This book is a collection of accounts, written by those who served with 106 Squadron, at RAF Syerston. Not just the words of the well-known names though, such as Wing Commander Guy Gibson VC DSO & Bar DFC & Bar, and Squadron Leader John Searby DSO DFC, but predominantly those of the lesser known 960 airmen who flew. The men who bravely flew and fought over the skies of Germany, frequented the pubs of Nottinghamshire and fleetingly spent time at home on leave. It also documents some of the sad stories of the 360 young men who never came back, and whose parents, wives, girlfriends and family were left to mourn their loss.
106 Squadron moved to RAF Syerston on the 1st October 1942, from RAF Coningsby, where Gibson had taken over command in April 1942. The initial 6 months had seen the squadron participate in the 1,000 Bomber Raids, convert from the unreliable Manchesters to the vastly superior Lancasters and then through Gibson’s leadership, begin moving up the bombing ladder to become one of the best squadrons in No. 5 Group. The next 6 months would see Gibson build on his reputation, through publicity in newspapers and magazines. He also participated in the first Lancaster operation to Berlin, and took along Richard Dimbleby to report on it. On completion of his tour, his successful command of 106 Squadron, along with his vast operational experience, made him the obvious choice to lead the Dambusters operation. He was succeeded by Searby, and then later on by Wing Commander Ronnie Baxter DFC.