With yesterday being the 70th anniversary of the famous Dambusters raid, I made my way up to Derwent Reservoir in the Peak District to see the fly pasts from the BBMF (battle of britain memorial flight) Avro Lancaster, Spitfire PR Mk XIX and two RAF Tornados GR4's from 617 Squadron both wearing the commemorative tails.
Operation Chastise and was focussed on the dams in the Ruhr Valley, Germany. They had three primary targets the Möhne, Eder and Sorpe dams and two secondary ones, the Lister and the Eneppe dams.
Both the Möhne and Eder dams were successfully breached whilst the Sorpe dam, although hit by the reserve force of bombers failed to breach. Severe flooding from both the Möhne and Eder dams killed more than 1300 people and destroyed power plants, transport lines, homes & factories, the majority of which were back in production by September.
The operation was viewed as a great success by the military despite losing 53 men and 8 Lancasters. The attack had a massive affect on propaganda and made Wing Commander Guy Gibson a national hero, he was also awarded with the Victoria Cross for flying a decoy run alongside another Lancaster to distract and draw fire from the enemy.