This three-seater armed tractor biplane was constructed by Robey and Co under the design of J.A. Peters to carry the Admiralty-sponsored Davis recoiless gun. The more remarkable feature of this 240 hp Roll-Royce powered aircraft was its crew members disposition. The two gunners were located each in a nacelle faired into the upper wings where they manned their Davis guns, while the pilot was placed bizarrely in a cockpit towards the very rear of the fuselage just ahead of the fin. Two examples were ordered by the Royal Navy Air Service (RNAS) in May 1916, but in the end all came to naught when the first prototype crashed in its very first flight in May 1917.
Poor little thing. The iconic Blériot XI looks so fragile here, it was certainly past its prime at that time and not well-suited for this metier anyway.
Sublime 1915 artwork of William L. Wyllie. (Defence Academy of the United Kingdom).
Spitfire is a drug. I’ve just revisited, again, the ” Battle of Britain” (1969) movie. With all its defects, nothing has come near this classic; no digital effects and plenty of hardware “in action”. Well, there one thing I hate in this movie: they killed the best “pilot” and I can’t really forgive them for that. The headgear was also quite dubious.
Such a glorious line. His name is….
In times of Brexit and referendums let’s remember a pair of things that made them great together. The superb Mk.IIa of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) close to the almost equally iconic Long Nose Jaguar D-type of the Scottish Ecurie Ecosse. Photo taken at the 2015 BBMF RAF Coningsby.
The Cutty Sark-Windhover-Cloud family of amphibious aircraft was the more commercially successful aircraft produced by the Saunders Roe company ever. Nothing to set the world on fire though keeping in mind that, in total, only 36 were produced. The three models main difference was in their size. Introduced like its “brothers” in 1930, the Windhover was the intermediate one. It was also the least successful with only two produced.
Gorgeous photo of the first Windhover (A.21/1 ZK-ABW) soaring low over the Solent, late 1930. As we can see here a quite pretty thing, maybe the prettier one of the family. Well, they were pretty until a sort of “embryonic” auxiliary winglet was fitted over the engines to cure an engine-on and -off handling anomaly.
Splendid depiction of a pair of Harriers of the interesting RAF No. 1417 Flight overflying Belize’s incredible “Great Blue Hole”.
The GR.3 is, of an all Harrier variants, my favourite. That ugly and very British “Snoopy” nose with its laser rangefinder and lateral Port Facing Oblique (PFO) camera.
Artist Mark Postlethwaite.