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No. 626 Squadron RAF

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No. 626 Squadron RAF

No. 626 Squadron RAF
Active 7 November 1943 - 14 October 1945
Country United Kingdom
Branch Royal Air Force
Type Inactive
Role Bomber Squadron
Base RAF Wickenby
Motto To Strive and not to Yield[1]
Squadron Badge heraldry On the waves of the sea, an ancient ship, sails furled, charged on the bow with an eye[1][2]
Squadron Codes UM (Nov 1943 - Oct 1945)[3][4]
Aircraft flown
Bomber Avro Lancaster
four-engined heavy bomber

No. 626 Squadron RAF was a heavy bomber squadron of the Royal Air Force from 1943 to 1945.


Members of the 626 squadron

The squadron was formed on 7 November 1943 at RAF Wickenby from C Flight of No. 12 Squadron.[1][2] It operated in the strategic bombing role with the Avro Lancaster. It was disbanded on 14 October 1945, having spent the last months of the war on food droppings (Operation Manna) and transport duties (Operation Exodus), repatriating former prisoners of war and briging British troops home from Italy.[1]

First operational mission

10/11 November 1943

Last operational mission

25 April 1945

Last mission before V.E. day

7 May 1945

  • 19 Lancasters dropped supplies to the Dutch in Rotterdam[1]
RAF Wickenby Memorial.

Aircraft operated

Aircraft operated by no. 626 Squadron RAF, data from[1][2][5]
From To Aircraft Variant
November 1943 October 1945 Avro Lancaster Mks. I & III

Squadron bases

Base used by no. 626 Squadron RAF, data from[1][2][5]
From To Name
November 1943 October 1945 RAF Wickenby, Lincolnshire

See also



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Moyes 1976, p. 288.
  2. ^ a b c d Halley 1988, p. 440.
  3. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, p. 101.
  4. ^ Flintham and Thomas 2003, p. 109.
  5. ^ a b Jefford 2001, p. 102.


  • Bowyer, Michael J.F. and John D.R. Rawlings. Squadron Codes, 1937–56. Cambridge, UK: Patrick Stephens Ltd., 1979. ISBN 0-85059-364-6.
  • Currie, Jack. Lancaster Target: The Story of a Crew Who Flew from Wickenby. Goodall Publications Ltd., 1997. ISBN 0-907579-32-9.
  • 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. ISBN 0-85130-164-9.
  • Jefford, Wing Commander C.G., MBE, BA, RAF(Retd.). RAF Squadrons: A Comprehensive Record of the Movement and Equipment of All RAF Squadrons and Their Antecedents Since 1912, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1988. ISBN 1-85310-053-6. (2nd edition 2001. ISBN 1-84037-141-2.)
  • Moyes, Philip J.R. Bomber Squadrons of the RAF and their Aircraft. London, UK: Macdonald and Jane's Publishers Ltd., 1964, 2nd edition 1976. ISBN 0-356-01462-2.
  • Smith, Ron. Rear Gunner Pathfinder. Manchester, UK: Goodall Publications Ltd./Crécy, 1998. ISBN 0-907579-27-2.
  • Ward, Cris. Royal Air Force Bomber Command Squadron Profiles, Number 122: 626 Squadron, "To Strive and Not to Yield". Berkshire, UK: Ward Publishing, 1998.
  • West, Dennis. To Strive and Not to Yield: No. 626 Squadron and the Battle of Berlin . Woodfield Publishing, 2002. ISBN 1-873203-95-0.

External links

  • Tom Bint – 626 Squadron & RAF Wickenby
  • 626 Squadron on RAF website
  • No 621-650 Squadron Histories on RAFweb
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