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No. 463 Squadron RAAF
463 Sqn RAAF (UK2417).jpg
A No. 463 Squadron Lancaster in 1944
Active 25 November 1943 – 25 September 1945
Country Australia Australia
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Branch Ensign of the Royal Australian Air Force.svg Royal Australian Air Force
Role Bomber Squadron
Part of No. 5 Group RAF, Bomber Command[1]
Motto(s) Press on Regardless[2][3]
Battle honours

  • Tirpitz
  • Fortress Europe, 1940–1944
  • France and Germany, 1944–1945
  • Ruhr, 1940–1945
  • Berlin, 1940–1945
  • German Ports, 1940–1945
  • Normandy, 1944
  • Walcheren
  • Bergen
Squadron Badge heraldry In front of a star of seven points, four sledge hammers in saltire[2][3]
Squadron Codes PO (November 1943 – November 1943)[2]
JO (December 1943 – September 1945)[4][5]
Aircraft flown
Bomber Avro Lancaster

No. 463 Squadron RAAF was a Royal Australian Air Force heavy bomber squadron during World War II. The squadron was formed in the United Kingdom on 25 November 1943 from personnel and aircraft allocated from No. 467 Squadron RAAF. The Squadron was equipped with Avro Lancaster bombers and flew its first raids on Germany immediately after being formed. Operating as part of RAF Bomber Command No. 463 Squadron conducted raids against cities, industrial facilities and military targets in Germany, France and Norway throughout 1944 and until the end of the war in May 1945. Following the war the Squadron evacuated Allied Prisoners of war from Europe until it was disbanded on 25 September 1945.

Aircraft operated

Aircraft operated by no. 463 Squadron RAAF, data from[2][3][6]
From To Aircraft Version
November 1943 September 1945 Avro Lancaster Mks.I, III

Squadron bases

Bases and airfields used by no. 463 Squadron RAAF, data from[2][3][6][7]
From To Base
25 November 1943 3 July 1945 RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire
3 July 1945 25 September 1945 RAF Skellingthorpe, Lincolnshire

Commanding officers

Officers commanding no. 463 Squadron RAAF, data from[8]
From To Name
25 November 1943 19 June 1944 Wing Commander R. "Rollo" Kingsford-Smith, DSO, DFC, AM(US)
19 June 1944 24 June 1944 (Shot down) Flight Lieutenant D.R. Donaldson (acting), DFC, AFC
25 June 1944 18 January 1945 Wing Commander W.A. Forbes, DSO, DFC
18 January 1945 July 1945 Wing Commander K.M Kemp, DFC
July 1945 25 September 1945 Wing Commander M.G. "Mick" Cowan, DSO




  • Blundell, Harold M. They flew from Waddington! 463–467 Lancaster Squadrons, Royal Australian Air Force. Sydney, Australia: W. Homer, 1975.
  • Bowyer, Michael J.F. and John D.R. Rawlings. Squadron Codes, 1937–56. Cambridge, UK: Patrick Stephens Ltd., 1979. ISBN 0-85059-364-6.
  • Delve, Ken. The Source Book of the RAF. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1994. ISBN 1-85310-451-5.
  • Eather, Steve. Flying Squadrons of the Australian Defence Force. Weston Creek, ACT, Australia: Aerospace Publications, 1995, p. 127–128. ISBN 1-875671-15-3.
  • Flintham, Vic and Andrew Thomas. Combat Codes: A full explanation and listing of British, Commonwealth and Allied air force unit codes since 1938. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing Ltd., 2003. ISBN 1-84037-281-8.
  • Halley, James J. The Squadrons of the Royal Air Force & Commonwealth, 1918–1988. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air-Britain(Historians) Ltd., 1988, p. 484. ISBN 0-85130-164-9.
  • Jefford, C.G. RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912. Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1988 (second edition 2001). ISBN 1-85310-053-6.
  • Moyes, Philip J.R. Bomber Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London: Macdonald and Jane's (Publishers) Ltd., 2nd edition 1976, p. 259–260. ISBN 0-354-01027-1.
  • RAAF Historical Section. Units of the Royal Australian Air Force, Volume 3: Bomber Units. AGPS Press Publication, 1995.

External links

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