Operational History and Background
In January 1944, the squadron formed at Squantum, USA as a torpedo bomber reconnaissance Avenger squadron, and subsequently embarked on HMS Indomitable in April, disembarking at Machrihanish in May 1944.

In May 1944 the squadron was attached to No 157 Wing RAF Coastal Command at Hawkinge and subsequently Thorney Island for duties in the English Channel leading up to D-Day activities in Normandy.

In September 1944 the squadron personnel embarked with their aircraft on HMS Activity for the Far East, re-equipping with Avenger Is at Katukurunda.

24-29 January 1945 - Fleet Air Arm strikes on oil installations at Pladjoe around Palembang, Sumatra - the largest operation ever undertaken by  the Fleet Air Arm - successful strikes are made by aircraft from Task Force 63 - HM carriers "Indomitable", "Illustrious", "Indefatigable" and "Victorious".

In December 1944 the squadron embarked on HMS Illustrious, taking part in strikes on Belawan Deli and Palembang, the squadron subsequently disembarking at Nowra, Australia during February 1945.

Re-embarking on HMS Illustrious in March 1945 the squadron took part in attacks on airfields and other enemy targets in the Sakishima Gunto Islands, returning to Nowra in May 1945.

In July 1945 whilst still at Nowra the squadron joined the 3rd Carrier Air Group and were still there at the time of VJ-Day.

Battle Honours
Normandy 1944, Palembang 1945, Okinawa 1945

Commanding Officers and Squadron Personnel

  • L/C WJ Mainprice, DSC, RN Jan 1944-Jan 1945
  • L/C(A) FC Nottingham, DSC, RNVR Jan 1945-March 1945
  • L/C RE Jess, DSC, RCNVR March 1945-June 1945
  • None June 1945-end of WW2

  • Aircraft

  • Avenger I I Jan 1944-Sept 1944
  • Avenger I Oct 1944-May 1945
  • Avenger III July 1945-end of WW2
  • Ships and Squadron bases
    To be listed
    The Squadron Today
    Link to current Fleet Air Arm squadron information

    Associations and Reunions

  • 854 Royal Naval Air Squadron
  • Contact: R Wadmore, 40 Tile Farm Road, Orpington, Kent, BR6 9RZ (ref: 1998)
    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  
    Robert Horsten's FAA
            Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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