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Short Histories of Fleet Air Arm and Royal Naval reserve pilots. Including Pilots from the raid at Taranto, and the Sinking of the Bismarck. Including John Moffat, accredited with the torpedoing the Bismarck which damaged the steering gear of the ship.  

John Moffat 1940 wearing the zigzag gold stripe of the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve and his new Wings.

John Moffat in 1940 on board HMS Ark Royal. Background aircraft Blackburn Skua.

John Moffat in 1942 in the Mediterranean on HMS Invincible.

John Moffat of the Royal Naval Fleet Reserve, Fleet Air Arm credited with torpedoing the Bismarck.

John Moffat was born in Kelso in 1919 and at the outbreak of WWII, was sent to Sydenham, Belfast where a training school, set up by Short Brothers, was based. John learnt to fly in a Miles Magister (see photograph below right).  During 1939, he was sent to No.1 Flying Training School at Netheravon and here he was taught to fly advanced open-cockpit aircraft such as Hawker Hinds and Audaxes. Commissioned into the RNVR as a sub-lieutenant he was moved to Eastlee (now Southampton Airport) to the Naval Fighter School, learning fighter techniques in Blackburn Skuas and Rocs and the well-known Gloster Gladiator. In 1940, John was moved to Sanderling, the Royal Naval air station at Abbotsinch (now known as Glasgow Airport).

In 1941, on board HMS Ark Royal stationed at Gibraltar, they were ordered to assist in the hunt for Bismarck and Prinz Eugen. The aircraft headed first to HMS Sheffield who gave them signals by Aldis Lamp on the position of the Bismarck.

John Moffat with the rest of 824 Squadron on board HMS Formidable in 1945.

John Moffat served on HMS Ark Royal, HMS Argus, HMS Furious and HMS Formidable, and served with 759 Sqn, 818 Sqn, 820 Sqn and 824 Sqn. 

 

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Everything we obtain for this site is shown on the site, we do not have any more photos, crew lists or further information on any of the ships.

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