Squadron Royal Air Force
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> Units and Formations
Updated: 9 Sep 08
Formed: 14 Jul 1916 at Gosport
Disbanded: Feb 1919
Reformed: 1 Apr 1923, RAF Northolt
Disbanded: Dec 1963
Reformed: Sep 1965, RAF West Raynham
Disbanded: Sep 1970
Reformed: 1 Apr 1972, RAF Coningsby
Reserve Status : 1 Apr 2006 (The Fast Jet & Weapons Operational Evaluation Unit assumed the numebr plate of 41(R) Sqn)
Squadron badge: A double-armed cross, approved by HM King George VI in Feb 1937. The badge originated from the Sqn association with St Omer, France during World War I (the cross is part of the town's coat of arms).
Western Front 1916-1918
Battle of Britain 1940
Home Defence 1940-1944
Fortress Europe 1940-1944
France and Germany 1944-1945
Squadron was stationed at:
Gosport :: 14 Jul 1916 - Sep 1916
France :: Sep 1916 - Feb 1919
RAF Tangmere :: Feb 1919 - Dec 1919
RAF Northolt :: 1 Apr 1923 -
RAF West Raynham :: Sep 1965 - Sep 1970
RAF Coningsby :: 1 Apr 1972 - 1976
RAF Coltishall :: 1976 - 1 Apr 2004
RAF Coningsby :: 1 Apr 2004 -
Lightning :: 1965 - 1987
Phanton FGR2 :: 1 Apr 1972 -
Harrier GR7 ::
Harrier GR9 ::
Tornado GR4 ::
The Fast Jet & Weapons Operational Evaluation Unit now carrying the name of 41(R) Squadron from 01 April 2006. A logical step in more ways than one, with the Squadron previously associated with RAF Coningsby, the continuing involvement of front line aircraft, and the new Unit having operated its own Jaguar, which retired in December 2005, for the last 10 years. The Unit's role is the development of operational tactics and the evaluation and exploitation of weapons, avionics and software in preparation for their use by the front-line. The Unit's tasks are carried out in close liaison with defence manufacturers, research institutions and front-line squadrons. The Unit is an arm of the Air Warfare Centre which is located at RAF Waddington, who's motto is 'Arma Judicare Consilium Dare' which means 'To test the weaponry and give advice'
41 Squadron was formed on 14 July 1916 at Gosport, moving to France with FE8s in September. These were unsuitable for the planned air defence fole and so were swung to employed on ground attack missions. In 1917, the Squadron received SE5As to focus on fighter and escort duties. Tthe unit remained on the continent until Feb 1919 when it moved to Tangmere, disbanding at the end of the 1919.
The Sqn was reformed on 1 Apr 1923 on the Snipe in the fighter role, these being replaced a year later by the Siskin. The Sqn was involved in the Abyssinian crisis in 1935-36, filling air-policing duties in Aden on the two-seater Demons. Back in the UK these were replaced with the Fury.
41 Sqn transfered to the Spitfire in Jan 1939 and operated this airframe until 1947. During the war it provided fighter cover for the evacuation of Dunkirk and was part of 13 Group during the Battle of Britain. From Sep 1944, the Squadron flew fighter sweeps over the continent, moving to Germany as part of the occupation forces in July 1945. Post-war the unit spent 10 months as an instrument flying training unit in 1947 before reverting to its fighter role and receiving the Hornet. This in turn was replaced by the Meteor in 1951, retaining them to 1955 when they were in turn replaced by the Hunters and then all-weather Javelins in 1958 to disbandment in Dec 1963.
The Sqn reformed once more in Sep 1965 as a Bloodhound SAM unit at West Raynham, retaining this role until disbandment in Sep 1970.
On 1 April 1972, the Squadron reformed at RAF Coningsby equipped with the Phantoms FGR2.
In 1976, a squadron was formed at RAF Coltishall, flying the Sepecat Jaguar GR1 and the 41(F) Sqn numberplate was transfered to it. The Sqn saw operational action during the Gulf War in 1991 and the on NATO/UN Operations over Bosnia, becoming the first RAF Sqn to drop a bomb in anger over Europe since 1945.
The Sqn took on Reserve status on 1 April 2006, with
the standard being handed to the Fast Jet and Weapons Operational
Evaluation Unit (FJWOEU), formed by the merger of the Strike Attack OEU
(SAOEU) from RAF Boscombe Down, the F3 OEU from RAF Coningsby and the
OEU (AGWOEU) from RAF Valley. 41(R) Sqn, FJWOEU is an arm of the Air Warfare
41 Sqn Retro forum
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