Supermarine Spitfires of No. 111 Squadron RAF undergoing maintenance at Comiso, Sicily in the summer of 1943. ‘JU-R’ in the foreground is a Mark IXE, the other aircraft being Mark VCs.
No. 111 Sqn played a role in the Battle of Britain, pioneering dangerous head-on attacks against the Luftwaffe bomber streams. Claims included 47 aircraft shot down for 18 Hurricanes lost. The squadron replaced its Hurricanes with Supermarine Spitfires in April 1941. In November the Squadron again relocated to RAF Gibraltar for support of Operation Torch, the invasion of North Africa. In a similar role it moved to Malta in June 1943 to support the invasion of Sicily, then moved ashore. From Sicilian bases it covered the Italian landings, moving onto the mainland in September 1943. In preparation for the invasion of Southern France the squadron moved to Corsica in July 1944, covered the landing and then moved to French airfields to support the ground forces until returning to Italy in October. For the rest of the war it carried out fighter-bomber operations and then joined the occupation forces in Austria, eventually disbanding on 12 May 1947.