Friday, October 27, 2006

Wing Cdr Peter V Ayerst DFC 1920-2014

Wing Commander Peter V. Ayerst was a World War Two Fighter Ace. He joined the RAF in 1938 and then fought in campaigns during the entire length of the war, from 1939 to 1945. Peter took part in The Battle of France, Battle of Britain, El Alamein, D Day, and Bomber Escort, deep into the heart of Germany.Although he is not officially recognised as a Battle of Britain pilot,he did shoot down a Heinkel He 111 during this period.
On the 14th August 1940, he and two fellow Instructor's of 7 Operational Training Unit shot down Heinkel He 111P Werke No. 2624 of 8 Kampfgeschwader 27. The Heinkel He 111 forced-landed at Border House Farm, near Chichester and was set alight by its crew.
By the end of the war, W/Cmdr. Peter Ayerst had claimed the following enemy aircraft: 3 destroyed, 2 shared destroyed, 1 probable, 3 damaged and 2 destroyed on the ground.
By February 1945, he became a Test Pilot on Spitfires at Castle Bromwich under Alex Henshaw. Peter flew every operational mark of Spitfire and Hurricane in the RAF's inventory, and flew more Mark 22's than any other Pilot. In September 1944, Peter was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.