RAF Bomber Command Profiles
By Chris Ward
617 Squadron Profile (Revised)
617 Squadron Profile – Revised and Expanded
Please note: This book was previously published in 2018 as ‘The Wartime Profile of 617 Squadron’ and includes updated information.
2018 marked both the centenary of the Royal Air Force and the 75th anniversary of the formation of 617 Squadron. As is well known,
the unit was formed from scratch to attack the dams of the Ruhr Valley in Germany. The mission was carried out successfully,
though at the cost of eight Lancasters and 53 aircrew. 617 Squadron went on to specialise in precision attacks on the most difficult targets,
including the battleship Tirpitz, which was finally sunk in a Norwegian fjord on 12th November 1944.
This is the operational history of the legendary ‘Dambusters’, whose story has kept the spotlight on Bomber Command for so many decades.
Originally formed in 1943 to attack the Ruhr Dams, 617 Squadron was subsequently tasked with highly-specialised and incredibly risky missions which have become the stuff of legend.
The unit carried out hazardous raids against the Dortmund-Ems Canal, strongpoints linked to the dreaded V2 rockets, and the German battleship Tirpitz,
as well as other problematic targets. The story of the ‘Dambusters’ is widely-known but many myths and inaccuracies have crept in as the tale has been retold. Chris Ward’s profile of the unit sets the record straight on these and relates the full wartime history of 617 Squadron.
Comprehensively illustrated, and including photographs never previously published,
this book sheds new light on the most famous unit in the history of aerial warfare.
The original 617 Squadron Profile first appeared in the late nineties and formed the core of the author’s later full histories.
In updating this profile Chris has revisited some incidents to provide new detail and a better understanding of selected events.
It also provides an insight into the lives of some of the countless ‘ordinary’ airmen who made the ultimate sacrifice.
Chris Ward is an acknowledged expert on 617 Squadron and has previously written two acclaimed full squadron histories, ‘Dambusters, the Definitive History’, published by Red Kite in 2003, and ‘Dambusters, Forging of a Legend’, published by Pen & Sword in 2009.
Chris and his close friend Andreas Wachtel were the first to identify,
visit and survey the previously unknown crash sites from the Dams and Dortmund-Ems Canal operations in 1943.
They produced a guide book for those wishing to follow in their footsteps.
This commemorative volume brings together Chris’ extensive writing along with that of fellow specialists Andy Lee and Andreas Wachtel.
A4 format. 393 pages.
617 Squadron Profile (Revised) £18.00
617 Squadron Profile (Revised) Book will include a free pack of Bomber Command Christmas cards worth £7.50