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No. 57 Squadron RAF
57 Squadron Royal Air Force Solo Badge.jpg
57 Squadron crest
Active 8 June 1916 – 2002
2008 –
Country United Kingdom
Branch Royal Air Force
Motto(s) Corpus non animum muto
Latin: I change my body not my spirit
Battle honours Western Front, 1916–1918: Amiens, France & Low Countries, 1939–1940: Norway, 1940: Channel & North Sea, 1940: Ruhr, 1941–1943: Fortress Europe, 1941–1944: Berlin, 1941–1943: Walcheren, France & Germany, 1944–1945: South Atlantic 1982.

No. 57 Squadron RAF is a Royal Air Force flying training squadron.


World War I

57 Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps was formed on 8 June 1916 at Copmanthorpe, Yorkshire. In December 1916 the squadron was posted to France equipped with the FE2d. The squadron re-equipped with Airco DH4s in May 1917 and commenced long range bombing and reconnaissance operations near Ypres in June of that year.[citation needed] It was one of the few bomber units to produce flying aces, having five on strength. William Edward Green scored nine wins,[1] James Grant[2] and Forde Leathley eight,[3] E. Graham Joy seven (plus one later in 205 Squadron),[4] and Arthur Thomas Drinkwater scored six, all in Airco DH.4s.[5]

Between the Wars

Following the armistice the squadron was assigned to mail carrying duties before returning to the UK in August 1919 and then disbanding on 31 December of that year.[citation needed] The squadron re-formed at Netheravon on 20 October 1931 equipped with the Hawker Hart. In May 1936 the squadron converted to the Hawker Hind.

World War II

Flying Officer R W Stewart, a wireless operator on a Lancaster of 57 Squadron based at RAF Scampton speaking to the pilot from his position in front of the Marconi T1154/R1155 transmitter/receiver set

57 Squadron Lancaster with "Usual" area bombing load of 4000 pound blast bomb and incendiary bombs

At the outbreak of war the squadron was based in France equipped with Bristol Blenheims and was engaged in bombing and reconnaissance operations during the German invasion. The squadron operated from Rosièresdisambiguation needed, then Poix and finally Crécy before returning to England in May 1940. After a brief stay at Wyton the squadron moved to Scotland to commence anti-shipping strikes against the coast of Norway.

The squadron moved to Feltwell in November 1940 to re-equip with the Vickers Wellington. In September 1942 the squadron moved to Scampton and converted to Avro Lancasters. This was followed by a move to East Kirkby in August 1943 from where it operated for the remainder of the war until disbanding on 25 November 1945.

Modern era

The following day the squadron was re-formed via the re-numbering of No. 103 Squadron's Avro Lincoln flight.

In May 1951 the squadron converted to Boeing Washingtons before re-equipping with the English Electric Canberra in May 1953. The squadron disbanded on 9 December 1957.

The squadron re-formed on 1 January 1959 at Honington as part of the V bomber force equipped with the Handley Page Victor. In December 1965 the squadron moved to Marham to take on the role of a tanker squadron, before disbanding again on 30 June 1986.

The squadron number was assigned to No. 242 OCU at Lyneham from 1 June 1992 until 14 March 2002.

The 57 Squadron plate was assigned to No. 2 Sqn, 1 EFTS as an elementary flying training squadron, this was effective from 1 October 2008.

Aircraft operated

Dates Aircraft Variant Notes
1916 Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2 BE2c
1916 Avro 504 504K
1916–1917 Royal Aircraft Factory F.E.2 FE2d
1917–1919 Airco DH.4
1919 de Havilland DH.9 DH.9A
1931–1936 Hawker Hart
1936–1938 Hawker Hind
1938–1940 Bristol Blenheim I
1940 Bristol Blenheim IV
1940–1942 Vickers Wellington IA, IC, II and III
1942–1946 Avro Lancaster I & III
1945–1951 Avro Lincoln B2
1951–1953 Boeing Washington B1
1953–1957 English Electric Canberra B2
1959–1966 Handley Page Victor B1
1966–1977 Handley Page Victor K1
1976–1986 Handley Page Victor K2
1992–2002 Lockheed Hercules
2008- Grob Tutor T1

See also


  1. Franks, et al, p. 66.
  2. Retrieved 22 December 2011.
  3. Franks, et al, p. 89.
  4. Franks, et al, p. 69.
  5. Franks, et al, p. 63.


External links

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