Defending London In A Spitfire | WW2: I Was There

YouTube / WW2: I Was There

Since he was a young boy, Allan Scott dreamed of flying- he wanted to become a pilot. When the war hit years later in 1939, he saw it as a fulfillment of his childhood dream.

Although his application was initially rejected, it didn’t deter him. He was eventually chosen to become a fighter pilot, and would eventually defend London and South England from attacks by German bombers with his Spitfire.

A Childhood Dream

When the war was declared on September 3, 1939, men over 18 in Britain can volunteer for service.

“I realized this was my opportunity to get into the Air Force,” Scott said. “I want to be a fighter pilot because I felt that my temperament would not be to look after a crew of eight. I wanted to be on a Spitfire where I could fling it around and come back with other enemy aircraft.”

Never Giving Up

However, to qualify for the fighter pilot training, Scott needed to pass the recruiting board. He didn’t pass initially since he said that he was trained to be an architect. The sergeant told him he didn’t qualify as architects tend to be reserved.

However, this didn’t deter him. He eventually came back the next week, didn’t see the same sergeants, and finally got in. Before learning to fly, he had to pass the “initial training” which gave an induction for aircrew cadets for RAF service.

A ‘Natural’

In training, Scott was considered a ‘natural’ in the Spitfire cockpit, and this love for aerobatics eventually aided him in evading enemy Messerschmitt aircraft.

In July 1940, the Luftwaffe (the German Air Force) began their relentless bombing attacks on the UK. This eventually became known as the Battle of Britain, wherein the RAF engaged with the Luftwaffe’s planes in an aerial battle. At this point, Scott was still in the infancy of his training so he had to watch from afar.

The Strongest Link

The RAF base at the Biggin Hill Aerodrome in Kent played a key role in defending London and Southeast England from German bombers. Not long after, Scott was sent to Biggin Hall joining a Spitfire squadron and finishing his training.

Throughout WWII, Biggin Hall became an extremely active base and became known as the “The Strongest Link” as it went on to defend the country from enemy attacks.

Flying Solo and Defending London

After months of training, Scott was ready to fly solo, defending the country from attacks from the Luftwaffe.“All the cities are being bombed and our task was to knock the bombers down instead of letting them bomb our cities.” 

“That pride that you get flying there to do a job to stop the enemy overcoming us, and we knew that they (Hitler) had invaded and we were finished. But you didn’t have the time to think about it. Our job was to go up and shot the (enemy) aircraft down, and to think about it, the future didn’t enter your head at that time.” Scott recalled.