Wykeham-Barnes, P. G. [Wing Commander UK]

Peter Wykeham

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Sir Peter Guy Wykeham
Royal Air Force- 2nd Tactical Air Force, 1943-1945. CH12658.jpg
Group Captain P. G. Wykeham-Barnes c.1944
Born 13 September 1915
Died 23 February 1995(1995-02-23) (aged 79)
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch Royal Air Force
Years of service 19321969
Rank Air Marshal
Commands held Deputy Chief of the Air Staff (196769)
Far East Air Force (196467)
No. 38 Group RAF (196062)
RAF Wattisham (195253)
RAF North Weald (195152)
No. 140 Wing RAF (1944)
No. 23 Squadron RAF (194243)
No. 257 Squadron RAF (1942)
No. 73 Squadron RAF (1941)
Battles/wars Second World War
  • North African Campaign
  • European theatre
  • Italian campaign
Korean War
Awards Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath
Distinguished Service Order & Bar
Officer of the Order of the British Empire
Distinguished Flying Cross & Bar
Air Force Cross
Mentioned in Dispatches (3)
Air Medal (United States)
Commander of the Order of the Dannebrog (Denmark)

Air Marshal Sir Peter Guy Wykeham KCB, DSO & Bar, OBE, DFC & Bar, AFC (13 September 1915 23 February 1995), born Peter Guy Wykeham-Barnes was a Royal Air Force fighter pilot and squadron commander, and a flying ace of the Second World War.

RAF career

Wykeham-Barnes joined the Royal Air Force as an apprentice in 1932. He served in the Second World War as a Flight Commander with No. 274 Squadron and as Officer Commanding No. 73 Squadron before commanding the fighters at Headquarters Desert Air Force. He continued his war service Officer Commanding No. 257 Squadron and then as Officer Commanding No. 23 Squadron before becoming Sector Commander at RAF Kenley and then commanding No. 140 Wing.

Remaining in the RAF after the War, Wykeham-Barnes was employed as a test pilot before serving with the USAF Fifth Air Force in the Korean War. On his return to Great Britain, Wykeham-Barnes served as station commander at RAF North Weald and then RAF Wattisham before becoming Assistant Chief of Staff (Operations) at Headquarters Allied Air Forces Central Europe in 1953. He went on to join the Air Staff (Operations) at Headquarters RAF Fighter Command in 1956 and became Director of Fighter & Theatre Air Force Operations in 1958. He served as Air Officer Commanding No. 38 Group from 1960, the Director of the Joint Warfare Staff from 1962, the Commander of the Far East Air Force from 1964 and the Deputy Chief of the Air Staff from 1967 before retiring in 1969.

Published works

He is the author of a history of Fighter Command (Fighter Command. A Study of Air Defense 19141960 published in 1960 and a biography of Alberto Santos-Dumont, published in 1962.


In 1949 he married Barbara Priestley; they had two sons and one daughter.


Wing Commander P G Wykeham-Barnes, when Wing Commander - Fighters, at Air Headquarters, Western Desert Air Force, probably at Burg-el-Arab, Egypt. By the time of this appointment, Wykeham-Barnes had shot down fourteen enemy aircraft in combats over the Western Desert, while flying with Nos. 80 and 274 Squadrons RAF, and as the Commanding Officer of No. 73 Squadron RAF.