Seen from the inside: stunning Lancaster’s on-board video shows aerial gunner’s view of Derwent Dam flypast

On May 16-17, UK’s Royal Air Force celebrates the 70th anniversary of one its most famous raid in RAF history: the Dams raid conducted by 617 Squadron.

The “Dambusters”, half of those never returned from the raids, were honoured with a dramatic tribute: on May 15, a Lancaster from RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight,  performed three runs over the Derwent Dam that, back in 1943 was used by the 617 Sqn pilots to train in preparing of the daring night missions against the Mohne, Eder and Sorpe dams, pivotal to Hitler’s industrial heartland in the Ruhr Valley.

Below, an AP image of the Lancaster taken from the ground.


Image credit: AP

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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. I wounder what would have happened if we had done a full re-enactment i.e entering french & German airspace.

    Whilst this raid is quite correctly commemorated it has to be remembered a lot of civilians were killed and injured?

    Subsequent to the raids massive effort was put into to the repairs of the dams which was completed in 3 months.

    One comment that comes up is why did the UK and USA not follow up and carry out additional raids during the repairs.

    Finally ask your selves what the current generation of Germans think of the raid?

    So, yes it was a spectacular achievement but again and again, the question is was it worth it expending both allied and German lives and as such should this event be celebrated?

    All in all a few questions to be answered on the morality of war and the fact that such a raid these days may be considered as a war crime?

    So, whats the correct answer to the points I have listed above ?
    I do not know and I am ex-RAF

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