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No. 19 Squadron RAF: Wikis


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No. XIX (Reserve) Squadron
The Crest of XIX Squadron
RAF 19 Sqn.svg
Active 1915-1919
Country United Kingdom
Branch Royal Air Force
Role Training
Base RAF Valley
Motto "Possunt quia posse videntur"(Latin)
("They can because they think they can")
Equipment BAE Hawk
Battle honours Western Front 1916-1918, Somme 1916, Arras 1917, Ypres 1917,Somme 1918, Lys, Amiens, Hindenburg Line, Dunkirk, Home Defence 1940-1942, Battle of Britain 1940, Channel and North Sea 1942-1942, Fortress Europe 1942-1944, Dieppe, Normandy 1944, Arnhem, France and Germany 1944-1945
Badge Between wings elevated and conjoined in base, a dolphin, head downwards[1]
Squadron Codes[2][3] WZ (Sep 1938 - Sep 1939)
QV (Sep 1939 - Sep 1945)
A (1989 - 1991)

No. 19 Squadron (sometimes written as No. XIX Squadron) is a squadron of the Royal Air Force.




First World War

No. 19 Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps was founded on 1 September 1915[4] being deployed to France that year flying B.E.12s before re-equipping with French-built Spads. In 1918 the squadron was re-equipped with Sopwith Dolphins, flying escort duties. By the end of the war, 19 Squadron had a score of flying aces among its ranks, including Albert Desbrisay Carter, John Leacroft, Arthur Bradfield Fairclough, Oliver Bryson, Gordon Budd Irving, Frederick Sowrey, future Air Commodore Patrick Huskinson, Cecil Gardner, Roger Amedee Del'Haye, future Chief Air Marshal James Hardman, Finlay McQuistan, Alexander Pentland, John Candy, Cecil Thompson, and John Aldridge.[5]

Between the World Wars

The Squadron was disbanded after World War I on 31 December 1919[6], to be reformed again at RAF Duxford on 1 April 1923[6]. They then flew a number of different fighters, and were the first squadron to be equipped with the Gloster Gauntlet in May 1935, and with the Supermarine Spitfire on 4 August 1938[7].

World War II

The Squadron was stationed in the UK after the outbreak of World War II, and was part of No. 12 Group RAF, RAF Fighter Command, during the Battle of Britain[8]. Later versions of Spitfires were flown until the arrival of Mustangs for close-support duties in early 1944.[9] After D-Day, No. 19 briefly went across the English Channel before starting long-range escort duties from RAF Peterhead for Coastal Command off the coast of Norway.[10]

No. 19 Sqn. Phantom FGR.2 with a US Navy F-14A during Desert Shield in 1990

Post World War II

In the post-war period the squadron flew a variety of jet fighter aircraft, before being disbanded in 1992. Their final location before being disbanded was RAF Wildenrath in Germany near Geilenkirchen.[9]

The numberplate was then assigned to the former No. 63 Squadron, one of the Hawk squadrons at RAF Chivenor, in September 1992. Following the closure of Chivenor to jet flying the squadron was moved to RAF Valley in September 1994. The Squadron now provides fast jet training on the BAE Hawk.

In May 2008 a BAE Hawk T.1, XX184, was re-painted in a special Spitfire camouflage livery at RAF Valley. This was done to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the squadron as the first operational fighter squadron to fly the Supermarine Spitfire from Duxford in 1938.


See also



  1. ^ Royal Air Force: 19 Squadron
  2. ^ Flintham and Thomas 2003, pp. 52 + 99 + 229.
  3. ^ Bowyer and Rawlings 1979, pp. 11 + 87.
  4. ^ Halley 1988, p. 55.
  5. ^ Retrieved 26 January 2010.
  6. ^ a b Rawlings 1978, p. 47.
  7. ^ Rawlings 1978, p. 48.
  8. ^ Rawlings 1978, p. 525.
  9. ^ a b c Halley 1988, p. 56.
  10. ^ Rawlings 1978, p. 49.


  • Bowyer, Michael J.F. and John D.R. Rawlings. Squadron Codes, 1937-56. Bar Hill, Cambridge, UK: Patrick Stephens Ltd., 1979. ISBN 0-85059-364-6.
  • 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.
  • Palmer, Derek. Fighter Squadron (No. 19). United Kingdom Self Publishing Association, 1991. ISBN 1-85421-075-0.
  • Rawlings, John D.R. Fighter Squadrons of the Royal Air Force and their Aircraft. London: MacDonald and Jane's (Publishers) Ltd., 1969 (new edition 1976, reprinted 1978). ISBN 0-354-01028-X. pp.47–54.

External links


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