Weather:fine with some cloud.

Fighter Command Serviceable Aircraft as at 0900 hours:

  • Spitfire – 218
  • Hurricane – 403
  • Defiant – 13
  • Gladiator – 8
  • Total – 687

Two attacks by between 200 and 300 aircraft were set in train by Luftflotte 2. However both raids were intercepted by large numbers of RAF fighters and both were turned back before they could reach London. At midday heavy fighting took place over Kent. That afternoon, following some sporadic individual raids, a major onslaught occurred across Kent aiming for London. Some thirty aircraft penetrated to the capital. At the same time, a force of some 180 aircraft approached the capital from near Slough. Finally a force of some 50 aircraft from Luftflotte 3 headed towards Yeovil. The target being the Westland works nearby. However, when the Luftwaffe aircraft got there, the target was obscured by cloud so they had to bomb blind. Most of the bombs fell on the surrounding area.
So ended the last big daylight raid of the battle. So also ended the use by the Luftwaffe of massed formations of twin engined bombers attacking Britain by daylight. Like the Ju87 Stukas, these aircraft too were to be withdrawn from their daylight role. Henceforward, they would operate at night in what the British were to dub the “Blitz”.

The Luftwaffe lost 47 aircraft and the RAF lost 20.

303 Squadron Operational Record Book – 30 September
16:40 hours

Combat at Brooklands at 16:50 hours. 10 Hurricanes left Northolt at 16:40 hours…Squadron was ordered to patrol base and then to join number 1 Canadian Squadron at 229 Squadron who had taken off 15 minutes earlier. Climbed at full boost and Flights became separated but neither could join the wing. A Flight was broken up by Me109s of which FO Urbanowicz destroyed one. In this area were 150 to 200 Me109s and 110s and odds were too great. Cloud cover alone saved heavy casualties. B Flight made towards bombers going SE near Croydon. Sgt Belc broke away to protect Hurricane, pilot baled out and being attacked by Mes and after seeing him safe never rejoined Flight. Remaining 4 were dived upon by Me109s when 4 to 5 miles from bombers. Sgt Frantiszek broke off upwards in order to cover flight from enemy attack. He caught one Me on the turn and destroyed it and in subsequent fight with 6 probably destroyed another. He escaped with great difficulty in cloud. Rest of Flight tried to continue toward bombers but were broken up by Me109s.
Enemy casualties: 2 Me109s destroyed, 1 Me109 probable
Our casualties: nil

Reported Casualties (RAF Campaign Diary 30 September1940):

*  Enemy:  46 confirmed,  32 probable, 29 damaged
*  Own:20 aircraft with 8 pilots killed or missing.

Today’s theme:  Unsung Heroes – The ARP