# 1159 Merlin HM1, 820 Sqn
Purchased products will not feature the Squadron Prints watermark.
Squadron Prints Lithograph No. 1159 - Merlin HM1, ZH851 '013', 820 Naval Air Squadron, RNAS Culdrose.
820 Squadron is the oldest Fleet Air Arm Squadron still in service being formed in April 1933 for spotter/reconnaissance duties, and boasts more Battle Honours than any other Squadron. Embarked in HMS ARK ROYAL at the beginning of WWII the Squadron operated in Norway, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean being re-tasked to the roles of surface search and torpedo-attack, and took part in the attack which crippled the German battleship Bismarck in May 1941. In 1942 the Squadron supported the Allied landings in North Africa, and claimed its first U Boat in November of that year. In 1943 further landings in Sicily and Salerno tightened the Allies grip ready for the assault on mainland Europe in 1944, the year that the Squadron also attacked the battleship TIRPITZ. In 1945 the Squadron re-deployed to the Far East in the carrier HMS INDEFATIGABLE taking part in the largest ever Fleet Air Arm action in the raids on the Japanese-held oil refineries at Palembang in Sumatra. In June 1951 the Squadron re-formed for Anti-Submarine operations and in 1957 became the second Squadron to become Pingers when converted to rotary wing aircraft and flew the Sea King V embarked in HMS INVINCIBLE during the Falklands War in 1982. Between 1993 and 2000 the Squadron was primarily involved in logistical support and humanitarian aid operating in Bosnia, Mozambique and Sierra Leone and continued Sea King operations until the cessation of the conflict in Iraq in July 2003. In September 2003 the Squadron re-equipped with the advanced, multi-mission capable Merlin HM Mk1, allowing 820 Squadron to maintain its position at the forefront of Naval Aviation well into the 21st century.