A WW2 R.A.F. pilot's survival story…

Officer’s Mess – Hal Far

Officer's Mess

Officer's Mess - Hal Far

The Officer’s Mess, Hal Far Airfield, Malta. Malta’s strategic position and her good weather conditions permitted all year round training by the Royal Navy fleet. Until the outbreak of war, carrier-borne aircraft deployed at Hal Far also practised torpedo attacks on defended harbours and stationary ships. After the HMS Illustrious was severely hit while escorting a convoy, the Axis made a tremendous effort to damage the carrier in the harbour. But the Anti-Aircraft defences were so effective that the Axis managed to seriously hit the Illustrious only once. The HMS Illustrious left the Island repaired in just 12 days. The remaining flying units of 815 and 819 Naval Air Squadron Swordfish remained at Hal Far. These famous flying units were the ones that raided the Taranto harbour raid with success. (www.halfarairfieldmalta.com)

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