Header image: Lancasters of 617 Sqn and IX Sqn dropping ‘Tallboy’ bombs on the German battleship Tirpitz in Tromso Fjord, Norway, on the morning of 12th November 1944. (Artwork: Jim Laurier)
Seventy-five years ago this month, on 12th November 1944, 18 Avro Lancasters of 617 Squadron and 13 from IX Squadron took off in darkness from Lossiemouth and Milltown airfields in northern Scotland, to head north east towards the Norwegian Sea and the Arctic Circle on what was to be an epic flight both in duration and effect. This was to be the final attack on the German battleship Tirpitz, moored in Tromso Fjord, Norway, 190 miles inside the Arctic Circle. This particular operation, the last of many against the great ship, had been codenamed ‘Operation Catechism’ and was led by the C.O. of 617 Squadron, Wing Commander ‘Willie’ Tait DSO and three Bars DFC and Bar.