heston to carry out strategic photographic reconnaissance duties in France working closely with the Photographic Development Unit. It was intended to have three detachments each of three Spitfires but in the absence of sufficient camera-equipped Spitfires, No.212 was equipped with Blenheims.

After flying some operational missions, the detachment in France was forced to evacuate its base on 14 June 1940, and the squadron was absorbed by the Photographic Development Unit on 18 June 1940, which was redesignated the Photographic Reconnaissance Unit on 8 July.

Coulommiers, France Feb 1940 to Jun 1940

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Operations and losses 10/05/1940 - 30/06/1940
Not all operations listed; those with fatal losses are.

07/06/1940: photo recce, B. 1 a/c lost

The CWGC lists no casualties from 212 Sqdn for this period.

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07/06/1940: photo recce

Serial number: P9331, -?
Operation: photograph the railway line at Maastricht-Liege
Lost: 07/06/1940
Pilot: Believed to be F/Lt 'Tug' Wilson
Suffered a glycol leak following take-off from Meaux near Paris. Force-landed at Champagne airfield near Reims. French were asked to destroy it but failed to do so and aircraft was captured intact by the Germans.

See RAF Commands Forum: Spitfire P9331 - F/Lt Wilson 212 Sqn 7.6.1940

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Air of Authority - 212 Squadron
Air Force POWs 1939-1945
Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database
Australian War Memorial
Bail-outs for 1940
Canadian Virtual War Memorial
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Prisoners of War captured in Europe 1940
Royal Air Force - 212 Squadron
Royal Air Force Recce Units - 212 Squadron

RAF against odds (Time, USA, 27/05/1940)
RAF - Campaign Diary - The Battle of France (May-June 1940)
RAF Museum: British Military Aviation in 1940
RAF Order of Battle, France, 10th May 1940
Royal Air Force History Section
The Royal Air Force, 1939-1945
The Second World War - a day by day account
The War in France and Flanders, 1939-1940, by Major L.F. Ellis, 1954

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Peter D. Cornwell, The Battle of France, Then and Now, 2008
Norman L.R. Franks, 'Royal Air Force Fighter Command losses of the Second World War. Vol. 1 : Operational losses: Aircraft and crews 1939-1941', Midland Publishing, 1997 (revised edition 2007)

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Discussion Groups
Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum
RAF Commands Forum

Abbreviations used in the Royal Air Force
Code Names & RAF Vocabulary

Air Aces
Airwar over Denmark
Allied World War II Casualties in the Netherlands
Armée de l'Air - Order of Battle, 10th May 1940
Australian Wargraves
Axis History Factbook
De Belgen in Engeland 1940-1945 (in Dutch)
Belgian Aviation History Association Archaeological Team
British Aircraft Directory
British Aviation Archaeological Council - Books and research links
Canada's Air Force History
HMS Cavalier
Ciel de Gloire (in French) RAF Squadrons
CWGC Cemeteries Germany
CWGC Cemeteries Netherlands
Czechoslovak airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
Danish WW2 Pilots
Dutch Pilots in RAF Squadrons
Eagles Squadrons (American pilots in the RAF)
Foreign Aircraft Landings in Ireland 1939-1946
Håkans aviation page (from Sweden, in English)
'High flight', poem by John Gillespie Magee
An Irish Airman Foresees His Death, poem by W.B. Yeats
Jagdgeschwader 27 (in German)
Luchtoorlog ('Arial War', in Dutch, with many photos)
Land Forces of Britain, the Empire and Commonwealth
The Luftwaffe, 1933-1945
Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum
The National Ex-Prisoners of War Association
Nordic Aviation during WW2 aircraft of WW2
Polish Air Force 1940-1947 Operations Record Books
RAF Battle of Britain
RAF Upwood
Royal Air Force Recce Units
De Slag om de Grebbeberg
Warbird Alley
War over Holland
World War II Aircraft wrecksites in Norway

Aircraft crashes on the North Yorkshire Moors, England
The Lancastershire Aircraft Investigation Team
Luftfahrt-Archäologie in Schleswig Holstein (in German)
North East Diary 1939-1945
Wartime Leicester and Leicestershire

The Aerodrome - Aces and Aircraft of World War 1
WW1 Cemeteries

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This page is dedicated to the men of 212 Squadron.

© Bart FM Droog / Rottend Staal Online 2008. Permission granted for use of the data gathered here for non commercial purposes, if this source is mentioned with a link to