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445th Bombardment Group at Tibenham

History

The 445th Bombardment Group was stationed at Tibenham in Norfolk, England, from November 1943 to July 1945.

During their time there the group flew 282 missions and lost 108 Liberators in action.

On 27 September 1944 they suffered the highest losses inflicted in a single group of the Eighth Air Force on a single mission.

The group had sent 35 Liberators (two others had to abort the mission) as part of a force of 315 B-24s of the Second Bombardment Division.

Their mission was to bomb the Henschel engine and vehicle plant at Kassel in Germany.

In five or six minutes a force of some 100 Luftwaffe Storm fighters shot down 25 of the group's Liberators.

They so badly damaged five more that two of them 'bellied-in' at French airfields, two put down at the emergency landing ground at Manston, England and another crash-landed near Tibenham.

This had been the group's 166th mission. In the three months after D-Day, 6 June 1944, the 445th had the highest accuracy rating for bombing of any B-24 group in the Eighth.

After recovering from the massacre of 27 September, it went on to achieve an above average rating in bombing accuracy for the last six months of the war.

If you'd like to view photographs and other records relating to the 445th, you can browse our digital archive.

 

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