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No 60 Sqn RFC/RAF

Overview

When No 60 Sqn arrived in France in May 1916, partially equipped with the delightfully named Morane Bullet, there were only two dedicated single-seat fighter squadrons on the Western Front. Operating initially as a utility unit, No 60 Sqn's duties were mixed - reconnaissance, fighter patrols and escorts (by one Flight), as well as the landing of spies behind the enemy lines. In the opening weeks of the battles of the Somme in the summer of 1916, the squadron suffered heavy casualties. Its Commanding Officer ...

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Overview

When No 60 Sqn arrived in France in May 1916, partially equipped with the delightfully named Morane Bullet, there were only two dedicated single-seat fighter squadrons on the Western Front. Operating initially as a utility unit, No 60 Sqn's duties were mixed - reconnaissance, fighter patrols and escorts (by one Flight), as well as the landing of spies behind the enemy lines. In the opening weeks of the battles of the Somme in the summer of 1916, the squadron suffered heavy casualties. Its Commanding Officer complained to General Trenchard that this was mainly due to inadequately trained pilots and inferior aircraft. Trenchard withdrew the squadron from frontline duties. During its enforced rest and re-equipment, the observers were posted out, the squadron was re-equipped with Nieuport scouts, and individual pilots, who had shown promise as fighter pilots while flying the few single-seater scouts issued to the two-seater unit, were posted to No 60 Sqn. Chief amongst these was Capt Albert Ball MC who had already claimed 11 victories with No 11 Sqn. During his time with No 60 Sqn, Ball added another 20 victories and was awarded a DSO and Bar. After his death in May 1917, he was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross. With its return to active operations, equipped with the Nieuport, and later the SE 5 and SE 5a, No 60 Sqn rapidly became one of the most successful fighter units of the RFC. Many famous and high scoring pilots were to go through its ranks - Billy Bishop VC, Grid Caldwell, Willie Fry, 'Duke' Meintjes, S F Vincent, J E Doyle, S B Horn, R Chidlaw-Roberts and A W Saunders, to name but a few - and it finished the war with more 320 victories.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Usually anything with Alex Revell’s name on it is a sure winner for the historian, devotee and research fiend. This book is no exception."
- Stephen T. Lawson, AeroScale

"Revell does a great job of decorating the pages of this book with many photographs [and] color aircraft profiles and plan forms that are pleasing to the eye ... Revell has dedicated much of his life to researching the "Great" War. This book would be a "great" addition to your library.
- Aerodrome (Spring 2012)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781849083331
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing, Limited
  • Publication date: 9/20/2011
  • Series: Aviation Elite Units Series
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 534,144
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Alex Revell has been interested in World War 1 aviation since the age of six, when he began reading the famous John Hamilton series of aviation classics. He began serious aviation research in the early 1960s, being primarily interested in people and their role in the 1914-18 air war. He traced and interviewed many ex-members of the RFC/RAF/RNAS and is particularly proud that many of them became personal family friends. An internationally acknowledged researcher into the history of the RFC/RAF and RNAS during World War 1, Alex Revell has had many articles published in specialist aviation magazines and the journals of Cross and Cockade International and The First World War Aviation Historical Society, of which he is a founder member. His has written a number of aviation-related World War 1 titles over the years, including No 56 Sqn RFC/RAF. A retired engineer and also a jazz musician of international repute, Alex Revell lives in Cornwall with his wife Linda and three Burmese cats.

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