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27 March 1941: Malta on Almost Constant Alert

27 Mar

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ME 109s an almost constant presence today

ME 109s an almost constant presence today

SEVEN ALERTS AS FIGHTERS PROWL MALTA COAST

From dawn until 1615 hrs the enemy kept a standing fighter screen of two and sometimes three formations of three to six aircraft mostly 10-20 miles east of Malta but at times covering the northern and southern approaches. The enemy’s intention is thought to be to intercept reconnaissance aircraft embarking on missions from Malta. 

When the enemy fighters approached too close to the Island, Hurricanes were scrambled to intercept them. One of them was attacked by two ME 109s which dived out of the sunlight to attack but without result.  The patrols succeeded in delaying the take-off of Glenn Martin Marylands of 69 Squadron on reconnaissance missions.  The Marylands took alternative routes to carry out their missions.  The resulting delays prevented one from completing reconnaissance of Messina in daylight.

CIGS AND SIR ANTHONY EDEN TOUR ISLAND

Chief of Imperial General Staff Sir John Dill toured military units today as part of his continued stay in Malta. He made an extensive tour of all sectors, gaining first-hand knowledge of the challenge’s facing the Island’s defenders.

AIR RAIDS DAWN 27 MARCH TO DAWN 28 MARCH 1941

Weather  Stormy.

0721-0755 hrs Air raid alert for two ME 109 fighters which approach the Island and cross the coast. They are engaged by anti-aircraft guns and turn away without launching any attack.

0840-0846 hrs, 0924-0937 hrs, 0953-1010 hrs, 1423-1435 hrs, 1456-1525 hrs  Air raid alerts for Messerschmitt fighters approaching the coast. Hurricane aircraft are scrambled and intercept; there is no attack over land.

1813-1818 hrs  Air raid alert triggered by the return of two Glenn Martin Marylands from reconnaissance missions.

OPERATIONS REPORTS THURSDAY 27 MARCH 1941

AIR HQ 69 Squadron Maryland patrolled area between Malta and Tunisian coast. Maryland photoreconnaissance Naples: 4 destroyers, 3 fleet auxiliaries, 3 merchant vessels plus convoy approaching.  Maryland reconnaissance Messina, forced to take off late due to enemy action, had to be abandoned due to failing light.  Maryland photoreconnaissance Brindisi.  

HAL FAR  830 Squadron Operational flight cancelled owing to bad weather.

4th Bn THE BUFFS (ROYAL EAST KENT REGIMENTGeneral Sir John Dill, CIGS, inspected A Company at Falka Gap.

FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS  Bomb Disposal UXB reported 1.

8th Bn MANCHESTER REGIMENT  Sir John Dill, CIGS, visited the Victoria Lines and inspected officers and men.

 

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Posted by on March 27, 2016 in 1941, March 1941

 

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