History - Inter-War (4)

On the evacuation of all British troops from Turkey General Sir Charles Harrington KCB CMG DSO Commander in Chief, praised the way in which the RAF had co-operated with the Navy and Army. The larger share of this work fell naturally to 208 Squadron where it was taken up with zest. A very efficient liaison officer met with warm and willing assistance both from Naval and Military Staff officers, and this keen and friendly reception, backed up by the energy displayed in the Squadron generally, accounted for the results which helped to gain the Commander-in-Chief’s commendation.

The work of dismantling hangars and packing stores commenced on 2nd September. All aircraft were dispatched to Constantinople by rail and shipped in SS Khartoum. Transport and stores were shipped in SS Winnow. On 5th September both ships sailed for Egypt, quite a feat. On arrival at Alexandria the transport and stores were shipped to Ismailia while the aircraft were entrained to Aboukir where they were assembled, tested and

flown to base. It is interesting to see how efficiently and quickly an operational squadron could be moved around even in the early nineteen-twenties.


The Squadron remained in Ismailia until October, 1927 during which time it maintained a high standard of training in order to meet its operational commitment should the opportunity have arisen. The highlights which often broke up the training routine during these peace time years were open days, aerial demonstrations, Military Searchlight Tattoos and even formation escorts for visiting Royalty.

In February 1928 shortly after the Squadron had moved to its new base at Heliopolis the RAF in Egypt put on a large scale air display. This of course gave the pilots an opportunity to demonstrate their skills at such things as message picking-up and low level bombing of tanks using several converging aircraft. On this particular occasion the day culminated in a set-piece battle in which two aircraft carried out an air attack on a desert fort constructed for the occasion on the airfield. The smoke screen which followed cunningly masked the landing and disenplanement of


February 1928 208 Squadron moves to Heliopolis

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