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Operation Sealion


After the evacuation of Dunkirk, attention had turned to preparing for the German invasion of Britain. By late 1940, Phantom Squadrons were deployed to work with the different Army Groups operating along the South and east coast. They were mobilised and three Groups – later called Squadrons  A, B and C were deployed to Corp HQs at strategic coastal locations in England to prepare for their role to gather information and report to the C-in-C in event of an invasion.


Each Group had a small headquarters and four scouting patrols. consisting of an officer and a junior NCO and five other ranks, with a Daimler Scout Car fitted with a No. 11 wireless set, three motorcycles and a light truck to carry baggage and enough supplies to make the patrol self-supporting for some time.


A Squadron commanded by    was working with Montgomery’s command zone  in Kent   Miles Reid   Chilham Castle


B Squadron was located in Bath and Buckinghamshire


C Squadron was in reserve in Potters Bar.


Later E Squadron was established in East Anglia at Barham Ipswich under newly promoted Captain J Morgan.


Much of their work involved gathering strategic local information (for example about ground conditions and whether they would lend themselves to an invasion) and honing their skills on training exercises - such as the one photographed by Lt Malindine with the objective of testing aerodrome defences. Thus, Phantom identified how best to utilise their  vehicles and wireless equipment and their operators – their reputation began to grow….“throughout the exercise Phantom maintained contact with all enemy landings and movements.”


The Regiment also provided their own guard and patrols at Richmond Gate against possible attack by German Parachutists. Hopkinson was convinced that the Luftwaffe  knew where Phantom were based, as over 400 bombs landed on the Park between May 1941 and May 1942. Pembroke House was almost destroyed by bombs. Officers were eating dinner when bombs were dropped at the front and back and the dining room ceiling fell down; there were no air raid shelters and Hopkinson disapproved of his men dropping to the floor when the sirens began maintaining that "taking cover could make cowards".

Phantom was deployed in squadrons in North West Europe, South East Europe, North Africa and Italy to take part in the great battles of the campaign. Following their earliest missions before Dunkirk, they were deployed in the south of England, to relay information about the possible invasion. They also joined with other regiments in training missions, developing their innovative methods.


Role of Honour

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