202 Squadron Association

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Index constitution NOTICES UPDATE Squadron History Mucky Duck Recollections Linebook Items of Interest Requests

For the final 8 months of the war, 202 Squadron operated from the shores of Lough Erne in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. The base, Castle Archdale, was the starting point for many patrols over the Atlantic Ocean. Again, as in Gibraltar, the Squadron had to contend with a neutral country on their flight path. Eire remained steadfastly neutral during the war and this necessitated the Squadron aircraft making a long and dangerous detour which was to cost a number of lives.

The Squadrons strength was up to 17 Aircraft 62 officers and 271 other ranks, operations began almost immediately. Unfortunately, bad weather during the winter of 1944 - 45 resulted in the loss of two aircraft, costing the Squadron 17 lives. Despite the long range capabilities of the Catalina, squadron operations were restricted to coastal patrols, searching for the tell tale Schnorkel device of German U boats.

This was the year that Lough Erne froze solid to a depth of 6 inches for 7 days, preventing operations from continuing. The weather was so severe, that aircraft were beached to prevent damage from the ice.

The Squadrons aircraft were now equipped with Radar, Leigh Lights and Sonar Buoys to aid them in the hunt for the elusive submarine. However there were to be no more successes for the Squadron for on the 7th may 1945 the unconditional surrender of Germany took place,the war was over. However, two days later on the 9th a Squadron aircraft spotted U-1058 on the surface steaming towards Londonderry, the first of many that were to surrender to the allied forces. The last squadron patrol was flown on 2nd June 1945.


With the war at an end, the Squadron once again was "retired" and disbanded but not before receiving their final Battle Honour

North Atlantic


Squadron History Navy Co-Operation Malta Gibraltar Castle Archdale Meteorological Search & Rescue