Jedburghs, SOE (Special Operations Executive) = HORACE...

SAS (Special Air Service) = Derry...

NOTE

Brief principle of SAS and SOE missions in occupied territories

For easier actions of the Resistance Movement, it was decided by allies to drop SAS detachments, equipment and armament (by example, 6 SAS detachments were dropped in Brittany and had one chief, Commandant Bourgouin, dropped by a 299 Squadron Stirling, at Saint-Marcel, Base Dingson SAS, in the night of 10/11 June 1944).
To help Guerilla actions of the members of the Resistance Movement and to improve communications with London, Jedburghs teams were dropped to complete SAS detachments (by example, 14 Jedburghs teams were created in Brittany).
Nearly all the SAS and SOE teams, their reinforcement (soldiers, equipment, armament) and drops for the members of the Resistance Movement were flown by the 38 Group Squadrons.

These are only a few missions flown by 38 Group Squadrons (several were flown the same day over Brittany and Europe) :

 

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10 June 1944

620 Squadron: 3 aircraft

Mission: Samwest (SAS, Captain Leblond).
The aircraft begin to take-off at 00h26, the first return is at 03h57.
For reinforcement, 50 paratroopers, 23 containers and 5 parcels are dropped from an altitude between 600 and 800 ft.
All the aircrews find easily the DZ, one aircraft detects it with radar.

 

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10 June 1944

299 Squadron: 2 aircraft

Mission: Base Dingson (SAS).
First take-off at 00h35, returns between 04h00 and 04h35.
All the aircrews find the ground-lighting.
50 paratroopers, 23 containers and 5 parcels are dropped from an altitude between 800 and 900 ft.

 

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12/13 June 1944

196 Squadron: 7 aircraft
299 Squadron: 6 aircraft

Mission: Saint-Marcel, Base Dingson (SAS).
First take off from Keevil at 22h47 on 12 june 1944, first aircraft to return at 02h20 on 13 June.
The 13 aircraft find the DZ and drop a total of 87 paratroopers and 249 containers from and altitude between 800 and 1200 ft.

 

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17/18 June 1944

196 Squadron: 5 aircraft
299 Squadron: 5 aircraft
298 Squadron: 2 aircraft
644 Squadron: 2 aircraft

Mission: Dingson, SAS.
196 Squadron: The aircraft begin to take off from Keevil at 23h39 on 17 June, the first aircraft comes back at 03h43 on 18 June. 4 aircraft find the Drop Zone and drop 13 paratroopers and 85 containers from an altitude of 1200 ft. The fifth aircraft doesn't find the DZ because he confuses it with the railway station of Roc Saint-André, about 8 kms North West of Saint-Marcel, illuminated for the embarkation of Wehrmacht soldiers in a train. It comes back with his load.

299 Squadron: The aircraft begin to take off from Keevil at 00h26 on 18 June, the first return is at 03h30 on 18 June. All the aircraft find the DZ. They drop 29 paratroopers and 94 containers.

298 and 644 Squadrons: The 298 Squadron's aircraft begin to take off from Tarrant Rushton at 23h48 on 17 June and 644 Squadron's aircraft, also from Tarrant Rushton, at 00h03 on 18 June. The first 298's aircraft comes back at 02h53 and the first 644's aircraft at 03h12. 2 of this aircraft drop 3 paratroopers, one jeep and 3 containers of materials. A third plane : 3 passengers and 5 containers.

This mission is a success with 13 aircraft to complete the mission (they were 14 to take off).

 

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23/24 June 1944

620 Squadron: 10 aircraft

2 aircraft: Grog A.
First take-off from Fairford at 23h48 on 23 June. The first return is at 03h41 on 24.
The first aircraft finds the DZ but there isn't the groung lighting so it comes back without dropping. There's the ground-lighting for the second aircraft and the letter code (J) can be seen on the ground, so it drops 24 containers at the altitude of 800 ft.

3 aicraft: Grog B.
First take-off from Fairford at 23h58 on 23 June. The first return is at 03h35 on 24 June.
2 aicraft drop 24 containers each. The third can't be over the DZ before 02h40 and the reception on the ground has gone so it comes back with its load.

5 aircraft: Grog C.
First take-off from Fairford at 00h32 on 23 June. The first return is at nearly 04h30 on 24 June.
All the aircraft find the DZ and drop their loads for a total of 117 containers and 3 parcels (drops on DZ between 02h13 and 03h02)

 

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02/03 August 1944

196 Squadron: 12 aircraft
644 Squadron: 1 aircraft

196 Squadron: 3 aircraft (LK 557, LJ 925, LJ 502),
Mission: HORACE 8 (22h40 to 02h15) to be despatched to SAS.
LK 557 (W/O AZOUZ) is touched by flak , both starboard engines. Starboard outer prop. fell off but drops 24 containers and a pannier. B.F.X Colerne ; LJ 925 drops 23 containers (the 24th can't be dropped) and light flak is seen ; LJ502 drops 20 containers and also light flak is seen on DZ.

Note: For this operation, W/O Mark AZOUZ gained the DFC. Here is the link to the details of his award: Mark AZOUZ's DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS.

196 Squadron: 3 aircraft (LJ988, LJ888, EF 234),
Mission: HORACE 11 (22h55 to 01h55) for SOE.
LJ988 and LJ888 drop 24 containers and a pannier each (LJ988 makes 2 runs over DZ, LJ888 has Gee u/s, D.R. nav. and map reading to reach DZ) ; EF234 drops 24 containers.
DZs are:
Lanhouarneau. Armament for Battalion FFI (French Forces of the Interior) of Guissény-Plouescat.
Tréglonou. Armament (30 tons) for Battalion FFI of Lannilis.
Pont-Ours (# 01h15). 24 containers for Battalion FFI of Tréouergat.

196 Squadron: 4 aircraft (LK510, LJ843, LJ848, EF248),
Mission: FREDERICK 14 (23h10 to 02h45).
LJ843 & LJ848 drop 24 containers, LK510 drops 18 containers and 3 panniers, EF248 drops 23 containers and 1 pannier. LK 510 comes back with 6 containers and LJ848 comes back with 1container. EF248 machine-guns an enemy projector.

196 Squadron: 2 aircraft (LJ937, LJ928),
Mission: GILES 19 (22h40 to 02h10).
LJ937 & LJ928 drop 24 containers and 1 panier each.
LJ937: ‘Weather and radar good’ ; LJ928: ‘Good weather and good trip.’
DZ is located at Plourac'h, near La Chapelle Saint-Maudez, for Battalion FTP (Franc-Tireurs Partisans) Gilou.

644 squadron: 1 aircraft (LL312),
Mission: 20 Miles North-East of Nantes (22h55 to 04h10 via Pléneuf at 00h30).
LL312 drops 15 containers and 2 panniers.

 

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04/05 August 1944

196 Squadron: 6 aircraft
298 Squadron: 3 aircraft
644 Squadron: 2 aircraft

196 squadron: 6 aircraft (LJ581, LJ589, LK 556, LJ 583, LJ937, LJ588),
- 3 Stirlings (LJ581, LJ589, LK 556),
Mission: GILES 17 (SOE, 22h30 to 02h10).
DZ is 'Poire', code name of the DZ of village of Saint-Goazec, aera of Jedburgh GILES (GILES had, by example, 13 code names for DZs).
LJ589 and LK 556 drop 24 containers and 1 pannier. LJ 581 can't drop because there isn't the 'reception committee'.
- 1 Stirling (LJ583),
Mission: Wash 18 C (23h20 to 02h20).
LJ583 drops 24 containers.
- 1 Stirling (LJ937),
Mission: 48°17'30"N, 03°05'30"W (23h05 to 02h20).
No ground lighting so LJ937 returns with its load.
- 1 Stirling (LJ588),
Mission: 48°17'30"N, 03°05'30"W (22h50 to 02h10).
LJ588 drops 24 containers for the SAS.

298 Squadron: 3 aircraft,
- 1 Halifax,
Mission: Grog 42 B (22h40 to 02h05)
Drops 4 panniers and 12 containers.
- 1 Halifax,
Mission: HILARY 2 (23h05 to 02h05)
No drops because no ground-lighting.
- 1 Halifax,
Mission: HILARY 2 (23h05 to 02h30)
No drops because no ground-lighting.

644 Squadron: 2 aircraft (LL375, LL270),
- Halifax LL375,
Mission: Dingson 34 (00h25 to 04h05).
Drops 3 passengers, 6 containers and 1 jeep at 47°48'N, 03°04'W
- Halifax LL270,
Mission: Dingson 34 J (23h05 to 02h00).
Drops 3 passengers, 6 containers and 1 jeep as LL375.
Flak encountered 5 miles South-East of Hennebont.

38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index 38 Group History Index