On the 16/17th May 2022 the Lincoln Short Wave Club operated a Special Event Station GB5DAM in memory of the Air Crew and German civilians killed during the now famous 617 Squadron’s raid on the great Ruhr dams of Germany
On the16th/17th May 1943 19 Lancaster bombers of 617 Squadron RAF took off from RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire armed with the now famous Bouncing Bomb invented by Barnes Wallis.
The raid was led by Wing Commander Guy Gibson VC The aircraft took off in three groups, Group One lead by Gibson took off in three waves of three aircraft at ten minute intervals starting at 21.39,, their mission was to attack the Mohne and Elder dams.
Group Two consisting of 5 aircraft took off at 21.28 taking the longer northern route to attack the Sorpe dam.
Group Three also consisting of five aircraft took off later at 00.09 they were a reserve group if the Mohne, Elder and Sorpe were breached they were to attack the Lister, Ennepe and Diemel dams.
The code words sent back in Morse code to the operations room in Grantham were:
“Goner” meaning bomb dropped
“Nigger”, Gibson’s Black Labrador who was run over by a car on the evening of the mission, meaning the Mohne was breached.
“Dinghy” meaning the Sorpe was breached.
Five bombs were dropped before the Mohne was breached. The Elder dam took three bombs to breach it and Sorpe despite several attacks was only slightly damaged.
Only eleven aircraft returned to Scampton out of the nineteen aircraft which took off.
Of the survivors, 34 were decorated at Buckingham Palace on 22 June, with Gibson awarded the Victoria Cross. There were five Distinguished Service Orders, 10 Distinguished Flying Crosses and four bars, two Conspicuous Gallantry Medals, eleven Distinguished Flying Medals and one bar.
The Lincoln Short Wave Club shack is less than 1 mile from RAF Scampton. 79 years ago you could have watched the aircraft take off and count them back in again.
Members present at the SES were Steve M5ZZZ, Stephen M5SJM, Andy M0IYE, Marc M7DEU, Les G1LQB and David M6OYN. G4STO was also present but only to take photographs showing almost everyone there took an active part in the SES.
The station commenced operation on May 16th at 21.20 hrs clock time, this was the time the first wave of Lancaster’s took off from RAF Scampton.