Traces of World War 2 
RAF - No. 66 Squadron
10/05/1940 - 30/06/1940

      home - latest update 16 February 2008

66 SQUADRON - Fighter, Supermarine Spitfire Mk I

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

On 20 July 1936, No 66 reformed at Duxford from C Flight of No 19 Squadron. In November 1938 it replaced its Gauntlets with Spitfires which were flown on defensive duties after the outbreak of World War Two. In May 1940, the squadron flew covering patrols over Dunkirk and remained in the south-east throughout the Battle of Britain. In February 1941, No. 66 took part in a few sweeps over France before moving to south-west England for coastal patrols. For the next two years it also provided escorts for day bombers over France before moving to the Orkneys for four months. No. 66 then moved south again and began fighter-bomber sorties shortly before the Normandy landings and five days after the landings, the Squadron made use of airstrips in the beachhead for the first time. No. 66 transferred its base to France in August and on to Belgium and the Netherlands in September before disbanding on 30 April 1945.


Coltishall 29 May 1940
Kenley 3 September 1940
Gravesend 11 September 1940
West Malling 30 October 1940

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

12/05/1940: Fighter sweep, NL
13/05/1940: Fighter sweep, NL
28/05/1940, Dunkirk? 1 Plane lost, 1 MIA
02/06/1940, Dunkirk? 1 Plane lost, 1 KIA

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Losses 01/01/1940 - 09/05/1940 (incomplete)

Pilot Officer (Pilot) Robert G. Kennedy, RAF 42409, 66 Sqdn., age 21, 25/04/1940, Paisley (Hawkhead) Cemetery, UK

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12/05/1940: Fighter sweep, NL

'A' Flight from 264 Squadron took off in company with a flight from 66 Squadron for a swoop over Holland, hoping to catch German Troop carrying aircraft.

All the 264 Squadron crews saw were three bombers of which Sqdn.Ldr Cooke and his gunner Corporal Albert Lippett (KIA 31/05/1940) shot down a Ju. 88, returning to Duxford without further incident.

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13/05/1940: Fighter sweep, NL

In the evening the RAF had planned a strafing mission of six Defiants of 264th Squadron and six Spitfires of 66 Squadron along the Dutch coast. As this combined squadron approached the Dutch coast they were treated to Dutch anti-aircraft fire; fortunately without sustaining any damage. They proceeded south towards The Hague and Rotterdam. Then they spotted the Luftwaffe Stuka's south-east of Rotterdam.

The seven German Stuka's are of the 12th squadron of LG1 (12 Staffel, Lehr Geschwader 1). As they dive towards Dutch positions at Alblasserdam suddenly the twelve British fighters appear. Soon a huge dogfight unfolded and the Germans requested fighter back-up by means of a red flare launched from the leading Stuka. The arrival of 24 to 27 Messerschmitt Bf-109 fighters of JG26 meant that the kettle was put on the fire. The dogfight gradually expanded to the skies over Brabant.

After the intensive clash between the two forces (together about 45 planes) at least four German Stuka's [the RAF claimed seven - only four wreckages were identified], two Bf-109's and five of the vulnerable British Defiant's had been destroyed (source: War over Holland)

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28/05/1940, Dunkirk?

Type: Spitfire Mk I
Serial number: ?, LZ-?
Operation: Dunkirk?
Lost: 28/05/1940
Pilot Officer Laurence G.B. Stone, RAF 43695, 66 Sqdn., age unknown, 28/05/1940, missing.
Commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial

According to the 213 Squadron Association he was a member of 213 Squadron.

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02/06/1940, Dunkirk?

Type: Spitfire Mk I
Serial number: ?, LZ-?
Operation: Dunkirk?
Lost: 02/06/1940
Flight Sergeant (Pilot) Maurice W. Hayman, RAF 564713, 66 Sqdn., age 26, 02/06/1940, Etaples Military Cemetery, F

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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
Fighter Command Air Combat Claims 1939-1945
Prisoners of War captured in Europe 1940
Royal Air Force - 66 Squadron
RAF Battle of Britain - 66 Squadron
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 Spitfire. An Operational History
A W.A.A.F. at R.A.F. Coltishall 1940, Mary Blood, BBC WW2 People's War
War over Holland

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Peter D. Cornwell, The Battle of France, Then and Now, 2008
A Forbes & H R Allen 'Ten fighter boys: 66 Squadron RAF' (Collins 1942)
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)
L Lucas 'Five Up' (Autobiography of Laddie Lucas) (Wingham 1991)
J T McCudden 'Flying Fury: five years in the RFC' (1916) (Greenhill 1987/ 2000 - first published 1930)
Oxspring 'Spitfire Command' (Dunkirk & Battle of Britain) (Reprinted 2006)

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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
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 66 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