Aufkl. Gr. 122 Mar 1942

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March 1942 - In preparation for the coming assault on Sevastapol 4(F)./122 was ordered to perform photo-reconnaissance of the following types of target - fortifications, mobilization points, supply depots, and routes in the Crimea; embarcation and supply points along the Caucasus coastline. Together with airfields and transportation routes in the northern Caucasus.[1]

Erg.(F)/122 was ordered to disband at some point during the month.

1 Mar 1942 - 1(F)./122 reported 10 x Ju 88D-1 and 2 x Ju 88A-5 on strength.[2]

3(F)./122 reported 7 x Ju 88D-1, 1 x Ju 88A-5, 2 x Bf 110C-5, 1 x Bf 110E-3 and 1 x Bf 109F-4 on strength.[3]

4(F)./122 reported 9 x Ju 88D-1 and 3 x Ju 88D-5 on strength.[4]

5(F)./122 reported 6 x Ju 88A-5, 6 x Ju 88D-1, 3 x Ju 88D-5 and 1 x Bf 110E-3 on strength.[5]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
1 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88D-5 390 Forced landing due to engine problems. Ljuban - 40 % damage. Josef Reuter (Bf ) and Paul PÃtzeid (Bs) both killed.EA
3 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88D-5 1733 30% Tichwin-Schlüsselburg, Flak damage.EA
3 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88D-1 1943 80% Gosztkino,crashed due to technical problems.EA
4 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88D-1 1491 35% Gosztkino, Forced landing due to engine problems. EA

7 Mar 1942 – 3(F)./122, no operations.[6]


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
7 Mar 1942 1(F)./122 Ju 88D-1 1349 30% Gerbini,damaged during taxiing.EA

08 Mar 1942 – 3(F)./122 - F6+CL possibly gave weather reports for 05E 1469 (55 Km NE of Cromer) at 0800 hrs and landed back at Schiphol at 0915 hrs.

F6+KL also of 3(F)./122 flew from Schiphol to 45km NE of Margate, then to the Humber area and then as far north as Whitby. Sighted convoy FN 49 25 miles E by S of Spurn Point at 0858 hrs; and probably also convoy FS 44 to the N of this point. Landed back at Schiphol at 1054 hrs.

In its second sortie of the day F6+CL again operated from Schiphol to the Whitby- Clacton area. No shipping was sighted. the aircraft returned to Schiphol at 1636 hrs.[6]

09 Mar 1942 – 3(F)./122 sent one aircraft to operate in the Folkstone – Dover and Deal – Ramsgate area. No shipping was sighted. The aircraft was over the area between 0755 and 0800 hrs.

F6+AL, also of 3(F)./122, was sent to the Skegness – Whitby area and reported convoy FS45 between Whitby and Scarborough at 0940 hrs . Landing back at Schiphol at 1146 hrs.

F6+EL operated from Lowestoft as far north as the Withernsea (East Yorks) area, no shipping was sighted. The operation was probably broken off here on account of the weather conditions and a shortage of fuel. The aircraft landed back at Schiphol to refuel at 1053 hrs; taking off again at 1138 hrs to resume its sortie.[6]


10 Mar 1942 - Bf 110C-5 sabotaged at Fp.Nikolayev by Soviet partisans, the aircraft was destroyed. These same partisans succeeded in destroying 5 other aircraft at Nikolayev in this same operation: 3 Ju 87 dive bombers belonging to St.G. 77 and 2 Bf 109 fighters belonging to I./JG 77.[7]


3(F)./122 sent F6+GL to the Whitby-Skegness area. During the outward flight the crew reported 2 MTBs in 05E 2460 (75km NE of Cromer) at 0905. No shipping was sighted in the Whitby area, although the crew reported a convoy (probably FS 46) in 05E0470 (off Skegness) at 0930 hrs. At 1058 hrs the position report was corrected to 05E0450 (off the Humber). Aircraft returned at 1133 hrs. F6+CL, also of 3(F)./122, was sent to the area from the Thames Estuary to as far north as Cromer. The aircraft returned on reciprocal course. No shipping was sighted in the Thames. Reported two British aircraft off Cromer at 1000 hrs, and two MTBs off Orfordness at 1015 hrs. Landed at 1130 hrs. F6+FL, from the same unit, covered the area from the Humber to east of Clacton - No shipping sighted and landed back at Montdidier at about 1115 hrs.[6]

11 Mar 1942 – 3(F)./122 – no operations.[6]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
11 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88A-5 609 45% damage, Tscherjemjentz-Kejesse,Crash landing following Flak damage.EA

12 Mar 1942 – F6+KL (3(F)./122) took off at 1015hrs for the Yarmouth – Whitby area and reported a southbound convoy off Yarmouth at 1255hrs. Landed at Schiphol at 1314 hrs. [6]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
12 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Bf 110E-3 2501 20% damage, Gesstkine,Crash landing following Flak damage.EA


13 Mar 1942 – 3(F)./122 sent F6+KL to cover an area from the Thames Estuary to east of Cromer, nothing was sighted. It was reported that the mission had not been carried out. Landed at Schiphol at 0902 hrs.

F6+BL (3(F)./122) to operate in the area covered by Whitby – Skegness – east of Aldeburgh, again nothing sighted. Order during outward flight to home on Nieuport as the inland area behind the Schouwen beacon was closed. Landed back at Montdidier at 1120 hrs.[6]

14 Mar 1942 - 1(F)./122 declared a strength of 11 Ju 88s of which 7 were operational while 2(F)./122 returned a strength of 6 Ju 88s of which it had 4 operational.[8]FHRA</sup>

An aircraft (possibly F6+KL) from 3(F)./122 was sent to cover the area encompassing Cromer – Thames Estuary – 50km E of Margate. Nothing was sighted and the aircraft landed at 0825 hrs.

F6+GL (3(F)./122) sent operate in the Flamborough Head – Wash area and reported two MTBs in the Wash about 0840 hrs. Landed about 1040 hrs.

F6+FL, also of 3(F)./122, took off 1325 hrs, landed at 1434 hrs at Schiphol. Took off again at 1640 hrs and reported convoy FN 55 SE of Orfordness at 1655 hrs. Landed at Schiphol at 1743 hrs.[6]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
14 Mar 1942 5(F)./122 Ju 88A-5 518 60% damage, Elbing. Forced landing following engine problems.EA

15 Mar 1942 - 4(F)./122 was ordered to increase photo reconnaissance coverage of eastern Crimea and North Caucasia in preparation for a forthcoming German offensive to retake the Kerch Peninsula (Operation Trappenjagd), which commenced on 8 May.[9]

F6+BL (3(F)./122) took off at 0430 hrs on a shipping recce sortie to the Thames Estuary. – Lowestoft area. Nothing sighted and landed by 0900 hrs.

3(F)./122 sent F6+CL to the Suffolk Coast. the crew reported a convoy of unspecified size in the Aldeburgh – Southwold area. Recrossed the Dutch coast at 1545 hrs and probably landed at Montdidier at 1642 hrs.

F6+GL, also from 3(F)./122, took off at 0729 hrs to fly to the area from Hull down to Southwold. No shipping sighted. Landed at about 0936 hrs.[6]

16 Mar 1942 – 3./122 F6+AL aborted sortie due to engine trouble. Landed at Schipol at 0635

F6+GL to Thames Estuary – Humber. Sighted nothing and landed at Montdidier at 1025

F6+FL Flamborough Head – Cromer. Encountered one fighter about 20 miles N of Cromer. At 0946 enemy aircraft avoided combat. Take off at 0811, landing at 1048

F6+FL again take off at 1452: Flamborough Head – Spurn Head – 20 miles NE of Cromer. Reported two convoys at 1630: one of 4 medium sized merchantmen on N course in Square o5E0480 and at 1655 another of same size (southbound) in Square 05E148. There were four destroyers operating in the area at this time and these may have been mistaken as merchantmen.

17 Mar 1942 - F6+BL of 3(F)./122 took off at 0558 to cover the area Harwich – Cromer – Scarborough. About 0653 was informed of a convoy with fighter escort in square 124 (Thames estuary area). This aircraft had landed by 1000.[10]

F6+FL was despatched to the Flamborough Head – Cromer area. At 1135 it was in position just southeast of Flamborough Head and reported two minesweepers and one tanker on a northbound course. At about 1140 it then reported an attack by 3 enemy fighters accompanying an aircraft carrier and a battleship. (These were escorting convoy FS 51, 20 miles E of Cromer and the naval forces in fact included nothing larger than a destroyer). British sources state that two attacks were made by Spitfires at 1145 and that the German aircraft dived away in the mist. This aircraft landed at 1220.[10]

F6+KL was sent to the area north of Cromer where FL had sighted the “aircraft carrier”. This sortie was to verify the sighting - nothing sighted and landed at 1902.[10]

18 Mar 1942 - A crew of the 4(F)./122 claimed a Spitfire shot down during combat at 50m near by Neufchatel, Pas de Calais, France.[11](Subject to discussion on TOCH 10 Apr 2008 as 4.(F)/122 were based in Russia at the time.)

3(F)./122 sent out F6+BL, which took off before 0720 to cover the area Poulness – Lowestoft – Aldeburgh. At 0717 this crew reported an unidentified convoy off the Naze, then at 0820 reported another convoy (FN 58) in the Southwold area. The aircraft landed at Montdidier having been instructed during the flight to return via the Nordwijk beacon.[10]

F6+GL of 3(F)./122 took off at 0648 to cover the East Coast of England from Tynemouth – Hartlepool – Aldeburgh. At 0920 it reported three medium merchantmen and a destroyer in the Blyth – Tynemouth area, at 0945 reported convoy FN 57 in the Hartlepool area and at 1030 FS 52 near Aldeburgh.[10]

19 Mar 1942 – An aircraft of 3./122 (F6+BL) was sent out at 0517 to cover the East coast of England (Poulness-Tynemouth-Spurn Head-Cromer). At 0735 this crew reported a convoy (possibly FN 58 or 59) consisting of 1 destroyer, 3 tankers and 25 merchant vessels north bound, off the Humber. The aircraft landed at 0915.[10]

20 Mar 1942 - Kesselring launches an intense air offensive against the island of Malta.

3(F)./122 despatched F6+CL to the east Coast of England, covering the area from the Thames Estuary to the vicinity of Scarborough. This crew claimed to have sighted a light cruiser a little to the SW of Flamborough Head. The “light cruiser” was probably part of a convoy’s destroyer screen. Aircraft took off at 0718 and landed at 1145.[10]

23 Mar 1942 - 1(F)./122 operated convoy shadowing sorties against convoys approaching Malta.including convoy MW10. At approximately 09.00 two Spitfires of 126 Sqdn were patrolling over the ships of MW10, they approached a Ju 88 which fired off three recognition flares – maybe the Ju 88s crew believed that they were being approached by Messerschmitts – the Ju 88 was shot down.


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
22 Mar 1942 2(F)./122 Me 210 8156 Crashed at Trapani 80% damage.[12]
23 Mar 1942 1(F)./122 Ju 88 F6+CH Shot down, by Spitfires, into the sea while operating a convoy shadowing sortie. On this day a Ju 88 was claimed by F/L Hugh Anthony Stephen Johnston flying a Spitfire of 126 Sqdn from Malta.[13]F</sup>

25 Mar 1942 - Ju 88s of 4(F)./122 photographed ports in the Crimea and the Kerch Straits (Sevastapol, Kerch, Kamysh-Burun and Tamanskaya) and the Caucasus coast (Novorosiisk and Tuapse) as well as airfields and train stations in the NW Caucasus (Krymskaya, Krasnodar and Kropotkin).[14]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
25 Mar 1942 2(F)./122 Me 210 8159 Crashlanding in Tunisia 40% damage.[15]


31 Mar 1942 – An aircraft of 3.(F)/122 returned to Montidier (France) having performed the units 1000th combat sortie – the crew of Ofw Geuter (FF), Oblt Salecker (BO), Uffz Gärtner (BF) and Uffz Banz (BS) were honoured with a parade. Over 900 of the 1000 sorties had been carried out over British territory.[16]

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References

  1. Hayward - SaS p63
  2. LdZ - BA-MA - Flugzeug-Bereitstellungen (Aircraft Availability Status Reports - FzB) in: Holm-op cit.
  3. BA-MA - Flugzeug-Bereitstellungen (Aircraft Availability Status Reports - FzB) in: Holm-op cit; all subsequent entries of this type are from this source.
  4. BA-MA - Flugzeug-Bereitstellungen (Aircraft Availability Status Reports - FzB) in: Holm-op cit; all subsequent entries of this type are from this source.
  5. BA-MA - Flugzeug-Bereitstellungen (Aircraft Availability Status Reports - FzB) in: Holm-op cit; all subsequent entries of this type are from this source.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 6.8 HW 13/98
  7. LdZ - Bergström/Mikhailov-Black Cross-Red Star, v.2:130.
  8. FHRA - US Numbered Historical Studies no 161 appendix to p 234 sheet 1
  9. Hayward-Stopped at Stalingrad:62.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 HW 13/98 via Adam Thompson
  11. Wood - claims lists 3reichwest.pdf
  12. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Generals loss returns 4 Apr 1942 item 164. Also Messerschmitt Me 210/410 Hornet – Petrick / Stocker page 60
  13. F AF - Andy Fletcher - claim details in a posting to the LuftwaffeData Bulletin Board 13/11/05
  14. Hayward - Stopped at StalingradEA Eduardo Arana via e-mail 03/05/06
  15. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Generals loss returns 4 Apr 1942 item 165. Also Messerschmitt Me 210/410 Hornet – Petrick / Stocker page 60
  16. LimF – Luftwaffe im Focus 2 pages 6 and 7
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