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The raid's official name was "Operation Chastise" but the more potent "Dambusters" quickly prevailed, especially in summing up raid objectives, ingenuity and the supreme courage of the bomber crews involved.

In addition to the impossible risk of flying through enemy flak at heights down to 30 metres (roughly 9 storeys) in the dead of night, they had to land their bombs with incredible precision: the equivalent of threading a needle in the dark - but that is exactly what they did.

The Dambusters Raid on Germany's Ruhr Valley industrial heartland started at 9:29 pm on 16 May 1943, led by the legendary Wing Commander Guy Gibson VC, DSO & Bar, DFC & Bar — veteran of 170 missions. 

A newly invented "bouncing bomb" was used to hit dam walls at the lowest angle possible to detonate at their feet. The bouncing was inspired by the principle of skipping a stone over water. Given the technology of the day, it was amazing anything was hit at all. Yet the Dambusters breached two dams, damaged others, flooded the Ruhr Valley and destroyed or damaged countless houses, power stations factories and mines.

The enemy, needing to affect the fastest possible repairs, had to deploy labour and facilities needed elsewhere. The disruption ultimately helped reduce the number and quality of defences facing the D-Day Invasion.

Above all, the Dambusters Raid was a major morale booster for the British and her allies, proving they were well able to take the battle to Germany. This one smallish bombing mission inflicted more damage per crew member than any other.

This commemorative silver celebration two-coin set, exclusive to Bradford Exchange, is exquisitely crafted to the highest numismatic standards; each includes a 24K gold inlay emblem of the anniversary against a dark, polished Ruthenium background accent showing etched bomber and dam detail. The obverse features the current coin portrait of Queen Elizabeth II.


  • 75th Anniversary commemorative two-coin Silver set

  • A set to remember the significant courage of the airmen in Operation Chastie

  • Significant WWII aerial attack that shaped the war.

  • Limited worldwide mintage of only 999​

Dambusters – Operation Chastise 75th Anniversary

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