1946 – 1949

1946 – The squadron flew 16 Mk IV Hurricanes back from Italy to Megiddo, Palestine, where a few replacement Hurricanes and, later, four Mk IX Spitfires were added to strengthen the now scarce Hurricanes. Ramat David was the next base, back in Palestine again, with 6 Squadron resuming its duties against rebels and terrorists, especially the attacks on oil pipelines. The demobilisation run down pushed the Squadron down to 40 per cent under strength but everyone slaved hard to “keep the kites serviceable.” This mix of aircraft was soon to be replaced with Tempest F6s, the first to arrive on squadron 31 Dec 1946. These were later to cover the evacuation of British troops from Palestine.

1947 – On 13 Jan 1947 two Hurricanes performed the last operational flights. Two days later the squadron records state:Hurricane IV Foggia

“15 Jan 1947; This morning the Squadron watched not only our last Hurricane but also the last Hurricane in operational service with the RAF being towed away to its last resting place where it will be smashed with sledge hammers.” The Squadron’s 33rd birthday was celebrated in the Palace Hotel, Nicosia, Cyprus. November 1947 saw the Squadron at Khartoum under the command of the Battle of Britain legend S/Ldr Denis Crowley-Milling, D.S.O, D.F.C. and bar. A detachment was sent to Mogadishu in Somaliland and demonstrat
ion patrols flown, returning to Khartoum in February.

1948 – The withdrawal of British Forces from Palestine in May 1948 saw feverish preparation to fit drop–tanks and preparation for a quick move north to cover the evacuation. At this time of formation of the “new” state of Israel, at least one pilot was approached to sell his aircraft, the going rate being £7000. The suggested methoSpitfire PT470 Nicosia Oct46d being that he should land in Palestine, where he would be taken and dumped in the sea. From here he would be “rescued”, put in hospital and released. The situation was very tense and when the British columns left, the Arabs and Israelis joined battle. Air combat took place but recognition was very difficult as both sides were flying British made aircraft.

1949 – With the close of the Palestinian troubles, the Squadron enjoyed its first spell of real peace since its formation in 1914. Night flying and weapon training became the order of the day. In October, the Squadron did a flypast over H.M.S. Amethyst as it came through the canal on its return to the UK from its involvement and escape from the Yangtze incident. It was soon announced to the squadron that it was to enter the jet age with the re-equipment of the squadron with the De Havilland Vampire. The squadron handed over its last Tempest and left the piston era in the October of 1949.