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Height and Sun by Robert Taylor. (AP) - ivanberryman.co.uk

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Height and Sun by Robert Taylor. (AP)


Height and Sun by Robert Taylor. (AP)

If you had the height, you controlled the battle. If you came out of the sun, the enemy could not see you. If you held your fire until you were very close, you seldom missed. These three basic rules contributed to the prowess in aerial combat of some of the most successful fighter pilots in history and seldom were they more valuable than when outnumbered. Between July and October 1940 the brave young pilots of RAF Fighter Command were under intense pressure from the constant attacks of the Luftwaffe and the Hawker Hurricane was the machine of the Battle of Britain, accounting for 80 percent of Allied victories. In this painting, Hurricanes of 32 Sqn climb high into the morning sky, gaining Height and Sun in an attempt to take the advantage over the onslaught of enemy fighters - August, 1940. This image captures the surreal calmness above the clouds, belying the fury of action and ultimate sacrifices made in those crisp blue skies.
AMAZING VALUE! - The value of the signatures on this item is in excess of the price of the print itself!
Item Code : DHM1781APHeight and Sun by Robert Taylor. (AP) - This Edition
TYPEDESCRIPTIONSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSPRICEPURCHASING
ARTIST
PROOF
Artist Proof Edition : signed limited edition of 50 artist proofs.

SOLD OUT.
Matted size 31.5 inches x 19.5 inches (79cm x 50cm) Image size 21 inches x 9 inches (53cm x 23cm) Drake, Billy
Jones, Richard L
Wellum, Geoffrey
Appleford, Alexander N R L
Iveson, Tony
Bent, Benjamin
Brown, Maurice Peter
Burns, Owen V
Chamberlin, Joseph
Lusty, Kenneth R
Duckenfield, Byron
Elkington, John
Foster, Bob
Gray, Trevor
Gregory, Albert E
Heimes, Leopold
Kane, Terence
Kings, Robert
Lawrence, Keith
Lucas, Robin M M D
Millard, Jocelyn G P
Neil, Tom
Pinfold, Herbert M
Wilkinson, Ken
Swanwick, George
Bader, Douglas (matted)
David, Dennis (matted)
Casson, Buck (matted)
Gibson, John (matted)
Crew, Edward (matted)
Hay, Ronnie (matted)
Currant, Christopher (matted)
Higginson, Taffy (matted)
Winskill, Archie (matted)
Urwin-Mann, John (matted)
Parrott, Peter (matted)
Bisdee, John (matted)
Bird-Wilson, H (matted)
Stephen, Harbourne (matted)
Unwin, George (matted)
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £1730
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Other editions of this item : Height and Sun by Robert Taylor.DHM1781
TYPEDESCRIPTIONSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSPRICEPURCHASING
PRINT Signed limited edition of 300 prints. Paper size 27.5 inches x 17 inches (70cm x 43cm) Image size 21 inches x 9 inches (53cm x 23cm) Drake, Billy
Jones, Richard L
Wellum, Geoffrey
+ Artist : Robert Taylor
£90 Off!
Supplied with one or more free art prints!
Now : £125.00VIEW EDITION...
PRINT Tribute Edition : signed limited edition of 175 prints.

SODL OUT.
Paper size 27.5 inches x 17 inches (70cm x 43cm) Image size 21 inches x 9 inches (53cm x 23cm) Drake, Billy
Jones, Richard L
Wellum, Geoffrey
Appleford, Alexander N R L
Iveson, Tony
Bent, Benjamin
Brown, Maurice Peter
Burns, Owen V
Chamberlin, Joseph
Lusty, Kenneth R
Duckenfield, Byron
Elkington, John
Foster, Bob
Gray, Trevor
Gregory, Albert E
Heimes, Leopold
Kane, Terence
Kings, Robert
Lawrence, Keith
Lucas, Robin M M D
Millard, Jocelyn G P
Neil, Tom
Pinfold, Herbert M
Wilkinson, Ken
Swanwick, George
+ Artist : Robert Taylor
SOLD
OUT
VIEW EDITION...
Extra Details :
About this edition :

Matted Print :

Signatures on this item
*The value given for each signature has been calculated by us based on the historical significance and rarity of the signature. Values of many pilot signatures have risen in recent years and will likely continue to rise as they become more and more rare.
NameInfo




Air Commodore Sir Archie Winskill KCVO CBE DFC AE (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50 (matted)

An RAFVR pilot, Winskill flew with both 72 Squadron and 603 Squadrons during the Battle of Britain. Commissioned in August 1940 he was posted in February 1941 to 41 Squadron where he soon became a Flight Commander. Baders determination to engage the enemy at every possible opportunity is what he remembers most clearly of the period, On August 14th he was shot down over France, just five days after Bader. He managed to evade capture and, with the help of the French Resistance, made his way to Spain and then Gibraltar. He was the first pilot to use this route home. After another operational posting to North Africa, after which he was awarded a Bar to his DFC, he finished the war with four confirmed victories. Post war he stayed on in the RAF and was Captain of the Queens Flight for 14 years. He died 9th August 2005.


Air Vice Marshal Edward Crew CB DSO DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45 (matted)

Joining No 604 (County of Middlesex), an Auxiliary Air Force Squadron, in July 1940, Crew began to learn his trade as a night fighter pilot; among those with whom he flew at this time was John Cats' Eyes Cunningham, who himself became one of the most famous night fighter pilots of the war. It was a hard apprenticeship because Crew's Bristol Blenheim was equipped with early, and rudimentary, airborne radar, and much depended on the ability of his air gunner, Sgt Gus Guthrie, to adapt to his new calling as a radar operator. It was not until the following spring, when the squadron converted to two-engine Bristol Beaufighters, that the pair acquired a more suitable aircraft and sufficient expertise to dispatch five enemy bombers within a period of 10 weeks. This early run of success was speedily recognised with the award of the first of Crew's two DFCs. The citation stated: This officer is a pilot of outstanding ability who has shown tenacity of purpose to engage the enemy, which culminated in the destruction of two enemy aircraft in one night. Citations, by their very nature, are matter-of-fact, and do not capture the essence of their subjects. Others in the same squadron remembered Crew as a small, compact man who gave the impression of being larger than he was. He was seen as a patrician who hunted down his victims with a ferocity which was in marked contrast to his quietly spoken and always imperturbable manner. From the end of July 1941, Guthrie - Crew's eyes in combat - was posted away, and Crew was joined by Sgt Basil Duckett, with whom, in the spring of 1942, he achieved three further kills. Crew and Duckett made a brilliant team in which the radar operator's quiet persistence matched the pilot's natural hunting instincts. In early May 1942 Duckett enabled Crew to shoot down two Dornier 17 bombers on successive nights. Returning from the first of these encounters, over Portland in Dorset, Crew arrived back at base with the Dornier's trailing aerial wrapped around his Beaufighter's starboard propeller. Crew's second encounter developed into a long, drawn-out chase as he stalked the Dornier well out to sea off the Isle of Wight. As the enemy pilot twisted and turned to evade his pursuer, Crew refused to be shaken off, despite the fact that his guns were out of ammunition and Duckett was struggling to reload. Eventually, however, Crew's plane was able to deliver a burst which set the enemy bomber on fire and slowed it down as its gunner continued to return fire. At this point, the Beaufighter overshot the enemy aircraft, but Crew managed to keep it in view while Duckett again reloaded. Hunter and hunted continued to lose height until, at 2,000 ft, Crew saw the enemy crash into the sea, raising a plume of smoke and steam. Shortly afterwards Crew received a Bar to his DFC, the citation singling out his readiness to fly in all weather, his skill and ability in dealing with the enemy at night and his great example to the squadron. Edward Dixon Crew was born on December 24th 1917 at Higham Ferrers, Northamptonshire. He was brought up by his step-father, Sir Kenneth Murchison, a Tory MP, and educated at Felsted School and Downing College, Cambridge, where, in 1939, he joined the University Air Squadron. Following a sustained period of night operations with 604 Squadron, he was rested from October 1942 while commander of the Radio Development Flight; in March the following year he returned to operations in No 85, a Mosquito night fighter squadron. In June 1943 Wing Commander Crew received command of No 96 Squadron, leading its Mosquitoes against night raiders until the summer of 1944; this was when Hitler launched his so-called 'revenge weapons' against London and the South of England. Chasing pilotless V-1s - or 'chuff bombs', as Crew liked to call them - was by no means tame target practice. On June 25th he was on the tail of a V-1, travelling at high speed, when the force of the explosion as he shot it down split open his own aircraft's nose. Crew held the Mosquito steady long enough for his radar navigator, Warrant Officer W R Croysdill, to bail out over land. Then, as the Mosquito became uncontrollable, Crew himself jumped, landing safely near Worthing, in Sussex. Completing his Second World War operational career when 96 Squadron was disbanded in 1945, Crew was awarded the DSO. The citation emphasised his great skill in devising tactics to meet the menace of the flying bombs. That year he received a permanent commission and attended the RAF Staff College, before being posted in 1948 to command No 45 Beaufighter Squadron in the Far East. Operational once again, Crew led his squadron effectively against Communist insurgents aiming to destabilise Malaya. Harassing the jungle-based enemy in 100 night attacks, he consistently drove the terrorists into the hands of the security forces, for which he received a Bar to his DSO. The Air Ministry stated that Crew had displayed an almost uncanny knack in locating the target and attacking it on the first run in. From 1952 Crew served in Canada, where he commanded an operational training unit and introduced the Avro Canada CF100 all-weather fighter. After two years there he returned to command the all-weather development squadron at the Central Flying Establishment, with particular emphasis on trials of the Javelin. Later he commanded RAF Bruggen in Germany, before returning to the Far East in charge of the air task force in Borneo from 1965; his role here was dealing with the Indonesian Confrontation of the mid-1960s. Subsequently Crew commanded the Central Reconnaissance Establishment; he also served at the Ministry of Defence as Director of Operations (air defence and overseas), and was Deputy Air Controller of National Air Traffic Services. He retired as an air vice-marshal in 1973, when he joined the planning inspectorate of the Department of the Environment. Serving there until 1987, Crew was appointed CB in 1973 and elected a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society in 1972. Air Vice Marshal Edward Crew CB DSO DFC died on the 18th August 2002 at the age of 84.


Air Vice-Marshall H. Bird-Wilson. CBE.DSO.DFC.AFC. (BAR) (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50 (matted)

Birdy-Wilson joined the R.A.F. in 1937 and fought with 17 squadron during the Battle of France. Active throughout the Battle of Britain, awarded the DFC in the September of 1940, the same date he was shot down by Major Adolph Galland of JG26, bailing out with severe burns. He took command of 152 squadron in April 1942 and promoted Wing Commander 1943 he led 121 wing then 122 wing. Rested in January 1944 he went to the US command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth. Throughout the rest of 1944 he flew Mustangs, being awarded the D.S.O. in January 1945. He added the Czech Medal of Merit, 1st Class and the Dutch DFC. He stayed in the R.A.F. after the war until his retirement in 1974. By 1987 he had flown no less than 213 different types, including an Airship, the James Bond Autogiro and during 1978 the F-15 Eagle Fighter. He died on 27th December 2000.


Flight Lieutenant Albert E Gregory DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

Albert Gregory was born in Derby on 9th May 1917. Gregory joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in April 1939 as an Airman u/t Wop/Air Gunner. Called up on 1st September and posted to Aldegrove in October to commence Air Gunnery training in December 1939, Albert joined 141 Squadron at Grangemouth as an Air Gunner flying in Blenheims before the squadron converted to Defiants. He could not fly in the Defiant because he was too tall for the turret, so transferred to 219 squadron based at Catterick in May 1940 with whom he served throughout the Battle of Britain on Beaufighters. In September 1940 the introduction of Radar equipped Beaufighters meant Albert Gregory retrained as a Radio Observer and in March 1941 his aircraft accounted for the destruction of a He111. In May 1941, he went to no 2 Radio School at Yatesbury for a Wireless Operators course and passed out from this in September 1941. Albert then served with 23 Sqn in Boston IIIs on intruder patrols over occupied France, Belgium and Holland on bombing and strafing missions, before spending time with 275 and 278 (ASR) Squadrons. On 2nd April 1942 he damaged two Do 17s and in July 1942, Albert Gregory was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and was commissioned in August 1942. Albert later served with 278 (ASR) squadron and was released from the RAF in November 1945 with the rank of Flight Lieutenant. In July 1947 Albert Gregory rejoined the RAF and in February 1948 he was posted to 52 Squadron at Changi, Singapore. The squadron was engaged in Army support supply dropping and troop carrying in the anti-terrorist campaign in Malaya. In 1950 following his return to Britain, Albert became a signals instructor and retired from the RAF in May 1955. Sadly, he passed away on 12th November 2010.




Flight Lieutenant Alexander N R L Appleford (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

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.


Flight Lieutenant Benjamin Bent
*Signature Value : £25

Having joined the RAF in 1937, he flew with 25 Sqn as a Radar /Wireless Operator on Blenheims on night fighter duties throughout the Battle of Britain, assisting in five successful interceptions on his first tour. After a spell as an instructor, he reclassified a Navigator rejoining 25 Sqn on Beaufighters and then Mosquitoes, assisting in a total of eight victories including the first enemy aircraft shot down on D-Day.
Flight Lieutenant Joseph P R Chamberlin
*Signature Value : £45

Joining the RAFVR in June 1939 he was then called up at the Outbreak of war. He flew Blenheims with No.235 Sqn during the Battle of Britain before being seriously injured in a crash and spending eight months in hospital.


Flight Lieutenant Owen V Burns (deceased)
*Signature Value : £15

Flight Lieutenant Owen V Burns was born in Birkenhead on 20th November 1915. He flew throughout the Battle of Britain. His Squadron, 235, based at Bircham Newton in Norfolk, was equipped with Mark IV Bristol Blenheims, which had four guns under the nose and two in the mid-upper turret, which he operated. The squadron was attached to Fighter Command to replace its losses in the Battle for France, but because Blenheims lacked the speed of single-engined fighters, squadron duties were mainly aerodrome protection and fighter escort to aircraft crossing the Channel. On 14th February 1941 his Blenheim was caught in an enemy raid while returning from a night patrol over the North Sea. The aircraft crashed on landing as the flare path had been extinguished. The observer was killed and the pilot spent a year in hospital, but Owen escaped with a broken collar bone. Owen Burns went onto join 279 Sqn on Hudsons carrying out Air Sea Rescues. In January 1945 he was appointed Gunnery Officer for 19 Group, Plymouth and a month later he became PA to AOC, AVM CBS Spackman. He left the RAF in March 1948. Owen Burns died on 30th June 2015 aged 99.




Flight Lieutenant Richard L Jones (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

Richard Jones was born in 1918 and in July 1940 Richard Jones was posted to 64 Squadron at Kenley, flying Spitfires. He was involved in heavy fighting over the Channel during the Battle of Britain, with the squadron suffering many losses during July and August. Towards the end of the Battle of Britain, in October, he moved to 19 Squadron flying Spitfires from Fowlmere, and was heavily involved in the fighter sweeps taking place at that time. Near the end of the Battle of Britain, Pilot Officer Richard Jones was shot down during a dogfight over Kent with Me 109s. Jones crash landed his Spitfire in a field, colliding with a flock of sheep - he would go on to write in his log book "Crashed into a load of sheep. What a bloody mess!"After the Battle of Britain, Richard Jones became a test pilot for De Havilland at Witney in Oxfordshire, and test flew thousands of Hawker Hurricanes and other types, including civil types. After the war Richard Jones joined the RAFVR and started a long career in the motor industry. Sadly Richard Jones passed away on 7th March 2012.


Flight Lieutenant Robin M M D Lucas
*Signature Value : £35

Flight Lt Robin Lucas flew with 141 Squadron flying Boulton-Paul Defiants on night missions and flew Defiants during the Battle of Britain.


Flight Lieutenant Trevor Gray (deceased)
*Signature Value : £30

Trevor Gray joined the RAFVR in 1939 and was called for service on the outbreak of war. As he was only partially trained, he completed his flying training and after being awarded his wings was posted to 7 OTU at Hawarden After training Trevor Gray was commissioned as a Pilot Officer in August 1940. Converted onto Spitfires, and with the Battle of Britain at its Climax, he was urgently posted to join 64 Squadron at Leconfield, arriving on 16th September 1940. The Squadron had re-equipped from Blenheims to Spitfires earlier that year as it fought in the great air battles over Dunkirk, before seeing hectic action in the Battle of Britain. he damaged a Bf 110 in December 1940. He left the Squadron on April 3 1941 having completed his tour and was posted to 58 OTU at Grangemouth as an instructor from there he was posted to Castletown, the most northerly station on the mainland, to join 124 Squadron which was then being formed. Trevor Gray was then given a post as a research engineer officer at RAE Farnborough and finally left the RAF in 1946 as a flight Lieutenant. He died on 21st January 2012.


Flying Officer Ken Wilkinson (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

Battle of Britain pilot flying Hurricanes, he flew Spitfires with 611 Sqn and then 616 Sqn at Kirton-in-Lindsey and 19 Sqn at Fowlmere during 1940 and after a spell instructing returned to operations on Spitfires, with 234 and 165 Squadrons. After spending time with 53, 24 and 10 Operational Training Units, he left the RAF in November 1945 and served in the RAFVR.
Ken said :
From 1st September 1939 I wrote myself off. I thought, 'you've got no chance' lasting through whatever is going to be. It was quite obvious, in the way the Germans were moving, they were going to make a hell of a war out of it, so I was ready for war. I can remember saying 'we've got to stop this fellow Hitler'. When you think of all the thousands of citizens that were being killed by this absurd bombing. They had to pay for it didn't they. Yes, we lost people. Friends that didn't come back. I don't think we were the sort of people to brood over it, ever. You have to get into an attitude to make sure that you're as cold as a fish. Once someone has failed to return, that's it. Fortune smiled on me and not on some of the others. I can only say that whoever it was who pooped off at me, wasn't a very good marksman. It transpired that we were doing something far more important than we thought. As far as we were concerned, it was just that there were some untidy creatures from over the other side of the channel, trying to bomb England and the United Kingdom. And we didn't want them to bomb us. After all, we never asked the Germans to start this nonsense, did we? But they did, and we had to stop them, and we did. It's our country. You die for you country.




Group Captain Billy Drake DSO DFC* (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50

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.




Group Captain Byron Duckenfield AFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

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 :

Burma

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.




Group Captain Dennis David CBE DFC AFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £65 (matted)

Dennis David served with distinction in both the Battle of France and Battle of Britain. He regards the RAFs success in the former - during which he was credited with 11.5 victories - as crucial to victory in the Battle of Britain. He was a member of 87 Squadron at the outbreak of war and was posted to France in 1939 as part of the Air Component. When the Blitzkrieg began on 10th May 1940, he was a Flying Officer. He destroyed a Do17 and shared a He111 on the first day, and by the time the squadron withdrew to the United Kingdom late in the month he had brought his score to 11.5 and been awarded the DFC and Bar. He continued to fly during the Battle of Britain, destroying a Ju88 and a Bf109 on the 11th August, a Ju87, a Bf110 and another shared on the 15th and a Ju88 and Bf109 on the 25th. He shot down a He111 on 15th September and the following month was posted as a Flight Commander to 213 Squadron. On 19th October he destroyed a Ju88 to bring his score to 20 and in November was posted to 152 Squadron. In 1943, with the rank of Wing Commander, he was posted to the Middle East to command 89 Squadron on Beaufighters. In November he led the Squadron to Ceylon and early the following year was promoted again to Group Captai. He served in Burma until the end of the war, after which he remained in the RAF with the Rank of Wing Commander. He died 25th August 2000.
Group Captain Herbert M Pinfold (deceased)
*Signature Value : £25

Group Captain Herbert Moreton Pinfold, Battle of Britian pilot with 56 Squadron flying Hurricanes, he also flew with 6, 64, 502 and 603 Squadrons. Sadly, Herbert Pinfold passed away on 19th October 2009. Group Captain Herbert Moreton Pinfold was born 5th February 1913 and joined the Royal Air Force in August 1934 at the age of 21. In September Herbert Pinfold was posted to 5 FTS, Sealand and with training completed, on the 5th of September he was sent to join 6 Squadron at Ismailia, Egypt. He returned to the UK on 19th March 1936 and joined the newly formed 64 Squadron. The squadron were flying Hawker Demons, and were moved to the Western Desert to combat the Italian Air Force threat. The squadron returned to the UK in September. After a short spell as personal assistant and pilot to AOC 11 Group, Herbert Pinfold was sent on a Flying Instructors Course at RAF Upavon. After completing the instructors course he was posted to 502 Squadron, AuxAF as Flying Instructor and Adjutant at RAF Aldergrove, Northern Ireland on 16th July 1938. In January 1939, Herbert Pinfold went to RAF Turnhouse, Edinburgh and joined 603 Squadron where the squadron were flying Gladiators and then Spitfires. He went to 3 FTS, South Cerney on 2nd July 1940, as an instructor. On the 11th of August Penfold went to Aston Down and converted to Hurricanes. Herbert Pinfold took command of 56 Squadron at North Weald on the 25th, remaining with it until 29th January 1941, after this he was posted to 10 FTS at Tern Hill when he returned to flying instruction with a posting to 10 FTS, Tern Hill. Herbert Pinfold completed the RAF Staff College course and went on a number fo staff positions in the UK and also overseas including Ceylon and Singapore. Coming back to the UK Herbert Pinfold took command of Duxford, at that time flying Meteors, after which was posted to the Air Ministry. In 1953 Herbert was appointed Air Attache in Rome, before returning to the UK in 1956 for a second spell as Station Commander of Duxford. On the 1st of October 1958 Herbet Pinfold retired at the rank of Group Captain. Sadly, Herbert Pinfold passed away on 19th October 2009.
Group Captain John Bisdee OBE DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40 (matted)

John Derek Bisdee was born on November 20th 1915 at Weston-Super-Mare, and educated at Marlborough. He joined the RAF Voluntary Reserve, and began the war as a sergeant pilot. His combat career started while with 609 (West Riding) squadron RAAF, flying Spitfires when the squadron was moved from Edinburgh to Drem in December 1939. They participated in the air cover of the evacuation of the BEF form Dunkirk. John Bisdee destroyed six aircraft between July 1940 and July 1941, including an Me110 during an eventful day n August 1940 when they attacked a strong Luftwaffe force of 45 JU88s escorted by many Me109s and Me110s. In July 1941 he became instructor at No 61 Operational training unit. While here he had a small speaking roll in the classic wartime film The First of the Few. John Bisdee became commander of 601 (County of London) auxiliary Spitfire squadron and embarked (along with 603 (Edinburgh) Squadron) for Malta on board the US carrier Wasp. While off Algiers 47 Spitfires took of for Malta. and almost immedniatly upon arriving took part in combat. John Bisdee shot down JU88. He himself had to bail out. with a damaged parachute dangling by one leg, he had to disentangle himself as he fell, managing just in time and landing in the sea, paddling his way 6 miles in his dinghy to Malta. in June 1942 the squadron went to Egypt. In August John Bisdee became flight training officer at the Middle East Headquarters, Cairo, moving in 1943 as Wing Commander for day fighters in Tunisia. In July 1943, after the capture of the island of Lampedusa, halfway between Malta and Sicily, Bisdee was appointed its governor - the first governor in liberated Europe, as he liked to claim. Returning to North Africa, Bisdee trained Free French pilots at Bone. Later, after a brief spell in Corsica, he commanded No 322 Wing at Bone. In 322 Wing wre three Spitfire squadrons, a Beaufighter Squadron a Wellington Squadon used in anti shipping role and an Air Sea Rescue unit. Group Captain John Bisdee left the Royal Air Force in 1945 with his offcial score of 8 but it is likely there were a few others. Sadly John Bidee died at the age of 84 on the 21st October 2000. Group Captain John Bisdee was awarded the DFC in 1941 and appointed OBE in 1943.




Group Captain Sir Douglas Bader CBE, DSO*, DFC* (deceased)
*Signature Value : £125 (matted)

One of the most famous fighter aces of World War Two, Douglas Bader joined the RAF in 1928. A fearless aerobatic flyer, his luck ran out when his aircraft crashed attempting a slow roll. He lost both legs, and his career in the RAF was, for the time being, over. At the outbreak of World War Two however, his persistence persuaded the RAF to let him fly again, this time with artificial legs. Joining 19 Squadron in February 1940, he soon scored his first victory. A brilliant fighter leader, he was given command of 242 Squadron - and led them throughout the Battle of Britain. Posted to Tangmere in 1941 Bader was one of the first Wing Leaders. Baders luck again ran out on August 9th 1941, when he was brought down over St Omer, France. Bader was taken prisoner, ending up in Colditz for the rest of the war. He scored 20 and shared 4 victories.
Lt Colonel Ronnie Hay (deceased)
*Signature Value : £35 (matted)

Ronnie Hay joined the Royal Marines in 1935 and volunteered to fly with the Fleet Air Arm. In 1940 he joined 801 Squadron flying Skuas on HMS Ark Royal for the Norwegian Campaign, claiming his first victory on his first operational sortie. He took part in the operations covering the Dunkirk beaches and flew Fulmars with 808 Squadron during the Battle of Britain. By the time Ark Royal was unk in 1941, he had a further 7 victories. In 1944 he became Wing Leader of 47 Naval Wing flying Corsairs aboard HMS Victorious in the Far East where his tally climbed. His final socre was 13 victories. Sadly Ronnie Hay died on 22nd November 2001.


Sergeant Leopold Heimes (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

Already in the Belgian Air Force, he moved to 235 Sqn Coastal Command as an Air Gunner on Blenheims during the Battle of Britain before becoming a pilot, flying Spitfires and Catalinas with 350 Sqn before converting to 76 Sqn on Dakotas in India. Heimes stayed in the RAF until September 1951 having been gazetted as a Master Pilot. Sadly, Leopold Heimes died in 2009.




Squadron Leader Buck Casson DFC AFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £35 (matted)

Born 6th January 1915, Buck Casson completed his pilot training with the Royal Auxiliary Air Force at the outbreak of WW2. He spent the Battle of Britain with 616 Sqn, claiming a Do17, Me 109, and two He 111s, one damaged and one probable. Becoming part of the Tangmere Wing in 1941, the squadron was under the command of Douglas Bader. On 5th May 1941, he shared in a Ju88, but was forced to bale out during the action. He claimed two more Me109s, a further two probables and one damaged before being shot down on August 9th, being captured and held at Stalag Luft III until the end of the war. Buck Casson died 8th October 2003.




Squadron Leader Geoffrey Wellum DFC
*Signature Value : £35

Joined the RAF with a Short Service Commission in August 1939. He joined 92 Squadron flying Spitfires in June 1940 at the time of Dunkirk. He flew throughout the Battle of Britain, later completing over 50 fighter sweeps and escorts over northern France and Belgium until August 1941. He then joined 65 Squadron as Flight Commander in March 1942 operating over northern France and flew off aircraft carrier HMS Furious on Operation Pedestal, to Malta. Geoff was a Flight Lieutenant during Operation Pedestal. He returned to the UK as a test pilot for Gloster Aircraft and finished the war as a Pilot Attack Instructor. Geoffrey was credited with three destroyed, four probables and several damaged and was awarded the DFC in July 1941.




Squadron Leader Jocelyn G P Millard (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

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 Northolt. After the Battle of Britain he spent time as an instructor, going to Canada. He later became Squadron Commander of 35 SFTS. Sadly, Jocelyn Millard passed away on the 10th of May 2010.




Squadron Leader John Gibson (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50 (matted)

In May 1940 John Gibson joined 501 Squadron. The squadron flew to France and saw action during the German advances. On 27th May Gibson destroyed an He III and shared in the destruction of another before he was himself shot down, crash-landing in a field. The much-depleted Squadrons final base was at St Helier in Jersey on 19 June 1940, from where it covered the evacuation of the British Army from Cherbourg. During the Battle of Britain, Gibson destroyed seven aircraft. In an action on August 15 1940 Gibsons aircraft was set alight by return fire from a Stuka, one of a force attacking Hawkinge airfield. Being then directly over Folkestone, Gibson steered his blazing aircraft away from the town and took it down to 1000 feet before baling out. He was again shot down in flames on the 29th, this time over Dover, and baled out into the sea two miles off the coast. He was picked up by a motor boat. About this time Gibson was awarded the DFC. Later in the war he served in the Pacific and was awarded the DSO. He passed away on the 1st July 2000.


Squadron Leader John Urwin-Mann (deceased)
*Signature Value : £25 (matted)

A Canadian, John Urwin-Mann elisted in the RAF before the war. Flying Hurricanes with No.238 Sqn, he was awarded the DSO and DFC with Bar in his career with the RAF. DFC citation in the London Gazette, 26th November 1940 : This officer has displayed initiative and dash in his many engagements against the enemy. He has led his section in an excellent manner and has destroyed at least eight enemy aircraft. The bar to his DFC was gazetted on 7th April 1942. DSO citation in the London Gazette, 11th May 1943 : Within the past 6 months, whilst operating from Malta this officer has completed a large number of sorties, involving attacks on factories, warehouses, port installations, power stations and airfields in Sicily and nearby enemy islands. On one occasion he led a formation which attacked an airfield and destroyed many aircraft on the ground; Squadron Leader Urwin-Mann also obtained a hit on a petrol installation, causing a violent explosion and a large fire. Another of his successes was the destruction of a portion of the main railway line during a sortie at Gela in January, 1943. During the same operation, Squadron Leader Urwin-Mann engaged a Messerschmitt 210, shooting away its starboard engine. With his great skill and inspiring leadership this officer has raised his squadron to a high pitch of fighting efficiency. He died on 7th March 1999.




Squadron Leader Keith Lawrence DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £55

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. He died on 2nd June 2016.


Squadron Leader Kenneth R Lusty (deceased)
*Signature Value : £20

Kenneth Lusty joined the RAF as an Airman u/t Air Gunner on 4th September 1939. After call-up, he did his basic training at Padgate and then went to RAF Aldergrove on 30th December for a gunnery course. On 24th February 1940 Lusty joined 235 Squadron. As a Coastal Command Squadron, the need for WOp/AGs in the crews meant that Lusty was posted away on 14th May to 25 Squadron at North Weald. He served with the squadron throughout the Battle of Britain. Lusty retrained as a Radio Observer, was commissioned in May 1941 and on 16th July he joined 1453 Flight, newly-formed at Wittering and equipped with Turbinlite Havocs. On 1st August 1942 Lusty was rested. He returned to operations on 2nd April 1943, joining 410 (RCAF) Squadron at Drem operating Beaufighters. Lusty's pilot was posted to 406 (RCAF) Squadron at Predannack on 25th August and they went together but when the squadron became all-Canadian Lusty went to 264 Squadron at Fairwood Common on 9th October 1943. After completing his tour Lusty was sent to the Staff College on 5th July 1944. He was posted to 132 Squadron at Vavuyina, Ceylon on 28th November 1944 as Adjutant. He moved to BHQ Colombo on 23rd June 1945 as Senior Admin Officer. Lusty returned to the UK and was released from the RAF on 21st January 1946 as a Squadron Leader. He died on 18th September 2009.




Squadron Leader Maurice Peter Brown (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50

Maurice Peter Brown (known as Peter) was born in London on 17th June 1919. On leaving school he qualified for entry in the civil service with an appointment in the Air Ministry. But in April 1938 he left to join the Royal Air Force with a short service commission. In September 1939 he was posted to 611 West Lancashire Squadron with Spitfires in 12 Group, initially at Duxford and then Digby. His initiation into battle was over Dunkirk. He was at readiness throughout the Battle of Britain, including with the controversial Ducford Big Wing on 15th September, when the Luftwaffe's morale was broken, and then in late September with 41 Squadron at Hornchurch where the fiercest fighting with highest casualties had taken place. It was a quantum leap. In June 1941, after serving as a flight commander in the squadron, Peter was posted as an instructor to 61 Operational Training Unit at Heston and other OTUs and then at AFUs as a Squadron Leader Flying. He left the RAF with the rank of Squadron Leader and was awarded the Air Force Cross. In his flying career, Maurice Peter Brown flew Spitfire Mk.I, Mk.II and Mk.V. We have learned the sad news that Maurice Peter Brown passed away on 20th January 2011.


Squadron Leader Robert Kings (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

Robert Austin Kings was born on 22nd October 1914 and joined the RAFVR about July 1938 as an Airman u/t Pilot and began training at 29 E&RFTS at Luton. Called up on 1st September 1939, he was posted to 3 ITW Hastings on 13th December and moved on to 14 FTS Kinloss on 12th March 1940 and finished the course on 2nd August. Kings went to 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on 7th August and after converting to Hurricanes was posted to 238 Squadron at St. Eval on the 31st. He damaged a He111 on 25th September and was himself shot down by a Me110 in combat over the Isle of Wight on the 26th. Kings baled out, unhurt. His Hurricane, P3830, is believed to have crashed on Colemans Farm, Porchfield. He destroyed a He111 in the action. Four days later he baled out again, after colliding with P/O VC Simmonds during a routine patrol. Kings was injured in a heavy landing because of a damaged parachute, which had ripped on the tail of his aircraft. His Hurricane, L1702, crashed near Shaftesbury. Kings was admitted to hospital and did not rejoin 238 until 15th November 1940. However he was judged to be not fully fit and he was put on administrative duties and did not return again to 238 until 22nd December, this time fit to fly. Re-joining the squadron, in 1941 they embarked for North Africa, attached to 274 Squadron in the Western Desert. The squadron embarked on HMS Victorious on 17th May 1941, en route for the Middle East. However they disembarked when the carrier was added to the task force chasing the Bismarck. After returning to Scotland to refuel, it set off again for the Mediterranean. On 14th June Kings flew off south of Majorca, heading for Malta. Refuelled, the squadron flew to Egypt the next day and on the 19th was attached to 274 Squadron in the Western Desert. On 16th September 1941 the 238 pilots were flown to Takoradi, to fly back Hurricane 11cs. On 26th November Kings was shot down in a sweep over Sidi Rezegh and made a forced-landing in 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. Kings was posted to the ADU in the Delta on 30th April 1942 and remained with it until 17th May 1945 when he returned to the UK. In November 1945 he was posted to India, served at RAF Poona and Calcutta and returned to the UK in November 1947. Later trained in Air Traffic Control and Radar duties, Kings retired from the RAF on 27th October 1964 as a Flight Lieutenant, retaining the rank of Squadron Leader. Bob Kings was also a test pilot on Typhoons. He died on 1st May 2013.




Squadron Leader Tony Iveson DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

Tony Iveson fought in the Battle of Britain with RAF Fighter Command, as a Sergeant pilot, joining 616 Squadron at Kenley flying Spitfires on 2 September 1940. On the 16th of September, he was forced to ditch into the sea after running out of fuel following a pursuit of a Ju88 bomber. His Spitfire L1036 ditched 20 miles off Cromer in Norfolk, and he was picked up by an MTB. He joined No.92 Sqn the following month. Commissioned in 1942, Tony undertook his second tour transferring to RAF Bomber Command, where he was selected to join the famous 617 Squadron, flying Lancasters. He took part in most of 617 Squadrons high precision operations, including all three sorties against the German battleship Tirpitz, and went on to become one of the most respected pilots in the squadron.




Wing Commander Bob Foster DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £35

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.


Wing Commander Christopher Bunny Currant DSO DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £65 (matted)

Born 14th December 1911. One of the most succesful fighter pilots in the RAF, credited with 13 kills during the Battle of Britain. On 15th August 1940, with No. 605 Sqn, he downed two He111s and claimed a third probable. On 8th September he downed another bomber and damaged three more, sharing in two more the next day, downing two more and damaging a further three on the 15th of that month, before being shot down himself. The same afternoon, he got airborne again, shooting down a fighter. After the Battle of Britain, he became an instructor, before rejoining combat flying with No.501 Sqn. In August 1942 he took command of No. 122 Wing, leading them until the D-Day landings in June 1944 before taking a non-flying post until the end of the war. He died 12th March 2006.




Wing Commander George Grumpy Unwin, DSO, DFM* (deceased)
*Signature Value : £65 (matted)

George Unwin joined the RAF in 1929, and in 1936 was posted to Duxford with 19 Squadron as a Sergeant Pilot. He was one of the first pilots in the RAF to fly the Spitfire. With the outbreak of war 19 Squadron moved to Hornchurch and George, now one of the Squadrons most experienced pilots, took part in the great air battles over France and Dunkirk, scoring 3 and a half victories. He flew with 19 Squadron continuously during the whole of the Battle of Britain. He was commissioned in 1941. After a period instructing, he resumed operations, flying Mosquitoes with 16 Squadron. George finished the war with 13 victories, 2 shared, 2 unconfirmed, and 2 probables. He died 28th June 2006.




Wing Commander George W Swanwick (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

George Swanwick was born on 10th November 1915 and was an air-gunner on Wallaces and Hinds with 504 squadron at RAF Hucknall during the 1930s. In May 1936, 504 became part of the Auxiliary Air Force, and in October 1938 converted to a fighter unit, equipped with Gauntlets. In 1938 George re-trained as a pilot, and was promoted to Sergeant Pilot in August 1939. In May 1940 George Swanwick joined 7 BGS, and on 7th September was posted to 54 Squadron at Catterick flying Spitfires. He then went to 41 Squadron at Hornchurch. Commissioned in late 1941, he was posted to 222 Squadron at North Weald in April 1942 as a Flight Commander. In July George Swanwick joined 603 Squadron in Malta and in September 1942, George was posted to 7 OTU at Port Sudan as Flight Commander. In July 1943, he joined 81 Squadron in Malta as a supernumerary. George was invalided back to the UK and following his discharge from hospital in 1944, George held various staff appointments until the end of the war. George Swanwick was granted a Permament Commission in 1949 and retired on 30th April 1970, as a Wing Commander. Sadly, George Swanwick passed away on 4th January 2011.




Wing Commander Harbourne Stephen CBE, DSO, DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50 (matted)

Flying Spitfires with 605 squadron he took part in the air battles over France and Dunkirk and throughout the thick of the Battle of Britain. He was one of the top scoring R.A.F. pilots at the end of 1940 with 22 and a half air victories. In 1942 he was posted to the far east where he took command of 166 wing, remaining in fighters until the end of the war. After the war he had a successful career in newspapers where he became managing Director of the Daily Telegraph and Sunday Telegraph. He died on 20th August 2001.




Wing Commander John Elkington
*Signature Value : £40

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.




Wing Commander Peter Parrott DFC AFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40 (matted)

Born 28th of June 1920, Peter Parrott joined the RAF in 1938, completing his fighter pilot training before joining No.607 Sqn in early 1940. On the 10th of May 1940, he destroyed two He111s and damaged a further two, sharing in another the next day. He was then posted to No.145 Sqn, damaging a Bf110 on May the 22nd and an He111 four days later, an action which saw his aircraft sufficiently damaged to force him to crash land in Kent. During the Battle of Britain, Peter Parrott destroyed a Me109, Ju87, Ju88 and damaged an He111, before being posted to No.605 Sqn in September. After baling out of his damaged Hurricane in December 1940 and remaining with 605 Sqn until summer 1941, he became an instructor. From July 1943 he joined a number of Squadrons in Italy, returning to Britain after the war to become a test pilot. He died 27th August 2003.
Wing Commander Taffy Higginson (deceased)
*Signature Value : £30 (matted)

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.




Wing Commander Terence Kane (deceased)
*Signature Value : £25

Kane joined the RAF on July 25 1938 on a short service commission. During his flying training he was injured in an Audax crash and admitted to hospital, however he was able to complete his training and was posted to CFS, Upavon, for an instructor's course, after which he joined the staff at 14 FTS, Kinloss and later Cranfield. He went to 7 OTU, Hawarden in July 1940, converted to Spitfires and joined 234 Squadron on September 14th. He shared in the destruction of a Ju88 on the 22nd. The next day he failed to return from a routine section patrol. His Spitfire was damaged in combat off the French coast and he baled out at 6,000 feet and was picked up from the sea and captured by the Germans. Before being shot down, he destroyed a Bf109. He was freed in May 1945 and stayed in the RAF until 1950. He rejoined the RAF in April 1954, serving in the Fighter Control Branch, and retired in 1974. He died on 5th August 2016.




Wing Commander Tom Neil DFC* AFC
*Signature Value : £50

Tom Neil was born on 14th July 1920 in Bootle, Lancashire. Tom Neil (also to become known in the RAF as 'Ginger') joined the RAFVR in October 1938 and began his flying training at 17 E and RFTS, Barton, Manchester. Tom Neil was called up on the 2nd os September 1939 being sent to 4 ITW, Bexhill in early November. On 1st December 1939, he was posted to 8 FTS and on completion of the course he was commissioned and posted to 249 Squadron in May 1940 flying Hurricanes just before the start of the Battle of Britain flying from North Weald. On 7th September 1940, Tom Neil encountered and claimed a Bf109 destroyed. On the 11th an He111, on the 15th two Bf109s and a Do17 destroyed and another Do17 shared, on the 18th an He111 damaged and on the 27th a Bf110 and a Ju88 destroyed, a Bf110 probably destroyed and a Ju88 shared. On 6th October Tom Neil shared a Do17, on the 25th claimed a Bf109 destroyed, on the 27th a Do17 probably destroyed, on the 28th a Ju88 shared and on 7th November a Ju87 and two Bf109s destroyed. He was awarded a DFC on 8 October, but on 7 November, after claiming 3 victories over the North Sea off the Essex coast, he collided in mid-air with Wing Commander Francis Beamish and his aircraft lost its tail. He baled out of his Hurricane unhurt, Beamish force-landing unscathed. Tom received a Bar to his DFC on 26 November, and on 13 December was promoted flight Commander. The squadron was posted to Malta in May 1941, flying off HMS Ark Royal on the 21st. During a summer of frequent scrambles, he claimed one further victory in June, while on 7th October he led a fighter-bomber attack on Gela station, Sicily. He departed the island in December 1941, returning to the UK via the Middle East, South and West Africa, and Canada, finally arriving in March 1942, when he became tactics officer with 81 Group. A spell as an instructor at 56 OTU, before being posted as a flying liaison officer with the 100th Fighter Wing of the US 9th Air Force in January 1944. He managed to get some flying in over France with this unit, claiming a share in 6 aircraft destroyed on the ground before D-Day, and a dozen or so more later, plus a number of other ground targets. In January 1945 he was sent to the school of Land/Air Warfare as an instructor. In March 1945 he was posted out to Burma, where he undertook some operations with 1 Wing, Indian Air Force, to gain experience of the operations in this area. Returning to the UK in April, he resumed instructing at the school until the end of the year. In January 1946 he attended the Empire Test Pilots School, undertaking No.4 short course and No.5 course, a total of 18 months. Posted briefly to Farnborough, he sought a move to Boscombe Down, where he stayed for some 3 years. In 1948 in went to Wright-Patterson AFB, Dayton, Ohio, to take part in the first high altitude pressure suit experiments, as a precursor to the aerospace programme. 1950-51 he was a staff officer at HQ, Fighter Command, while in 1952 he attended the staff college at Bracknell. He was then given command of 208 Squadron in Egypt, which he led until 1956, leaving just before the Suez operation. He returned to the UK to become W/Cdr Operations, Metropolitan sector, until 1958, when he attended the flying college at Manby. He went to the British Embassy in Washington for 3 years from 1959, returning to the Ministry of Defence but retiring from the service as a Wing Commander in 1964. Meanwhile he had added the US Bronze Star to his decorations in august 1947, and an AFC in January 1956.

The Aircraft :
NameInfo
HurricaneRoyal 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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