Unit History: 84 Squadron - Royal Air Force
A scorpion - approved by King George VI in December 1936.
Scorpiones pungunt - Scorpions sting.
1917 - Formed at Beaulieu.
1940 - Flew during WWII in Africa, the Middle and the Far East.
2003 - Was the last RAF Squadron to operate the Westland Wessex.
Current Aircraft and Location:
Current Aircraft: Griffin
Current Location: RAF Akrotiri
Western Front 1917-1918*, Cambrai 1917, Somme 1918*, Amiens, Hindenburg Line*, Iraq 1920, Iraq 1923-1925, Iraq 1928-1929, Egypt and Libya 1940-1942*, Greece 1940-1941*, Iraq 1941*, Habbaniya, Syria 1941, Malaya 1942*, North Burma 1944*, Manipur 1944.
The history of 84 Squadron:
84 Squadron was born in January 1917, equipped with SE5 fighter aircraft and was soon despatched to France . During its 15 months service in WWI the Squadron’s pilots proved very successful and destroyed 129 enemy aircraft and 50 observation balloons. After spending a year as part of the Army of Occupation in post war Germany, the Squadron was disbanded as part of a major reduction in the Armed Forces in 1920 (the first of many!!). 84 Squadron was reformed just 8 months later in Baghdad and spent the years leading up to WWII in Iraq.
In 1939, the Squadron moved to the Western Desert flying Blenheim bombers, and took part in the campaigns in Greece, Iraq, Syria and Persia. In 1942 84 Squadron was transferred to the Far East theatre, carrying out raids on Japanese forces in Sumatra, Batavia and Java. Japanese forces overran the Sqn in Java and all were taken prisoner except a small party including the CO and 11 aircrew. The Squadron reformed in India for the remainder of WWII and went on to serve in Malaya and Singapore . 84 Squadron became a transport squadron in 1953, equipped with Valetta aircraft flying from the Canal Zone, Nicosia and Aden . As Aden was closed, the Squadron re-equipped with Andover aircraft and moved to Sharjah, until being disbanded in 1971.
84 Squadron was reformed almost immediately at RAF Akrotiri with Westland Whirlwind helicopters in the Search and Rescue and Support Helicopter roles. Conversion to Wessex helicopters occurred in 1981 and the 4 aircraft carried a blue band, to reflect the UN association, and the traditional Squadron card suit individual marking. 84 Sqn is unique in being the only RAF Sqn to have been based overseas for its entire Service history and the Sqn’s official badge of a scorpion reflects its long association with the Middle East.