posted on May, 16 2008 @ 05:32 AM
Today is the 65th anniversary of one of the most remarkable, audacious and certainly most famous bomber raids in history.
Arguments have raged over the usefulness and effectiveness of the raid in the years since the war ended but nobody can doubt the ingenuity of the
weapon used or the courage and skill of the aircrews themselves, or that news of the successful raid was immensely uplifting for a beleaguered country
at war with relatively few successes to shout about at that stage.
To mark the anniversary there has been a special flying display over the Ladybower dam in Derbyshire, the significance of which is that it was the
very dam that 617 Sqn practised on before the raid.
Several overflights of the dam wer made by the BBMF Lancaster and it was amazing to see this near 70 year old bomber swooping and banking down the
derwent valley at as low as 100ft off the water as spectators looked down on it from the hillside!
On its final pass it was escorted by two Tornado GR.4's fr4om todays 617 Sqn who then made a high speed pass of the dam on their own, leading me to
wonder if a similar raid launched today might just be flown from the other side with missiles launched straight into the dam wall?
Afterwards the BBMF Spitfire and Hurricane performed a display with the event being completed by the Dakota making its own pass of the dam. A lovely
display and a fine tribute to the Dambusters in particular and the men of Bomber Command in general.