By Norman Franks
While Canadian troops and British Commandos made their now recognized ‘reconnaissance in force’ opposed to the harbor city of Dieppe on nineteenth August 1942, they have been supported and guarded through the most important array of Royal Air strength airplane ever visible in WWII until eventually that point. Air Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, AOC of Fighter Command’s No.11 crew, was once given command of the air operation and had forty six Spitfire, eight storm, three hurricane and four Mustang Squadrons below his path, in addition to 7 Boston and Blenheim squadrons of two staff and Fighter Command. On nineteenth August Leigh-Mallory commanded extra squadrons than have been to be had to Air leader Marshal Hugh Dowding at anybody time throughout the conflict of england years previously.
This booklet offers an in depth, minute by way of minute, hour by means of hour, blow by way of blow account of operations on an afternoon which has turn into approved because the one on which the Royal Air strength fought its maximum air conflict. The RAF flew approximately 3,000 sorties: the Luftwaffe 945, Air strive against, flooring assaults, bombing and smoke laying missions fee the RAF over a hundred plane and the Luftwaffe approximately 50. All this occurred in exactly sixteen hours.
In addition to the in-depth examine into the RAF’s actions in this August day sixty eight years in the past, there also are many own debts from pilots who took half including colour to the tale of this distinct conflict within the heritage of the Royal Air strength. Norman Franks is a whole time writer and air historian, with numerous books on WWI and WWII released through Grub road.
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Extra info for Dieppe: The Greatest Air Battle, 19th August 1942
W. Ellacombe DFCwas hit yet controlled to achieve adequate top to bale out, touchdown within the water just about the final boats leaving the final zone of Dieppe. Squadron chief Yapp's computing device used to be additionally hit and certainly one of his cannons used to be knocked out. Derek Sidney Yapp acquired the DFC for his management. 'For the ultimate sortie of the day we have been informed that the convoy was once retreating and the various gun batteries have been the best target. i used to be flying my very own typhoon IIC BP707 and my quantity 2 was once Pilot Officer G. Dodson RAAFin a twelve gun IIB. As we crossed the coast to the west of Dieppe we have been bounced via FW190s and compelled to take violent evasive motion which cut up the squadron into small sections. With my quantity 2, I headed for a few flashes at the fringe of a wooden to the south-west of Dieppe and observed a battery of box weapons - most likely 88mm's. We flew a large circuit to assault north to south around the weapons and approached at greatest throttle — Pilot Officer Dodson on my starboard facet. We either had the pride of seeing our cannon and machine-gun bullets detonating at the weapons and scattering the gunners. 'It was once too solid to final - the inevitable mild flak seemed from the best and my storm used to be mortally hit. Oil and glycol smoke poured from the engine which i used to be not able to nurse because the tnrottle linkage used to be shot away. I broke to the proper heading for the coast and flew throughout the twelve weapons firing from Pilot Officer Dodson's typhoon. He had an ideal cine movie to end up it. At excessive pace and at tree-top top I reached the coast the place the engine died with an exceptional thud. I eased the plane as much as approximately six hundred toes, laying off hood and correct part panel at the approach, baling out because the stall approached. The jerk of my parachute commencing was once a aid yet i used to be questioned by way of the smoke less than the cover till I realised that tracer bullets have been the reason. inside of a couple of seconds i used to be within the sea approximately 500 yards from the cliffs. I removed my parachute harness and boots and trigger for England with a gradual facet stroke, dragging my dinghy in its unopened pack and inspired via the zipp of bullets within the sea round me. 'To my nice aid I observed a small touchdown craft turning in the direction of me. The ramp used to be decreased and that i used to be dragged aboard LCA 188. i used to be passed a mug of chilly tea which I gulped down — I approximately choked - it was once neat whisky! the most convoy was once a few miles away and this badly broken touchdown Craft attack with just one engine now attracted the eye of the massive weapons. The shells arrived in salvos of 4 and the good plumes of water round us have been disconcerting to claim the least. 'Sub-Lieutenant corridor RNZVRwas the skipper and the staff have been 3 leader Petty officials RN. They took all of it very lightly - in the end, that they had been experiencing this remedy for the earlier 8 hours. "Can't we take evasive motion? " I requested. ' "Ten levels port," shouted Sub-Lieutenant corridor, which at four knots did not anything to elevate my spirits. without notice we observed a good white bow wave heading in the direction of us. a robust RN steam gun boat rotated around and got here along and took us in tow.