No. 258 Squadron RAF

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No. 258 Squadron RAF
Active 25 July 1918 - 5 March 1918
20 November 1940 - October 1941
1 March 1942 - 31 December 1945
Country Flag of the United Kingdom.svg United Kingdom
Branch Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg Royal Air Force
Motto(s) 'In medias re' (In the middle of things)
Engagements Java, Ceylon
Marshal of the RAF Sir Neil Cameron
Squadron Badge heraldry In front of wings elevated and conjoined in base, a panthers face
Squadron Codes FH (Apr 1939 - Sep 1939)
ZT (Aug 1944 - Dec 1945)

RAF 258 Squadron was a Royal Air Force squadron during World War I and World War II.

No. 258 Squadron was first formed 25 July 1918 from 523, 525 and 529 Special Duties Flights at Luce Bay near Stranraer, Scotland under the control of No. 25 Group. It was equipped with De Havilland DH.6 biplanes and carried out anti-submarine patrols over the Irish Sea. It was disbanded on 5 March 1918.[1]

The squadron was reformed on 20 November 1940 at RAF Leconfield, Yorkshire as a fighter squadron equipped with Hawker Hurricanes. First based at RAF Acklington they relocated to RAF Jurby, Isle of Man. By April 1941, No. 258 Squadron's time had Jurby had come to an end, and they transferred to RAF Valley[2] and thence to RAF Kenley[2] in preparation to take the offensive to the enemy.[3] In October they were stood down to prepare for a move to the Far East. After a few days in Singapore they were withdrawn to Sumatra and then Java, where they suffered many losses either killed or captured by the Japanese. The survivors transferred their aircraft to No. 605 squadron and most attempted to escape by ship to Australia, but unfortunately all the ships were sunk en route with no survivors.[4]

The squadron was again reformed 1 Mar 1942 from G Squadron at Ratmalana Airport, near Colombo, Ceylon but suffered severe losses during the Japanese carrier strike on 5 April 1942. After a spell in Burma (under Neil Cameron) the squadron was withdrawn to be re-equipped with American Republic P-47 Thunderbolts. In June 1945 it then began training for the invasion of Malaya but on the Japanese surrender the squadron was finally disbanded on 31 December 1945.

The squadron was largely manned by RNZAF pilots from New Zealand.


See also

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