POLISH AIR FORCE
Polish Air Force Polish Air Force

in Lincolnshire

za naszą i waszą wolność

The Polish Air Force (Polskie Siły Powietrzne) was founded at the end of the Great War and in the 1920s/1930s was supported by a substantial aviation industry. It was the first air force in the world to equip its front-line fighter force entirely with all-metal monoplanes, and many international aviation records were established.

Originally part of the Army - Lotnictwo Wojskowe (Military Aviation) - it became an independent part of the Polish Armed Forces in 1940.

PAF Badge Following the invasion of Poland by Germany and the Soviet Union in September 1939 the Polish government and forces evacuated to Romania, and on into France where they reformed.

After the fall of France the Polish government was established in London and Polish armed forces came under the overall allied command.

During the Battle of Britain in 1940 1 in 8 of allied pilots was Polish, and the highest scoring allied fighter pilot flew with 303 Squadron of the Polish Air Force.

It is said that the Battle of Britain was won by a narrow margin, and the contribution of the already combat experienced Polish pilots was decisive.

At its peak strength the Polish Air Force was the largest allied air force after the RAF and USAAF, with 15 Squadrons and many training and support units. It flew day fighter, night-fighter, bomber, coastal, army-cooperation, and transport aircraft. A large part of the Polish Air Force was based in Lincolnshire.

The tragedy of allied victory was that Poland did not regain its freedom. The Polish Air Force remained in Britain, finally being disbanded in January 1947.

It left behind an indelible record, and the sacrifice and endeavour of its personnel in the cause of freedom forms a bond between our two countries that will always be recalled with honour and with pride.

The links remain - there is a large Polish community in Britain, Poland is now joined with Britain in the European Union, and the modern Polish Air Force (Wojska Lotnicze i Obrony Powietrznej) together with its Naval and Army counterparts form part of NATO (the multi-national North Atlantic Treaty Organization), partners once more with the Royal Air Force.

Poland WLOP NATO RAF UK
PAF Ensign Polish Air Force
Organization
Polish Eagle Polish Air Force
Squadrons
in Lincolnshire
PAF Flying Badge Ranks of the
Polish Air Force
Polish Air Force Badges and Titles
Polish Air Force
Squadrons
Books Recommended Reading
Polish Air Force
PAF Memorials Memorials to the
Polish Air Force
in Lincolnshire
Para Polish Parachute Brigade
in Lincolnshire
Anthem Polish National Anthem
sound (midi file - 2k)
PAF Links PAF

shared history shared history

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all text © Mike Ingham
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this page last updated 21 July 2011

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