List of Royal Air Force conversion units

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Ensign of the Royal Air Force Ensign of the Royal Air Force.svg
Ensign of the Royal Air Force

Conversion units and operational conversion units (OCU) were training units of the Royal Air Force.

Royal Air Force Aerial warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces

The Royal Air Force (RAF) is the United Kingdom's aerial warfare force. It was formed towards the end of the First World War on 1 April 1918. Following victory over the Central Powers in 1918 the RAF emerged as, at the time, the largest air force in the world. Since its formation, the RAF has taken a significant role in British military history. In particular, it played a large part in the Second World War where it fought its most famous campaign, the Battle of Britain.

Contents

History

With the introduction of new heavy bombers, the four-engined Short Stirling, Avro Lancaster and Handley Page Halifax, the Royal Air Force introduced heavy conversion units (HCU). The heavy conversion units began forming in late 1941, to qualify crews trained on medium bombers to operate the heavy bombers before final posting to the operational squadrons. Some of the heavy conversion units were involved in bombing operations over Germany.

Short Stirling British four-engined heavy bomber of the Second World War

The Short Stirling was a British four-engined heavy bomber of the Second World War. It has the distinction of being the first four-engined bomber to be introduced into service with the Royal Air Force (RAF).

Avro Lancaster Heavy bomber aircraft of World War II

The Avro Lancaster is a British four-engined Second World War heavy bomber. It was designed and manufactured by Avro as a contemporary of the Handley Page Halifax, both bombers having been developed to the same specification, as well as the Short Stirling, all three aircraft being four-engined heavy bombers adopted by the Royal Air Force (RAF) during the same wartime era.

Handley Page Halifax Royal Air Force four-engine heavy bomber of WWII

The Handley Page Halifax is a British Royal Air Force (RAF) four-engined heavy bomber of the Second World War. It was developed by Handley Page to the same specification as the contemporary twin-engine Avro Manchester.

After the end of the Second World War, the role of the HCUs was taken over by the operational conversion units. Although the units had nominal bases, it was usual for different flights and individual aircraft to be detached nearer the operational bases.

Royal Air Force Operational Conversion Units (OCU) are training units that prepare aircrew for operations on a particular type or types of aircraft or roles. Some OCUs have a shadow, or reserve, squadron designation which is used if the unit has a war role.

Shadow squadrons are additional squadron numbers allocated to RAF training, Operational conversion, and Operational and Weapons evaluation units. Normally in peacetime these units are not tasked with combat roles, however UK planning for a major confrontation during the Cold War would have seen the tasking of the aircraft and pilots of these units in combat roles with the activation of the shadow designations.

Current Royal Air Force OCUs

Lightning - RAF Marham

Typhoon - RAF Coningsby

Hawk - RAF Valley

Support Helicopter (Puma & Chinook) - RAF Benson

Hercules - RAF Brize Norton

ISTAR - RAF Waddington

Tutor - RAF Wittering

Some aircraft types which are operated by a single squadron, which includes most transport aircraft, and most ISTAR aircraft, are not big enough to need a dedicated OCU Squadron for their training requirements - they may only have a couple of students at any time. Therefore, smaller squadrons also incorporate training facilities to allow them to process aircrew onto their aircraft type. Some roles, such as ISTAR, require more rear crew for the aircraft, like weapon systems officer (WSO)s and weapon systems operator (WSOp) - their training can be more generalised, and this is carried out by 54 Squadron at RAF Waddington. This reduces the training requirement on the individual ISTAR squadrons, by providing aircrew who require only aircraft conversion training when they reach their squadron. Pilots are trained directly onto their aircraft type by the frontline squadrons using training 'Flights'. An example of this is the OCU flight of 24 Squadron, which trains new Hercules aircrew onto the aircraft.

Weapon systems officer flight crew of combat aircraft tasked with operating weapons and other systems

A Weapon Systems Officer is an air flight officer directly involved in all air operations and weapon systems of a military aircraft.

No. 54 Squadron RAF

Number 54 Squadron is a squadron of the Royal Air Force. It is based at RAF Waddington, England. On 1 September 2005 it took on the role of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) Operational Conversion Unit, responsible for training all RAF crews assigned to the E-3D Sentry AEW1 and the Nimrod R1 and the Sentinel R1 as well as running the Qualified Weapons Instructor Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Course. The squadron was previously a SEPECAT Jaguar strike fighter unit, operating from RAF Coltishall, until it was disbanded on 11 March 2005. Since September 2005 the unit has been formally titled 54(Reserve) Squadron, until the (Reserve) nameplate was removed from all training squadrons in 2018.

RAF Waddington Royal Air Force main operating base located in Lincolnshire, England

Royal Air Force Waddington otherwise known as RAF Waddington is a Royal Air Force station located beside the village of Waddington, 4.2 miles (6.8 km) south of Lincoln, Lincolnshire in England.

Operational Conversion Units are standardised by the RAF's Central Flying School to maintain training standards. Training is delivered by Qualified Flying Instructors (QFIs) and Qualified Weapons Instructors (QWIs), and frontline squadrons will also have qualified individuals to deliver continual and refresher training after the OCU. OCUs generally also provide training for those aircrew selected to become QFIs on an aircraft type - an example would be 208(R) Squadron, which currently trains aircrew for 100 Squadron, QFIs for 208(R), and provides refresher training for aircrew joining the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, the Red Arrows.

The Central Flying School (CFS) is the Royal Air Force's primary institution for the training of military flying instructors. Established in 1912, it is the longest existing flying training school. Its motto is Imprimis Praecepta which is Latin for "Our Teaching is Everlasting" and its Mission Statement is 'To Deliver, Develop and Assure Excellence in Aircrew Instruction for Defence'. It currently manages a series of training squadrons as well as the RAF Display Team.

No. 208 Squadron RAF

No 208 (Reserve) Squadron was a reserve unit of the Royal Air Force, most recently based at RAF Valley, Anglesey, Wales. It operated the BAe Hawk aircraft, as a part of No. 4 Flying Training School. Due to obsolescence of its Hawk T.1 aircraft compared to the new-build Hawk T.2 aircraft of its sister unit, 4(R) Sqn, the squadron was disbanded in April 2016, in its 100th year of operations.

No. 100 Squadron RAF squadron of the Royal Air Force

No. 100 Squadron of the Royal Air Force is based at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire, UK, and operates the British Aerospace Hawk T.1 providing 'aggressor' aircraft for air combat training.

List of conversion units

UnitDatesAircraftBaseNotes
226 OCU Aug 46–Aug 49
Sep 49–Jun 55
Jun 63–Sep 74
Oct 74–Sep 91
Oxford I, Beaufighter X
Hornet F.1
Mosquito III/TT.35
Tiger Moth II
Vampire F.1/FB.5/T.11
Meteor F.3/F.4/T.7/F.8/FR.9
Tempest II
Martinet I
Spitfire XIV/XVI/XVIII/XIX/F.22
Javelin T.3
Lightning F.1/F.1A/F.3/T.4/T.5
Jaguar GR.1/T.2
RAF Molesworth
RAF Bentwaters
RAF Driffield
RAF Stradishall
RAF Middleton St. George
RAF Coltishall
RAF Lossiemouth
Formed at Molesworth by re-designating 1335 (Meteor) CU. Disbanded at Driffield to become 203 AFS. Re-formed at Stradishall by renaming 203 AFS. Re-formed at Middleton St. George by merging the Lightning Conversion Squadron and the Fighter Command Instrument Rating Squadron. Disbanded at Coltishall. Immediately re-formed at Lossiemouth by re-designating the Jaguar Operational Conversion Unit.
Disbanded at Lossiemouth to become 16 (Reserve) Sqn
227 OCU
227 (AOP) CU
May 47–Dec 47
Dec 47–May 50
Tiger Moth II
Oxford I
Auster V
Auster VI
Auster T.7
Auster A.2/45
Harvard IIB
RAF Andover
RAF Middle Wallop
Formed by re-designation of No. 43 OTU
Became the Air Observation Post School.
228 OCU May 47–Sep 61
May 65–Dec 66
Aug 68–Jul 92
Martinet I
Master II
Oxford I
Tiger Moth II
Brigand B.1/T.4/T.5
Tempest V
Buckmaster T.1
Wellington XVIII
Mosquito III/VI/NF.30/TT.35/NF.36
Balliol T.2
Valetta C.1/T.3/T.4
Prentice T.1
Vampire T.11
Meteor F.4/T.7/NF.11/NF.12/NF.14
Anson XIX
Chipmunk T.10
Javelin T.3/FAW.5/FAW.7/FAW.9
Canberra T.4/T.11
Phantom FGR.2
Jet Provost T.4
RAF Leeming
RAF Leuchars
RAF Coningsby
Formed by merging No. 13 OTU and No. 54 OTU
Became 64 (R) Sqn
229 OCUDec 50–Sep 74
Nov 84–Jul 92
Vampire FB.5/T.11
Meteor T.7/F.8/TT.8
Hunter F.1/F.4/F.6/T.7/FGA.9/FR.10
Tempest V
Beaufighter X
Oxford I/II
Mosquito III/TT.35
Martinet I
Anson T.21/T.22
Sabre F.2/F.4
Chipmunk T.10
Jet Provost T.3A
Tornado F.2(T)/F.3
RAF Leuchars
RAF Chivenor
RAF Brawdy
RAF Coningsby
Formed from 'B' and 'D' Flights of 226 OCU.
Reformed 1957 at Chivenor, still there late 1962. Relocated to RAF Brawdy mid 1960s
Disbanded 2 September 1974 at Brawdy to become the Tactical Weapons Unit
Designated 65 (Shadow) Squadron from 31 December 1986
Became 56 (R) Sqn.
230 OCU Mar 47–Oct 52
Aug 53–Feb 55
May 56–Aug 81
Lancaster I/III
Lincoln B.2
Mosquito III/B.35/NF.36
Tiger Moth
Anson XIX
Vulcan B.1/B.2
Hastings T.5
Canberra T.4
RAF Lindholme
RAF Scampton
RAF Upwood
RAF Waddington
RAF Finningley
RAF Scampton
Formed by re-designting 1653 HCU
Disbanded 15 October 1952 to become the Reserve Training Squadron
Became the Lincoln Conversion Flight at Upwood 1 February 1955.
231 OCU Mar 47–Dec 49
Dec 51–Dec 90
May 1991–Apr 93
Lancaster I/III
Anson XII/XIX/T.22
Mosquito III/VI/XVI/PR.34/PR.34A/B.35
Chipmunk T.10
Meteor T.7/PR.10
Canberra B.2/PR.3/T.4
RAF Coningsby
RAF Waddington
RAF Bassingbourn
RAF Cottesmore
RAF Marham
RAF Wyton
Formed by re-designating No. 16 OTU
re-formed at Bassingbourn by re-designation of 237 OCU
Disbanded at Wyton, 15 December 1990, to become the Canberra Standardisation and Training Flight
Re-formed at Wyton 13 May 1990 from the Canberra Standardisation and Training Flight
232 OCUFeb 55–Jun 65
Feb 70–Apr 86
Valiant B.1
Victor B.1/B(PR).1/B.1A/B.2/BK.2
Canberra T.4
RAF Gaydon
RAF Marham
At Gaydon, 30 June 1965, the Victor element became the Tanker Training Flight
Re-formed at Marham 6 February 1970 by amalgamating the Victor (B.2) Training Flight and the Victor Training Unit
233 OCUSep 52–Sep 57
Oct 70–Sep 92
Vampire FB.5/FB.9/T.11
Balliol T.2
Meteor T.7/F.8
Oxford I
Tiger Moth II
Mosquito III/PR.34A/TT.35
Tempest V
Chipmunk T.10
Hunter F.1
Harrier GR.1/GR.1A/GR.3/GR.3A/T.2/T.4/T.4A/GR.5
RAF Pembrey [1]
RAF Wittering
Became 20 (R) Sqn
235 OCUJul 47–Oct 53 Sunderland V
Short Seaford
RAF Calshot Became the Flying Boat Training Squadron
236 OCUJul 47–Sep 56
Jul 70–Sep 92
Lancaster III
Oxford I/II
Beaufighter X
Shackleton GR.1/MR.1A
Neptune MR.1
Martinet I
Tiger Moth II
Spitfire XVI
Vampire FB.5
Anson XI/XIX
Mosquito TT.35
Brigand T.5
Buckmaster T.1
Nimrod MR1 & MR2
RAF Kinloss
RAF St Mawgan
Formed by re-designating No. 6 OTU
237 OCUJul 47–Dec 51
Oct 56–Jan 58
Mar 71–Oct 91
Oxford I
Mosquito III/PR.34/PR.34A
Spitfire XVI/XIX
Harvard IIB
Meteor T.7/PR.10
Canberra PR.3/T.4
Hunter F.6/T.7/T.7A/T.7B/T.8C
Buccaneer S.2A/S.2B
RAF Benson
RAF Bassingbourn
RAF Wyton
RAF Honington
RAF Lossiemouth
Formed by re-designating No. 8 OTU
Became 231 OCU at Bassingbourn.
Re-formed at Wyton, 1956, by re-designating 'C' Squadron of 231 OCU.
Re-absorbed by 231 OCU January 1958.
238 OCU1 Jun 52–Mar 58 Buckmaster T.1
Brigand T.4/T.5
Mosquito TT.35
Balliol T.2
Meteor NF.12/NF.14
Valetta C.1/T.3
RAF Colerne
RAF North Luffenham
Formed by re-designating the Airborne Interception School
240 OCUJan 48–Apr 51
Dec 71–Oct 93
Anson I/X/XII/XIX
Dakota IV
Hastings MET.1
Valetta C.1
Wessex HC.2 [2]
Puma HC.1 [2]
ChinookHC.1
RAF North Luffenham
RAF Odiham
Formed by merging 1333 (TS)CU with 1382 (T)CU
241 OCUJan 48–Apr 51
Jul 70–Oct 93
York C.1
Halifax IX
Hastings C.1
Valetta C.1
Tiger Moth II
Anson XI/XII
Brittania C.1/C.2
Andover C.1
Belfast C.1
VC10 C.1
Tristar C.1
BAe 146
RAF Dishforth
RAF Brize Norton
Formed by re-designating 1332 HTCU.
Became No. 55 (Reserve) Squadron RAF
242 OCUApr 51–Jul 92 Valetta C.1
Hastings C.1/MET.1/C.1A
Beverley C.1
Argosy C.1
Andover C.1
Hercules C.1/C.1K/C.1P/C.3
Tiger Moth II
Anson XII
Chipmunk T.10
RAF Dishforth
RAF Thorney Island
RAF Lyneham
Became 57 (R) Sqn
1330 CUJun 44–Mar 46 Harvard IIA
Baltimore IV/V
Vengeance IV
Hudson IIIA
Expeditor I
Marauder II/III
Ventura V
Hellcat II
Beaufighter X
Spitfire Vb
Mustang IVA
Anson I
Dakota I/III
Douglas DC-2
Mosquito III/IV
Oxford I
RAF Bilbeis No. 1 (Middle East) Check and Conversion Unit RAF re-designated.
1331 CU
1331 HTCU
Sep 44–Jan 46
Dec 46–Jan 48
Harvard IIB
Vengeance IA/II/IV
Beaufighter VI/X
Spitfire VIII
Mustang IV
Mosquito III
Oxford I
Blenheim V
Thunderbolt I/II
Hurricane IIC
Wellington XVI
Liberator III/VI
RAF Mauripur
RAF Risalpur
RAF Syerston
Formed by re-designating Check and Conversion Flight.
1332 (T)HCU
1332 HTCU
Sep 44–May 47
May 47–Jan 48
Liberator III/V /VI/VII/IX
York C.1
Stirling III
Halifax VII/IX
Skymaster C.1
Oxford I
RAF Longtown
RAF Dishforth
Became 241 OCU.
1333 (TS)CU
1333 TSCU
Mar 45–Jul 46
Jul 46–Jan 48
Dakota III/IV
Horsa I/II
Halifax VII/IX
Oxford II
Miles Magister
Tiger Moth
Proctor IV
Auster III
RAF Leicester East
RAF North Luffenham
Formed by re-designating No. 107 OTU
Merged with 1382 (T)CU to become 240 OCU.
1334 (TS)CUApr 45–Mar 45 Dakota III/IV RAF Gujrat
RAF Baroda
1335 (M)CUMar 45–Aug 46 Meteor F.1/F.3
Oxford II
Martinet I
RAF Colerne
RAF Molesworth
Became 226 OCU
1336 (TS)CU
1336 TCU
Jun 45–Mar 46 Dakota III RAF Welford
1380 (TS)CU
1380 TCU
Aug 45–Jan 46 Wellington X
Anson I
Proctor II
RAF Tilstock Formed by re-designating No. 81 OTU
1381 (T)CUAug 45–Feb 48 Dakota III/IV
Wellington X
Miles Magister
Tiger Moth II
Oxford I
RAF Bramcote
RAF Dishforth
Formed by re-designating No. 105 OTU
1382 (T)CUAug 45–Jan 48 Oxford I
Miles Magister
Dakota III/IV
RAF Wymeswold
RAF North Luffenham
Formed by re-designating No. 108 OTU
Merged with 1330 TSCU to form 240 OCU.
1383 (T)CUAug 45–Aug 46 Dakota III
Oxford II
Halifax VII
RAF Crosby-on-Eden Formed by re-designating No. 109 OTU
1384 (HT)CUNov 45–Jun 46 Dakota I
Oxford I
York C.1
RAF Ossington
RAF Wethersfield
Formed by re-designating No. 6 Lancaster Finishing School RAF
1385 (HTS)CUApr 46–Jun 46 Stirling V
Halifax VII
Horsa II
Oxford I
RAF Wethersfield Absorbed by 1333 TSCU
1584 (HB)CUNov 43–Feb 44 Liberator III RAF Kolar
RAF Salbani
Formed by re-designating No. 1584 (Heavy Bomber Conversion) Flight RAF.
Became 1673 HCU.
1651 CU
1651 HCU
Jan 42–July 44
May 44–Mar 45
Mar 45–Jul 45
Stirling I/III
Lancaster I/III
Oxford I
Spitfire Vb
Tiger Moth II
Beaufighter X
Halifax II
RAF Waterbeach
RAF Wratting Common
RAF Woolfox Lodge
During 1942 it flew 49 operational sorties for RAF Bomber Command with a loss of five aircraft.
Formed by merging No. 26 Conversion Flight RAF and No. 106 Conversion Flight RAF.
Absorbed 15 Squadron Conversion Flight and 24 Squadron Conversion Flight.
1652 CU
1652 HCU
Jan 42–Jun 45 Halifax I/II/III/V
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC/IV
RAF Marston Moor
RAF Bentwaters
During 1942 it flew 42 operational sorties for RAF Bomber Command with a loss of three aircraft.
Formed by merging No. 28 Conversion Flight RAF and No. 109 Conversion Flight RAF.
Absorbed 35 Squadron Conversion Flight
1653 CU
1653 HCU
Jan 42–Oct 42
Nov 43–Nov 46
Liberator II
Stirling I/III
Lancaster I/III
Blenheim IV
Ventura I
Mosquito XIX
Hurricane IIC
Spitfire Vb
Beaufighter VI
RAF Polebrook
RAF Burn
RAF Chedburgh
RAF Lindholme
RAF North Luffenham
Formed by re-designating No. 108 Conversion Flight RAF
Became No. 230 Operational Conversion Unit RAF in March 1947.
1654 CU
1654 HCU
May 42–Jul 42
Jul 42–Sep 45
Manchester I
Lancaster I
Halifax II/V
Stirling III
Oxford I
Hurricane IIC
Spitfire Vb
RAF Swinderby
RAF Wigsley
During 1942 it flew 12 operational sorties with a loss of two aircraft.
1655 MCUAug 42–May 43 Mosquito III/IV/XVI/B.20/B.25
Blenheim IV
Oxford I
RAF Horsham St. Faith
RAF Upper Heyford
RAF Marham
Became Mosquito Training Unit RAF at RAF Marham
1656 HCUOct 42–Nov 45 Lancaster I/III
Halifax II/V
Manchester I
Spitfire IIa/Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Lindholme
Tiger Moth II
Formed by merging 103 and 460 Squadron Conversion Fights.
1657 HCUOct 42–Dec 44 Stirling I/III/IV
Lancaster I/II
Tomahawk IIB
Oxford II
Hurricane IIC
RAF Stradishall Formed by merging 7, 101 and 149 Squadron Conversion Fights.
1658 HCUOct 42–Apr 45 Halifax I/II/III
Oxford II
Hurricane IIC
RAF Riccall Formed by merging 10, 76 and 78 Squadron Conversion Fights.
1659 HCUOct 42–Mar 43
Mar 43–Sep 45
Halifax I/II/III
Lancaster I/III
Oxford II
Spitfire IIa/Vb
Hurricane IIC
Tiger Moth
RAF Leeming
RAF Topcliffe
Formed by merging 405 and 408 Squadron Conversion Fights.
Trained Canadian aircrew.
1660 HCUOct 42–Nov 46 Lancaster I/II/III
Halifax II
Manchester I
Mosquito XIX
Stirling I/III
Oxford I
Spitfire Vc
Hurricane IIC
Lysander I
de Havilland Puss Moth
RAF Swinderby Formed by merging 61, 97, 106 and 7 Squadron Conversion Fights.
Absorbed by No. 1653 Heavy Conversion Unit RAF
1661 HCUNov 42–Aug 45 Lancaster I/II
Halifax II/V
Manchester I
Mosquito XIII
Stirling III
Oxford II
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Winthorpe Formed by merging 9, 44 and 49 Squadron Conversion Fights.
Short Stirlings replaced the planned re-equipment with Handley Page Halifaxs. [3]
1662 HCUJan 43–Apr 45 Lancaster I/II
Halifax I/II/III/V
Oxford II
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
Tiger Moth II
RAF Blyton
1663 HCUMar 43–May 45 Halifax I/II/III/V
Stirling I
Oxford II
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Rufforth
1664 HCU
1664 (RCAF)HCU
May 43–Apr 44
Apr 44–Apr 45
Lancaster I/III
Halifax II/III/V
Oxford II
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Croft
RAF Dishforth
The unit had the Canadian name Caribou.
1665 HCU
1665 (HT)CU
Apr 43–Jun 43
Jun 43–Jan 44
Jan 44–Aug 45
Aug 45–Jul 46
Halifax III/V/VI/VII
Stirling I/III/IV
Oxford II
Spitfire IIa/Vb
Hurricane X
Tiger Moth II
Mosquito VI
Lancaster I
RAF Mepal
RAF Woolfox Lodge
RAF Tilstock
RAF Saltby
RAF Marston Moor
RAF Linton-on-Ouse
Re-designated as 1665 (HT)CU on 10 August 1945
1666 HCU
1666 (RCAF)HCU
Jun 43–Oct 43
Oct 43–Aug 45
Halifax II/III/V
Lancaster I/II/III
Oxford II
Spitfire IIa/Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Dalton
RAF Wombleton
The unit had the Canadian name Mohawk.
1667 HCUJun 43–Oct 43
Oct 43–Feb 44
Feb 44–Nov 45
Halifax II/V
Oxford II
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
Tiger Moth II
Lancaster I/III
RAF Lindholme
RAF Faldingworth
RAF Sandtoft
1668 HCUAug 43–Nov 43
Jul 44–Mar 46
Lancaster I/II/III/X
Mosquito XIX
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
Beaufighter VI
RAF Balderton
RAF Bottesford
Disbanded November 1943, re-formed July 1944.
1669 HCUAug 44–Mar 45 Handley Page Halifax
Lancaster I/III
Spitfire Vb
Hurricane IIC
RAF Langar
1670 (T)CUJun 44–Jan 45 Thunderbolt
Harvard IIB
RAF Yelahanka Became 8 Refresher Flying Unit
1670 CUFeb 44–Jun 44 Beaufighter VI RAF Baigachi Formed from AI MkVIII Conversion Flight
1670 (M)CUFeb 44–Aug 45 Blenheim V
Mosquito III
Oxford I
RAF Yelahanka
1673 HCUFeb 44–Apr 44
Apr 44–Nov 44
Liberator III
Tiger Moth II
Anson I
RAF Salbani
RAF Kolar
Formed by re-designating No. 1584 (Heavy Bomber) Conversion Unit RAF.
1674 HCUOct 43–Nov 45 Liberator III/V/VI/VIII
Halifax II
Fortress I/II/IIA
Wellington XIII
Oxford I/II
Hurricane IIC
Martinet I
RAF Aldergrove
various bases in Northern Ireland
RAF Lossiemouth
1675 HCUOct 43–Aug 44
Aug 44–Oct 45
Liberator II
Harvard IIA
Hurricane IIB
Argus II
RAF Lydda
RAF Abu Sueir
Formed by re-designating 5 Heavy Bomber Conversion Unit, Lydda
1678 HCUSep 43–Jun 44 Lancaster II RAF Foulsham
RAF Waterbeach
1699 (BS)CU
1699 HCU
Oct 44–Jun 45 Fortress II/III
Liberator VI
Lancastrian II
RAF Oulton
RAF Full Sutton
Became the Lancastrian Flight of No. 231 Squadron RAF
All-Weather OCU?–? Anson T.21
Vampire T.11
Meteor T.7/F.8/NF.12/NF.14
nomadic
Argosy CUNov 61–Apr 63 Argosy C.1 RAF Benson Became the Argosy Flight of 242 OCU
Belvedere CUAug 64–Aug 68 Belvedere HC.1 RAF Odiham Absorbed by the Short-Range Conversion Unit
Short-Range CUAug 64–Jul 67 Twin Pioneer CC.2
Wessex HC.2
Auster AOP.9
RAF Odiham Became the Helicopter Operational Conversion Flight
Jaguar OCUJun 74–Sep 74 Jaguar GR.1/T.2 RAF Lossiemouth Formed from Jaguar Conversion Team.
Became 226 OCU
5 Heavy Bomber Conversion Unit?–? Liberator RAF Lydda, RCAF Boundary Bay and RCAF Abbotsford]Became 1675 HCU

In April 1944 RCAF Boundary Bay BCATP No. 5 Operational Training Unit (for Heavy Conversion) established when Seventeen B-24 Liberators were scheduled to arrive fresh from American factories that first month. However, only sixteen would actually be delivered. By Sept 30th 1944 RCAF 5 O.T.U. reported B-24 Liberators; Abbotsford 24, Boundary Bay 14, total 38. B-25 Mitchells; Boundary Bay only total 35. Bolingbrokes; Boundary Bay only total 5. P-40 Kittyhawks; Boundary Bay only 8. Norseman; Boundary Bay only 1. Total aircraft on Unit strength 87

Heavy Bomber Conversion Unit, SalbaniSep 42–Jul 43 Liberator III RAF Salbani Became 1584 HCU
Heavy Glider Conversion UnitJul 42–Oct 44 Whitley V
Albemarle I/GT.I/ST.II/ST.V
Horsa I/II
Oxford I/II
Tiger Moth II
Miles Magister
RAF Shrewton
RAF Brize Norton
Became No. 21 Heavy Glider Conversion Unit RAF
21 HGCUOct 44–Dec 47 Whitley V
Albemarle GT.VI
Horsa I/II
Oxford I
Tiger Moth I
Miles Magister
Hotspur II/III
Hadrian I
Stirling IV
Halifax III/VII
Master II
RAF Brize Norton
RAF North Luffenham
Formed by re-designation of the Heavy Glider Conversion Unit
22 HGCUOct 44–Dec 47 Albemarle GT.I/ST.II/ST.V/GT.VI
Horsa I/II
Oxford I
Hadrian I
RAF Keevil
RAF Blakehill Farm
Formed by re-designation of an element of the Heavy Glider Conversion Unit
23 HGCUOct 44–Dec 45 Albemarle GT.I/ST.V/ST.VI
Horsa I/II
Oxford I
Hadrian I
Proctor III
RAF Peplow Formed by elements of No. 83 OTU the Heavy Glider Conversion Unit

See also

Related Research Articles

No. 1321 Bomber (Defence) Training Flight RAF was first formed at RAF Bottesford on 1 September 1944 as a fighter affiliation unit to train bomber crews from No. 5 Group Bomber Command how to defend their aircraft. The Flight was disbanded two months later on 1 November 1944 and absorbed by the units they trained before, 1668 Heavy Conversion Unit and 1669 Heavy Conversion Unit.

An operational conversion unit (OCU) is a unit within an air force whose role is to support preparation for the operational missions of a specific aircraft type by providing trained personnel. Operational conversion units teach pilots how to fly an aircraft and which tactics best exploit the performance of their aircraft and its weapons. The Royal Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force, among others, practise this method of training. The United States Navy calls its units in this role fleet replacement squadrons.

No. 42 Squadron RAF

No. 42 Squadron of the Royal Air Force has served during World War I as an army co-operation squadron and during World War II in various roles. In recent years, it was the Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) for the Nimrod MR.2, based at RAF Kinloss, Moray, until the Nimrod MR2's retirement in 2010.

RAF Finningley

Royal Air Force Finningley or RAF Finningley was a Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force station at Finningley, in the Metropolitan Borough of Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England. The station straddled the historic county boundaries of both Nottinghamshire and the West Riding of Yorkshire.

No. 75 Squadron of the Royal Air Force operated as a bomber unit in World War II, before being transferred to the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 1945.

RAF Gaydon Royal Air Force station

Royal Air Force Gaydon or more simply RAF Gaydon is a former Royal Air Force station located 5.2 miles (8.4 km) east of Wellesbourne, Warwickshire and 10.8 miles (17.4 km) north west of Banbury, Oxfordshire, England.

No. 623 Squadron RAF was a heavy bomber squadron of the Royal Air Force during the Second World War.

No. 622 Squadron RAF is a reserve aircrew squadron of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. During World War II, it operated as a bomber squadron of the Royal Air Force. Post-war it served shortly as a transport squadron in the RAuxAF.

No. 231 Operational Conversion Unit was a Royal Air Force Operational Conversion Unit.

No. 63 Squadron RAF

Number 63 Squadron was a bomber aircraft and training squadron of the Royal Air Force that was active during various periods from 1916 to 1992. Originally using De Havilland DH4 aircraft in World War I, it was last equipped with BAe Hawk jet trainers.

RAF Lindholme

Royal Air Force Station Lindholme or more simply RAF Lindholme is a former Royal Air Force station in South Yorkshire, England. It is located 3.9 miles (6.3 km) south of Thorne and 6.9 miles (11.1 km) north east of Doncaster and was initially called RAF Hatfield Woodhouse.

No. 467 Squadron RAAF Royal Australian Air Force squadron

No. 467 Squadron RAAF was a Royal Australian Air Force bomber squadron, active over North West Europe during World War II. Formed in November 1942 as an Article XV Squadron in Britain, the squadron was notionally an Australian squadron under the command of the Royal Air Force, and consisted of a mixture of personnel from various Commonwealth nations. After becoming operational in early 1943, the squadron flew operations in Occupied Europe until the end of the war flying Avro Lancaster heavy bombers. It was scheduled to deploy to the Far East to take part in further operations against Japan, but the war ended before it could complete its training and the squadron was disbanded in September 1945.

No. 230 Operational Conversion Unit RAF

No. 230 Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) was first created on 15 Mar 1947 at RAF Lindholme, by re-designation of No. 1653 Heavy Conversion Unit RAF, to convert crews onto the Avro Lancaster, Avro Lincoln and de Havilland Mosquito bombers. This unit was disbanded on 15 August 1952 to become the Reserve Training Squadron. Re-formed again at RAF Upwood, from the Lincoln Conversion Flight, 230 OCU trained Lincoln bomber crews until disbanded on 1 February 1955, reverting to Lincoln Conversion Flight.

No. 616 Squadron RAF

No. 616 Squadron is an active Reserve unit of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force (RAuxAF) assigned to the RAF ISTAR Force at RAF Waddington. It was originally formed as a unit of the British Auxiliary Air Force in 1938, active throughout World War 2 as a fighter unit, becoming the 1st operational RAF unit to fly jets and disbanded in 1957. The unit reformed in its current guise in April 2019 as 616 Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force.

Number 76 Squadron was a squadron of the Royal Air Force. It was formed during World War I as a home defence fighter squadron and in its second incarnation during World War II flew as a bomber squadron, first as an operational training unit and later as an active bomber squadron. With the end of the war the squadron converted to the role of transport squadron, to be reactivated shortly in the bomber role during the 1950s. From 2007 to 2011, it was a training unit, equipped with the Short Tucano at RAF Linton-on-Ouse.

References

Citations

  1. Senar, Ken (2008). I'll Call You Pod. rafjever.org. Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  2. 1 2 Green 1976, p. 13.
  3. Falconer, Jonathan (1975). RAF bomber airfields of World War 2. Shepperton: Ian Allan.

Bibliography

  • Green, W; Swanborough, G (1976). Royal Air Force Yearbook 1976. Bromley: Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund.
  • Jefford, C.G. (1998). RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive Record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912. Shrewsbury: Airlife Publishing. ISBN   1-84037-141-2.
  • Sturtivant, Ray; Hamlin, John F. (2007). RAF Flying Training And Support Units since 1912. Tonbridge, Kent, UK: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. ISBN   0-85130-365-X.
  • Lake, Alan (1999). Flying Units of the RAF. Shrewsbury: Airlife Publishing. ISBN   1-84037-086-6.