No. 19 Squadron, RAF Duxford, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom, early 1939
This aircraft is equipped with a double-bladed propeller, a flat canopy and an older type of pitot tube. The No. 19 squadron was founded
in early 1915 and during second half of the Great War it flew with Spad airplanes and Sopwith Dolphins. One of unit aces from this period
was the future Air Chief Marshal Sir James Donald Innes Hardman, GBE, KCB, DFC (1899-1982), who, after the World War II, became Chief
of the Air Staff (CAS) of the RAAF. In 1938 No. 19 Squadron became the first RAF unit to fly Spitfires. During 1939 the fuselage code of the
unit changed to "QV". In 1944 unit exchanged Spitfires for Mustangs. The last type, the unit flew was the BAe Hawk. In November 2011 after
almost a hundred years of continuous service, the Squadron was disbanded. Among the aces who flew Spitfires with No. 19 Squadron were
Douglas Bader (23 victories), F.W. Higginson (15 victories) or Gordon Sinclair (10 victories). Czechoslovak pilot František Doležal was also a
member of this squadron during the second half of the Battle of Britain. During September 1940 he achieved two confirmed victories and
K9843, No. 54 Squadron, Hornchurch, Essex, United Kingdom, early 1940
The aircraft is equipped with a three-bladed propeller, a flat canopy and an older type of pitot tube. In January 1939 it was taken over by No.
41 Squadron at RAF Catterick. On February 4th, 1939, this Spitfire was slightly damaged by Sgt. Reginald Thomas Llewellyn during landing.
The same pilot caused a more serious accident with the same aircraft on November 30th, 1939. Llewellyn won 13.5 air victories during 1940,
but on August 15th, 1940 he was shot down by a Messerschmitt Bf 110 and suffered serious injuries. After repair, the Spitfire K9843 was assigned to No. 54 Squadron in February 1940. The emblem of this squadron was painted on the tail of the aircraft. At the end of the Dynamo
operation, No. 54 Squadron became one of three units with Spitfires, in whose ranks a pilot became an ace. It was the legendary P/O Alan
Christopher Deere from New Zealand, who had six victories at the end of May 1940.
K9938, No. 72 Squadron, Church Fenton, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom, April 1939
The aircraft is equipped with a three-bladed propeller, a flat canopy and an older type of pitot tube. In April 1939, it was taken over by No.
72 Squadron and was given the designation "SD-H", later changing to "ZP-W". The emblem of this squadron is displayed on the tail. The
aircraft was lost in combat on September 2nd, 1940. The unit intercepted formation of Dorniers, escorted by Messerschmitt Bf 110s over the
Isle of Thanet. During the fight No. 72 Sqn. shot down four Bf 110s of ZG 2 and ZG 26, but also K9938 piloted by Sgt. Norman Robert Norfolk
was shot down. The pilot bailed out and parachuted at Herne Bay. Norfolk served with the unit at least since October 1939 and during the
Battle of Britain scored four victories, for which he received the DFC. He later served as an instructor at the No. 25 (Polish) Elementary Flying
Training School at RAF Westwood and stayed serving with flight schools even after the war.
INFO Eduard - April 2021