Battle of Britain London Monument – F/O I N MacDougall

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Privacy Statement The Airmen’s Stories – F/O I N MacDougall


Ian Neil MacDougall was born on 11th June 1920 and educated at Morrisons Academy, Crieff. He entered the RAF College Cranwell in April 1938 as a Flight Cadet.

After the outbreak of war Cranwell cadets who had not completed their courses were enlisted in the regular RAF on 7th September 1939 as Airmen u/t Pilots.

MacDougall passed out on 21st October 1939 with a permanent commission. He was then posted to 141 Squadron, reforming at Turnhouse.



The squadron flew south to West Malling on 12th July 1940. Shortly after 0900 on the 19th twelve Defiants moved to the forward airfield at Hawkinge. At 1223 they were ordered to carry out an offensive patrol twenty miles south of Folkestone. Three were left behind with engine trouble.

During the patrol the nine Defiants were surprised by a force of Me109’s of III/JG51. MacDougall’s aircraft, L6983, was hit in the engine. He ordered his gunner, Sgt. JF Wise, to bale out. He then managed to get the aircraft back to West Malling. Wise was reported Missing and no trace of him was ever found.

MacDougall was posted to 260 Squadron at Drem on 2nd May 1941 and later in the month he left with it for the Middle East. He became a Flight Commander in late 1941. He shared in the destruction of a Ju88 on 5th April 1942 and he was awarded the DFC (gazetted 15th May 1942).

He commanded 94 Squadron in the Western Desert from February to May 1942. He then returned to the UK and was placed in a non-operational post before going in May 1943 to Malta, where he joined 1435 Flight.

In June 1943 he was given command of 185 Squadron at Krendi. On 8th July he damaged a Me109 and on 20th August he shared in the destruction of a Cant Z506B. He led 185 until January 1944 when he returned to the UK. He then commanded 131 Squadron from May to October 1944.

MacDougall stayed in the postwar RAF and held a number of teaching and instructing appointments, amongst them Chief Flying Instructor at Cranwell and as a War Studies Lecturer at the US Air Force Academy in Colorado.

In 1965 he was Chief Air Staff Officer at 38 Group, he was then appointed Air Defence Commander in Zambia. He was made a CBE in 1967. From 1967 to 1969 he was Air Attaché in Paris. He retired from the RAF on 27th December 1969 as an Air Commodore.

MacDougall died in August 1987.


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