189 Squadron

189 Squadron while stationed at Bardney.

Lancaster 1/111 with 189 Squadron livery

Photo by Air of Authority

Lancaster 1/111 with 189 Squadron livery

  • No. 189 Squadron was formed at Ripon on 20th December 1917 as a night-flying training unit, moving shortly afterwards to Sutton's Farm to continue their work until the end of World War 1. On 1 March 1919, the squadron was disbanded.
  • The squadron was re-formed as part of No. 5 Group RAF on 15th October 1944 at Bardney, with Code letters 'CA'. Unfortunately, it did not carry an authorised badge.
  • They flew Lancaster bombers in raids over occupied Europe towards the end of World War II in 1944 and 1945.
  • The first operational mission involved 5 Lancasters despatched to bomb Hamburg, on 1st November 1944.
  • On 2nd November 1944, the Squadron moved to Fulbeck.
  • During 1944 they suffered the loss of 4 aircrews, and in 1945 another 15 crews were lost.
  • The squadron took charge of Mk.3 Lancaster, EE136 "Spirit of Russia", from 9 Squadron, which took part in a grand total of 109 sorties by the end of the war.
  • The Commanding Officer was Wing Commander J. S. Shorthouse DFC.
  • They returned to Bardney on 8th April 1945, until October, when they moved on to RAF Metheringham.
  • The unit was mixed, with many personnel from other parts of the Commonwealth including Australians, New Zealanders and Canadians.
    Airmen of 189 squadron

    Airmen of 189 Squadron

    Stan Gardner, Colin Borrill, Roy Hill,

    Bill Hemphoeys, Frank Bensted, Thomas Oatway.

  • No. 189 Squadron was among the 107 Lancasters and 12 Mosquitos of No 5 Group which attacked the oil refinery in Tonsberg in Southern Norway on 25th April 1945 in the last raid of the war flown by heavy bombers of Bomber Command.
  • During its brief wartime service, it flew a total of 652 sorties and dropped 2,783 tons of bombs over occupied Europe.
  • After the war the unit was involved in dropping food to the Dutch and repatriating POW's until it was disbanded on 20th November 1945.