Intruder Operations....

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Lucky13, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    In the RAF Bomber Command Diaries book, I've read that the Handley Page Hampden, was sometimes used for intruder operations, which I didn't know, also to fight off any Luftwaffe intruders...
    How successful was, if it was successful, the Hampden at these missions?
     
  2. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    #2 mhuxt, Jun 2, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2013
    I didn't know Hampdens had been on Intruder Ops - learn something new every day...
     
  3. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    True indeed!
     
  4. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Also noticed that the Hampdens were used for.....hang on....searchlight suppression, which is another new one for me!
     
  5. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    I'm thinking the 'Intruder' ops must have been early ops - perhaps not 'true' Intruder operations as they became to be thought of. Certainly, they were used for early 'Gardening' ops, sowing mines in estuaries, and inland water ways and canals.
     
  6. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Couldn't have been too busy after June 1941. Luftwaffe intruders over Britain didn't amount to a hill of beans after Operation Barbarossa began.
     
  7. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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    interestingly Guy Gibson says they thought of themselves as pure fighters when returning from a bombing mission whilst flying a Hampden !
     
  8. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    He also spent some time on a night-fighter squadron, 29 I think, can't remember if Beaus or Blenheims. He ended up with three kills, so I suppose it was Beaufighters.
     
  9. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Yep, it was Beaus- got a pic of his aircraft somewhere.
    And by June '41, the Hampden was certainly showing it's weaknesses as a bomber, never mind a night fighter, and there were better night fighters around to take care of intruders, which, even after Barbarossa, continued to bomb Britain throughout WW2.
     
  10. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Cheers, thanks for that.

    I suppose there must have been some kind of bureaucratic wrestling match over who was responsible for Intruders, BC or FC. There were certainly some Fighter Command Hurris over the continent looking for trouble from very early days, quite successfully in some cases. I believe Karel Kuttelwascher got most (all?) his kills in a black-painted Hurri.
     
  11. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    As it says in the book, dropping bombs close to the searlights and use the machineguns....
     
  12. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    15/16 March 1942,

    3 Blenheims on intruder flights to Dutch airfields. Schiphol airfield was attacked. No losses...
     
  13. Maximowitz

    Maximowitz Active Member

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    Or before. Despite the best efforts of NJG2.
     
  14. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    From fall 1940 through May 1941 Germany conducted large scale night attacks on Port of London and Port of Liverpool. That sort of precludes the need for night intruder operations.
     
  15. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Au contraire, mon vieux. The presence of large numbers of bombers either taking off heavily laden with bombs and fuel, or returning to base with tired crews, is an Intruder's dream. The LW's (Hitler's?) failure to exploit those opportunities against Bomber Command is yet another great stuff-up.
     
  16. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Bombers taking off don't matter if they aren't hitting anything of importance and RAF Bomber Command wasn't during the first half of WWII. So Germany decided their light bombers could do more good on the Russian front. If RAF Bomber Command had been inflicting more damage the German decision might have been different.
     
  17. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    I was speaking in terms of RAF intruders over LW fields during the night blitz.
     
  18. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Again....

    25/26 June 1942;

    56 aircraft of No. 2 Group - 31 Blenheims, 21 Bostons and 4 Mosquitoes - were dispatched to attack and harrass 13 German airfields. 15 of the Blenheims were lent by Army Co-Operation Command and were operating under Bomber Command orders. The Boston and Mosquito sorties were the first Intruder flights by those aircraft types. Most of the Intruders bombed or machine-gunned the airfields to which they were allocated but there were no encounters with German aircraft. 2 of the Army Co-Operation Blenheims, attacking St. Trond and Venlo airfields, were lost.

    Target on the night of 25/26 of June was Bremen.
     
  19. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    More....

    23/24 July 1942;

    Target; Duisburg

    8 Blenheims as Intruders, 2 lost.

    Same again on the 25/26 July...

    21 Blenheims as Intruders, 3 lost.
     
  20. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    #20 Juha, Jun 8, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2013
    Port of London? Simply London is more truthful description of the area hit by many LW attacks during that period.
     
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