Douglas Bader’s Log Book – Battle of Britain

Douglas Bader's Log Book - Battle of Britain

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Bader’s wartime log book records fighting at the height of the Battle of Britain. His note on 9 September reads:

Patrolled London with Wing – 242, 310, 19 [Squadrons] (242 leading). Intercepted Enemy Aircraft Bombers and Fighters South of Thames. Wing Destroyed 20 E/A. 242 Squadron got 11. I got the leader – a Do 215 in flames.
Pilot Officer Sclanders killed
Sergeant Lonsdale baled out OK
2 Hurricanes of 310 collided – 1 pilot OK. Baled out

For the 15th – now commemorated as Battle of Britain Day – he recorded

  1. Wing patrolled London. Engaged enemy formation & destroyed most of them. Wing comprised 242, 310, 302, 19 and 611. Eric Ball shot down – OK.
  2. Sighted large enemy formation & tried to attack, but too low. Was attacked by ME 109s & had to break away. Spun off [pilot’s name]’s slipstream & out of the fight.

Wing total for day: 52 [confirmed] + 8 [Probably destroyed]
242 Total: 12
Georgie P S [Powell-Shedden] shot down baled out

The “Big Wing” tactics, developed in part by Bader and championed by Air Vice-Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, were proving very effective.