ADF-SERIALS & NZDF-SERIALS
Australian & New Zealand Military Aircraft Serials & History

Aircraft operated by WWII RAAF & RNZAF units within the RAF

 

Handley Page Hampden Mark I, AT137 'UB-T', of No 455 Squadron RAAF based at Leuchars, Fife, Scotland, in flight above clouds, May 1942.

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Under Article XV of the Empire Air Training Scheme, participating Commonwealth Nations raised squadrons for service within the RAF during WWII. These squadrons were intended to be crewed by nationals from the participating nations and equipped by the RAF, but in practice, they tended to be staffed by crews from across the Commonwealth.

Royal Australian Air Force

Australia formed 17 Article XV squadrons, out of a total of 79 RAAF squadrons, during World War II. While 18 squadrons had been originally planned for service with the RAF, No. 465 Squadron was never formed.

When some Article XV squadrons and RAF units were transferred to RAAF operational control, from 1943 onwards, they retained their original numbers.

All the Australian Article XV squadrons were disbanded after the end of the war, but since 2005 four of the squadrons have been re-formed by re-designating RAAF intelligence and air traffic control units.

The RAAF Article XV squadrons were (links to our squadron photo albums):

 
     
 
450 Squadron, RAAF 451 Squadron, RAAF 452 Squadron, RAAF 453 Squadron, RAAF 454 Squadron, RAAF 455 Squadron, RAAF
Highlight for Album: 450 Squadron Kittyhawks Highlight for Album: 451 Squadron Spitfire RAAF 452 Squadron
Kirton-in-Lindsey Highlight for Album: 453 Squadron Spitfire Highlight for Album: 454 Squadron Martin Baltimore Beaufighter TF Mark X, NE543 'UB-E', of No. 455 Squadron
456 Squadron, RAAF 457 Squadron, RAAF 458 Squadron, RAAF 459 Squadron, RAAF 460 Squadron, RAAF 461 Squadron, RAAF
Highlight for Album: 456 Squadron De Havilland Mosquito Supermarine Spitfire Mark VB, of No 457 Squadron RAAF returning to Redhill, Surrey, after a sweep over northen France, whilst another Squadron aircraft stands at its dispersal point, plugged into a trolley accumulator at readiness. Highlight for Album: 458 Squadron Vickers Wellington 459 Squadron 
Martin Baltimore Lancaster I LL964/AR-D2 
 460 Squadron
July 1944 461 Sqn Sunderland 
(AWM P01520 001)
462 Squadron, RAAF 463 Squadron, RAAF 464 Squadron, RAAF 465 Squadron 466 Squadron, RAAF 467 Squadron, RAAF
Handley Page Halifax 
LL599 Z5-E
462 Squadron Lancaster RF270
JO-V
POW Airlift
Juvincourt
6th May 1945 Highlight for Album: 464 Squadron De Havilland Mosquito (Unit not formed) Highlight for Album: Handley Page Halifax A gathering of men of No 467 Squadron, Royal Australian Air Force to celebrate the completion of 100 operations by the Avro Lancaster R5868/`PO-S' (S for Sugar) after its sortie on 11 - 12 May 1944 to a communications target in Belgium. Below the cockpit of the Lancaster are the emblems indicating the number of operational flights and the award of three DSOs and two DFCs to crew members
462 Squadron
Known Serials Page
         
 
 
RAAF Squadrons under RAF control during WWII
 
Five other RAAF squadrons plus other units were also under RAF operational control for the whole or part of the war:
 
 
Coastal Command   Far East Air Force   Desert Air Force
10 Squadron, RAAF   1 Sqn, RAAF   3 Squadron, RAAF
Highlight for Album: Short Sunderland 
W3984 RB-S   Image Gallery
Coming Soon
  Highlight for Album: 3 Squadron Curtiss Kittyhawk
    8 Sqn, RAAF   1 Air Ambulance Unit, RAAF
    Highlight for Album: 8 Squadron Hudsons   De Havilland DH.86A
    21 Sqn, RAAF    
       
 
 

Aircraft Operated (RAAF)

 
     
 

(It is possible that a type could have A or N allocations and RAF Serials on the same page)

 
     
 
Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters
Airspeed Oxford Highlight for Album: Oxford BM704 3 Sqn & 456 Sqn, RAAF. Avro Anson Highlight for Album: Anson NK718 462 Sqn, RAAF
Avro 679 Manchester Avro Manchester 
via Brendan Cowan 460 Sqn, RAAF. Avro 683 Lancaster Highlight for Album: Lancaster A66-1 (ED930) 460 Sqn, 463 Sqn & 467 Sqn, RAAF.
Boulton Paul Defiant Boulton Paul Defiant 456 Sqn, RAAF. Brewster Buffalo Brewster Buffalo 21 Sqn & 453 Sqn, RAAF.
Bristol 130 Bombay Tunisia. 1943. Maintenance section of No. 1 Air Ambulance Unit RAAF at work on the propeller of one of the Units Bristol Bombay aircraft. 1 AAU, RAAF. Bristol 149 Blenheim Bristol Blenheim V 
This type was used by RAAF 459 Squadron 
via Brendan Cowan 454 Sqn, 456 Sqn & 459 Sqn, RAAF.
Bristol 156 Beaufighter Highlight for Album: Beaufighter NT947 455 Sqn & 456 Sqn, RAAF. Curtis Tomahawk Highlight for Album: 3 Squadron Curtis Tomahawk 3 Sqn, RAAF.
Curtiss Kittyhawk Highlight for Album: 450 Squadron Kittyhawks 3 Sqn & 450 Sqn, RAAF. De Havilland DH.86 Highlight for Album: DH.86A A31-4 1 AAU, RAAF.
De Havilland DH.98 Mosquito Highlight for Album: 456 Squadron De Havilland Mosquito 456 Sqn & 464 Sqn, RAAF. Fairchild 24 Argus Fairchild Argus 
HK948,
451 Squadron, 
El Daba, Egypt, c.1943, 
Squadron's hack with Typhoon Mk.Ib behind.
via Mike Mirkovic. 451 Sqn, RAAF.
Gloster Gauntlet Gauntlet Mk.II K7843
451 Squadron, 
El Daba, Egypt, Sept 1943  
(Used by 3 Squadron in 1940) 
via Mike Mirkovic. 3 Sqn, & 451 Sqn RAAF. Gloster Gladiator Gloster Gladiator Mark II, 
N5752 'NW-G'
RAAF 3 Squadron 3 Sqn, RAAF.
Grumman G-21A Goose Gruman Goose MV993 which has been confused many times in the past with 1 AAU's HK822. 1 AAU, RAAF. Handley Page HP.52 Hampden Handley Page Hampden Mark I, AT137 'UB-T', of No 455 Squadron RAAF based at Leuchars, Fife, Scotland, in flight above clouds, May 1942. 455 Sqn, RAAF.
Handley Page 57,58,59, 61 & 63 Halifax Handley Page Halifax 
MZ296 Z5-L
462 Squadron 460 Sqn, 462 Sqn and 466 Sqn, RAAF. Hawker Hurricane Highlight for Album: 451 Squadron Hawker Hurricane 3 Sqn, 450 Sqn and 451 Sqn, RAAF.
Hawker Typhoon

Article

Typhoon Mk.Ib 
DN323/Y,
451 Squadron, 
El Daba, Egypt, 1943.
via Mike Mirkovic 451 Sqn, RAAF Lockheed Hudson Highlight for Album: Hudson A16-12 8 Sqn, 459 Sqn and 464 Sqn, RAAF.
Lockheed Ventura Highlight for Album: 464 Squadron Lockheed Ventura 464 Sqn and 459 Sqn, RAAF. Lockheed Model 16 Lodestar Lodestar 1371 at Catania Sicily for evacuation to hospitals in North Africa via Brendan Cowan 1 AAU, RAAF.
Martin 167 Maryland Martin Maryland AR738 -
Type used by RAAF 459 Squadron
 via Brendan Cowan 459 Sqn, RAAF.

May have been flown by members of 458 Sqn.

Martin 187 Baltimore Martin Baltimore 454 and 459 Sqn, RAAF.
Miles M.14 Magister Magister Mk.I R1954
451 Squadron, Rayak, 
Barney Wallis in the rear cockpit. 
via Mike Mirkovic. 3 Sqn, 451 Sqn & 456 Sqn, RAAF. North American Mustang Highlight for Album: 3 Squadron Mustang 3 Sqn, RAAF.
North American Harvard Highlight for Album: Harvard AJ844 451 Sqn RAAF, 239 Wing RAF
(Available to 3 Sqn & 450 Sqn, RAAF).
Short S.25 Sunderland Short Sunderland Mk III 
ML839 
10 Squadron 10 Sqn & 461 Sqn, RAAF.
Short S.26 (G Class) Short S.26 
X8274
Served with 10 Squadron 10 Sqn, RAAF. Supermarine Spitfire Highlight for Album: Spitfire A58-672 451 Sqn, 452 Sqn , 453 Sqn and 457 Sqn, RAAF.
Taylorcraft Auster Mk.III Highlight for Album: Auster A11-41 454 Sqn, RAAF. Vickers Wellington Wellington F of 458 Sqn  
via Brendan Cowan 458 Sqn, 460 Sqn and 466 Sqn, RAAF.
Westland Lysander Westland Lysander P9198 
3 Sqn RAAF
Middle East late 1940s. 
Photo via RAAF Museum collection. 3 Sqn, RAAF.      
 
     

Interestingly, many of these units also operated captured axis aircraft for evaluation or as squadron transports or hacks.

     
 
Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters
Breda BE-25

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Breda BE-25 3 Sqn, RAAF. Cant Z.501 Gabbiano

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Cant Z.501 3 Sqn, RAAF.
Caproni Ca.100

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Caproni Ca.100 3 Sqn, RAAF. Caproni Ca.164

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: 3 Squadron Caproni Ca.164 3 Sqn, RAAF.
Caproni Ca.309 Ghibli

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Caproni Ca.309 3 Sqn, RAAF. Fiat Cr.42

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Fiat CR.42 3 Sqn, RAAF.
Henschel 126

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Henschel Hs 126B 450 Sqn, RAAF. Junkers 52/3M

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Junkers Ju 52/3m 450 Sqn, RAAF
Macchi MC.205 Veltro

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Macchi MC.202 3 Sqn, RAAF. Messerschmitt Me109

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Messerschmitt Bf109 3 Sqn, RAAF.
 
     
 

Royal New Zealand Air Force

The RNZAF Article XV squadrons were:

  • 485 (NZ) Sqn (Fighter, Fighter-bomber)
  • 486 (NZ) Sqn (Fighter-bomber, fighter)
  • 487 (NZ) Sqn (Fighter-bomber)
  • 488 (NZ) Sqn (Fighter/night Fighter)
  • 489 (NZ) Sqn (Coastal Command: torpedo, anti-shipping)
  • 490 (NZ) Sqn (Coastal Command: flying boat)

Also 75 Sqn (NZ) Sqn (although not an Article XV squadron) was made up of RNZAF aircrews and operated as a heavy bomber unit under RAF operational command.

 
     
 

Aircraft Operated (RNZAF)

 
     
 

(It is possible that a type could have NZ allocations and RAF Serials on the same page)

 
     
 
Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters Aircraft History Page Image Gallery Operaters
Avro 683 Lancaster Highlight for Album: Avro Lancaster 75(NZ) Sqn, RNZAF Avro 694 Lincoln Highlight for Album: Avro Lincoln 75(NZ) Sqn, RNZAF
Brewster Buffalo Highlight for Album: Brewster Buffalo 488 Sqn, RNZAF. Bristol 149 Blenheim Highlight for Album: Bristol Blenheim 488 Sqn & 489 Sqn, RNZAF.
Bristol 152 Beaufort   489 Sqn, RNZAF. Bristol 156 Beaufighter

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Bristol Beaufighter 488 Sqn & 489 Sqn, RNZAF.
Consolidated Catalina

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Consolidated Catalina 490 Sqn, RNZAF. De Havilland DH.98 Mosquito Highlight for Album: DH.98 Mosquito 487 Sqn, 488 Sqn & 489 Sqn, RNZAF.
Handley Page HP.52  Hampden

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Handley Page Hampden 489 Sqn, RNZAF. Hawker Hurricane Hawker Hurricane BM899 488 Sqn RNZAF via Mike Yeo 486 Sqn & 488 Sqn, RNZAF.
Hawker Typhoon

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Hawker Typhoon 485 Sqn & 486 Sqn, RNZAF. Hawker Tempest

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Hawker Tempest 486 Sqn, RNZAF.
Lockheed Ventura

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Lockheed Ventura 487 Sqn, RNZAF. Short S.25 Sunderland

(Aircraft Page to be added)

Highlight for Album: Short Sunderland 490 Sqn, RNZAF.
Short S.29 Stirling Highlight for Album: Short Stirling 75(NZ) Sqn, RNZAF Supermarine Spitfire Highlight for Album: Supermarine Spitfire 485 Sqn, RNZAF.
Vickers Wellington Highlight for Album: Vickers Wellington 75(NZ) Sqn, RNZAF      
 
     

Page Authors: Darren Crick, Brendan Cowan, Martin Edwards & Tony McDonald

Page Updated 04 April 2016

     
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