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Fairey Albacore910 viewsThe Fairey Albacore is a single-engine carrier-borne biplane torpedo bomber built by Fairey Aviation between 1939 and 1943 for the Fleet Air Arm. It had a three-man crew and was designed for spotting and reconnaissance as well as delivering bombs and torpedoes. The Albacore, popularly known as the "Applecore", was conceived as a replacement for the ageing Fairey Swordfish, which had entered service in 1936. However, the Albacore served with the Swordfish and was retired before it, being replaced by the monoplane Fairey Barracuda torpedo bomber.

The Albacore prototypes were built to meet Specification S.41/36 for a three-seat TSR (torpedo/spotter/reconnaissance) for the FAA. The first of two prototypes flew on December 12 1938 and production of the first batch of 98 aircraft began in 1939. Early Albacores were fitted with the Bristol Taurus II engine and those built later received the more powerful Taurus XII.

No. 826 Squadron FAA was specially formed to operate the first Albacores in March, 1940. Carrier-based squadrons began operating the Albacore in 1941. Eventually there were 15 FAA squadrons equipped with the plane which operated widely in the Mediterranean. Albacores participated in the Battle of Cape Matapan and the fighting at El Alamein as well as supporting the landings at Sicily and Salerno. During the period September 1941 to end of June 1943 No. 828 Squadron FAA, Hal-Far, Malta, operated a squadron of TSR Fairey Albacores under some of the most severe blitz conditions imaginable during the siege of Malta, mainly against Italian shipping and shore targets in Sicily.

In 1943 the Albacore was replaced by the Barracuda. The last Albacore squadron, No. 841, disbanded in late 1943. The Royal Canadian Air Force took over the Albacores and used them during the Normandy invasion.
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Gloster Gladiator841 viewsThe Gloster Gladiator (or Gloster SS.37) was a British-built biplane fighter. It was used by the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Royal Navy (as the Sea Gladiator variant) and was exported to a number of other air forces during the late 1930s. It was the RAF's last biplane fighter aircraft and was rendered obsolete by newer monoplane designs even as it was being introduced. Though often pitted against more formidable foes during the early days of the Second World War, it acquitted itself reasonably well in combat.

The Gladiator saw action in almost all theatres during the Second World War, with a large number of air forces, some of them on the Axis side. The RAF used it in France, Norway, Greece, the defence of Malta, and the brief Anglo-Iraqi War (in which the Royal Iraqi Air Force was similarly equipped). Other countries deploying the Gladiator included China against Japan, beginning in 1938; Finland (along with Swedish volunteers) in the Winter War and the Continuation War; and Norway, Belgium, and Greece
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Supermarine Spitfire Mk Vb822 viewsThe Mk V was produced in greater numbers than any other single mark of Spitfire. It was the main version of the fighter during 1941, replacing the Mk I and II in service in time to take part in the first British counterattacks over France. During the summer of 1941 it held an advantage over the Bf 109, but in September 1941 the Fw 190 made its operation debut, and the Mk V found itself outclassed. Despite this, it remained the main RAF fighter until the summer of 1942, and the low level LF.Mk V remained in use into 1944.
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Avro Anson Mk II534 viewsThe Anson first flew in 1935 and went on to serve in a wide variety of roles during the Second World War. Over 11 000 were built and the Anson was still flying for the Royal Air Force in 1968. Anson II's were used primarily to train pilots to fly multi-engined aircraft such as the Lancaster. However wireless operators, navigators, and bomb-aimers used the Anson as well. As a training aircraft the Anson was docile, forgiving, and easy to fly.
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HAWKER HURRICANE Mk IIC442 viewsThis most famous partner to the Spitfire was the predominant fighter in use by the RAF during the Battle of Britain. Designed by Sidney Camm, this aircraft was the first RAF fighter to exceed 300mph & the first eight gun monoplane to enter service. This aircraft saw service throughout the war & was the mount of many great pilots of the War years. It is an interesting & judicious point to note that there were 1,326 Hurricanes & 967 Spitfires on strength during the Battle of Britain, a fine testimony to this fine aeroplane, This particular aircraft was flown by Sqn. Ldr. D. G. Smallwood.
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Avro 685 York431 viewsA transport development of the Lancaster, with a bigger fuselage of rectangular cross-section and an additional tailfin. Production during WWII was limited because it was agreed that the US would supply transport aircraft.
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SUPERMARINE SPITFIRE Mk Vc417 viewsPossibly the most famous of all fighters, this particular aeroplane was re-activated to take part in the film "Battle of Britain" in which it flew nearly 50 hours. Now flying reularly at the Shuttleworth Collection.
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VICKERS ARMSTRONG SUPERMARINE SPITFIRE Mk 1A411 viewsSingle seat fighter powered by a Rolls Royce Merlin II or III liquid cooled in line engine. Maximum speed: 367mph. Armament: eight .303 machine guns. First deliveries to No. 19 Squadron Duxford, June 1938.
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Avro Lancastrian359 viewsIn 1944 Avros, at their Waddington factory, began a conversion of the Lancaster, to follow that, which had been made by Victory Aircraft in Canada. This was to make an aircraft for long-range navigational flights. The nose and tail sections were modified and extra fuel tanks added. The new machine was named the Avro Lancastrian; and was delivered to The Empire Air Navigation School at RAF Shawbury.The first plane was called Aries, and it set off on the first, circumnavigation of the world. QANTAS airline of Australia used Lancastrians, on their London to Australia flights. BSAA also used Lancastrians on regular flights to South America; as did Flota Aerea Mercante Argentina. The Canadian Authorities had established a regular route from Canada toBritain earlier. This plane had a range of 4,100 miles with a 7,500 lb payload.
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Hurricane MKI335 views The new Mk.I included a deHaviland or Rotol constant-speed metal propeller, ejector exhaust stacks for added thrust, metal-covered wings, armour and other changes. At the start of the war the RAF had taken on about 500 of this later design, and it formed the backbone of the fighter squadrons during the Battle of France and into the Battle of Britain.

Although it may have been an older design, the Hurricane was still a worthy fighter on its own and a reasonable match for the Messerschmitt Bf 109 it faced. In the photo The first production Hurricane Mk.I at [[Brooklands]], November 1937.
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Avro Manchester332 viewsThe Avro Manchester had a relatively brief service career, from November 1940 to June 1942, largely because of problems associated by the unreliability and eventual lack of power shown by the Rolls-Royce Vulture I engines with which it was fitted. The bomber could, however, maintain height on one engine, and in one case an aircraft flew 600 miles from Berlin to its base in England after having had an engine knocked out by gunfire in addition to other extensive damage. In addition to a 10,350 pound bomb load in cavernous bomb-bay nearly half the length of the fuselage, the armament consisted of eight .303-inch machine-guns: two in the nose, two in a dorsal turret, and four in a turret in the tail.
Though unsuccessful the Avro Manchester design demonstrated sufficient promise to warrant further modification.
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HAWKER HURRICANE Mk IIB330 viewsThe Hurricane bore the brunt of the fighting during the Battle of Britain &, of the 14,00 built, only three examples remain airworthy. This particular machine is painted to represent the aircraft of the late Squadron Leader Archie McKellar
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