Operational History and Background

BLACKBURN ROC I, L3105 "L6R", 806 Sqn RN, West Freugh, April 1940 [A0228]

The squadron formed as a fighter squadron at Worthy Down in February 1940 with 8 Skua and 4 Rocs.

In May 1940 the squadron took part in bombing attacks on Bergen, Norway, and subsequently provided cover during the Dunkirk evacuations at the end of the month.

Subsequently with Fulmar replacing the Rocs, the squadron embarked on HMS Illustrious for Bermuda, and after returning to the UK re-embarked for the Mediterranean, with additional Sea Gladiators. Over the next few months the squadron shot down 20 enremy aircraft.

In February 1941 the squadron provided defence for Crete, and then embarked on HMS Formidable for further operations in the Mediterranean. The squadron only dis-emabarking at Aboukir and Idku when the ship was badly damaged by enemy bombing in May 1941.

The squadron was then equipped with RAF Hurricanes and in August became part of the Royal Navy Fighter Squadron in the Western Desert.

In February 1942 after the disbandment of the joint unit the squadron was re-equipped with 12 Fulmars for transfer to Ratmalana, Ceylon.

In May 1942, A flight embarked on HMS Indomitable with Martlet IIs and B Flight embarked on Illustrious with Fulmars. When HMS Indomitable was damaged on 12 August 1942 in Operation Pedestal to Malta, A flight disbanded on the ship's return to the UK.

The remaining squadron subsequently disembarked at Port Reitz in East Africa in October 1942, and disbanded at Tanga in January 1943.

The squadron reformed at Machrihanish in August 1945 with 12 Seafire L.IIIs, and was still at Machrihanish by VJ-Day.

Battle Honours
Norway 1940, Dunkirk 1940, Mediterranean 1940 - 1,
Libya 1940 - 1. Matapan 1941, Crete 1941, Diego Suarez 1942

Commanding Officers and Squadron Personnel

  • L/C CLG Evans, DSC, RN Feb 1940-June 1941
  • L/C JN Garnett, RN June 1941-Aug 1942
  • Lt RL Johnston, RN Aug 1942-Jan 1943
  • Lt AC Lindsey, DSC, RN Aug 1945-end of WW2

  • Aircraft

  • Skua II Feb 1940-July 1940
  • Roc I Feb 1940-July 1940
  • Fulmar I June 1940-May 1941
  • Sea Gladiator Oct 1940-May 1941
  • Hurricane I May 1941- 1942
  • Fulmar II Nov 1941-Jan 1943
  • Martlet I May 1942-June 1942
  • Martlet II Aug 1942-Dec 1942
  • SeafireL.III Aug 1945 -end of WW2
  • 806 squadron sea gladiators in Gladiator production for the RAF and FAA Serials: N5513, N5549. Notes: N5513; marked 6F, later transferred to 805 Sq. N5549; 806 Sq. in 11/40.

    Ships and Squadron bases
    To be listed

    The Squadron Today
    Link to the current squadron information

    Associations and Reunions
    No information

    Gloster Gladiator in Commonwealth squadron service (Håkans Aviation page) Gladiator production for the RAF and FAA
    World Aircraft Carrier Lists and Photo Gallery - from 1913 to 2000. Naval History Information Center, Haze Gray & Underway American based World Aircraft Carrier Lists & Photo Gallery - one of the definitive online sources for British and world aircraft carrier & seaplane tender data, histories and images - over 1000 photos. 
    Sturtivant, R & Ballance, T  (1994). 'The Squadrons of the Fleet Air Arm' Published by Air Britain (Historians) Ltd, 1994 ISBN: 0 85130 223 8  
    An A-Z of Aircraft Profiles by FAUCONBERG AEROGRAPHICS including BLACKBURN ROC Mk. I, 806 Squadron, Royal Naval Air Service, West Freugh, Wigtownshire, April 1940  
            Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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