214 Squadron

Badge: A nightjar volant affrontee.
The nightjar was chosen because "it is a bird which is active at night and is indicative of the role of this squadron".
Motto: "Ultor in umbris" ("Avenging in the shadows").
Authority: King George VI, March, 1938.
Based at Upwood from: (November 1946 - December 1954)
Type of Aircraft:
Avro Lancaster (November 1946 - March 1950)
Avro Lincoln (February 1950 - December 1954)


On 4 November 1946, No.214 reformed at Upwood commanded by S/Ldr. J. H. Blount DFC. Over the next few months the Squadron's was equipped with six Lancaster's. The Lancaster's of 214 got under way at once with Exercise Front Line (a long-distance navigation trip over Germany). Operation Sunbronze, Flights to Malta for fighter affiliation exercise. Only a skeleton ground crew was retained at Upwood from the 12 April 1947 with most of the servicing being done at Mildenhall. S/Ldr. C. M. Clementi OBE took over on the 5 May 1947. S/Ldr. Clementi was replaced by S/Ldr. A. J. Hamilton on the 9th March 1949. 214 Squadron Left Upwood on the 1 September 1949 destination, Shallufa in Egypt, Operation Sunray for training under Middle East conditions. The first Lincoln to be lent to 214 Squadron at Upwood, was RF569 on the 17 November 1949 for trials, a few months later it returned to Binbrook. By the end of March 1950 seven Lincoln's had joined 214 with one Lancaster as a freighter. More exercises in 1950 included the RAF Display at Farnborough on the 7th and 8th of July and on the 7th and 10th of October 214 took part in Exercise Emperor to test the UK's air defences. In the summer of 1951 214 Squadron participated in Operation Sunray once more when on the 1st July seven aircraft left Upwood for Shallufa. By the beginning of September all aircraft were back at Upwood. S/Ldr. E. P. Landon DFC took over as CO on the 14th January 1952. The autumn of 1953 another detachment went to Shallufa for training under Middle East conditions. In 1954 214 Squadron took part in Operation Bagpipes in connection with the nuclear trials being carried out at Woomera. 10th June 1954 four 214 Squadron aircraft were sent to Eastleigh Nairobi in the campaign against the Mau Mau rebels in Kenya. The Squadron made offensive strikes against the rebels, mainly in the Aberdare Mountains. Sgt. L. J. Pinn, lost his life in Lincoln SX976 when he was hit by splinters from his own bombs (See news paper clip below) while in operational flight. 49 Squadron relieved 214 Squadron and by the 7th of December most of 214 Squadron Lincoln's were home. Once back 214 Squadron started to disband and on the 31st December 1954 the Squadron was no more.

214 Squadron at Upwood
(Peter Brown Collection)


214 Squadron Lincoln RF570

214 Squadron Lincoln SX976


Copyright © 2007 David Gambold
John Gambold also known as Taff, Certificate
John initially attached to 148 squadron (06/51 to 07/51) before joining
214 Squadron (09/51 to 11/54) and then to 7 squadron 01/55 to 11/55 and
finally to 1426 flight.

Copyright © 2007 David Gambold


Copyright © 2007 David Gambold


Copyright © 2007 David Gambold

Back row L to R. Red finch, Paddy Warren, John Gambold
Front row L to R. Bill Payne, Don Harman, Keith Butcher

Copyright © 2007 David Gambold

Inflight Red Finch (Nav), Paddy Warren (bombs), John Gambold (radio).


Copyright © 2007 David Gambold

Last pee before takeoff, John Gambold on the Left with his Pilot on his right


Copyright © 2007 David Gambold
RF453 214 Squadron Lincoln



Below is John Gambold Log Book

Thanks to David Gambold for letting me use all his Fathers documents and pictures for this webpage

Anyone wishing to use these pictures, or any pictures on this web site,
Please contact Sean Edwards for permission. rafupwood@hotmail.com