RAF Hawksmere
is a fictitious Royal Air Force station in the North-East of England for World War II historical re-enactors. The station is used by all three RAF commands, Fighter, Bomber and Coastal, and is home to five squadrons. Our aim is to further the remembrance of those who served with the RAF during the Second World War (1939 – 1945) by re-enacting as a “Living History” Group through talks, presentations and at commemorative events, hence our motto – “numquam obliviscar” (We will never forget).
The station was built in 1937 as the threat of war increased, initially with grass runways which were upgraded to concrete in late 1942. The runways are set at 30/210, 90/270 and 150/320
No 188 Squadron
Motto: Quaerat et Destruent – Seek and destroy
Formed as a fighter squadron at RAF Stradishall in October 1939, it was equipped with Blenheim Mk 1s, which it took to RAF Bircham Newton in February 1940, where the unit was transferred to Coastal Command. In April it moved to RAF Wittering, where it rejoined Fighter Command and the following month was moved to RAF Manston to fly defensive patrols over the Channel, but in July, a move to RAF St Eval in the South West, saw it back in Coastal Command, carrying out anti-shipping patrols over the Channel, and Irish Sea, having re-equipped with Beaufighters in October 1941. In February 1942 it transferred to RAF North Coates and was reduced toa skeleton squadron in size, but received new Beaufighters in March and resumed its previous duties, although these were now flown over the North Sea, however it did also operate detachments in the South West undertaking similar duties over the Bay of Biscay. In September 1942 the squadron moved to RAF Hawksmere
Squadron Code used: – XD
From To Aircraft Version
October 1939 September 1940 Bristol Blenheim
October 1940 September 1941 Bristol Blenheim
September 1941 Bristol Beaufighter

No 634 Squadron

Motto: Lorem uiam deferunt ostendit – This shows the route
Originally formed as part of the Light Night Striking Force, in No 8 Group at Oakington in January 1943, from elite crews within Bomber Command Squadrons, this unit is equipped with Mosquitoes. It was transferred to No 1 Group to undertake special operations within Bomber Command and has recently moved to Hawksmere in April 1943 as part of the Pathfinder Force (PFF).
Squadron Code used: – LQ
From To Aircraft Version
January 1943 De Haviland Mosquito Mk IV

No 629 Squadron
Motto: Defendere nobis certamen – We fight to defend
Formed originally as one of the Auxiliary Air Force Squadrons, equipped with Hawker Hart light bombers. As war approached, it was upgraded to Hawker Hinds in May 1938. In January 1939 the squadron role was changed to that of a Fighter squadron and was planned to receive Defiants, keeping its Hinds pending their arrival. At the outbreak of war in September 1939 it received its first Hawker Hurricane fighters and by the end of that same month it was flying the more advanced Supermarine Spitfire fighter replacing the majority of the Hurricanes, only a single Flight remaining.
No 629 Squadron was attached to No. 11 Group and operated over Dunkirk and throughout most of the Battle of Britain from various bases. It was initially based at RAF Gravesend, but moved to RAF Biggin Hill before the German offensive. At the end of August 1940 the squadron moved North to RAF Acklington for rest and recuperation, having sustained severe casualties. In January 1941 the Squadron was moved to RAF Hawksmere where it currently remains.
Squadron Code used: – VZ.
From To Aircraft Version
March 1936 May 1938 Hawker Hart

May 1938 September 1939 Hawker Hind

September 1939 September 1939 Hawker Hurricane
September 1939 February 1941 Supermarine Spitfire
February 1941 July 1941 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IIa
July 1941 August 1941 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vb
August 1941 Supermarine Spitfire Mks.IIa, IIb

No 641 Squadron
Motto: Impetus optima defensio – Attack is the best defence
Formed in March 1942 at Scampton for the purpose of developing and carrying out low level marking techniques, initially using Avro Manchesters but rapidly moving to Lancasters when the Manchester proved unequal to the task. The Squadron was heavily involved in the “1000 Raids” between May and August 1942. Later in 1942, operating Lancasters in No 1 Group, 641 Squadron became part of Bomber Command’s Main Force. The squadron was transferred to RAF Hawksmere during April 1943
Squadron Code used: – EU.
From To Aircraft Version
March 1942 Avro Lancaster Mk III

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