Royal Air Force Fighter, the Hawker Hurricane had a top speed of 320mph, at 18,200 feet and 340mph at 17,500, ceiling of 34,200 and a range of 935 miles. The Hurricane was armed with eight fixed wing mounted .303 browning machine guns in the Mark I and twelve .303 browning's in the MKIIB in the Hurricane MKIIC it had four 20mm cannon. All time classic fighter the Hurricane was designed in 1933-1934, the first prototype flew in June 1936 and a contract for 600 for the Royal Air Force was placed. The first production model flew ion the 12th October 1937 and 111 squadron of the Royal Air Force received the first Hurricanes in January 1938. By the outbreak of World war two the Royal Air Force had 18 operational squadrons of Hurricanes. During the Battle of Britain a total of 1715 Hurricanes took part, (which was more than the rest of the aircraft of the Royal air force put together) and almost 75% of the Victories during the Battle of Britain went to hurricane pilots. The Hawker Hurricane was used in all theatres during World war two, and in many roles. in total 14,533 Hurricanes were built.
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|Top Aces for : Hurricane|
|A list of all Aces from our database who are known to have flown this aircraft. A profile page is available by clicking the pilots name.|
|John Randall Daniel Bob Braham||29.00|
|Robert Stanford-Tuck||29.00||The signature of Robert Stanford-Tuck features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Frank R Carey||28.00||The signature of Frank R Carey features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|James Harry Ginger Lacey||28.00||The signature of James Harry Ginger Lacey features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Billy Drake||24.50||The signature of Billy Drake features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Archibald Ashmore Archie McKellar||21.00|
|F W Higginson||15.00||The signature of F W Higginson features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Peter Malam Brothers||15.00||The signature of Peter Malam Brothers features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Robert Francis Thomas Doe||15.00||The signature of Robert Francis Thomas Doe features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Tom Neil||14.00||The signature of Tom Neil features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Manfred Beckett Czernin||13.00|
|Alan Geoffrey Page||12.50||The signature of Alan Geoffrey Page features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Joseph Risso||11.00||The signature of Joseph Risso features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|George H Westlake||11.00||The signature of George H Westlake features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Ken Mackenzie||8.00||The signature of Ken Mackenzie features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Paul Farnes||8.00||The signature of Paul Farnes features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Charles Palliser||7.50||The signature of Charles Palliser features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|James Douglas Lindsay||7.00||The signature of James Douglas Lindsay features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Kenneth Lee||7.00||The signature of Kenneth Lee features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Bob Foster||7.00||The signature of Bob Foster features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Wilf Sizer||7.00||The signature of Wilf Sizer features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Owen Vincent Tracey||6.00|
|Keith Ashley Lawrence||5.00||The signature of Keith Ashley Lawrence features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|John Harry Stafford||5.00||The signature of John Harry Stafford features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Signatures for : Hurricane|
|A list of all signatures from our database who are associated with this aircraft. A profile page is available by clicking their name.|
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Captain Luke Allen
| Captain Luke Allen |
Volunteering for the RAF just as the Battle of Britain was reaching its climax, Luke joined 71 Eagle Squadron, flying his first combat operation in April 1941 on Hurricanes. Converting to Spitfires the squadron had a busy period of patrols, sweeps and escorts before transferring to the USAAF as the 334th Fighter Squadron. Luke flew over 60 combat missions in Europe.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flying Officer (Acting Flt/Lt) Bill Anderson
| Flying Officer (Acting Flt/Lt) Bill Anderson |
Flying Officer (Acting Flt/Lt) Bill Anderson flew with 16 Sqn from 1943 until the war was over. He trained in Georgia, USA, before becoming attached to 16 Sqn at Benson, flying missions over France and Germany. Bill flew many different types of aircraft beginning with a PT17 Stearman in the USA; others include Tiger Moths, Typhoons, Tempest, Harvards, Lysanders, Hurricanes and Oxfords.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Alexander N R L Appleford
| Flight Lieutenant Alexander N R L Appleford |
Born in September 1921, Robin Appleford was one of the youngest pilots to take part in the Battle of Britain. He joined 66 Squadron at Duxford on 13th May 1940, flying Spitfires. He was shot down over the Thames Estuary during a dogfight on 4th September 1940, but baled out slightly wounded. After a spell as an instructor, in 1943 he flew another combat tour, this time with 274 Squadron, flying Hurricanes on coastal defence in North Africa. After a spell with the Aircraft Delivery Unit, he went to South Africa as a flying instructor. Sadly, we have learned that Alexander Appleford passed away on 17th April 2012.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wing Commander Peter V Ayerst DFC
| Wing Commander Peter V Ayerst DFC |
Peter Ayerst joined the RAF in 1938, and was posted to 73 Squadron in August 1939, flying Hurricanes. He went to France with the squadron, scoring his first victory in April 1940. After a spell instructing, when he shared in the destruction of a He111 with two other instructors, he had postings with both 145 and 243 Squadrons. In July 1942 he went to 33 Squadron, before promotion to flight commander with 238 Squadron, both postings with further combat success. After a period in South Africa, he returned to the UK, joining 124 Squadron flying Spitfire MkVIIs in defence of the invasion ports, where he scored his final victory; then flew Spitfire MkIXs on bomber escorts to Germany. He later became a Spitfire test pilot at Castle Bromwich. Peter finished the war not only a brilliant fighter Ace, but also one of the most highly regarded wartime instructors in the RAF. His final victory tally stood at 5 destroyed, 1 probable, 3 damaged and 2 further destroyed on the ground. Peter Ayerst died on 15th May 2014.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader Cyril Bam Bamberger
| Squadron Leader Cyril Bam Bamberger |
Born in Port Sunlight on May 4th 1919, Cyril Bamberger won an electrical engineering apprenticeship at Lever Brothers in 1934. He joined 610 Squadron AuxAF, in 1936 on the ground staff. Accepted for pilot training with the RAF VR in late 1938, he soloed in mid 1939. Bamberger was called up at the outbreak of war and on the 23rd October 1939 was posted to No 8 EFTS, Woodley and later went to 9 FTS, Hullavington to complete his training. He rejoined 610 (F) Squadron at Biggin Hill on July 27th but with no experience on Spitfires, he was sent to Hawarden for three weeks. Back with 610 (F) Squadron, Bamberger claimed a probable Bf109 on August 28th 1940. He was posted to 41 (F) Squadron at Hornchurch, Essex, September 17th and on October 5th he claimed a Bf109 destroyed. After volunteering for Malta, Bamberger left 41 (F) Squadron in mid-October 1940. He sailed from Glasgow on the Aircraft Carrier HMS Argus. Luckily for him, he did not fly off for Malta with the twelve Hurricanes ad two navigating Skuas which did. Only five of the fourteen aircraft reached their destination. Bamberger eventually reached Malta on November 28th on the destroyer HMS Hotspur, and on arrival he joined 261 Squadron. On January 18th 1941 he destroyed a Junkers JU87 Stuka and another the following day. 261 Squadron was dispended on May 21st 1941. Bamberger moved on the 12th to the newly formed 185 (F) Squadron at Hal Far. He was posted back to England on June 12th and was sent to Central Gunnery School at Sutton Bridge. Commissioned in February 1942, he was posted to Northern Ireland as a Gunnery Officer with the Americans who were converting to Spitfires. In March 1943 Bamberger volunteered for North Africa where he joined 93 Squadron at Hal Far, Malta in May. On July 13th operating over Sicily, he shot down a Junkers JU87 Stuka. In August Bamberger joined 243 Squadron in Sicily as a Flight Commander. He was awarded the DFC (28.09.43). On October 16th Bamberger damaged a Bf109, his first success after 243 crossed into Italy. On May 25th 1944 he claimed a Bf109 destroyed and on June 15th a Macci 202 damaged. Bamberger came off operations in July for medical reasons returning to the UK. He was sent on an instructors course and in early 1945 was posted to the Gunnery School at Catfoss. Awarded a bar to his DFC (14.11.44). Bamberger received it from the King at Buckingham Palace on July 3rd 1945. Released in 1946, Bamberger returned to Lever Brothers and rejoined 610 Squadron at Hooten Park, becoming its CO in 1950. When the Korean crisis came, he was recalled to the RAF. In February 1951 he was granted a permanent commission and in May 1952 moved to an Intelligence Unit, assessing strike capabilities of the Chinese and Koreans. Bamberger retired on January 29th 1959 as a Squadron Leader, and became managing director of a small packaging materials company – he started in 1954. On retirement he had an antique shop in Hampshire. Sadly, Cyril Bamberger passed away on 3rd February 2008.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander Roland Bee Beamont CBE DSO DFC DL
| Wing Commander Roland Bee Beamont CBE DSO DFC DL |
One of World War IIs great characters, Bee flew Hurricanes with 87 Squadron, later leading a Tempest Wing. He had 8 victories plus a further 32 VIs destroyed. After the war he became a highly respected Chief Test Pilot.Wing Commander Roland Beamont, one of the RAFs top buzz bomb interceptors, was born in Enfield England on August 10, 1920. Educated at Eastborne College, Beamont accepted a short service commission with the Royal Air Force in 1938. He commenced flying in 1939 at the the No. 13 Reserve Flying School at White Waltham. His initial duty was with the Group Fighter Pool at St. Athan where he learned to fly the Hurricane. Beamont was soon posted with the No. 87 Squadron which was part of the Advanced Air Striking Force in France. Seeing action in both France and Belgium prior to the Allied withdrawl, Beamont rejoined 87 Squadron in England during the Battle of Britain. In the spring of 1941 Beamont was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross after destroying five enemy aircraft. As Commanding Officer of 609 Squadron, Beamont pioneered both day and night ground attack missions utilizing the Typhoon. Beamont was credited with destroying 25 trains in a three month period. He was then made responsible for organizing and commanding the first Tempest Wing at Newchurch. Three days after D-Day Bearnont shot down an Me-109, marking the first aerial combat victory for the Hawker Tempest. In the summer of 1944 Beamont destroyed 32 buzz bombs prior to leading his wing to a Dutch Airfield at Volkel on the Continent. In October of 1944 Beamont was shot down during a ground attack mission over Germany, and he remained a prisoner of war until wars end. Following repatriation Beamont became an experimental test pilot with the Gloster Aircraft Company, which had developed the RAFs first jet aircraft. Turning down a permanent commission with the RAF, Beamont then joined English Electric Company in Wharton as the Chief Test Pilot for the B3/45 (Canberra) jet bomber program. He managed all prototype testing on the Canberra, and in the process set two Atlantic speed records. Later Beamont was involved with the supersonic P1/Lightning program, and became the first British pilot to fly at twice the speed of sound. From 1965 until 1970 he was a founding member of Britains highly succesful Saudi Arabian export program. For several years prior to his retirement in 1979, Beamont was Director of Operations for British Aerospace and Panavia where he was in charge of flight testing for the Tornado. Since his retirement Beamont has authored nine books, and published numerous magazine articles. He is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Scociety and an Honorary Fellow of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots in America. He died 19th November 2001.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Jack Biggs
| Flight Lieutenant Jack Biggs |
Serving with 17 Sqn on Hurricanes he then transferred to Spitfires flying on the Burma front from March 1944 until the end of September 1945 as air cover for the planned invasion on Malaya which, as a result of the Nuclear attacks on the Japanese Empire, never happened.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Air Commodore Peter Brothers CBE, DSO, DFC*
| Air Commodore Peter Brothers CBE, DSO, DFC* |
Learnt to fly at the age of 16 and joined the RAF two years later in 1936. He first saw action in 1940 when as a Flight Commander in 32 Squadron, based at Biggin Hill, he flew his Hurricane against the fighters and bombers of the Luftwaffe. He recalls this as an intensely busy period, during which he shot down an Me109 - his first enemy aircraft; by the end of August that same year his tally of enemy aircraft shot down increased to eight. Awarded the DFC, he was transferred to 257 Squadron where he joined Bob-Stanford Tuck as a Flight Commander. Promoted in 1941 to Squadron Leader, Pete Brothers then took command of 457 Squadron RAAF, equipped with Spitfires. A year later when 457 Squadron returned to Australia, Pete took command of 602 Squadron. In the early autumn of 1942 he went on to become Wing Leader of the Tangmere Wing, succeeding his old friend, Douglas Bader. By the end of the war Pete Brothers had amassed 875 operational hours over a 44-month period. He was credited with having personally shot down 16 enemy aircraft and damaged many more. He later went on to command 57 Squadron during the Malaya campaign. Upon return to the UK Pete Brothers joined the V-Force, flying Valiant-4 jet bombers. He retired in 1973. Sadly, Pete Brothers died 18th December 2008.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Commodore Cyril Brown CBE AFC AE
| Air Commodore Cyril Brown CBE AFC AE |
Born 17th January 1921. Joined the RAFVR in 1939, and completed pilot training to fly Hurricanes with No.245 Sqn during the Battle of Britain. He then joined No.616 Sqn in 1941, before taking a post as a test pilot. He died 1st November 2003.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flying Officer John Byrne
| Flying Officer John Byrne |
With the RAF since 1938, Byrne flew Hurricanes, Spitfires, P-47s, Tempests and Typhoons during WWII. Upon joining 197 Sqn in March 1944 he flew Typhoons during one the squadrons most hectic periods in the run up to D-Day and throughout the subsequent Allied invasion, mostly on low-level bombing missions. In total Byrne completed over 150 combat operations and finally left the RAF in 1946.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Group Captain Frank Carey
| Group Captain Frank Carey |
Born 7th May 1912. Frank Carey joined the Royal Air Force n 1927 as a 15 year old apprentice. Carey was first employed as a ground crew fitter and metal rigger but in 1935 Frank carey was selected in 1935 for a pilots course. He was then posted as a sergeant pilot to No 43 Squadron, the Fighting Cocks, whose aircraft he had been servicing. Demonstrating exceptional panache in the Hawker Fury biplane fighter, Carey was selected for the squadrons renowned aerobatics team which took part in many air displays. In early 1939, No 43 Squadron was re-equipped at Tangmere, Sussex, with the eight-gun Hurricane fighter. During World War Two, Frank Carey scored 25 enemy aircraft destroyed, one of the highest Allied fighter pilot totals. Carey opened his account at Acklington in Northumberland, when he shared in the destruction of several Heinkel shipping raiders during the cold winter of 1939-40. This was followed by a short spell at Wick defending the fleet at Scapa Flow before he was commissioned as a pilot officer and posted with No 3 Hurricane Squadron to Merville in France after the German invasion, adding to his total. After six days day of continuous combat, during which he bagged some 14 kills Carey was shot down. He had attacked a Dornier 17 bomber and was following it closely down in its last moments; the pilot was dead but the surviving rear gunner pressed his trigger to set Careys Hurricane alight, wounding him in a leg. The fire stopped, and Carey lwas forced to land between the Allied and enemy lines. Carey managed to get back by hitching a lift with a Belgium soldier on the back of his motorbike until he was picked up by a Passing Army truck which got him to a casualty station at Dieppe, he was put on a Hospital train but the train was attacked by the luftwaffe afer the attack the Engin eDriver had detache dthe train form the carriages and left the wounded. The wlaking wounded managed to push the carriages to the relative safety of La Baule on the coast. Frank Carey along with some other RAF personel managed to obtain a abandoned Bristol Bombay whihc they flew back to Hendon with Carey manning the rear gun. Carey found himself listed as missing believed killed and awarded a DFC and Bar to add to an earlier DFM. He returned to Tangmere just in time for the Battle of Britain. During the Battle of Britain, Carey was shot down during an attack on a large formation of German aircraft, when after several ships had been lost from a Channel convoy during the summer of 1940 Carey and five other Hurricane pilots of No 43 Squadron arrived on the scene to find enemy aircraft stretched out in great lumps all the way from the Isle of Wight to Cherbourg. Frank Carey said about the combat At the bottom were Ju87 dive-bombers; above these Me 109s in great oval sweeps, and above them Me 110s. Three of us got up into them. It was absolutely ludicrous - three of us to take on that mob. At one stage I found himself hooked on to the tail of the last of an echelon of 109s and started firing away quite merrily. Then I had an awful wallop. It was an Me 110 with four cannons sitting just behind me. There was a big bang and there, in the wing, was a hole a man could have crawled through. Carey was slightly wounded by an explosive bullet, then a second Me 110 attacked and caused damage to Carey's rudder; but he managed to return to Tangmere only to be fired at by its anti-aircraft guns. That he managed to land was, he said, a great tribute to the Hurricane. He had been in combat up to six times a day when on August 18, the squadron's losses enabled him to lead No 43 for the first time in an attack on a mixed bunch of fighters and Ju 87 dive-bombers. The fur was flying everywhere, he recalled. Suddenly I was bullet stitched right across the cockpit. Since Tangmere was under attack he turned away and found a likely field for a crash landing at Pulborough, Sussex, where his Hurricane turned violently upside down. he spent some time in hospital. In November 1941 he was posted to Burma with No.135 Sqn when war broke out in the Far East. No 135 was diverted to Rangoon in Burma , , On February 27 1942, Carey was promoted wing commander to lead No 267 Wing, though it could seldom muster more than six serviceable Hurricanes. After destroying several Japanese aircraft he was forced to move to Magwe. As Japanese air raids increased Carey turned the Red Road, the main thoroughfare across the city, into a fighter runway. One advantage, he recalled, was that it was quite possible to sit in Firpos, the citys fashionable restaurant, and take off within three to four minutes. I managed it on several occasions. Early in 1943, Carey formed an air fighting training unit at Orissa, south-west of Calcutta, for pilots who were unfamiliar with conditions and Japanese tactics. In November 1944 he was posted to command No 73 OTU at Fayid, Egypt, in the rank of group captain. Awarded the AFC, Carey returned to Britian as the war ended in 1945, where he was granted a permanent commission and went to teach tactics at the Central Fighter Establishment at Tangmere. After attending the Army Staff College he reverted to the rank of wing commander to lead No 135 Wing, 2nd Tactical Air Force in Germany, where he flew Tempests. Converting to jets, he moved to Gutersloh as wing commander, A succession of staff appointments followed until 1958 he was appointed air adviser to the British High Commission in Australia. Carey, who was awarded the US Silver Star and appointed CBE in 1960, retired from the Royal Air Force in 1962 and joined Rolls-Royce as its aero division representative in Australia, New Zealand and Fiji, retiring in 1972 and moving back the the UK. . Frank Carey died 6th December 2004.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer Eric Carter
| Warrant Officer Eric Carter |
Initially posted to 615 Squadron flying Hurricanes, Eric was then posted to 81 Squadron, again on Hurricanes. In the autumn of 1941 he accompanied the squadron on HMS Argus to Russia as part of Force Benedict, a clandestine operation to defend the strategically important Russian port of Murmansk. As well as operational patrols the squadron escorted Russian bomber missions.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader A M Charlesworth DFC
| Squadron Leader A M Charlesworth DFC |
Joined the RAF straight from school just before his 18th birthday in the summer of 1940 with the sole purpose of becoming a fighter pilot. After training, at age just 18, he was posted to RAF Ibsley, Hampshire, to 118 Sqdn, flying Spitfire 2Bs. Here he took part in his first scramble. After a month he was posted where the action was thickest, to a 11 Group Station, RAF Kenley, where he joined 602 Sqdn. His Squadron Commander was Al Deere, by this time a highly decorated ace; Al was 23 then and had already been shot down nine times. 602 Squadron was equipped with the more advanced Spitfire VBs which had two 20mm cannons, firing at 1200 rounds a minute, plus four very useful Browning 50mm machine guns firing at an even higher rate per minute. Al Deere was eventually posted to another squadron and Paddy Finucane took over - possibly the finest fighter pilot 1 came across, Max. Charlesworth continues, I remember him trying to get his 21st victory before his birthday and I often flew No. 2 to him. These were twitchy and tiring days when three sweeps a over occupied France day were the norm, to be met each time by several hundred Me 109s and Focke Wolf 190s, at our maximum range, where hectic dog fights ensued. We were normally outnumbered and a day could last from an early morning call at 3.30am to the last landing at 10.30pm in the semi-dark of the long summer of 1941. The average age of the approximately 30 pilots on the squadron was always about 19. During this period they were scrambled to search for and attack the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau (although they did not know it at the time) which, with escorting vessels had slipped up the Channel from Brest. The weather was awful and Max flew straight across the German battle cruiser Hipper thinking it was a Royal Navy cruiser. The Hipper opened up at Max with guns blazing but he was fortunate to escape with just a hole in one wing. In April 1942 Max was posted to a secret unit called MSFU (Merchant Service Fighter Unit) where he flew Hurricanes from catapults on merchant ships attached to convoys of anything up to fifty merchant men a time. The ships were mainly bringing supplies from America and taking them to Murmansk and Archangel, the hard-pressed Soviets and Gibraltar. Max recalls this as a highly physical and uncomfortable task, apart from also being very scary. The ships were constantly attacked by U Boat packs and aircraft. When they were in range of the latter, if they launched the Hurricane they knew they would ultimately have to bail out and hope to be picked up by either a friendly escort vessel or a sunken ships lifeboat. The North Atlantic route to Canada, north of Iceland and down the Greenland coast at an average sped of six knots in appalling seas was not our idea of a holiday cruise, Max vividly recalls. Having survived this posting Max was then moved to 124 Sq. at West Malting, Near Maidstone, Kent. The squadron was equipped with the much more powerful Spitfire IXs. Their task here was mainly escorting USAF and RAF bombing raids into Europe. With longrange tanks fitted they were able to reach Hamburg and Ludwigshafen; later on they were able to refuel from liberated bases in France. These ops. required them to fly as Top Cover at over 30,000 feet for up to three hours, where it was so cold the pilots returned to base hardly able to climb out of their cockpits. On February 9th 1945 Max was the Senior Flight Commander on 124 Squadron during their move to Cottishall. Here they adapted the Spitfire Ks to dive-bombing. The Spitfires carried either a 500lb. bomb under the fuselage and two 250lbs. under each wing or, a 90-gallon fuel tank under the fuselage and a 250lb. bomb under each wing. Their mission was to destroy V2 sites in Holland - mainly situated in small parks near the centre of the Hague. These V2 sites were launching rockets on London in ever increasing numbers. As well as attacking the V2 sites they were to destroy railway lines used by the Germans to transport V2s into the area. These were dangerous times as the V2s sites were heavily defended by 88mm guns down to 20mm. The flak was horrendous and we lost many recalls Max. As Senior Flight Commander, Max often led the squadron, though identifying targets from 12,000 feet was difficult. After the war Max was one of the first pilots to convert to the Meteor twin-engined jet, later to move on to Vampires and Canberras. His flying career was completed in June 1961 when he was posted to Warsaw, Poland as the Assistant Air Attache. He finally retired from the RAF in 1966.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader Douglas G Clift
| Squadron Leader Douglas G Clift |
Squadron Leader Douglas G Clift was born in 1919 and joined the RAF in January 1939. Douglas Clift arrived at 11 Group Pool, St Athan on 24 October 1939 and after converting to Hurricanes, he joined 79 Squadron at Biggin Hill on November 17. On 15 August 1940 Clift claimed a Bf 110 destroyed and on 30 August he shared in the destruction of a He 111. In July 1941 he was posted to the Central Flying School at Upavon for an instructor's course. Clift later volunteered for the Merchant Ship Fighter Unit (MSFU) and served with it until October 1942. He remained on flying duties for the rest of the war, finishing up in South-East Asia with the Royal Indian Air Force (RIAF). After the war Clift served with 34 Squadron flying photo-reconnaissance Spitfires until its disbandment in August 1947. later he became a radar specialist, sadly Squadron Leader Douglas G Clift passed away on the 31st December 2008 aged 89.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flying Officer Ken Cockram
| Flying Officer Ken Cockram |
After training in Rhodesia and a spell with 73 OTU in Egypt, Ken Cockram flew Hurricanes and Spitfires in late 1944 and early 1945 with 26 AA Cooperation Unit based in Egypt. He also flew Curtiss Kittyhawks with 112 Squadron on anti-shipping and fighter patrols, once crashing his aircraft on take-off during a dust storm. He completed a total of 198 operations.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Bryan Colston
| Flight Lieutenant Bryan Colston |
Bryan Colston was born in Buckinghamshire on 27 May 1921 and was educated at St Pauls School. He joined the RAFVR in 1940, training on Tiger Moths, Oxfords and Lysanders, becoming a fighter reconnaissance pilot with 225 Squadron in 1941. He served with 225 Sqn until July 1943 and became a Flight Commander in 1942. He flew Lysanders, Tomahawks, Hurricanes, Mustangs and Spitfires serving throughout the Tunisian campaign and flying over a hundred operational sorties. He contracted typhoid fever at the end of the campaign and was invalided back to the UK, where, after periods of instructing at 61 OTU and some staff appointments, he commanded 695 Squadron flying Spitfire XVIs.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Michael E Croskell
| Flight Lieutenant Michael E Croskell |
Joining the RAFVR in June 1938, Michael Croskell was called up in September 1939 at the outbreak of war. He was posted to join 213 Squadron at Wittering in December flying Hurricanes, and took part in the Battle of France and the operations over Dunkirk in May 1940, where he probably destroyed a Ju87. He flew with 213 Squadron throughout the Battle of Britain, scoring three further victories at the height of the battle in August 1940. Commissioned in 1942, his great fighter skills led to him spending six years as an instructor.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Cheif Marshal Sir Kenneth Cross KCB, CBE, DSO, DFC
| Air Cheif Marshal Sir Kenneth Cross KCB, CBE, DSO, DFC |
Born October 4th 1911, Kenneth Cross was commissioned in to the RAF in 1930, joining 25 Sqn in 1931. Kenneth Cross survived the sinking of the aircraft carrier HMS Glorious in June 1940, when his No.46 Sqn Hurricane was onboard. Sqn Ldr Kenneth Cross was one of only two pilots to survive the sinking of HMS Glorious. Squadron Leader Cross and Flight Lieutenant Jameson from 46 squadron managed to get aboard a Carley float with 61 seamen, but 25 of the latter died of exposure and exhaustion before the 38 survivors, the two RAF men amongst them, were finally picked up by a passing fishing vessel. He spent much of the war commading Hurricanes in Africa, involved in the Crusader offensive in 1941, returning home in early 1944, and working at the Air Ministry until 1945. He died on the 18th of June 2003.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Lieutenant Steve Crowe
| Lieutenant Steve Crowe |
Steve Crowe flew Hurricanes with 257 Squadron RAF. and undertook his first combat operation in November 1941. Along with other Americans he was then posted to join 133 Eagle Squadron, flying Spitfires, transferring to the USAAF in September 1942 as the 336th Fighter Squadron. He flew over 70 combat missions in both the European and Mediterranean theatres of operations.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant W R Cundy DFC DFM MID
| Flight Lieutenant W R Cundy DFC DFM MID |
Ron Cundy commenced flying with 135 Sqn before being posted to the Middle East with 260 Sqn flying Hurricanes and later Kittyhawks. Returning back to Australia he flew Spitfires in defence of Darwin with 452 Sqn RAAF. In North Africa he survived an encounter with Marseille, and ended the war with 5 confirmed victories.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Miss Lettice Curtis
| Miss Lettice Curtis |
Joined the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) in July 1940 having been taken on to ferry Tiger Moths. Although we were later allowed to ferry other training types such as Oxfords and Masters, it was not until the autumn of 1941 that women were allowed to fly operational aircraft types. I flew my first Hurricane in August 1941 and my first Spitfire a couple of weeks later. After a brief course on a Blenheim I was cleared to fly without any further training, twin-engine bombers up to the Wellington. In November 1943 I was sent on a Halifax course, which due to unserviceability and bad weather closed, restarting in February 1943 at Pocklington where I was cleared for ferrying Halifaxes. After that without further training, I ferried Lancasters and over 100 Stirlings. In November 1945 I ferried 14 Liberators.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Roy Daines DFM
| Flight Lieutenant Roy Daines DFM |
Roy Daines joined the RAF as soon as he was able, and after completing his hurried training as a pilot, was posted to join 247 Squadron in the autumn of 1940. Here he flew Gladiators and Hurricanes on coastal patrols, 247 being the only squadron to fly Gladiators during the Battle of Britain, before converting to nightfighting Hurricanes. Later, in 1943, he flew Typhoons with 247 before being posted to join 65 Squadron flying Spitfires and Mustangs.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Flt Lt Leonard Davies
| Flt Lt Leonard Davies |
Joined 151 Squadron in July 1940 and was wounded in combat over the Thames estuary on August 18th of that year. He later flew Sunderlands in the Middle East.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander Bob Doe, DSO, DFC*
| Wing Commander Bob Doe, DSO, DFC* |
In 1939 he joined the R.A.F. and upon completion of his training was posted to 234 squadron. During the Battle of Britain he achieved great success. He was one of the very few pilots to successfully fly both Hurricanes and Spitfires and was one of the top scorers of the Battle with 14 and two shared victories. He was awarded the DFC in October and a BAR in November. He joined 66 squadron as a Flight Commander then moving to 130 squadron in August 1943 saw him in 613 squadron flying Mustangs. October 1943 he was posted out to the Far-East, forming 10 squadron, Indian Air Force, which he led on the Burma front. Awarded the DSO in 1945. He stayed on in the R.A.F. after the war, retirement in 1966 was followed by opening a Garage business which proved successful. Sadly, we have learned of the passing of Bob Doe on 21st February 2010.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Group Captain Billy Drake DSO DFC*
| Group Captain Billy Drake DSO DFC* |
Joined the R.A.F. in 1936. His first posting was to 1 squadron flying Furies then Hurricanes and first saw action over France in the Spring of 1940 and was awarded his first DFC by the end of the year. As a Squadron Leader he was sent to West Africa to command 128 Squadron. 1942 saw his commanding 112 squadron in North Africa, in July saw an immediate BAR to his DFC and in December an immediate DSO. Posted to Malta as Wing Commander he won a US DFC in 1943. Back in the UK he now was flying Typhoons in the lead up to D-Day. With Pete Brothers he was sent to the States to attend the US Staff School at Fort Leavenworth. After the war he continued in the R.A.F. serving in Japan, Malaya, Singapore, Switzerland and his final posting as Group Captain RAF Chivenor, Devon. Retired in July 1963. Going to Portugal where he ran a Bar and Restaurant and dealing in Real Estate. In his flying career he accounted for more than 24 enemy aircraft. Sadly, Billy Drake passed away on 28th August 2011.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Group Captain Byron Duckenfield AFC
| Group Captain Byron Duckenfield AFC |
Byron Duckenfield started at Flying Training School on 25th November 1935 in a Blackburn B2 at Brough. As a Sergeant, he joined No.32 Sqn at Biggin Hill on 8th August 1936 and flew Gauntlets and Hurricanes. He joined 74 Squadron at Hornchurch on 11th April 1940, flying Spitfires, and on 5th May was posted to 501 Squadron flying Hurricanes at Tangmere. On the 11th of May at Betheniville, he survived a crash in a passenger transport Bombay aircraft in an aircraft in which he was a passenger, While comin ginto land the aircraft at 200 feet the aircraft stalled and the aircrfat fell backwards just levelly out as it histhe ground. 5 of th epassengers were killed when the centre section collapsed and crushed them. Duckenfield was fortunate as he had moved position during the flight. as the two passengers sitting each side of where he was sitting had died in the crash. (it was found later that the Bombay had beeb loaded with to much weight in the aft sectiion. ) recovering in hospital in Roehampton. On 23rd July 1940, he rejoined No.501 Sqn at Middle Wallop, then moved to to Gravesend two days later, scoring his first victory, a Ju87, on the 29th of July 1940. During August and September he scored three more victories. After a spell as a test pilot from 14th September 1940, he was posted to command 66 Squadron on 20th December 1941, flying Spitfires. On 26th February 1942 he took command of 615 Squadron flying Hurricanes from Fairwood Common, taking the squadron to the Far East. In late December 1942 he was shot down in Burma and captured by the Japanese. He remained a POW until release in May 1945. After a refresher course at the Flying Training School in November 1949, he took command of No.19 Squadron flying Hornets and Meteors from Chruch Fenton. After a series of staff positions, he retired from the RAF as a Group Captain on 28th May 1969. Duckenfield would write later his details :
At first light, 12 Hurricanes IIC aircraft of 615 Squadron, myself in the lead, took off from Chittagong for central Burma to attack the Japanese air base at Magwe, 300 miles away on the banks of the River Irrawaddy. Arriving at Yenangyaung, we turned downstream at minimum height for Magwe, 30 miles to the South and jettisoned drop tanks. Just before sighting the enemy base, the squadron climbed to 1200 feet and positioned to attack from up sun. On the ramp at the base, in front of the hangers, were 10 or 12 Nakajima KI - 43 Oscars in a rough line up (not dispersed) perhaps readying for take. These aircraft and the hangars behind them were attacked in a single pass, before withdrawing westward at low level and maximum speed. A few minutes later perhaps 20 miles away form Magwe, I was following the line of a cheung (small creek), height about 250 feet, speed aboput 280 mph, when the aircraft gave a violent shudder, accompanied by a very lound, unusual noise. The cause was instantly apparent: the airscrew has disappeared completely, leaving only the spinning hub. My immediate reaction was to throttle back fully and switch off to stop the violently overspeeding engine. Further action was obvious: I was committed to staying with the aircraft because, with a high initial speed, not enough height to eject could be gained without the help of an airscrew. So I jettisoned the canopy and acknowledged gratefully the fact that I was following a creek; the banks of either side were hillocky ground, hostile to a forced landing aircraft. Flying the course of the creek, I soon found the aircraft to be near the stall (luckily, a lower than normal figure without an airscrew) extended the flaps and touched down wheels-up with minimum impact ( I have done worse landings on a smooth runway!) My luck was holding, if one can talk of luck in such a situation. December is the height of the dry season in that area and the creek had little water, it was shallow and narrow at the point where I came down: shallow enough to support the fusalage and narrow enough to support wing tips. So I released the harness, pushed the IFF Destruct switch, climed out and walked the wing ashore, dryshod. The question may occur -Why did not others in the squadron see their leader go down? - the answer is simple, the usual tatctic of withdrawal from an enemy target was to fly single at high speed and low level on parallel courses until a safe distance from target was attained. Then, the formation would climb to re-assemble. Having left the aircraft, I now faced a formidable escape problem? I was 300 miles from friendly territory: my desired route would be westward but 80% of that 300 miles was covered by steep north-south ridges impenetrably clothed in virgin jungle; these were natural impediments, there was also the enemy to consider. Having thought over my predicament, I decided the best I could do - having heard reports of mean herted plainspeope - was to get as far into the hills as possible and then find a (hopefully sympathetic) village. I suppose I may have covered about 15 miles by nightfall when I came upon this small hill village and walked into the village square. Nobody seemed surprised to see me (I suspect I had been followed for some time) I wa given a quiet welcome, seated at a table in the open and given food. Then exhaustion took over, I fell asleep in the chair and woke later to find myself tied up in it. Next day I was handed over to a Japanese sergeant and escort who took me back to Magwe and, soon after that, 2.5 years captivity in Rangoon jail.
Sadly we have learned that Byron Duckenfield passed away on 19th November 2010.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wing Commander Peter Dunning-White DFC
| Wing Commander Peter Dunning-White DFC |
Joining 601 Squadron in 1938, Peter Dunning-White was called up to full-time service in August 1939, being posted to 29 Squadron in May 1940, then a few weeks later to 145 Squadron at Westhampnett, flying Hurricanes. He was soon in action over the Channel, sharing in the destruction of an HeIll on 18 July. Transferring to 615 Squadron in March 1941, on 15 April his victory over an Me109 confirmed him as an Ace. In 1942 he was attached to 409 Squadron RCAF, and then to 255 Squadron on Beaufighters. He went to North West Africa with this squadron, being made Flight Commander in March 1943. In July 1944 he was posted to 100 Group, Bomber Command. Sadly, he died on 27th December 2008.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Eric R Edmunds
| Flight Lieutenant Eric R Edmunds |
Flew Hurricanes with No.245 Sqn.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Colonel Bill Edwards
| Colonel Bill Edwards |
Volunteering for the RAF in 1940, Bill Edwards was to fly 37 combat operations with 133 Squadron, the third Eagle Squadron to be formed, first on Hurricanes and then on Spitfires. Transferring to the 4th Fighter Group in September 1942, he was leading the Group on 13th July 1944 when he was shot down and taken prisoner of war. He remained in German captivity until liberated in June 1945. He retired from the USAF in 1968.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wing Commander John Elkington
| Wing Commander John Elkington |
John (Tim) Elkington was born in 1920 and joined the RAF in September 1939. Commissioned as a Pilot Officer in July 1940 he was immediately posted to join 1 Squadron flying Hurricanes atTangmere. On 15 August he shot down an Me109 over the Channel, but the following day he was himself shot down over Thorney Island. He baled out injured and was admitted to hospital, his Hurricane crashing at Chidham.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Air Commodore John Ellacombe CB DFC*
| Air Commodore John Ellacombe CB DFC* |
John Ellacombe joined the RAF in 1939 and was posted to 151 Squadron in July 1940, immediately converting to Hurricanes. On 24th August he shot down a He111, but a week later his Hurricane was blown up in combat and he baled out, with burns. Rejoining his squadron a few months later, in February 1941 was posted to 253 Squadron where he took part in the Dieppe operations. On 28th July, flying a Turbinlite Havoc, he probably destroyed a Do217. Converting to Mosquitos, John was posted to 487 Squadron RNZAF, and during the build up to the Normandy Invasion and after, was involved in many ground attacks on enemy held airfields, railways, and other targets of opportunity. He completed a total of 37 sorties on Mosquitos. Flying a de Havilland Mosquito XIII with a devastating set of four 20mm cannon in the nose, John Ellacombe flew deep into occupied France on the night before D-Day searching out and destroying German convoys and railway targets. As the Normandy campaign raged on, 151 Squadron intensified its interdiction sorties - including night attacks on Falaise and the Seine bridges. On August 1st Ellacombe took part in the famous attack by 23 Mosquitoes on the German bar-racks in Poitiers, led by Group Captain Wykeham Barnes. Ellacombe had first joined 151 Squadron during the Battle of Britain, direct from Flying Training School. Within weeks he had scored his first victory but also force landed in a field, having shot down a He 111, and baled out of a blazing Hurricane. He baled out a second time during the Dieppe Raid in 1942 but was picked up safely. Postwar he had a long and successful career in the RAE. Air Commodore John Ellacombe, who has died aged 94, survived being shot down three times during the Second World War - twice during the Battle of Britain. On August 15th 1940 the Luftwaffe launched Adler Tag (Eagle Day), with the object of destroying Fighter Command by attacking the ground organisation and drawing the RAF's fighters into the air. Nine Hurricanes of No 151 Squadron were scrambled during the afternoon and met enemy fighters near Dover at 18,000ft. Ellacombe attacked a Messerschmitt Bf 109 and fired three bursts. The enemy fighter rolled on to its back and dived into the sea. There was heavy fighting over the next few days, and on August 24 Ellacombe engaged a Heinkel III bomber. His fire hit its engines and the bomber crash-landed in Essex . During intense fighting on August 30 he attacked a formation of Heinkels head on. He hit one, which crashed, but return fire damaged the engine of his Hurricane and he was forced to land in a field, where a farmer accosted him with a pitchfork. On the following day Ellacombe damaged two Bf 109s before attacking a Junkers 88 bomber. When the Junkers returned fire, setting his Hurricane's fuel tank ablaze, he bailed out. As he drifted to the ground, a member of the Home Guard fired on him. He was then marched to a police station where he was assaulted by a constable who thought he was German. Later in life Ellacombe remarked: In two days, a farmer had attempted to kill me, the Home Guard had shot at me and a policeman had tried to kill me — quite apart from the Germans. I wondered whose side I was on. He received hospital treatment for his burns, and his fighting days during the Battle of Britain were over. After several months convalescing Ellacombe returned to No 151, which had been reassigned to night fighting. Equipped with the Hurricane and the Defiant, the squadron had little contact with the enemy; but Ellacombe developed a reputation for flying at night in the worst weather, and in April 1942 he was awarded a DFC for his service in the Battle of Britain and for showing the greatest keenness to engage the enemy. Posted to No 253 Squadron as a flight commander, he found night fighting dull, and volunteered for daylight operations. He flew in support of the ill-fated raid on Dieppe, and as he attacked a gun battery his aircraft was hit by flak. Ellacombe managed to get over the sea before bailing out and being picked up by a Canadian landing craft. After a rest tour, Ellacombe converted to the Mosquito before joining No 487 (NZ) Squadron, flying low-level intruder missions over France and the Low Countries. He attacked V-1 sites in the Pas de Calais and bombed roads and railways in support of the Normandy landings. He saw constant action attacking targets in support of the Allied armies and during the breakout from the Falaise pocket. After 37 intruder bombing patrols Ellacombe was rested and awarded a Bar to his DFC. He spent the remainder of the war on training duties, but still managed occasionally to take a Mosquito on an operational sortie. The son of an English doctor who had served during the Boer War, John Lawrence Wemyss Ellacombe was born at Livingstone, Northern Rhodesia, on February 28 1920 and educated at Diocesan College (Bishops) in Cape Town. In May 1939 he went to Britain to join the RAF, trained as a pilot and in July 1940 was posted to No 151 Squadron; he had never flown a Hurricane. Post-war he remained in the RAF, most of his flying appointments being in Fighter Command. After service in Aden he led No 1 Squadron, flying Meteor jets, and he commanded the Fighter Development Unit at the Central Fighter Establishment, developing tactics for the Hunter and Lightning . He served in Washington as a liaison officer with the USAF on fighter operations before commanding the RAF flying training base at Linton-on-Ouse, near York. Ellacombe was the senior serving representative at the Defence Operational Analysis Establishment, and on promotion to air commodore in 1968 was appointed Air Commander of Air Forces, Gulf, with headquarters at Muharraq, Bahrain. The withdrawal of British forces from Aden was scheduled for the end of that year, and Muharraq became a key staging post and support airfield . Ellacombe's calm handling of affairs in Bahrain was recognised by his appointment as CB. His final appointment was in the MoD, and he retired in 1973. Ellacombe then became Director of Scientific Services at St Thomas's Hospital in London, and later administrator to the hospital's trustees. A good cricketer and rugby player in his younger days, he played golf three times a week until he was 88, and he was a keen follower of Middlesex CCC. He particularly enjoyed watching his grandchildren play cricket (some of them at county junior level, including a granddaughter who turned out for Essex Ladies). John Ellacombe's wife, Mary, whom he married in 1951 when she was serving in the WRAF, had served on Winston Churchill's staff and been appointed OBE. She died in 2007, and he is survived by their son and two daughters. Air Commodore John Ellacombe, born February 28 1920, died May 11 2014.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wing Commander Paul Farnes DFM
| Wing Commander Paul Farnes DFM |
Paul Farnes was born in Boscombe, Hampshire, July 16, 1918. He joined the RAFVR in April 1938 and is mobilized in July 1939 before being posted to 501 Squadron, 14 September 1939. He accompanied the Squadron when it was sent to France in May 1940, winning his first victories in the campaign of France and during the Battle of Britain. In October, he was awarded the DFM after eight victories and was promoted to officer the following month. In February 1941 he was transferred to 57 OTU as an instructor and then to 73 OTU in November, in Aden. In late February 1942, he was posted to 229 Squadron in North Africa as Flight Commander. On March 27, 1942, he flew to Malta with the rest of the Squadron aboard the Hurricane IIc BN122. After a period of intense and difficult battles in which defenders of the island will lose many fighters, during which he took command of the Squadron, he returned to Egypt with the survivors of his unit May 27, 1942. He then transferred to Iraq where he joined the Headquarters and remained there until March 1945. He then returned to Great Britain and three weeks after upgrading to the UTO 53, he took command of 124 Squadron, a position he held until the end of the war. He joined the Tangmere before making command of 611 Squadron equipped Mustang IV July 7, 1945. In August, the Squadron was disbanded and it supports the 164 Squadron with Spitfire IX. 63 Squadron was designated in August 1946. In January 1947, he became an officer of Liaison with training centres with the Air Ministry until October 1948. He then became an instructor in various centres. He continued his career in the RAF until 1958 and left active service with the rank of Wing Commander. He returned to his civilian career in the industry.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander Bob Foster DFC
| Wing Commander Bob Foster DFC |
Wing Commander Bob Foster, who has died aged 94, flew Hurricane fighters during the Battle of Britain, when he was credited with destroying and damaging a number of enemy aircraft; later in the war he destroyed at least five Japanese aircraft while flying from airfields in northern Australia. For much of the Battle of Britain, Foster was serving with No 605 Squadron in Scotland; but in September, 605 moved to Croydon to join the main action over the south-east of England. It was soon heavily engaged, but it was not until September 27 that Foster achieved his first success, when he damaged a Messerschmitt Bf 110 fighter over Surrey. During this encounter his Hurricane was hit by return fire, and he was forced to make an emergency landing on Gatwick airfield. On October 7 he shot down a Messerschmitt Bf 109 near Lingfield racecourse, and on the following day he shared in the destruction of a Junkers 88 bomber. By the end of the month he is thought to have destroyed another Bf 109 and damaged a third. In 1941 No 605 moved to Suffolk, from where on one occasion Foster chased a lone German Heinkel bomber well out to sea. His gunfire knocked pieces off the enemy aircraft, but it escaped into cloud before Foster could follow up with a second attack. In September 1941 he was transferred to a fighter training unit as an instructor. Robert William Foster was born on May 14 1920 at Battersea, south-west London. After leaving school he worked for the joint petroleum marketing venture Shell-Mex and BP, and in March 1939 — six months before the outbreak of war — he joined the RAF Volunteer Reserve to train as a pilot. He was called up in August to complete his training before joining No 605. Foster's spell as an instructor lasted six months, and in April 1942 he was posted as a flight commander to No 54 Squadron. Within weeks of his joining, it was sent to Australia to join two other Spitfire squadrons to form No 1 Fighter Wing of the Royal Australian Air Force. The Wing was ready for action by the beginning of 1943, and moved to airfields in the Darwin area to counter Japanese bombing raids mounted from captured airfields in the Dutch East Indies and Timor. On February 26 Foster intercepted a Mitsubishi Dinah reconnaissance aircraft (all Japanese wartime aircraft types were given British names) and shot it down. It was the squadron's first success in Australia, and the first time a Spitfire had shot down a Japanese aircraft. Enemy bombing raids against Darwin continued, and on March 15 Foster was engaged in a fierce fight during which he downed a Mitsubishi Betty bomber and damaged a second. The three squadrons of No 1 Wing were in constant action throughout the spring of 1943, but Foster had to wait until June 20 for his next success. This came when he was leading No 54 Squadron as his formation intercepted a raid by 18 Betty bombers which were accompanied by a fighter escort. Foster attacked the leading bomber and sent it crashing into the sea. A Japanese Zero fighter broke towards him, and in the ensuing encounter Foster damaged the enemy aircraft. In June, the raids on Darwin became even more intense, and on June 30 Foster claimed another Betty destroyed as well as a probable. A week later he achieved his final successes when 30 bombers were reported to be heading for the city from the west. Foster led his formation to intercept the force, and he shot down a Betty and damaged a second near Peron Island, west of Darwin. He was the third pilot to claim five successes over Australia (earning him the title of ace) and a few weeks later he was awarded a DFC. After returning to Britain in early 1944, Foster joined the Air Information Unit with the role of escorting war correspondents. He arrived in Normandy soon after the Allied landings, and was one of the first RAF officers to enter Paris, joining General de Gaulle's triumphant procession down the Champs-Elysées. Foster spent the final months of the war at HQ Fighter Command and as the adjutant of a fighter base in Suffolk. In 1946 he left the RAF, but joined the Auxiliary Air Force on its re-formation in late 1947. He served with No 3613 Fighter Control Unit until its disbandment in March 1957, by which time he was a wing commander commanding the unit. He received the Air Efficiency Award. After the war Foster had rejoined Shell-Mex and BP, where he worked as a marketing executive until his retirement in 1975. In 2004 he was reunited with the Hurricane he had flown during the Battle of Britain. The aircraft, R 4118, had been rescued as a wreck in India by the printer and publisher of academic journals Peter Vacher, who brought it back to Britain in 2002 and had it restored to full flying condition. The aircraft now flies regularly as the only surviving Battle of Britain Hurricane and is the subject of a book by Vacher, Hurricane R 4118. Foster was a keen supporter of the Battle of Britain Fighter Association, becoming its chairman in 2009. He was a life vice-president of the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust, and a dedicated supporter of its initiative to erect The Wing, a new building at the National Memorial to The Few at Capel-le-Ferne, on the Kent coast. Designed in the shape of a Spitfire wing, the museum and educational facility will tell the story of what the Battle of Britain pilots achieved in the summer of 1940. Foster took the controls of the mechanical digger to turn the first turf and start the work. In recent years he had accompanied some of the tours, organised by the Trust, of Battle of Britain sites in east Kent. Wing Commander Bob Foster, born May 14 1920, died July 30 2014.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer Peter Fox
| Warrant Officer Peter Fox |
Peter Hutton Fox was born in Bridlington on 23rd January 1921 and educated at Warwick Public School. He joined the RAFVR in June 1939 and began training at 26 E&RFTS, Kidlington. Called up on 1st September he was posted to 13 EFTS Fairoaks on 28th March 1940 and then moved to 10 EFTS, Yatesbury on 28th May. Advanced training was carried out by Fox at 8 FTS, Montrose after which he went to 5 OTU, Aston Down to convert to Hurricanes and then joined 56 Squadron at Boscombe Down on 17th September 1940. Fox was shot down in combat with Do17s and Me110s over the Portland area on 30th September. Peter Fox was wounded in the leg and was forced to bale out over the Portland area. His Hurricane, N2434, crashed at Okeford Fitzpaine. On 16th November Fox and Pilot Officer MR Ingle-Finch were flying to Kidlington in a Magister, when they crashed near Tidworth. Both were injured and admitted to Tidworth Hospital. On 28th June 1941 Fox joined 234 Squadron at Warmwell. He was shot down over France on 20th October 1941 and captured. Freed on 16th April 1945, Fox left the RAF in 1946 as a Warrant Officer. He sadly passed away on 10th June 2005.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader Charles G Frizell
| Squadron Leader Charles G Frizell |
Squadron Leader Charles George Frizell flew with RAF Squadron No. 257. His Hurricane fighter was shot down on Aug. 15, 1940, but Frizell bailed out of the burning aircraft and landed safely. Subsequently he fought in Africa and flew long-range shipping patrols from Gibraltar. He lives today in Tsawwassen, Canada.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Commodore J W Frost CBE, DFC, DL
| Air Commodore J W Frost CBE, DFC, DL |
Jack Frost commenced flying training in July 1941, completing his training in the USA. After a short period as a flying instructor he returned to the UK for operational training on Hurricanes. In February 1944 Jack Frost joined No 175 Squadron which was converting to the rocket-firing role. In April the squadron moved to the New Forest and started operations over northern France. Leading up to D-Day, Jack Frost flew 12 sorties, attacking vital radar stations that had to be put out of action before the invasion. On June 6 he flew an armed-reconnaissance sortie to attack enemy transports taking reinforcements to the beachhead. 175 Squadron equipped with Typhoons in January 1944. On August 7th 1944 a major German counter-attack, spearheaded by five Panzer divisions, was identified moving against just two US infantry divisions. The Panzers were threatening to cut off the US Third Army near the town of Mortain. More than 300 sorties were flown by the squadrons on the Day of the Typhoon. Frost claimed a Tiger tank and a troop carrier, as well as two unidentified targets as flamers. Frosts Typhoon was hit by 20mm flak but he managed to return to his airstrip. The intense effort of the Typhoon squadrons defeated the German counter-attack, which the Chief of Staff of the Seventh German Army reported had come to a standstill due to employment of fighter-bombers by the enemy and the absence of our own air support. Frost and his fellow Typhoon pilots were made available immediately to be called down over the radio by ground controllers as the Allied armies encircled the German Forces at Falaise and the break out from Normandy that followed. Jack Frost carried out many attacks against gun positions, tank and transport concentrations, all in the face of intense anti-aircraft fire. The Typhoon squadrons suffered heavy casualties. He completed an operational tour of 100 sorties in December 1944 and after the war went on to a distinguished career with the peacetime RAF. Flying Typhoons and the Tempest, based in Schleswig-Holstein then moving to Kastrup in Denmark. Jack frost would later command No 26 Squadron at Gutersloh in Germany. In 1948 he was appointed RAF Liaison Officer to HQ BETFOR, responsible for air advice and control of air support for the British Army Brigade, based in Trieste. During this sensitive period, Marshal Tito of Yugoslavia was causing some difficulties and Frost led a four-aircraft dummy attack on his headquarters as a reminder of the RAFs continued, and potent, presence in the area. In May 1949 he returned to Britain to command No 222 (Natal) Squadron, equipped with Meteor day fighters, as air defences were rebuilt with the emergence of the Soviet threat. Frost served in Malaya at the Air Headquarters during the communist insurrection, when he was involved with planning the development of airfields and air defence radar. After service in Hong Kong he returned to flying duties when he took command of No 151 Squadron, flying the delta-wing Javelin night fighter from Leuchars in Scotland. After a series of senior appointments in the MOD, Jack Frost was posted in August 1970 to the Joint Warfare Establishment. After a four-year appointment as Deputy and Chief of Staff to the UK Military Representative to Nato Headquarters in Brussels, he retired from the RAF in October 1976. Sadly Jack Frost passed away on August 7th 2010.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Group Captain Peter Gilpin CBE DFC
| Group Captain Peter Gilpin CBE DFC |
Peter originally joined 253 Sqn flying Hurricanes, converting to Spitfire Mark 5s he took part in the invasions of North Africa and Sicily, providing fighter cover. Later based in Italy he was on a low level fighter sweep over Yugoslavia on the 2nd June 1944 when he was hit by ground fire and had to bale out. Captured by the Germans he was initially a PoW in Yugoslavia, before being transferred to Stalag Luft 7a, Moosberg, Germany.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Group Captain Tom Gleave
| Group Captain Tom Gleave |
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant John Golley
| Flight Lieutenant John Golley |
John Golley flew Hurricanes, Spitfires and Typhoons during World War II, commencing his combat flying with fighter sweeps and ground attacks over Northern Europe. During the run up to D-Day his No. 245 Squadron Typhoons were equipped with rockets, specializing in tank-busting in the Normandy Campaign. He has written several best-selling military books including The Day of the Typhoon.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant A J Nat Gould
| Flight Lieutenant A J Nat Gould |
Joined the RAAF in April 1940 and trained in Australia. Nat sailed to the UK in December 1940 and attended 56 OTU at Sutton Bridge. In April 1941 he joined 17 Sqn RAF and in September joined 134 Sqn equipped with Hurricanes and sailed aboard HMS Argus for Murmansk, USSR. After some ops, Nat returned to the UK in December and converted to Spitfires. He then sailed for Australia in March 1942 and joined 75 Sqn RAAF equipped with Kittyhawks. He flew to New Guinea in July and participated in the Battle of Milne Bay and on 28th August twice flew S A29-133 on ops and remained with 75 Sqn until December. After instructing at 2 OTU, Nat was posted in October 1943 to 457 Sqn equipped with Spitfires at Darwin. After 12 months of operations he returned to 2 OTU. In June 1945, Gould transferred to RANVR for service with the RN. Nat Gould commanded 816 Firefly and 806 Sea Fury Sqns during Korea.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Bill Green
| Flight Lieutenant Bill Green |
In December 1936, Bill Green joined the Auxiliary Air Force as an aero engine fitter with 501 Squadron at Filton, near Bristol. Shortly before the start of the Second World War, he was given a rare chance for an engine fitter. In 1938 he joined a scheme to recruit NCO pilots, qualifying as a Flight Sergeant and re-joined 501 at Bristol in July 1940. Sgt Bill Green had completed just 10 hours of dual flying – with an instructor. In October, he was sent for further flying instruction and on October 30th he had his first solo flight in a Magister aircraft. After more training – and getting married on June 3rd – he flew a Hurricane for the first time on August 8th 1940, when the Battle of Britain had been raging for a month. He flew from Kenley throughout the Battle of Britain until November, surviving being shot down twice, before being posted to 504 Squadron. After a spell instructing on Spitfires and Tomahawks, he converted to Typhoons, and from November 1944 served with 56 Squadron on Tempests. He flew more than 50 missions in Tempest fighter aircraft with 56 Squadron. He was shot down over Germany on February 22nd 1945 and spent the last three months of the war as a prisoner of war. After the war, Green enjoyed a hugely successful business career, ending up as the managing director and chairman of Crown Paints, before retiring on his 60th birthday. Flight Lieutenant Bill Green, who has died aged 97, was twice shot down flying a Hurricane during the Battle of Britain; five years later he was taken prisoner after again being shot down, this time over Germany. Green had less than 200 hours' flying time, and just seven hours in the Hurricane, when he joined No 501 Squadron and was pitched into the fighting at the height of the Battle of Britain in August 1940. On August 24, flying from Hawkinge in Kent, his squadron was scrambled to intercept a raid against the nearby airfield at Manston. Green closed in to attack an enemy dive-bomber when his aircraft was hit by the airfield's anti-aircraft fire. His Hurricane was badly damaged and the engine stopped – but he managed to glide to Hawkinge, where he discovered half the undercarriage had been shot away. He crash-landed and scrambled from the wrecked aircraft. Five days later his squadron was orbiting over Deal at 20,000ft when a large force of Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters attacked the formation. The windscreen of Green's aircraft was shattered and the engine damaged. With no control, he was forced to bail out. His parachute failed to stream correctly and the main canopy became entangled around his legs. He fought to release it and fell thousands of feet before it finally opened fully. Within seconds he hit the ground. He had been wounded in the leg and his days in the Battle were over. The son of a regular soldier, William James Green was born in Bristol on April 23 1917 and attended St Gabriel School. He left at 14 to work in a cardboard box factory specialising in packages for shoes and small goods, there he met the girl who would become his wife. Green was an enterprising boy and he designed a new, larger box. Receiving no encouragement from his manager, he took it to Mardon, Son & Hall, where he was offered a job. The company encouraged workmen to join auxiliary military units, and Green joined No 501 Squadron of the Auxiliary Air Force, stationed at nearby Filton. He trained as an aero-engine fitter and two years later volunteered to be a pilot. He was mobilised at the beginning of the war and completed his training before returning to No 501. After recovering from his wounds, he was posted to No 504 Squadron, based at Filton. One night he was cycling home when German bombers attacked Bristol in force and the city suffered heavy damage. Over the next few days Green flew standing patrols over the city and on a number of occasions chased enemy bombers away. He spent three years as a flying instructor before, in late 1944, joining No 56 Squadron, flying the RAF's most powerful piston-engine fighter, the Tempest. The squadron was based at Volkel in the Netherlands and he flew low-level strafing attacks against trains, motor transport and supply columns. On February 22 1945 he came under fire from two friendly fighters but evaded them, only to be shot down near Osnabruck by intense anti-aircraft fire.
I should have zigged when I zagged he said later. Green bailed out and was captured. His prison camp near Nuremberg was soon evacuated and the PoWs marched south to Stalag 7A, a large camp at Moosburg near Munich. On April 29 the US Seventh Army liberated that camp, and within two weeks Green was back in England. He was released from the RAF in December and received the Air Efficiency Award. Green returned to the cardboard box industry, then, in 1960, joined Reed International, rising to be chairman. Green admired the work of the Salvation Army and achieved great contentment in religious activities. In June 2012, aged 95, he flew in a two-seat Spitfire from Goodwood airfield. Bill Green married, in 1940, Bertha Biggs; she died in 2008, and he is survived by their son and daughter. Flight Lieutenant Bill Green, born April 23 1917, died on November 7 2014.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt Lt W J Green
| Flt Lt W J Green |
In December 1936, Flt. Lt. Green had joined the Royal Auxiliary Air Force as an engine fitter and later trained as a Hurricane pilot and joined No.501 Sqn on 19th August 1940. Flight Lieutenant Green had flown a total of only 5 hours on Hurricanes and had only flown one for the first time the day before going into action on 20th August 1940. Flt Lt Green flew Hurricanes for only 9 days during the Battle of Britain, between the 20th and 29th August, 1940. During this period in the Battle of Britain green was shot down twice: the first time on 24th August 1940, crash landing his Hurricane at Hawkinge and on the 29th August over Deal in Kent. Green baled out of his Mk.I Hurricane carrying code R4223 off Folkestone. Flt Lt Green never saw the aircraft that shot him down. The first thing Flight Lieutenant Green knew of being shot down on 29th August was a large hole appearing in his armoured windscreen and . He managed to exit his aircraft but his parachute initially failed to open as his drogue parachute lines had been cut about nine inches above where they joined the main parachute. His boots were ripped off his feet during the ensuing high-speed fall. The parachute eventually opened without the drogue and he landed in a farm in Elham Valley near Folkstone. Green could not stand due to his injuries and this would be the end of his participation in the Battle of Britian.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Peter Hairs MBE
| Flight Lieutenant Peter Hairs MBE |
Peter Hairs joined the RAFVR in 1937, and was called up at the outbreak of war in September 1939 to complete his training. After being commissioned he converted to Hurricanes, joining 501 Squadron at Tangmere in January 1940. He went to France with the squadron in May, claiming a share in a Dornier Do17 a few days after arriving. 501 covered the evacuation of the BEF from Cherbourg before re-assembling in England. On the 3 June he was shot down, but fortunately not seriously hurt and two days later he rejoined the squadron at Le Mans. On the 5th of September he downed an Me109, Peter Hairs was posted to 15 FTS, Kidlington on October 13 1940 as an instructor. He went to 2 CFS, Cranwell for an instructors course on February 23 1941. after which he taught at 11 FTS, Shawbury and 10 EFTS, Weston-Super-Mare before being posted to Canada in June as a EFTS flying instructor and then assistant CFI (EFTS). In December 1943 he was posted to join 276 Squadron to 19 OTU. He finished the was in India, receiving a mention in dispatches.
Click the name above to see prints signed by F/O Tony (Titch) Hallett DFC
| F/O Tony (Titch) Hallett DFC |
F/O Tony (Titch) Hallett DFC a member of 198 Rocket Firing Typhoon Squadron operated from bases in Southern England (Manston to Hurn). Operating from Thorney Island on D-Day and then from several landing strips on The Beachhead, France and Belgium between January and November 1944. After Fighter Pilot training in the USA in 1941/42 he returned to the UK for conversion to Hurricanes and was then posted to an Army Co-operation Unit in Northern Ireland where he gained valuable experience flying various types of aircraft, i.e. Defiant, Lysander, Hurricane, Martinet and Twin Engine Oxford. His operational flying from Southern England consisted mainly of attacking the many strongly defended Radar Stations from Ostend to Cherbourg and on two occasions changed from rockets to bombs for attacks on Noball Targets (flying bomb sites). Operations from the landing strips consisted, with close Army Support, taking out Gun Positions, attacking Tanks and destroying anything that moved in enemy territory all against very heavy enemy Flak. He completed in excess of 100 sorties and since 1984 has revisited Normandy on many occasions. He attended the official funerals of two 198 Squadron Pilots whose aircraft wreckage had been discovered as many as 41 and 49 years after the events.
Click the name above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander Taffy Higginson
| Wing Commander Taffy Higginson |
Frederick William Higginson was born into a Welsh-speaking family at Gorseinon, near Swansea, where his father was a policeman. He attended Gorseinon Grammar School until beginning his apprenticeship with the RAF. Enlisting in 1929 at the age of 16, Taffy Higginson served as a fitter and air gunner with No.7 Sqn until 1935, when he was accepted for flight training. After qualifying as a pilot, he initially flew with No.19 Sqn before transferring to No.56 Sqn on Hurricanes. By June 1941 he had tallied a score of 12 victories. On June 17th, 1941, he was shot down by anti-aircraft fire over Dunkirk while escorting bombers returning from an operation over Lille. With considerable height in hand, he was able to bale out safely and guide his parachute to land in a wood near a railway. Having a map, he established that he was about 12 miles northwest of Fauquembergues but he had lost one of his boots in ejecting from his Hurricane. Limping along, he was overtaken by two German soldiers on a motorcycle combination sent out to find him. His capture appeared certain but the abrupt appearance of a low-flying Luftwaffe aircraft distracted the soldier driving the motorcycle, enabling Higginson to wrench over the handlebars, crash the machine into a ditch and make off in the confusion. He hid in the wood until after dark and then made his way to a hut on the edge, where he sought assistance from the owner. Confident of his limited French, he ordered a glass of beer, paid for it with money provided by the French farmer and hitched a lift with a lorry driver who took him to a local garage whose owner had contacts with an escape line for British airmen. After a series of adventures, Higginson crossed into Vichy- controlled France and made contact with the MI9 escape line run by the Belgian doctor Albert-Marie Guérisse, alias “Pat O’Leary”. While attempting to cross into Spain with an Australian escaped prisoner of war, he was stopped and arrested by Vichy French frontier guards and interned in Fort de la Revère near Nice. Thanks to the efforts of Guérisse, he escaped from there and was eventually taken off the French Mediterranean coast by a Polish-manned trawler operating out of Gibraltar under the auspices of the Special Operations Executive. He was landed at Greenock on October 5, 1942, and rejoined No 56 Squadron shortly afterwards. He was awarded the DFC in 1943. After the war he served with Headquarters 11 Group, attended the RAF Staff course at Bracknell and also graduated from the Army Staff College, Camberley. He resigned from the RAF in 1956 to join the Bristol aircraft manufacturers at Filton, where the company was developing the ground-to-air rocket-powered defensive system, Bloodhound. In 1963 he joined the board of Bristol and was appointed OBE for services to industry that year. Sadly Frederick William Higginson passed away on 12th February 2003, aged 89.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer Jack Hodges DFC
| Warrant Officer Jack Hodges DFC |
Jack Hodges joined the RAF in late 1940, and after completing his pilot training in Canada he returned to England and was then briefly sent to a Photo Reconnaissance Unit flying Spitfires. He moved to a OTU in Annan, Scotland on Hurricanes before finally moving to a holding unit in Redhill, flying Typhoons. In 1944 he was posted to join 175 Squadron. Shortly after this he moved to 174 Squadron at Westhampnett. He served on operations throughout occupied Europe until the end of the war, being awarded the DFC in 1945 for successfully leading a group of Typhoons against a German Armoured Division.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt. Lt. David Ince DFC
| Flt. Lt. David Ince DFC |
Flt. Lt. David Ince DFC was born in Glasgow and was educated at Aysgarth School and Cheltenham College. Failing to meet the eyesight standards for aircrew he became a gunner officer in 1940 and managed to pass a wartime RAF medical board at his third attempt. Seconded for Army Cooperation duties, he trained in Canada at 35 EFTS and 37 SFTS before returning to the UK to fly Hurricanes and Mustangs at 41 OTU. Subsequently converting to Typhoons he flew with 193 and 257 Squadrons, from Normandy until the end of hostilities in Europe, completing almost 150 sorties and being awarded an immediate DFC. He took a leading part in trials, demonstrations and the early operational use of Napalm. Almost shot down on one reconnaissance flight, he later devised and proved a camera installation for low level close up target photography, which was an immediate success. In the closing stages of the war he was leading 193 Squadron on shipping strikes in the Baltic. After attending the first post war course at The Empire Test Pilots School he returned to University to complete an engineering degree.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Group Captain Alec Ingle
| Group Captain Alec Ingle |
Alec Ingle was commissioned in June 1940 and joined 615 Squadron at Drem flying Hurricanes before moving to Croydon during the Battle of Britain. He probably destroyed a Do17 in September; in October he shot down an Me109 and probably two more, and yet another victory in November, at which time he was appointed B Flight Commander. He later commanded 609 Squadron at Manston before leading 124 Wing in 1943 flying Typhoons. He was shot down in September 1943 after his Typhoon blew up in combat with an Fw190. Badly burned, he spent the remainder of the war as a POW in Stalag Luft III. Alec Ingle was awarded the AFC and DFC. Sadly Alec Ingle died on 31st July 1999.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Wing Commander M R Ingle-Finch DFC, AFC
| Wing Commander M R Ingle-Finch DFC, AFC |
Michael Ingle-Finch commenced his operational RAF career flying Hurricanes during and after the Battle of Britain. He then joined 56 Squadron based at Duxford and was amongst the first squadron pilots to fly a Typhoon when the first operational Typhoons came into service on that significant day, 11th September 1941. In September 1942, by now promoted to Flight Commander, Ingle-Finch achieved another first - 56 Squadrons first air victory in a Typhoon when he shot down a Junkers Ju88 off the east coast. Having been involved with Typhoons since they became operational, Ingle-Finch went on to fly them throughout their operational life. On 31st December 1943, he was promoted to command 175 Squadron during the decisive campaign in Normandy. In that same year he was awarded the DFC. His distinguished wartime service in the RAF culminated in promotion to Wing Commander Flying of 124 Wing. Passed away 2002.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Robert Innes
| Squadron Leader Robert Innes |
Born on June 15th 1918, Innes joined the RAFVR about August 1938 as an Airman under training Pilot. Called up on September 1st 1939 he completed his training at No 10 FTS Fern Hill from November 5th 1939 to early May 1940. Bob Innes was then posted to 253 (F) Squadron on Hurricanes at Kenley on May 6th 1940. He claimed a Bf110 destroyed on August 30th and on September 15th shot down a Dornier Do17 of 8/KG2. Bob Innes crashed in Hurricane V6736 on September 20th 1940 following an attack by Bf109s over Maidstone. He crashed again during an interception patrol on October 11th at Staplehurst in Kent, whilst flying Hurricane L1666 (force landing). He probably destroyed a Bf109 off the coast of Essex on November 11th 1940. Commissioned in March 1941 - Bob Innes served in Malta and retired from the RAF on August 31st 1961 as a Squadron Leader. Bob sadly passed away on April 6th 2005.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Ray Jackson MC
| Flight Lieutenant Ray Jackson MC |
Spending all his flying career with 34 Squadron, Ray was posted out to the Burma Front in 1943. Originally flying Hurricane IIcs, he was forced to bale out over the jungle and won his MC for his successful evasion of the enemy. He later converted to Thunderbolts with the same Squadron.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Frank Joyce MBE
| Squadron Leader Frank Joyce MBE |
Originally flying Hurricanes with 87 Squadron, he was shot down in May 1940 during the Battle of France, was badly injured bailing out and lost his leg. After having a false leg fitted, he returned to active service duties with 286 Squadron, flying Defiants on coastal patrols.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leaader Raymond E Kellow
| Squadron Leaader Raymond E Kellow |
Squadron Leader Raymond Alan Kellow, 213 Squadron, Cambridgeshire, Hurricanes
Click the name above to see prints signed by Warrant Officer Terrence Kelly
| Warrant Officer Terrence Kelly |
As a pilot for 258 Squadron flying Hurricanes, Terrence left England in October 1941 for Singapore. Flying against the Japanese he was caught on the island of Java with no means of evacuation and went into the bag in March 1942 and was a prisoner of the Japanese for 3 long years.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant N L D Kemp DFC
| Flight Lieutenant N L D Kemp DFC |
A Battle of Britain veteran who had flown with Douglas Bader in the famous 242 Canadian squadron. Nigel Kemp transferred with the squadron to Malta in 1941, flying his Hurricane of Ark Royal on Nmember 12. The squadron sufferred such heavy losses in Malta that in March 1942 the survivors were absorbed into 126 and 185 Squadrons. He had been with 242 in 1941 when the squadron was re-equipped with the Hurricane II and took part in the cross channel offensive, receiving the D17C in October 1941 for a series of daring attacks on enemy shipping. Nigel Kemp passed away on 13th March 2005.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Robert Kings
| Squadron Leader Robert Kings |
Robert Kings flew Hurricanes in the Battle of Britain with 238 Squadron at St Eval, where he was twice forced to bale out, the second time being hospitalised after a heavy landing due to a damaged parachute. Rejoining the squadron, in 1941 they embarked for North Affica, attached to 274 Squadron in the Western Desert. In November 1941 his Hurricane was shot down over the desert, where he was spotted and rescued by soldiers from the 22nd Armoured Division en-route to Tobruk, and was able to rejoin his squadron. Bob Kings was also a test pilot on Typhoons.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Franciszek Kornicki
| Squadron Leader Franciszek Kornicki |
Posted in 1939 to 3rd Fighter Wing in Lwow as part of the Polish Air Force. This area was soon overrun by Germans so he travelled to England to join 303 Polish Sqn on Spitfires and also served with 308, 315 and 317 Squadrons carrying out many fighter sweeps over France and occupied Europe.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Ginger Lacey DFM
| Squadron Leader Ginger Lacey DFM |
James Harry Lacey, from Wetherby, who was destined to become the top scoring RAF fighter pilot in the Battle of Britain, joined the RAFVR. in 1937. After an instructors course in 1938 he became an instructor at the Yorkshire Aeroplane Club. Called up at the outbreak of war, he was posted to 501 Squadron, and in May 1940 was posted with the unit to France. On the 13th he set off late on an early patrol, and shot down a Bf 109 and a He 111. Later in the day he destroyed a Bf 110. On the 27th he destroyed two He 11 Is and then returned to the United Kingdom, in June, having made an emergency landing in a swamp on the 9th and overturned, nearly being drowned. On 20 July he shot down a 13f 109, and was then awarded a DFM. In the Battle of Britain, during August, he destroyed a Ju 87 and a probable on the 12th, damaged a Do 17 on the 15th, probably destroyed a Bf 109 on the 16th, and on the 24th shot down a Ju 88 and damaged a Do 17. On the 29th he destroyed a 13f 109 and next day claimed a He 111 and probablya Bf110. He shot down a Bf109 on the 31st and on 2 September got two Bf 109s and damaged a Do 17. Two days later he destroyed two more Bf 109s, and was then sent on leave for a few days. on his return, on the 13th, he took off in very bad weather to shoot down a lone He 111 which had just bombed Buckingham Palace. Having destroyed it, he found the cloud too thick to return to base and was forced to bale out. On the 15th he shot down another He 111 and two Bf 109s with a third damaged, on the 27th destroyed another Bf 109 and on the 30th damaged a Ju 88. During October he was in action frequently against Bf 109s, getting a probable on the 7th and destroying others on the 12th, 26th, and the 30th, damaging one also on this latter date. His score was now 23, and he had been shot down or forced to bale out nine times. Of his victories 18 were gained during the Battle of Britain, and this was the highest score of any pilot for this period. In December he received a Bar to his DFM and was commissioned the following month. He converted to Spitfires early in 1941, and in June became a flight commander. During July he destroyed a Bf 109 on the 10th, damaged one on the 14th, shot down a He 59 floatplane on the 17th and destroyed two more Bf 109s on the 24th, causing them to collide. He was then posted as an instructor to 57 OTU where he trained, among others, George Beurling. In March 1942 he was posted to 602 Squadron, and on 24th March damaged a Fw 190. On 25 April he damaged two more, but was then posted to HQ 81 Group as Tactics Officer, now as a Sqn. Ldr. He spent some while testing Hurricanes with rocket projectiles and 40 mm. anti-tank guns, and then became Chief Flying Instructor at Millfield. In March 1943 he was sent to India, and first was responsible for converting squadrons to Hurricanes at Madras. He then moved to Bangalore, where he converted Hurricane pilots to Thunderbolts. In September 1944 he was posted to 3 TAC at Komila as Sqn. Ldr. Tactics, and the following month attended an Air Fighting Instructors Course at Armarda Road, which was run by Wg. Cdr. F.R. Carey. In November he became temporary commanding officer of 155 Squadron, flying Spitfire 8s in Burma, but later that month took command of 17 Squadron, equipped with the same aircraft. His squadron was responsible for giving ground support to a Gurkha regiment, so he ordered his pilots to have their heads shaved in the Gurkha fashion, which proved to be a very popular move. On 19 February 1945 he shot down a Nakajima Ki 43 Oscar, his twenty-eighth and last victory. He died on 30th May 1989.
Citation for award of Distinguished Flying Medal, awarded 23rd August 1940 :
Citation for award of Bar to the Distinguished Flying Medal, awarded 26th November 1940 :
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Sir Archie Lamb KBE CMG DFC
| Flight Lieutenant Sir Archie Lamb KBE CMG DFC |
Archie Lamb joined the RAF from the Foreign Office after the outbreak of war. Returning from training in Southern Rhodesia, his troopship Orinsay was torpedoed, and he spent nine days in a lifeboat. Joining 184 Squadron, flying Hurricane rocket-firing fighter-bombers, the squadron converted to Typhoons early in 1944. Flying from Westhampnett, he flew two missions on D-Day. He transferred to 245 Squadron in mid 1944 as a Flight Commander. After the war he returned to the Foreign Office, becoming H.M. Ambassador to Kuwait, and to Norway.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Robin Langdon-Davies DFC
| Squadron Leader Robin Langdon-Davies DFC |
Officer Commanding 6 Squadron 1944, Hurricane ground attack Pilot
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader Keith Lawrence DFC
| Squadron Leader Keith Lawrence DFC |
Keith Lawrence was born in New Zealand at Waitara on November 25th 1919. After attending Southland Boys High School at Invercargill, Lawrence went to work in a local bank in December 1936. In November 1938 he applied to join the RAF and was accepted for pilot training in Britain and sailed in February 1939. In November 1939 Keith Lawrence completed his flying training and joined the newly-formed 234 Squadron, which flew Spitfires throughout the Battle of Britain. Whilst based at St Eval in Cornwall, Lawrence shared 234s first victory on 8th July 1940 with the destruction of a Ju88 which was attacking a convoy in the Western Approaches. 234 Squadron was posted to Middle Wallop on 15 August. On 15 September Lawrence was posted to 603 Squadron at Hornchurch, and on 8 October moved to 421 Flight at Gravesend, a unit which early the following year became 91 Squadron. During the Battle of Britain he destroyed two enemy aircraft and damaged four others. Whilst on a weather reconnaissance on 26 November 1940, Lawrences Spitfire was shot down by ME 109s, his Spitfire breaking up and throwing him clear to parachute into the sea. Lawrence was picked up by a RNLI lifeboat, and having suffered severe leg injuries and a dislocated arm, was taken to hospital. He returned to 91 Squadron on the 16th of January 1942. On the 17th of February 1942 Lawrence was posted to 185 Squadron in Malta. At this time, the island’s capital Valetta and its airfields were suffering almost constant bombardment from bombers with fighter escorts which generally considerably outnumbered the defending fighters. While in Malta, Lawrence was promoted to squadron commander. The Squadron flew Hurricanes until Spitfires arrived on 9 May. Lawrence returned to the UK from Malta at the end of June 1942, and began a long period as an instructor. He served at three different Operational Training Units, and after receiving training at the Central Gunnery School at Sutton Bridge, became a gunnery instructor flying Spitfires. Lawrence returned to operations with 124 Squadron from early February until the end of April 1945. The unit had been successfully intercepting German reconnaissance aircraft at 50,000 feet plus, using Spitfire VIIs with pressurised cockpits, flying from Manston. As Lawrence arrived, it was re-equipping with Spitfire IX’s to carry out dive-bombing attacks on V2 sites around The Hague from RAF Coltishall. After each aircraft had dropped its 1000 lb bomb-load, it flew on to captured airfields in Belgium, and refuelled and re-armed, before bombing targets again during the return flight to Coltishall. The unit also carried out daylight escorts for bombers raiding into Germany. From the end of August 1945 Lawrence flew Meteors with 124 Squadron until he was released from the RAF in March 1946. He returned to New Zealand and settled in Christchurch but later returned to Britain.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader Kenneth Lee
| Squadron Leader Kenneth Lee |
Kenneth Norman Thomson Lee was a Battle of Britain pilot who volunteered for the RAF in 1937. Kenneth Lee joined 111 Squadron at Northolt in March 1939. He was commissioned and went to 43 Squadron at Tangmere. Kenneth Lee flew Hurricanes during the Battles of France and Britain with No.501 Sqn, based at Filton and accumulated 7 victories, the first being when 501 Squadron went to France on May 10th 1940 and Kenneth Lee claimed a Bf 110 destroyed later that day. On the 12th he destroyed a Do 17 and a Bf109. The Squadron flew back from France on June 18th and re-assembled at Croydon on the 21st. On May 27th Kenneth Lee claimed an He111 destroyed and a Do17 on June 6th. While attacking a formation of He111s on June 10th Lee's Hurricane was hit by return fire from one of the He111s and exploded. He took to his parachute and landed at Le Mans. Kenneth Lee damaged a Ju 87 on July 29th and on August 12th destroyed another Ju87. While flying his Hurricane (P3059) Lee was shot down for a second time on the 18th when Oberleutnant Schopfel in an Me109 of III./JG26 shot him down over Canterbury. He was one of four Hurricane of the squadron claimed by Schopfel that day. Kenneth Lee baled out, with a bullet wound in the leg and landed near Whitstable. In October, Lee rejoined 501 Sqn and on the 22nd October he was awarded the DFC. On November 29th Lee was posted to the Special Duties flight at Stormy Down and later transferred as Flight Commander to 52 OTU, at Crosby-On-Eden. In December 1941 Kenneth Lee became Flight Commander with 112 Squadron when he was posted to the Middle East and on the 18th of September 1942 Lee moved to 260 Squadron. On 10th November he destroyed an Mc202. He took control of 123 Squadron at Abadan, Persia in March 1943. In May, Lee with 123 Squadron went to the Western Desert and on July 27th 1943 Lee was shot down for the third time and captured on a dawn raid on Crete. He was taken prisoner of war to Stalag Luft 111 at Sagan and Belaria. Ken Lee left the RAF in late 1945 as a Squadron Leader. Sadly, Kenneth Lee passed away on 15th January 2008.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader P G Leggett
| Squadron Leader P G Leggett |
Percival Graham Leggett was born on the 24th of February 1921 and joined the RAFVR In June 1939 as an Airman under training Pilot. He was called up for active duty on 1 September 1939 and he completed his training in September 1940. On the 18 September 1940 Leggett crashed at Oldbury on Severn in Gloucestershire but was unhurt. Leggett was posted to No.615 Squadron at RAF Prestick in Scotland then to 245 Squadron at RAF Aldergrove on 28 September and then to No.46 Squadron at RAF Stapleford on 18 October 1940. He claimed a Fiat BR.20 and probably destroyed and shared in the destruction of another on 11 November 1940. Leggett was then posted to No.145 Squadron in late November 1940 and then to No.96 Squadron on 18 December 1940. Flying his Hurricane off Ark Royal, Leggett joined 249 Squadron in Malta in June 1941 and was in action that same afternoon. In July he increased his Battle of Britain score by shooting down a Macchi C.200 but was shot down in December, bailing out with minor injuries. He was posted to the Desert Air Force just before El Alamein. An RAFVR pilot, Leggett had flown both Hurricanes and Defiants before his posting to Malta. He stayed on in the RAF commanding 73 Squadron on Vampires, retiring in 1958 as a Squadron Leader.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Arthur Leigh DFC, DFM
| Squadron Leader Arthur Leigh DFC, DFM |
Another RAFVR pilot, The son of a regular soldier, Arthur Leigh was called up at the outbreak of war. After finishing his flying training he was posted to 7 OTU and then on to convert to Spitfires in August 1940. Arthur Leigh flew with 64 Squadron at Leconfield and 72 Squadron at Biggin Hill during the Battle of Britain before transferring to 611 Squadron. Awarded the DFM in September 1941, Leigh had then completed 50 sweeps, had destroyed two Bf 109s, probably destroyed another four and shared in the destruction of a Do 17. After a spell instructing and ferrying Hurricanes from Gibraltar to Cairo, he returned to operations with 56 Squadron flying Typhoons from Manston. He was shot down on his first sweep by flak, near Calais but was picked up by an ASR launch. In late 1943 Leigh was posted to 129 Squadron at Hornchurch and was awarded the DDC on completing his second tour in December 1944, spending the rest of the war as an instructor.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wing Commander James Lindsay DFC
| Wing Commander James Lindsay DFC |
Born in September 1922, James Doug Lindsay joined the RCAF in February 1941, training on Harvards. He was posted to the UK, arriving in March 1943 and joining 403 Sqn in October that year. In his first tour, he claimed 5 Me109s as well as 2 Fw190s, plus another damaged. Of the Me109s he shot down, three of these were in a single minute, earning him a DFC. For his second tour, he rejoined 403 Sqn in April 1945, claiming a probable Fw190 during his short time with this squadron before he moved to 416 squadron until the end of the war in Europe. After the war he stayed with the air force, and in 1952 served during the Korean war with the USAF. He flew F-86 Sabres with the 39th Fighter Squadron of the 51st Fighter Wing, claiming victories over two MiG-15s and damaging 3 others. In 1953, he returned to the UK with No.1 Fighter Wing leading Sabres in formation at the Queen's Coronation. He retired in 1972, having flown more than 30 different types of aircraft (excluding different Mks). These included, Harvard, Anson, Master, Spitfire, Typhoon, Tempest, Hurricane, Mustang, Beaufort, Beaufighter, Oxford, Dakota, Tiger Moth, Vampire and Sabre.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant Derek Lovell
| Flight Lieutenant Derek Lovell |
Volunteered for the RAFVR in January 1941. He trained in Canada on Tiger Moths and Oxfords. He received his wings in April 1942 and was posted to Central Flying School. Following graduation, he taught Fleet Air Arm trainees on Harvards. He returned to the UK in March 1943 and flew Masters at AFU and Hurricanes at OTU. He taught Lancaster crews fighter evasion prior to posting to 84 GSU to fly Typhoons. He joined 197 Squadron at Needs Oar Point in the New Forest in June 1944 and was involved in close support operations and tactical dive bombing and low level bombing throughout the Normandy campaign and on through to VE-Day. He completed 135 operations and in August 1945 was posted to an OTU to instruct on Typhoons and Tempest Vs. He was demobbed in June 1946 and flew weekends in the VR on Tiger Moths and later Chipmunks. He was called up on the G Reserve in July 1951 and flew Harvards, Spitfire XXIIs and then Vampire Vs. He stood down in September as the Korea situation eased.
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt/Lt Julian Lowe DFC
| Flt/Lt Julian Lowe DFC |
Flt/Lt Julian Lowe DFC joined the RAF in 1941 having escaped from a reserved occupation, and, after I.T., he was sent to Southern Rhodesia to fly on Tiger Moths and Harvards. From there he went to 74 OTU in Palestine flying Hurricanes. He was posted to 2 PRU (later 680 Squadron) in Cairo and completed 86 ops over North Africa, Greece and the Aegian. He was awarded the DFC in March 1944 and returned to the UK to join 542 Squadron at Benson in October 1944, where he did a further 30 ops over germany before the war in Europe ended. After a short period in the RAFVR, he joined No 6 Air Experience Flight and flew Chipmunks for 26 years logging some 2000 hours on that aircraft.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Wng Cmdr Ken Mackenzie
| Wng Cmdr Ken Mackenzie |
Ken Mackenzie flew 2 ops on Hurricanes with No.43 Sqn before joining No.501 Sqn based at Kenley during the Battle of Britain, again on Hurricanes. During his time with No.501 Sqn, he claimed 7 victories, with a further 4 shared and 3 damaged. In the most remarkable of these, Ken was following what he thought was a damaged Me109 down to sea level. Realising the aircraft was not damaged, he deliberately struck the tailplane of the enemy aircraft with the wing of his Hurricane (V6799), forcing his opponent to crash. He was subsequently awarded the DFC on 25th October 1940. After this, he joined No.247 Sqn flying night fighter Hurricanes shooting down 10 aircraft in one year. He was shot down on the 29th of September 1941 after claiming an He111 bomber in a night attack planned to target Lannion airfield in Brittany. Ken was engaged by heavy flak from ground defences and completed this sortie by ditching in the sea. He paddled to shore in his dinghy and was subsequently captured and taken prisoner. Ken MacKenzie was posted to various camps before ending up in Stalag Luft 111, Sagan, and was finally repatriated to the UK in October 1944. He was posted to 53 OTU, Kirton-In-Lindsey on 19th December 1945 as an instructor and on 17th June 1945, posted to 61 OTU, Keevil, as a Flight Commander. After the war on the 1st January 1953, Ken was awarded the Air Force Cross. Retired from the RAF on 1st July 1967 with the rank of Wing Commander. Sadly, Wing Commander Ken Mackenzie died on 4th June 2009
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt. Lt. Peter May
| Flt. Lt. Peter May |
Peter May was under training as a pilot in the Civil Air Guard at Weston Super Mare on the 3d September 1939 and was immediately accepted for further training with the RAF at Downing College, Cambridge. In June 1940 he was posted to a holding unit at Hernswell, near Lincoln, from which Hampden aircraft were employed in dropping leaflets over Germany. This aerodrome was subjected to one of the first, possibly the first, bombing raid on England by the Germans. Peter went solo on a Magister monoplane at Kingsdown Aerodrome, Chester on the 26 th June 1940. On the 1st July he suffered an engine failure over the Solway Firth, but managed to force land safely. As a reward for this safe landing he was one of six fortunate pupils on the Course of 52 to be selected for training as fighter pilots. His first solo flight in a Spitfire 1 at Hawardene Operational Unit, was on the 10th December 1940. A few days later flying over Liverpool in poor visibility, the engine failed. He decided to pancake in the Mersey but fortunately at the last minute he saw a field alongside. By using his emergency pressure bottle to lower the undercarriage quickly he managed to force land safely. Spitfire 1 aircraft undercarriage had to be raised and lowered manually. In January 1941 with only 20 hours experience on Spitfires he was posted to Sailor Malan's 74 Squadron based at Biggin Hill and later at Manston. This squadron was engaged in protecting the Channel convoys, the south-coast radar stations and the Lysanders on rescue missions over the North Sea. Returning from operational patrol over the Channel on the 21st April 1941, Peter crash-landed at Manston Aerodrome. he was taken to Margate General Hospital suffering from concussion and a broken leg. During the latter part of 1941 Peter was appointed Aerodrome Control Pilot at Manston and recommenced flying non-operationaily in December 1941. In June 1942 he moved to No. 1 Squadron at Tangmere, flying Hurricanes and mainly engaged in sweeps over France. In July it was decided to convert No. 1 squadron into a Night Fighter Squadron. As Peter's nightflying experience was limited he was sent on a Beam Approach Course at Watchfield. Peter was commissioned in 1943 and in 1944 was appointed C.O. of a Communications Flight on the island of Orkney. In July 1945 he joined 286 Hurricane Squadron at Weston Zoyland, Somerset, flying mostly at night. His completed his flying career as Naval Liaison Officer with 667 Squadron at Gosport, flying Spitfire XV1 s. Peter amassed 1687 flying hours, including 110 in Spitfires and 55 in Hurricanes.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Roy McGowan
| Squadron Leader Roy McGowan |
Flying Hurricanes with No.46 Squadron, Roy McGowan was shot down on 15th September 1940. Sufferring from severe burns he was hospitalised and treated by the pioneering plastic surgeon Archie McIndoe, and was one of the founding members of the famous Guinea Pig Club.
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Squadron Leader Jocelyn G P Millard
| Squadron Leader Jocelyn G P Millard |
Volunteering for the RAFVR in August 1939, J G Millard was called up for full time service the following month. Converting to Hurricanes, he was posted to 1 Squadron at Wittering in October 1940, and shortly after transferred to Dougla Baders 242 Squadron at Coltishall. In November he moved to 615 Squadron at No