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NAVAL AVIATION BATTLE HONOURS
1939-1945
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Thirty Battle Honours were awarded to Royal Navy Naval Air Squadrons for actions and campaigns during the Second World War, perhaps the most renown being for the Taranto strike, the Norwegian campiagns of 1940 and against the Tirpitz, the Battle of the Atlantic and the sinking of the Bismarck, and the operations against the Japanese most notably at Palembang, Okinawa and Tokyo.
 

For Aircrew name lists for the different Battle Honours click here
 

1939

 

Atlantic 1939-45

Ocean convoy escorts, or support forces that took part in a successful action, Equator to the Arctic Circle between 3rd September 1939 and 8th May 1945.
 

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 801, 802, 804, 807, 808, 810, 811, 813, 814, 816, 818, 819, 820, 822, 824, 825, 826, 829, 833, 834, 835, 836, 837, 838, 840, 842, 846, 850, 860, 881, 882, 892, 896, 898, 1832.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Activity, Albatross, Arbiter, Argus, Attacker, Audacity, Battler, Biter, Campania, Chaser, Dasher, Emperor, Empress, Engadine, Fencer, Furious, Hermes, Hunter, Nairana, Patroller, Pegasus, Premier, Pretoria Castle, Puncher, Pursuer, Queen, Rajah, Ranee, Ravager, Reaper, Ruler, Searcher, Smiter, Speaker, Stalker, Striker, Thane, Tracker.

 

Atlantic 1939-45 By Navy History Net
Battle of the Atlantic by British Forces.com

English Channel 1939-45

Channel coastal convoy escorts, or other forces that took part in a successful action, English Channel and all waters on the south coast between Southend and Bristol, east of a line Ushant to the Scilly Islands then to the north coast of Cornwall between 3rd September 1939 and 8th May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 811, 812, 818, 819, 825, 841.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
ENGLISH CHANNEL 1939-45: Sept 3rd 1939-May 1944, June 1944-May 1945 By Navy History Net
Channel Dash by British.forces.com

North Sea 1939-45

Coastal convoy escorts, or other forces that took part in a successful action, North Sea and all waters to the eastward between Southend and the Shetland Islands, except coastal waters of Norway between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 803, 811, 812, 826.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
NORTH SEA 1939-45: Sept 3rd 1939-May 1944, June 1944-May 1945 By Navy History Net

River Plate 1939

Pursuit of the German Battleship Admiral Graf Spee in the South Atlantic on 13 December 1939.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Achilles, Ajax and Exeter

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
River Plate 1939 By Navy History Net
Battle of River Plate
Battle of River Plate by British Forces.com

1940

 

Biscay 1940-45

Patrol or successful engagement of an enemy ship of submarine within the Bay of Biscay from Ushant to Cape Ortegal, from 12W to French coast.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 817.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Archer, Glasgow, Sheffield, Victorious, Warspite

 

Biscay 1940-45  By Navy History Net

Norway 1940-45

Operations in coastal waters of Norway as far north as Tromso between 8 April and 8 June 1940, and successful actions in these waters at a later date to May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 701, 800, 801, 802, 803, 804, 806, 810, 816, 817, 818, 820, 821, 823, 825, 827, 828, 829, 830, 831, 841, 842, 846, 852, 853, 856, 880, 881, 882, 887, 894, 896, 898, 1770, 1771, 1832, 1834, 1836, 1840, 1841, 1842.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ark
 Royal, Berwick, Birmingham, Campania, Devonshire, Edinburgh, Emperor, Enterprise, Fencer, Furious, Galatea, Glasgow, Glorious, Implacable, Kent, Kenya, Manchester, Nairana, Nigeria, Norfolk, Penelope, Premier, Pursuer, Queen, Renown, Repulse, Resolution, Rodney, Searcher, Sheffield, Southampton, Suffolk, Sussex, Trumpeter, Victorious, Vindictive, York.

 

Tirpitz strike Fleet Air Arm aircrews
Kirkenes-Petsamo Fleet air Arm aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Norway 1940-1945 by British.Forces.com
Norway 1940-1945 By Navy History Net
The Tirpitz by British Forces.com

Narvik 1940

Forces taking part in the two battles of Narvik 10 and 13 April 1940, during the defence of Norway.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 816, 818.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Warspite

 

Fleet Air Arm Konigsberg aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
WW2 Military and Naval Campaign summaries: Narvik. by Naval History Net

Dunkirk 1940

Operation Dynamo, evacuation of British Expeditionary Force, and other Allied forces, from France, 26 May to 4 June 1940.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 801, 806, 825, 826.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: None

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Dunkirk 1940 (Operation Dynamo) By Navy History Net
Dunkirk by British.forces.com

Battle of Britain 1940

Operations by fighter squadrons operating with RAF fighter command over Britain, 10  July and 31 October 1940.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 804, 808 (812 earned but not awarded).

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: None

 

Fleet Air Arm Battle of Britain aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Battle of Britain home page  by RAF/MOD 
Battle of Britain website
Battle of Britain web pages
Battle of Britain by British Forces.com
Battle of Britain net

Mediterranean 1940-45

Forces taking part in operations in the Mediterranean, east of a line Cape Spartel to Cape Trafalgar, not covered by other Battle Honours in the area, between the fall of France in June 1940, and May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 767, 800, 803, 806, 810, 812, 813, 815, 816, 818, 819, 820, 821, 824, 826, 828, 829, 830.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ajax, Ark Royal, Atherstone, Barham, Eagle, Formidable, Galatea, Gloucester, Hobart, Illustrious, Kent, Liverpool, Malaya, Mauritius, Newfoundland, Orion, Penelope, Renown, Rodney, Sheffield, Uganda, Valiant, Warspite, York. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Mediterranean 1940-45 By Navy History Net
Mediterranean by British.forces.com

Calabria 1940

Forces taking part in the action off Calabria, Italy, 9 July 1940.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 813, 824.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Eagle, Gloucester, Liverpool, Malaya, Orion, Sydney, Warspite. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Calabria 1940 By Navy History Net
Calabria 1940 by British.forces.com

Libya 1940-42

Forces involved on inshore operations between Port Said and Benghazi, and support of the army advance in the Western Desert between September 1940 and June 1942.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 803, 805, 813, 815, 819, 821, 824, 826.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: None

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Libya 1940-42 By Navy History Net

Taranto 1940

Forces taking part in Operation Judgement, night air strike on the Italian fleet and harbour at Taranto, 11 November 1940.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 813, 815, 819, 824.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Illustrious.

 

Fleet Air Arm Taranto strike aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Taranto By Navy History Net
Battle of Taranto by British.forces.com
Taranto by Military history trilogy (Alex's Military history home page)
ACA Taranto account of Taranto

Spartivento 1940

Operation Collar, night action against Italian Battleships and Cruisers off Cape Spartivento, Sardinia, 27 November 1940.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 800, 808, 810, 818, 820.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ark Royal, Berwick, Newcastle, Renown, Sheffield.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Spartinivento By Navy History Net

1941

 

Malta Convoys 1941-42

Forces taking part in Operations Excess, Substance, Halberd, Harpoon, and Pedestal, diversionary operations and the resupply of aircraft and stores to Malta, between January 1941 and August 1942.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 801, 806, 807, 808, 809, 812, 813, 816, 820, 824, 825, 827, 831, 832, 884, 885.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ajax, Ark Rooyal, Argus, Eagle, Edinburgh, Furious, Fury, Gloucester, Illustrious, Indomitable, Kenya, Liverpool,  Malaya, Manchester, Nelson, Nigeria, Penelope, Prince of Wales, Renown, Rodney,Sheffield, Southampton, Triumph, Valiant, Victorious, Warspite, York.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Malta convoys 1941-42 By Navy History Net
The Malta Convoys by British.forces.com
Pedestal Convoy (August 1942) by British Forces.com

Matapan 1941

Forces taking part in the night action against the Italian fleet off Cape Matapan, Greece, 28-29 March 1941.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 803, 806, 815, 826, 829.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ajax, Barham, Formidable, Gloucester, Valiant, and Warspite.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Matapan 1941 By Navy History Net
Battle honours: Cape Matapan by British.forces.com
Conflicts: Matapan by British forces.com 

Crete 1941

Operation Mercury, forces taking part in the defence and evacuation of Crete, 20 May - 1 June 1941.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 805.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ajax, Barham, Calcutta, Fiji, Formidable, Gloucester, Orion, Perth, Queen Elizabeth,  Valiant, Warspite.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Crete 1941 By Navy History Net
Battle for Crete  by British Forces.com

'Bismarck' 1941

Pursuit and destruction of German Battleship Bismark in North North Atlantic 23 - 27 May 1941.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 808, 810, 818, 820, 825.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ark Royal, Dorsetshire, Edinburgh, Galatea, Hood, Kenya, King George V, Neptune, Norfolk, Prince of Wales, Renown, Repulse, Rodney, Sheffield, Suffolk, Victorious.

 

Fleet Air Arm Bismark strike aircrews

See FAA Archive Sink the Bismarck 60th anniversary page
FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Bismarck 1941 By Navy History Net
The Hunt for the Bismarck by British.forces.com
ACA account of the sinking of the Bismarck
FAA SIG account of the Bismarck

Arctic 1941-45

Covering forces in support of, and escorts to, the convoys running to and from North Russia; also those ships which operated in the area and took part in a successful action, within the Arctic Circle, except for the coastal waters of Norway to the southward of Tromso, between September 1941 and May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 802, 809, 811, 813, 816, 819, 822, 824, 825, 832, 833, 835, 842, 846, 853, 856, 882, 883, 893, 1832.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Activity, Argus, Avenger, Belfast, Campania, Chaser, Dasher, Devonshire, Duke of York, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Kent, Kenya, King George V, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Nairana, Nigeria, Norfolk, Premier, Renown, Rodney, Sheffield, Shropshire, Striker, Tracker, Victorious, Vindex.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Arctic 1941-45 By Navy History Net
The Arctic Convoys by British.forces.com
The Arctic 1942-1945 by British Forces.com

1942

 

Malaya 1942-45

Forces taking part in a successful action in Malacca Strait and waters adjacent to the Malay Peninsular and Sumatra between 7N - 7S and 95 - 108E, January 1942 to August 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 851.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Emperor, Exeter, Perth.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Malaya 1942-45 By Navy History Net

Diego Suarez 1942

Operation Ironclad, in support of landing forces in Madagascar 5 - 7 May 1942.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 806, 810, 827, 829, 831, 880, 881, 882.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Devonshire, Illustrious, Indomitable.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Diego Suarez 1942 By Navy History Net
Diego Suarez (Madagascar or Operation Ironclad) 1942 by British.forces.com

North Africa 1942-43

Forces taking part in Operation Torch, the support of landing forces and the army ashore in Algeria and Tunisia, between 8 November 1942 and 20 February 1943.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700, 800, 801, 802, 804, 807, 809, 817, 820, 822, 832, 933, 880, 882, 883, 884, 885, 888, 891, 893.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Argus, Avenger, Biter, Dasher, Formidable, Furious.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
North Africa 1942-43 Operation Torch By Navy History Net
Operation Torch by British.forces.com
Mers-El-Kebir, Algeria (Operation Catapult) by British Forces.com
Africa 1942, Prelude to El Alamein by British Forces.com
El Alamein by British Forces.com
North Africa, After El Alamein by British Forces.com
Desert Air Force Operations by British Forces.com

1943

 

Sicily 1943

Forces taking part in Operation Husky, support of landing forces in Sicily, between 10 July and 17 August 1943.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 807, 817, 820, 880, 885, 888, 893, 899.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Atherstone, Formidable, Howe, Indomitable, King George V, Mauritius,Nelson, Newfoundland, Penelope, Rodney, Valiant, Warspite.

 

Fleet Air Arm Sicily aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Sicily 1943 By Navy History Net
Sicily by British-forces.com

Salerno 1943

Operation Avalanche, support of landing forces at Salerno on the Mainland of Italy, 9 September to 6 October 1943.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 807, 808, 809, 810, 820, 834, 878, 879, 880, 886, 887, 888, 890, 893, 894, 897, 899.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Attacker, Battler, Formidable, Hunter, Illustrious, Stalker. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Salerno 1943 By Navy History Net

1944

 

Aegean 1944

Forces engaged with the enemy in all waters of the Aegean Archipeligo, between 35 - 42N and 22 - 30E, January - December 1944.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 807, 809, 879, 881, 899.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Emperor, Khedive, Pursuer, Searcher, Stalker. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Aegean 1943-44 By Navy History Net
Aegean 1943-1944 by British.forces.com

Normandy 1944

Operation Neptune, covering and support forces in the Channel, Dover to Ushant, for landings in France, 6 June to 3 July 1944.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 700 warships, 800, 804, 808, 816, 819, 838, 846, 848, 849, 850, 854, 855, 881, 885, 886, 896, 897.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ajax, Belfast, Emperor, Glasgow, Pursuer, Rodney, Tracker, Warspite. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Normandy 1944 By Navy History Net
D-Day by BritishForces.com
Operation Neptune by British forces.com

Sabang 1944

Operation Crimson, Task Force 62, air strikes and bombardment of harbour and oil installations in northern Sumatra, 25 July 1944.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 831, 1830, 1833, 1834, 1936, 1837, 1838.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Illustrious, Victorious

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Sabang 1944 By Navy History Net

South France 1944

Operation Dragoon, Task Force 88, support of landing forces on the south coast of France 15 - August 1944.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 807, 809, 879, 881, 882, 899.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Attacker, Emperor, Hunter, Khedive, Pursuer, Searcher, Stalker.

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
South France 1944 By Navy History Net

Burma 1944-45

Operations over Burma, October 1944 to April 1945, and May to August 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 800, 804, 807, 808, 809, 815, 851, 896, 1700.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Ameer, Ceylon, Cumberland, Emperor, Empress, Hunter, Kenya, Khedive, Newcastle, Queen Elizabeth, Shah, Stalker, Suffolk, Sussex

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Burma 1944-45 By Navy History Net
Burma 1944-1945 by British.forces.com

1945

 

Palembang 1945

Operation Meridian 1, Task Force 63, air strikes on oil refineries at Pladjoe, on Sumatra, 24 January 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 820, 849, 854, 857, 887, 894, 1770, 1830, 1833, 1834, 1836, 1839, 1844.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Illustrious, Indefatigable, Indomitable and Victorious. 

 

Fleet Air Arm Palembang aircrews

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Palembang 1945 By Navy History Net
The Palembang Strikes by British.forces.com
RN and Palembang strikes by British Forces.com

Okinawa 1945

Operation Iceberg, Task Force 57 attacks on airfields in the Sakashima Gunto in the East China Sea, during the assault on Okinawa, 26 March to 25 May 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 820, 848, 849, 854, 857, 885, 887, 894, 1770, 1830, 1833, 1834, 1836, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842, 1844, 1845.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Chaser, Formidable, Gambia, Howe, Illustrious, Indefatigable, Indomitable, King George V, Ruler, Slinger, Speaker, Striker, Victorious. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Okinawa 1945 By Navy History Net

Japan 1945

Fleet Carriers and their Squadrons of Task Force 37 that took part in the final attacks on warships and mainland Japan, 16 July to 11 August 1945.

Awarded to Squadron numbers: 801, 820, 828, 848, 849, 880, 887, 1771, 1772, 1834, 1836, 1841, 1842.

Awarded to HM aircraft carrying ships: Achilles, Formidable, Gambia, Implacable, Indefatigable, King George V, Uganda, Victorious. 

 

See FAA History by the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association
Japan 1945 By Navy History Net



Created: 3-04-2001, Last Modified 23-07-2002


 
 

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