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 The daylight raid on Tokyo, led by Lt Col James H. Doolittle on Sunday 18 April 1942, has rightfully entered the history books as one of the most daring and courageous operations of the Second World War. On that day, in mid ocean, Doolittle had launched his B-25 Mitchell bomber from the heaving, spray-soaked flight deck of an aircraft carrier, a deck too short to land on, and flown on to bomb Tokyo. He knew there would be no return to the USS Hornet, either for him or the 15 heavily laden B-25s behind him, for this was a feat never before attempted, and for every crew member the mission was a one-way ticket. Yet, under the leadership of Jimmy Doolittle, they all dared to survive. The mission for the 16 bombers was to bomb industrial targets in Tokyo and surrounding areas, to slow production of strategic war material, then fly on to land in the part of south-west China that was still in the hands of friendly Nationalist forces. All being well, the mission would be so unexpected it would plant the first seeds of doubt into enemy minds. It worked – the Japanese were forced to quickly divert hundreds of aircraft, men and equipment away from offensive operations to the defence of their homeland. There was, however, another reason behind the Doolittle's raid – to lift the morale of an American public devastated by the attack on Pearl Harbor four months earlier. And the success of the mission provided the boost that was needed. If any had doubted America's resolve in the face of uncertainty, the courage, determination and heroism displayed by Lt Col Doolittle and his band of aviators restored their determination. Although it might take years, and the price would be high, America and her allies understood that the fight could, and would, be won. Commissioned to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Doolittle Tokyo Raid the painting portrays the dramatic moment that Lt Col Jimmy Doolittle lifts his B-25 off the pitching deck of the USS Hornet. Having timed his launch to perfection he climbs steeply away, ready to adjust his compass bearing for a direct line to Tokyo. On the sodden deck behind him the crews of the remaining 15 aircraft, whose engines are warmed, ready and turning, will quickly follow their commanding officer into the murky sky.

Destination Tokyo by Anthony Saunders.

" The daylight raid on Tokyo, led by Lt Col James H. Doolittle on Sunday 18 April 1942, has rightfully entered the history books as one of the most daring and courageous operations of the Second World War. On that day, in mid ocean, Doolittle had launched his B-25 Mitchell bomber from the heaving, spray-soaked flight deck of an aircraft carrier, a deck too short to land on, and flown on to bomb Tokyo. He knew there would be no return to the USS Hornet, either for him or the 15 heavily laden B-25s behind him, for this was a feat never before attempted, and for every crew member the mission was a one-way ticket. Yet, under the leadership of Jimmy Doolittle, they all dared to survive. The mission for the 16 bombers was to bomb industrial targets in Tokyo and surrounding areas, to slow production of strategic war material, then fly on to land in the part of south-west China that was still in the hands of friendly Nationalist forces. All being well, the mission would be so unexpected it would plant the first seeds of doubt into enemy minds. It worked – the Japanese were forced to quickly divert hundreds of aircraft, men and equipment away from offensive operations to the defence of their homeland. There was, however, another reason behind the Doolittle's raid – to lift the morale of an American public devastated by the attack on Pearl Harbor four months earlier. And the success of the mission provided the boost that was needed. If any had doubted America's resolve in the face of uncertainty, the courage, determination and heroism displayed by Lt Col Doolittle and his band of aviators restored their determination. Although it might take years, and the price would be high, America and her allies understood that the fight could, and would, be won. Commissioned to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Doolittle Tokyo Raid the painting portrays the dramatic moment that Lt Col Jimmy Doolittle lifts his B-25 off the pitching deck of the USS Hornet. Having timed his launch to perfection he climbs steeply away, ready to adjust his compass bearing for a direct line to Tokyo. On the sodden deck behind him the crews of the remaining 15 aircraft, whose engines are warmed, ready and turning, will quickly follow their commanding officer into the murky sky. "

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Latest 50 Aviation Prints / Paintings / Drawings

 The daylight raid on Tokyo, led by Lt Col James H. Doolittle on Sunday 18 April 1942, has rightfully entered the history books as one of the most daring and courageous operations of the Second World War. On that day, in mid ocean, Doolittle had launched his B-25 Mitchell bomber from the heaving, spray-soaked flight deck of an aircraft carrier, a deck too short to land on, and flown on to bomb Tokyo. He knew there would be no return to the USS Hornet, either for him or the 15 heavily laden B-25s behind him, for this was a feat never before attempted, and for every crew member the mission was a one-way ticket. Yet, under the leadership of Jimmy Doolittle, they all dared to survive. The mission for the 16 bombers was to bomb industrial targets in Tokyo and surrounding areas, to slow production of strategic war material, then fly on to land in the part of south-west China that was still in the hands of friendly Nationalist forces. All being well, the mission would be so unexpected it would plant the first seeds of doubt into enemy minds. It worked – the Japanese were forced to quickly divert hundreds of aircraft, men and equipment away from offensive operations to the defence of their homeland. There was, however, another reason behind the Doolittle's raid – to lift the morale of an American public devastated by the attack on Pearl Harbor four months earlier. And the success of the mission provided the boost that was needed. If any had doubted America's resolve in the face of uncertainty, the courage, determination and heroism displayed by Lt Col Doolittle and his band of aviators restored their determination. Although it might take years, and the price would be high, America and her allies understood that the fight could, and would, be won. Commissioned to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Doolittle Tokyo Raid the painting portrays the dramatic moment that Lt Col Jimmy Doolittle lifts his B-25 off the pitching deck of the USS Hornet. Having timed his launch to perfection he climbs steeply away, ready to adjust his compass bearing for a direct line to Tokyo. On the sodden deck behind him the crews of the remaining 15 aircraft, whose engines are warmed, ready and turning, will quickly follow their commanding officer into the murky sky.
Destination Tokyo by Anthony Saunders.Click For DetailsDHM6591
  Seen here in company with other 485 Sqn machines, Spitfire Mk.IXc ML407 is depicted over the Normandy beaches shortly after D-Day.  Flown by New Zealander Fl Lt Johnnie Houlton, this aircraft claimed a Ju.88 on 6th June and shared in the destruction of another on the same day.  Coded 'V' in honour of his wife, Vickie, ML407 is still flying today, now converted to a two-seater and regularly displayed by Carolyn Grace.
Guardians of the Beaches by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM6429
 Despite crippling damage to their Lancaster ED925 (G), the crew of AJ-M continued to press home their attack on the Mohne Dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943. With both port engines ablaze, Flt Lt J V Hopgood forced his blazing aircraft on, releasing the Upkeep bomb just precious seconds too late to strike the dam, the mine instead bouncing over the wall and onto the power station below with devastating results. ED925 attempted to recover from the maelstrom, but the fuel fire was too intense and the aircraft was tragically lost, just two of her crew managing to escape the impact to spend the rest of the war as PoWs.
No Way Back by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0417
  Following the successful attack on the Mohne dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943, three Lancasters of 617 Sqn turned their attention to the Eder, some twelve minutes flying time away, accompanied by Wing Commander Guy Gibson to oversee the next attack. After several aborted attempts to obtain the correct height and direction for their bomb run by Flight Lieutenant Shannon (AJ-L) and  Squadron Leader H E Maudslay (AJ-Z), Gibson called in Maudslay to try again. During his second approach, he released his Upkeep bomb too late. It struck the top of the dam wall and bounced back into the air where it exploded right behind Maudslay's aircraft, lighting up the entire valley and causing considerable damage to the aircraft that had dropped it. Despite what must have been crippling damage, AJ-Z did manage to limp away from the scene and begin the return journey, but Maudslay and all his crew were sadly lost when their aircraft was shot down by flak at Emmerich-Klein-Netterdn. The Eder was finally successfully breached by Pilot Officer Les Knight's aircraft, ED912(G), AJ-N, which returned safely.
Tragedy at the Eder by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0427
 Flying low across the North Sea en route to the Sorpe Dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943 as part of Operation Chastise, Flying Officer Geoff Rice's Lancaster ED936(G) clipped a large wave, ripping the Upkeep bomb from its mountings and pitching the aircraft into the sea. Somehow, in just a split second, Rice managed to haul AJ-H back into the air, but the aircraft had ingested a huge amount of water and, as Rice put his Lancaster into a climb to head back to Scampton, rear gunner Sgt S Burns and his turret were almost swept away as the water rushed to the back of the aircraft. AJ-H returned to Scampton otherwise unscathed and took no further part in the Dams Raids.
A Lucky Escape by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0430
 En route to the Ruhr Dams on the night of 16/17 May 1943, P/O W C Townsend, demonstrating great skill, flew his aircraft, ED886(G) 'O'- Orange below tree-top height through a forest firetrap on his way to the Ennepe Dam, a feat carried out by moonlight alone.  AJ-O made it successfully to its target where the Upkeep bomb was observed to hit the dam, but with no effect, before returning safely to base the following morning.
Undetected by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0469
  This was the moment when the massive Möhne dam was finally breached on the night of 16th-17th May 1943 during the top secret Operation Chastise. The specially-converted Lancaster B MkIII of Fl/Lt David Maltby ED906(G) AJ-J roars between the towers of the dam, having released the Upkeep bouncing bomb that would ultimately cause a cascade of water to flood into the valley below. Fl/Lt Harold Martin's identical aircraft, ED909(G) AJ-P can be seen off Maltby's port wing with all of its light ablaze, drawing enemy fire from the attacking bomber.
Dambusters - Moment of Truth by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1946
 The Lancaster B MkIII of Flt Lt J V Hopgood was the second aircraft to make an attempt at breaching the Möhne Dam on the night of 16/17th of May 1943.    Already damaged by flak en route to their target, the embattled Lancaster ED925(G) (AJ-M) encountered intense flak and 20mm fire from the shore and from the towers of the dam itself. Flying Officer Gregory's front gun turret had taken the full force of the flak burst during the journey, killing him instantly, and Hopgood himself was almost certainly wounded in the same explosion.  Nevertheless, they pressed home their attack but, just moments from the release of the Upkeep bomb, both of Hopgood's port engines took direct hits and burst into flames, and other rounds ripped through the starboard wing. Perhaps distracted by the sudden conflagration, Hopgood's aircraft released its bomb just seconds too late to be effective.  The bomb bounced over the dam wall, landing on the power station below where it exploded with devastating results.  With blazing fuel now engulfing the wing of his crippled aircraft, Hopgood climbed to about 500ft where the wing failed, sending ED925 into a dive from which it would never recover. By jumping clear, clutching their parachutes just moments before impact, two of her crew survived to become prisoners of war.
Bravest of the Brave by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1948
 Of the five Lancasters that formed the Second Wave of Operation Chastise, just one aircraft made it to the target, the Sorpe Dam, on the night of 16th/17th May 1943. American pilot Joe McCarthy had been forced to switch to the reserve aircraft due to technical difficulties and subsequently took off slightly later than his less fortunate comrades, all of whom fell either to German flak or to mishaps on their perilous journey. Upon arrival, McCarthy found the view of the dam itself to be unobscured, although mist in the surrounding valleys made it difficult to gauge his approach. As this was not a masonry dam, a different tactic was employed to the Möhne and Eder which involved flying along the length of the dam and dropping the Upkeep bomb, unspun, directly onto it. Their task was made all the more difficult by the fact that their approach necessitated McCarthy bringing AJ-T low over the hilltop village of Langsheid whose Church spire occupied the very point at which the aircraft had to pass to get a good run upon the dam. Undaunted and with great skill, ED825(G) made its run and released the bomb onto the dam, unassisted by the spotlight altimeter device that had proved so useful at the Möhne and Eder as AJ-T had not been fitted with this aid. Nevertheless, the Upkeep struck the dam and exploded as planned, sadly with little effect. McCarthy and his brave crew returned safely to Scampton, their landing made slightly difficult by a tyre that had been damaged by light flak on the return journey. The Sorpe was attacked again in the small hours of the morning when Flight Sergeant Ken Brown's aircraft, AJ-F of the Third Wave arrived, once more striking the dam successfully, but again without breaching it.
Attack on the Sorpe by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1949
  Lancasters of 617 Sqn <i>Dambusters</i> get airborne from their Scampton base at the start of their journey to the Ruhr Valley on the night of 16th May 1943 under the codename <i>Operation Chastise</i>.  These are aircraft of the First Wave, led by Wing Commander Guy Gibson, the Second Wave having already departed some ten minutes earlier to negotiate a more northerly route to their targets.  On this momentous night, both the Möhne and Eder dams were successfully breached, whilst the Sorpe was also hit, but without serious damage.  Of the nineteen aircraft that took part in the mission, eleven returned safely.
The Dambusters by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM6007
 Two Republic P.47s of the 78th FG roar low over the Normandy beaches as the Allied invasion gets underway during Operation Overlord on 6th June 1944 as an LCT(5) Tank Landing Craft makes its break for the beach through a hail of enemy fire.  These craft were used at all the D-Day beaches, carrying mixed loads of vehicles and stores in almost impossible conditions.
The Dash for the Beach by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM6399
 Immediately following the Allied invasion of northern France in June 1944, 488 Sqn RNZAF found themselves in the thick of the fighting, keeping enemy intruders at bay, flying mainly at night, a role to which their young pilots aspired and excelled. Among those was Flt Lt G E 'Jamie' Jameson who, together with his navigator Norman Crookes, shot down no fewer than eight enemy aircraft in Mosquito NF.XIII MM466, this particular machine becoming the most successful Mosquito of WWII in terms of aerial victories.  Jameson was to be credited with a final total of eleven victories before being repatriated home.
Tribute to 488 Sqn RNZAF by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM6392
 Regarded by some in the Air Ministry as a failed fighter, the mighty Hawker Typhoon was unrivalled as a ground attack aircraft, especially in the crucial months immediately prior to - and after - D-Day when squadrons of Typhoons operated in 'cab ranks' to smash the German infrastructure and smooth the passage of the invading allied force.  This aircraft is Mk.1B (MN570) of Wing Commander R E P Brooker of 123 Wing based at Thorney Island.
Sledgehammer by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0510
 Pictured above the beaches of Normandy shortly after D-Day in June 1944, Spitfire Mk IX MK392 was the personal aircraft of Wing Commander Johnnie Johnson, carrying his initials JE-J instead of the usual squadron codes.  He went on to become Britain's highest scoring ace against the Luftwaffe with 34 claimed victories with many other probable victories.
Tribute to Air Vice Marshal James Edgar 'Johnnie' Johnson by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsB0509
 SE5As of B Flight, 56 Sqn led by James McCudden in the aircraft numbered B519, on patrol over the Western Front in 1917.
James McCudden by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1572
  Of similar configuration, but usually outclassed by its British contemporary, the Bristol F2b, the Luft-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft LVG was essentially a strong and stable observation aircraft that served widely during World War 1. On 21st May 1917, this example became the victim of the guns of Sergeant John H  Jones, contributing to his eventual tally of 15 victories. Here, his pilot that day, Captain W G Mostyn, has already had a squirt using his forward-firing Vickers gun before manoeuvring their 22 Sqn machine into position for Jones to finish the job with his twin Lewis guns.
Sergeant John H Jones and pilot Captain W G Mostyn, Bristol F2b Fighter claiming a Luft-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft LVG by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1622
 One of Frances most venerated pilots in World War 1 was Capitaine Georges Guynemer whose final victory tally has never been fully established, although he has been officially credited with 53 kills. It is more likely, however, that his actual total was nearer to 88! He is shown here in his Spad S.VII having just claimed his 31st victim, a Gotha bomber.
Capitaine Georges Guynemer by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1588
 Raymond Collishaw is shown heading B-Flight of No.10 Naval Squadron in 1917, comprised of five Sopwith Triplanes that became known as the Black Flight - all flown with great success by Canadian pilots. Collishaws aircraft was named Black Maria, Reids was Black Roger and Sharmans was Black Death, while Nash and Alexander flew Black Sheep and Black Prince respectively. Collishaws personal tally at the end of the war was 60 victories.
Lieutenant-Colonel Raymond Collishaw by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1582
 Flying Sopwith Snipe E8102 on 27th October 1918, Major William Barker encountered a flight of fifteen Fokker D.VIIs and decided to take them on single handed. Having downed one enemy aircraft, Barker was wounded in his left thigh and momentarily fainted. Coming to, he found another D.VII ahead of him and immediately resumed the battle. Another bullet now tore into his right leg and another shattered his left elbow. Despite his terrible injuries, Barker shot down three D.VIIs and drove the others off before crash landing his bullet-riddled Snipe in friendly territory. He survived the crash and was awarded the VC for his gallantry on this epic flight.
Major William Barker VC, DSO - Nearly an Ace in a Day by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1574
 Major Lanoe G Hawkers Bristol Scout C 1611, the No 6 Sqn aircraft in which he shot down two enemy planes on 25th July, 1915, and sufficiently damaged a third enemy aircraft to force it to the ground. He is shown here in combat with an Albatross C.III - soon to fall as one of his victims that day.  Lanoe G Hawker earned the first aerial Victoria Cross (VC) of the war for this action, but was killed in November 1916, after a lengthy battle with the infamous Red Baron, Manfred von Richthofen, becoming his 11th victim.
Lanoe G Hawker by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1567
  Captain Edward Rickenbacker of the 94th Sqn, United States Air Force, is shown in his Spad S.XIII, pursuing a Fokker D.VII. Eddie scored his first victory on 29th April 1918, but by the November Armistice he had increased his tally to 26 confirmed kills.
Edward Rickenbacker by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1564
 Lieutenant Leefe-Robinsons BE2C, converted to single-seater night-fighter configuration, destroying the German SL11 over Hertfordshire on the night of 2/3 September, 1916. Robinson attacked the SL11 from below, raking it with incendiary fire, before turning and diving past the airship for another attack. As he did so, the airship exploded into flames and crashed into a field near Cuffley, killing all sixteen crew. For this action, Leefe-Robinson was awarded the VC.
William Leefe-Robinson by Ivan Berryman. (PC)Click For DetailsDHM1559
 Short Stirling III EH990 is depicted heading out over the North Sea on the evening of 7th October 1943, on a mine-laying sortie off the Frisian Islands. LS-K was piloted, on this occasion, by Fl/Sg Thomas Robertson Ewen, RAFVR on his first - and sadly only - mission as pilot, his aircraft falling victim to a marauding enemy night fighter.
Outbound from Mildenhall by Ivan Berryman.Click For DetailsDHM6579
 When Hitler invaded Poland the British found themselves at war - and isolated.  Desperate for new fighters and with production at full capacity they turned to the US aircraft manufacturer North American Aviation who were convinced they had the answer for Britain's needs - but it was still on the drawing board.  They were, however, sure they could meet the deadline and incredibly, within the space of just four months the company had their brand new machine in the air.  The Mustang was a triumph - conceived and born in a shorter period than any other significant aircraft in history and testament to its designer Edgar Schmued, and the people who built it.  Delivered to the RAF in October 1941, it was fast, manoeuvrable, hard-hitting and, by the time it was combined with the legendary Rolls-Royce Merlin engine, was capable of outperforming anything the enemy could throw at it.  With the arrival of the long-range fighter the heavy bombers of the USAAF could now be escorted all the way to the German capital and back so whilst the RAF pounded Berlin at night, the Mighty Eighth would do the same by day.  When P-51s first appeared in the skies over Berlin, Hermann Goering was reported to have announced that he knew then the war was lost.  Like the Spitfire, a special new breed of men flew the Mustang as the Allies pushed for victory in Europe.  Tough, supremely confident, determined, and gloriously brave; it was an era that belonged to them and the P-51 helped produce some of the greatest aces of the war.  Such iconic pilots as George Preddy, John Meyer, Don Blakeslee, Kit Carson and Bud Anderson scored all or most of their victories in this thoroughbred fighter.  In fact, the Mustang was responsible for more US victories than any other fighter of the war.  In this painting, P-51Ds of the 352nd Fighter Group with full long-range tanks slung under their wings, head out from their forward base in Belgium on an extended sweep east of the Rhine crossing on the lookout for enemy aircraft, in the spring of 1945.
Looking for Trouble by Robert Taylor.Click For DetailsDHM6578
For nearly a thousand years the white cliffs of southern England had taunted many a foreign army.  These fortress walls of chalk, however, were defended by the moat-like waters of the Channel, and together they had shielded the British from her enemies.  Alongside Drake they had defied the armies of Spain and her great Armada and, in 1805, had halted the march of Napoleon's <i>Grand Armée</i>.  No enemy force since that of William the Conqueror in 1066 had successfully managed to cross the Channel in anger but, in May 1940, one of the most powerful armies the world had ever seen arrived at Calais.  An invasion by Hitler's all-conquering Wehrmacht was imminent - or so it seemed.  To cross the Channel and breach the English defences, the Luftwaffe simply had to gain control of the skies, and with massively superior numbers the outcom seemed inevitable.  The fate of Britain lay in the hands of less than 3,000 young airmen from Fighter Command - Churhill's 'Few'.  By July the most famous air battle in history was underway and, over the next three months under tranquil summer skies, the 'Few' battled to defend their Scpetred Isle.  Impossibly outnumbered and flying daily to the point of exhaustion, by October these courageous young men had snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, emerging defiantly victorious.  The threat of invasion might be over but a terrible price had been paid - during that long battle for the survival of Britain 544 had been killed and 422 wounded; and of those who survived a further 814 would be killed before the end of the war.  This painting pays tribute to the valiant 'Few', portraying a fleeting moment of calm for the pilots of 74 (Tiger) Squadron during the height of the Battle of Britain.  With his commanding officer Sailor Malan (ZP-A) to his right, Acting Flight Lieutenant John Freeborn (ZP-C) takes time to reflect on another day of intense combat while passing over the white cliffs and the familiar lighthouse at Beachy Head, as the squadron cross the English coast to head for home.
This Sceptred Isle by Robert Taylor.Click For DetailsDHM6577
 Following their victory at Midway, American forces had fought a long, bloody and bitter campaign to retake the Japanese held islands in the Pacific.  By the end of March 1945, however, they had finally captured Iwo Jima and looked towards Okinawa, a province of Japan itself.  But the closer the fighting came to Japan, the greater was the enemy's resistance.  The five-week long battle for Iwo Jima had been bloody, brutal and costly with over 26,000 US Marine casualties.  Of the 21,000-strong Japanese garrison on the island less than 300 prisoners had been taken; the rest refusing to surrender, preferring to fight to the death or commit 'honourable' ritual suicide.  Now the Allied attention turned to the island of Okinawa.  Annexed by Japan in the late nineteenth century and less than 400 miles south of its mainland, it was the place from which the Allied invasion of Japan must be launched.  Supported by a huge naval presence, including one of the largest British fleets ever assembled, the assault began on 1st April 1945 with the largest amphibious landing of the Pacific war - six US Divisions landed during what has been referred to as a <i>typhoon of steel</i>.  Japan's response was ferocious seeing the peak of the kamikaze scourge and the Allied fighter pilots, whilst providing ground support to the advancing infantry, desperately attempted to defend the naval fleet from unrelenting attacks.  While the British ships with their steel decks fared much better, the kamikazes took their toll on the US fleet, highlighting a conflict worse than anything seen before.  The 82 day battle was one of the most severe and bloody campaigns of WWII, accounting for over 14,000 Allied deaths and five times that number of Japanese soldiers.  This painting depicts USMC Ace Dean Caswell and F4U Corsairs from VMF-221, based on the carrier USS Bunker Hill climbing away from the target area after delivering a blistering rocket attack on enemy positions on Okinawa.
Okinawa by Robert Taylor.Click For DetailsDHM6576
 The bomber crews of the US Eighth Air Force rightfully earned their place in the annals of aviation history through heroism and devotion to duty.  Flying their first mission from England on Independence Day, 4th July 1942, using A-20 Havocs borrowed from the RAF, until their final full scale mission of the war on 25th April 1945, the bomber crews of the Eighth had become one of the most highly decorated military organisations of the war with 17 Medal of Honor recipients and 66 Distinguished Unit Citation awards.  By the end of the war, the <i>Mighty Eighth</i> was the largest air unit ever assembled, and their heroic efforts had played a major role in the destruction of Hitler's Third Reich.  But, with almost 6,000 heavy bombers lost, the cost of victory had come at an enormous price - only one in three airmen had survived the air battle over Europe.  Here, a brief moment of reprieve for the bomber crews as deep overnight snow temporarily grounds the Mighty Eighth during the bitter winter of 1944.  With the morning sunlight glinting across the snow-covered landscape, a B-17G Flying Fortress of the 398th Bomb Group stands quietly near the perimeter of RAF Nuthampstead, awaiting the thaw that will allow the flying to begin again.
Fortress at Rest by Richard Taylor.Click For DetailsDHM6574
 It was one of the fastest operational aircraft in the world, one of the most envied - and one of the most feared. Built almost entirely of wood and assembled by carpenters, the beautifully streamlined de Havilland Mosquito, or <i>Wooden Wonder</i> was a triumph of ingenuity at a time when resources of light alloys were in short supply.  Its greatest attribute was speed.  Powered by two phenomenal Rolls-Royce Merlin engines, the Mosquito became the finest multi-role combat aircraft of World War II.  No other Allied military aircraft was built in so many versions for so many roles - a fast bomber which could carry a huge 4,000lb payload; a day or night fighter; a fighter-bomber; trainer; torpedo bomber; photo reconnaissance aircraft; maritime strike aircraft and U-boat hunter were just some of the 43 different variants produced during a long and distinguished career.  Mosquitos had pioneered the role of daring precision attacks with the September 1942 raid on the Gestapo Headquarters in Oslo and were involved in the first unescorted high-speed bombing raids on Germany.  It was the Mosquito strike wings of Coastal Command, however, that endured some of the fiercest battles of the war.  Flying over the unforgiving icy waters of the North Sea to attack enemy shipping along the coasts of Norway, Denmark and Hollad meant that precision flying was essential for survival; especially in the deep, sheer fjords where even the slightest lapse in concentration could result in instant destruction.  In this painting, Mosquito Mk.VIs from No.143 Sqn, part of the famous Banff Strike Wing, come under intense defensive fire whilst delivering a blistering strike on enemy shipping off the Norwegian coast in early 1945.  Their salvo of rockets, however, will likely be enough to penetrate the hulls of the ships.
Devastating Strike by Robert Taylor.Click For DetailsDHM6573
 Spitfire, Typhoon and Mosquito aircraft in a triple print made up of the three individual prints <i>MkIX Spitfire, June 1944</i>, <i>Hawker Typhoons</i> and <i>De Havilland Mosquito</i>.
Royal Air Force WW2 Aircraft Triptych by Barry Price.Click For DetailsDHM6559
 Messerschmitt Bf109E-7Bs belonging to III./JG27, during the Balkan Campaign of 1941.  The yellow and white painted areas were used as recognition markings, so that they were not fired upon by friendly ground units during their low-level sorties.
Messerschmitt Bf109E-7/Bs by Jerry Boucher.Click For DetailsDHM6556
 This aircraft is preserved at Newark Air Museum.
Vulcan B Mk2 XM594, 44 Rhodesia Squadron, RAF Waddington. (PHOTO) by R P Chapman.Click For DetailsDHM6555
 Spitfire QJ-K of No.92 Squadron intercepts a marauding pair of Ju88s over southern England.
92 Squadron Intercept by Jason Askew. (P)Click For DetailsB0561
616 (South Yorkshire) Squadron Gloster Meteor Mk.1 EE218.  Flown by Warrant Officer Sid Woodacre over Kent, August 1944.  No.616 Sqn was chosen as the first unit to equip with the Gloster Meteor jet fighter - thus becoming the first RAF Jet Squadron.
Meteoric Victory by Tom Marchant. (PC)Click For DetailsTM0002
 Avro Lancaster <i>City of Lincoln</i> depicted as she appeared in 1995.
City of Lincoln by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0044

Shackletons by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0043
Royal Air Force ground crew engineers work on the engine of a Lancaster at its squadron's airfield.  A fitting tribute to the Avro Lancaster bomber of Bomber Command and all the crews that flew in and also worked on this magnificent aircraft.
Lancasters by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0002
 A flight of RAF Spitfires fly low over fields over occupied France, and are shown in their D-Day stripes.
Early Morning Sortie by Keith Aspinall. (PC)Click For DetailsKA0005

Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Ia N3093 of 616 Sqn RAF by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsWC0003
 Royal Air Force catalina over flys a Royal Navy Cruiser of Gibraltar while on patrol.
On the Prowl by Timothy OBrien. (PC)Click For DetailsTO0002
 A sole Lancaster returns over the snow covered fields of England, escorted home by a fighter. A fitting tribute to the air crews of the Lancaster squadrons of World War Two.
Last One Home by Keith Aspinall. (PC)Click For DetailsKA0009
 Yorkshire Warrior by Keith Aspinall. (PC)Click For DetailsKA0028
 Hurricane PZ865 of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
The Last of the Many by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0017
 No.7 Squadron.
Stirlings Ready by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0011
Covered in snow, an Avro Lancaster bomber is parked as a winter's dawn approaches at its squadron's airfield.  A fitting tribute to the Avro Lancaster bomber of Bomber Command and all the crews that flew in this stalwart of the Royal Air Force bombing squadrons.
Unexpected Snow by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0016

Blackburn Beverley C.Mk.1 XM108 of 84 Sqn RAF by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsWC0004
 A total of ten Lancasters carrying the code KM-X were lost between 17th January 1942 and 28th June 1945, with the loss of a total of 55 crew.
Winter Departure by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0019
 The Memphis Belle, a Boeing-built B-17F-10-BO, manufacturer's serial number 3470, USAAC Serial No.41-24485, was added to the USAAF inventory on 15th July 1942 and delivered in September 1942 to the 91st Bombardment Group at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine.  She deployed to Prestwick, Scotland, on 30th September 1942, moving to a temporary base at RAF Kimbolton on 1st October, and then finally to her permanent base at Bassingbourn, England, on 14th October.  Each side of the fuselage bore the unit and aircraft identification markings of a B-17 of the 324th Bomb Squadron (Heavy); the squadron code 'DF' and individual aircraft letter 'A'.  Captain Robert K. Morgan's crew flew 29 combat missions with the 324th Bomb Squadron, all but four in the Memphis Belle. The aircraft's 25 missions were:<br>7 November 1942 - Brest, France  <br>9 November 1942 - St. Nazaire, France   <br>17 November 1942 - St. Nazaire, France  <br>6 December 1942 - Lille, France  <br>20 December 1942 - Romilly-sur-Seine, France  <br>30 December 1942 - Lorient, France (flown by Lt. James A. Verinis) <br>3 January 1943 - St. Nazaire, France  <br>13 January 1943 - Lille, France  <br>23 January 1943 - Lorient, France[ <br>14 February 1943 - Hamm, Germany  <br>16 February 1943 - St. Nazaire, France  <br>27 February 1943 - Brest, France  <br>6 March 1943 = Lorient France <br>12 March 1943 - Rouen, France <br>13 March 1943 - Abbeville, France <br>22 March 1943 - Wilhelmshaven, Germany <br>28 March 1943 - Rouen, France] <br>31 March 1943 - Rotterdam, Netherlands <br>16 April 1943 - Lorient, France <br>17 April 1943 - Bremen, Germany] <br>1 May 1943 - St. Nazaire, France <br>13 May 1943 - Meaulte, France (flown by Lt. C.L. Anderson) <br>14 May 1943 - Kiel, Germany (flown by Lt. John H. Miller) <br>15 May 1943 - Wilhelmshaven, Germany <br>17 May 1943 - Lorient, France <br>19 May 1943 - Kiel, Germany (flown by Lt. Anderson)
B-17 Memphis Belle by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0010
 Sadly, but two examples of the Handly page Halifax exist today - the unrestored W1048 at the RAF Museum at Hendon, and the Yorkshire Air Museums pristine LV907 Friday the 13th, a rebuild from the remains of HR792.
A Friday in Winter by Keith Woodcock. (PC)Click For DetailsKW0018
 The Tempest of Wing Commander Roland Beamont DSO and Bar DFC and Bar, June 1944.
Lull Before the Storm by Keith Aspinall. (PC)Click For DetailsKA0014
 Returning from a night mission, two Wellington bombers return over the snow covered fields of England. A fitting tribute to the air crews of the Wellington squadrons of World War Two.
Wimpey Wonderland by Keith Aspinall. (PC)Click For DetailsKA0013

Latest Robert Taylor and Richard Taylor Aviation Releases !

 When Hitler invaded Poland the British found themselves at war - and isolated.  Desperate for new fighters and with production at full capacity they turned to the US aircraft manufacturer North American Aviation who were convinced they had the answer for Britain's needs - but it was still on the drawing board.  They were, however, sure they could meet the deadline and incredibly, within the space of just four months the company had their brand new machine in the air.  The Mustang was a triumph - conceived and born in a shorter period than any other significant aircraft in history and testament to its designer Edgar Schmued, and the people who built it.  Delivered to the RAF in October 1941, it was fast, manoeuvrable, hard-hitting and, by the time it was combined with the legendary Rolls-Royce Merlin engine, was capable of outperforming anything the enemy could throw at it.  With the arrival of the long-range fighter the heavy bombers of the USAAF could now be escorted all the way to the German capital and back so whilst the RAF pounded Berlin at night, the Mighty Eighth would do the same by day.  When P-51s first appeared in the skies over Berlin, Hermann Goering was reported to have announced that he knew then the war was lost.  Like the Spitfire, a special new breed of men flew the Mustang as the Allies pushed for victory in Europe.  Tough, supremely confident, determined, and gloriously brave; it was an era that belonged to them and the P-51 helped produce some of the greatest aces of the war.  Such iconic pilots as George Preddy, John Meyer, Don Blakeslee, Kit Carson and Bud Anderson scored all or most of their victories in this thoroughbred fighter.  In fact, the Mustang was responsible for more US victories than any other fighter of the war.  In this painting, P-51Ds of the 352nd Fighter Group with full long-range tanks slung under their wings, head out from their forward base in Belgium on an extended sweep east of the Rhine crossing on the lookout for enemy aircraft, in the spring of 1945.

Looking for Trouble by Robert Taylor.

" When Hitler invaded Poland the British found themselves at war - and isolated. Desperate for new fighters and with production at full capacity they turned to the US aircraft manufacturer North American Aviation who were convinced they had the answer for Britain's needs - but it was still on the drawing board. They were, however, sure they could meet the deadline and incredibly, within the space of just four months the company had their brand new machine in the air. The Mustang was a triumph - conceived and born in a shorter period than any other significant aircraft in history and testament to its designer Edgar Schmued, and the people who built it. Delivered to the RAF in October 1941, it was fast, manoeuvrable, hard-hitting and, by the time it was combined with the legendary Rolls-Royce Merlin engine, was capable of outperforming anything the enemy could throw at it. With the arrival of the long-range fighter the heavy bombers of the USAAF could now be escorted all the way to the German capital and back so whilst the RAF pounded Berlin at night, the Mighty Eighth would do the same by day. When P-51s first appeared in the skies over Berlin, Hermann Goering was reported to have announced that he knew then the war was lost. Like the Spitfire, a special new breed of men flew the Mustang as the Allies pushed for victory in Europe. Tough, supremely confident, determined, and gloriously brave; it was an era that belonged to them and the P-51 helped produce some of the greatest aces of the war. Such iconic pilots as George Preddy, John Meyer, Don Blakeslee, Kit Carson and Bud Anderson scored all or most of their victories in this thoroughbred fighter. In fact, the Mustang was responsible for more US victories than any other fighter of the war. In this painting, P-51Ds of the 352nd Fighter Group with full long-range tanks slung under their wings, head out from their forward base in Belgium on an extended sweep east of the Rhine crossing on the lookout for enemy aircraft, in the spring of 1945. "

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 The bomber crews of the US Eighth Air Force rightfully earned their place in the annals of aviation history through heroism and devotion to duty.  Flying their first mission from England on Independence Day, 4th July 1942, using A-20 Havocs borrowed from the RAF, until their final full scale mission of the war on 25th April 1945, the bomber crews of the Eighth had become one of the most highly decorated military organisations of the war with 17 Medal of Honor recipients and 66 Distinguished Unit Citation awards.  By the end of the war, the <i>Mighty Eighth</i> was the largest air unit ever assembled, and their heroic efforts had played a major role in the destruction of Hitler's Third Reich.  But, with almost 6,000 heavy bombers lost, the cost of victory had come at an enormous price - only one in three airmen had survived the air battle over Europe.  Here, a brief moment of reprieve for the bomber crews as deep overnight snow temporarily grounds the Mighty Eighth during the bitter winter of 1944.  With the morning sunlight glinting across the snow-covered landscape, a B-17G Flying Fortress of the 398th Bomb Group stands quietly near the perimeter of RAF Nuthampstead, awaiting the thaw that will allow the flying to begin again.

Fortress at Rest by Richard Taylor.

" The bomber crews of the US Eighth Air Force rightfully earned their place in the annals of aviation history through heroism and devotion to duty. Flying their first mission from England on Independence Day, 4th July 1942, using A-20 Havocs borrowed from the RAF, until their final full scale mission of the war on 25th April 1945, the bomber crews of the Eighth had become one of the most highly decorated military organisations of the war with 17 Medal of Honor recipients and 66 Distinguished Unit Citation awards. By the end of the war, the Mighty Eighth was the largest air unit ever assembled, and their heroic efforts had played a major role in the destruction of Hitler's Third Reich. But, with almost 6,000 heavy bombers lost, the cost of victory had come at an enormous price - only one in three airmen had survived the air battle over Europe. Here, a brief moment of reprieve for the bomber crews as deep overnight snow temporarily grounds the Mighty Eighth during the bitter winter of 1944. With the morning sunlight glinting across the snow-covered landscape, a B-17G Flying Fortress of the 398th Bomb Group stands quietly near the perimeter of RAF Nuthampstead, awaiting the thaw that will allow the flying to begin again. "

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See our aviation history timeline for all today's historical aviation events - air victories, aircraft losses and pilot details.

RECENT UPDATES TO OUR AVIATION HISTORY DATABASES
Updates made to Aircrew database for : Aircraftsman 1 D. W. Barker : First name updated (now D. W.), Squadron service dates updated
New victory claim added : He111 claimed on 26th September 1940 by Jozef Jeka of No.238 Sqn RAF
Updates made to Aircrew database for : Warrant Officer Richard Maywood :
Updates made to Airframes database for : Flying Fortress 42-30046 : Squadrons updated (added 384th Bomb Group)
Updates made to Aircrew database for : Warrant Officer Stanley F Paddy Hope : First name updated (now Stanley F Paddy), Squadron service dates updated
Updates made to Aircrew database for : Flight Lieutenant Des Curtis : Aircraft updated, Squadrons updated, Squadron service dates updated
Clarke added to aircrew database.
Flying Fortress Mk.F-85-BO 42-30042 of 349th Bomb Squadron added to the airframes database.
Hurricane Mk.IIb Z5617 of No.229 Sqn RAF added to the airframes database.
561st Bomb Squadron added to the squadrons database.
SEARCH OUR AVIATION HISTORY DATABASES

 

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