Operation DF (ii)

This was a British naval undertaking by ships and carrierborne aircraft to find and destroy German shipping off the coast of German-occupied central Norway (6/7 September 1940).

The primary weapon of the operation was the aircraft complement of the elderly fleet carrier Furious, which was escorted by the battleship Nelson, light anti-aircraft cruisers Naiad and Bonaventure, and destroyers Ashanti, Bedouin, Eskimo, Matabele, Punjabi, Somali and Tartar.

At 05.00 on 7 September, in a westerly gale and heavy rain, Furious launched nine Blackburn Skua warplanes of No. 801 Squadron and 12 Fairey Swordfish warplanes of Nos 816 and 825 Squadrons to attack German shipping, and after the aircraft had been launched the surface force turned to the south to return to Scapa Flow.

The aircraft sighted and attacked two small ships of about 2,000 and 1,000 tons: the larger vessel was claimed sunk, but this was not confirmed. The aircraft returned to the naval air station at Hatston in the Orkney islands group, some refuelling en route at Sumburgh in the Shetland islands group.