Spitfire

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Second World War aviation art prints of the Spitfire aircraft. Our collection of prints and original paintings of the Spitfire aircraft of World War Two.
Royal Air Force fighter aircraft, maximum speed for mark I Supermarine Spitfire, 362mph up to The Seafire 47 with a top speed of 452mph. maximum ceiling for Mk I 34,000feet up to 44,500 for the mark XIV. Maximum range for MK I 575 miles . up to 1475 miles for the Seafire 47. Armament for the various Marks of Spitfire. for MK I, and II . eight fixed .303 browning Machine guns, for MKs V-IX and XVI two 20mm Hispano cannons and four .303 browning machine guns. and on later Marks, six to eight Rockets under the wings or a maximum bomb load of 1,000 lbs. Designed by R J Mitchell, The proto type Spitfire first flew on the 5th March 1936. and entered service with the Royal Air Force in August 1938, with 19 squadron based and RAF Duxford. by the outbreak of World war two, there were twelve squadrons with a total of 187 spitfires, with another 83 in store. Between 1939 and 1945, a large variety of modifications and developments produced a variety of MK,s from I to XVI. The mark II came into service in late 1940, and in March 1941, the Mk,V came into service. To counter the Improvements in fighters of the Luftwaffe especially the FW190, the MK,XII was introduced with its Griffin engine. The Fleet Air Arm used the Mk,I and II and were named Seafires. By the end of production in 1948 a total of 20,351 spitfires had been made and 2408 Seafires. The most produced variant was the Spitfire Mark V, with a total of 6479 spitfires produced. The Royal Air Force kept Spitfires in front line use until April 1954.
Top 10 Aces for this aircraft
NameVictoriesInfo
James E "Johnnie" Johnson signatures36.91
Adolf Gysbert Malam35.00
Marmaduke Pattle34.00
Brendon E "Paddy" Finucane32.00
George Frederick Beurling31.50
Robert Stanford-Tuck signatures29.00
Clive Caldwell28.50
James Harry "Ginger" Lacey signatures28.00
Neville F Duke signatures28.00
Francis S Gabreski signatures28.00
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Eagles High by Robert Taylor.


Eagles High by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0025Eagles High by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 1000 prints.
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Paper size 37 inches x 27 inches (93cm x 69cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Brothers, Peter
Page, Geoffrey
Rall, Gunther
Steinhoff, Johannes
Galland, Adolf
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Ia N3093 of 616 Sqn RAF by Keith Woodcock.


Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Ia N3093 of 616 Sqn RAF by Keith Woodcock.

Item Code : WC0003Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Ia N3093 of 616 Sqn RAF by Keith Woodcock. - Editions Available
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Image size 11 inches x 7 inches (28cm x 18cm)none£9.00

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Malta - George Cross by Robert Taylor.


Malta - George Cross by Robert Taylor.

Pilot Officer John Bisley of 126 Squadron in combat with Me 109s from JG-53 during one of the intense aerial air battles over Valetta in April 1942. Between the summer of 1940 and the end of 1942, Malta became one of the most bombed places on earth. The RAFs desperate fight to retain control of the diminutive Mediterranean island, and the defiant courage of the people of Malta, is one of the epic stories of World War Two.
Item Code : RT0003Malta - George Cross by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINT Malta Edition of 250 prints.
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Image size 27 inches x 16 inches (69cm x 41cm) Overall size 33 inches x 24 inches (84cm x 64cm) Evans, Ken
MacLennan, Ian
Parkinson, Colin
Rae, Jack
Roscoe, Arthur
Scott, Allan
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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Malta Edition of 25 Artist Proofs.
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Image size 27 inches x 16 inches (69cm x 41cm) Overall size 33 inches x 24 inches (84cm x 64cm) Evans, Ken
MacLennan, Ian
Parkinson, Colin
Rae, Jack
Roscoe, Arthur
Scott, Allan
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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PRINT Malta Edition of 250 prints with companion print.
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Image size 27 inches x 16 inches (69cm x 41cm) Overall size 33 inches x 24 inches (84cm x 64cm) Crosley, Mike (companion print)
Evans, Ken
Drake, Billy (companion print)
Twiss, Peter (companion print)
MacLennan, Ian
Parkinson, Colin
Rae, Jack
Roscoe, Arthur
Scott, Allan
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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PRINTSpitfire edition of 300 prints.
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Image size 27 inches x 16 inches (69cm x 41cm) Overall size 33 inches x 24 inches (84cm x 64cm) Evans, Ken
MacLennan, Ian
Parkinson, Colin
Rae, Jack
Roscoe, Arthur
Scott, Allan
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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St Croix sur Mer by Robert Taylor.


St Croix sur Mer by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0073St Croix sur Mer by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 1250 prints.
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Paper size 34 inches x 24 inches (86cm x 61cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Robillard, Larry
Browne, Danny
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £175
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Memorial Flight by Robert Taylor.


Memorial Flight by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0057Memorial Flight by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINT Signed limited edition of 1000 prints.
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Paper size 27 inches x 20 inches (69cm x 51cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Townsend, Peter
Cheshire, Leonard
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £235
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Wings of Glory by Robert Taylor.


Wings of Glory by Robert Taylor.

Robert Taylors spellbinding painting, Wings of Glory, paying tribute to Mitchells immortal fighter, features the MkX1X Spitfire of the RAFs Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. Powered by the Rolls-Royce Griffin engine providing maximum speed of 450mph and a 44,000 feet operating ceiling, this lovingly restored aircraft thrills generations of aviation enthusiasts with her spectacular aerobatics at Europes summer air shows. This most beautiful of fighters gives a virtuoso performance, high among the clouds, alone in her magical element, she dances an aerial ballet like no other could.
Item Code : RT0312Wings of Glory by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 500 prints.
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Paper size 27 inches x 22 inches (69cm x 56cm) Stapleton, Basil
Duke, Neville
Freeborn, John
Henshaw, Alex
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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PRINTSigned limited edition of 350 Battle of Britain Portfolios.
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Paper size 27 inches x 22 inches (69cm x 56cm) Brothers, Peter
Stapleton, Basil
Duke, Neville
Freeborn, John
Henshaw, Alex
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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Supermarine Spitfire Poster by P Oliver.


Supermarine Spitfire Poster by P Oliver.

Item Code : VAR0210Supermarine Spitfire Poster by P Oliver. - Editions Available
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PRINTPoster size 24 inches x 16 inches (61cm x 41cm)
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Return of the Few by Robert Taylor.


Return of the Few by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0067Return of the Few by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 1000 prints.
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Paper size 27 inches x 20 inches (69cm x 51cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Townsend, Peter
Stanford-Tuck, Bob
Deere, Alan
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


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Spitfire on the Prowl by Stan Stokes.


Spitfire on the Prowl by Stan Stokes.

One of  most popular aircraft of WW II. Spitfire on the Prowl depicts the venerable Super-marine Spitfire flying over the needles.
Item Code : STK0140Spitfire on the Prowl by Stan Stokes. - Editions Available
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PRINT Limited edition of 950 prints.
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Print size 30 inches x 24 inches (76cm x 61cm)Artist : Stan Stokes£15 Off!Now : £80.00

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Duxford and Shuttleworth by John Wincentzen.


Duxford and Shuttleworth by John Wincentzen.

Item Code : VAR0325Duxford and Shuttleworth by John Wincentzen. - Editions Available
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PRINTOpen edition print.
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Image size 22 inches x 16 inches (56cm x 41cm)noneHalf
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Summer of 41 by Tom Marchant.


Summer of 41 by Tom Marchant.

The Pilot, Squadron Leader L.H. Buck Casson D.F.C., A.F.C., a founder member of 616 Squadron took this aircraft into action in July 1941. In August he was shot down over France and became a prisoner of war. After the war he returned to Command the Squadron flying Meteors.
Item Code : TM0001Summer of 41 by Tom Marchant. - Editions Available
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Image size 15 inches x 10 inches (38cm x 25cm)Artist : Tom MarchantSOLD
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Dawn Scramble by Robert Taylor.


Dawn Scramble by Robert Taylor.

Biggin Hill was one of the most active R.A.F. Fighter bases of World War II. Fighter aircraft scrambled as many as seven or eight times a day during the height of the Battle of Britain. Mark Vb Spitfires are seen retracting their undercarriage almost as soon as they leave the ground in order to gain height as quickly as possible.

This print was first published in 1981. We have one secondary market copy available, number 513 of the edition of 1000. The print was framed from new and hung in a corridor, out of sunlight. As a result, the colours are strong, not faded, and the signature is good. There is some damage to the border areas and some slight rippling, caused by being framed for such a long period of time. This is reflected in the price at which the print is offered.
Item Code : RST0088Dawn Scramble by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 1000 prints 
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Paper size 30 inches x 23 inches (76cm x 59cm) Stanford-Tuck, Bob
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £85
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Sigh of the Merlin by Robert Taylor.


Sigh of the Merlin by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0070Sigh of the Merlin by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 750 prints.
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Paper size 28 inches x 23 inches (71cm x 58cm) Doe, Bob
Henshaw, Alex
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £130
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Spitfire by Robert Taylor.


Spitfire by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0071Spitfire by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 1500 prints.
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Paper size 24 inches x 20 inches (61cm x 51cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Bader, Douglas
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £220
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Battle of Britain by Stan Stokes.


Battle of Britain by Stan Stokes.

The Battle of Britain in 1940 was the biggest air battle ever fought in the history of armed conflict. After the fall of France Hitler hoped to sign a peace treaty with Britain allowing the Germans to dominate Europe, and ultimately attack Russia in the East. Being rebuffed by the British, Hitler and his senior military advisors formulated Operation Sea Lion. This was to involve an invasion of Britain after the Luftwaffe had attained total domination over the RAF. As plans evolved for knocking out the RAF, the Germans began assembling a large number of airfields in Holland, France, and Belgium to be used for the attack. In their arsenal the Germans had more than 800 medium range bombers including the Heinkel He-111, the Junker Ju-88, and the Dornier Do-17. They also had more than 200 Ju-87 Stuka dive bombers, and more than 900 Bf-109 and Bf-110 fighters to escort their attacking forces. The British had far less than 1000 defensive aircraft at their disposal with Hawker Hurricanes outn.........


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Item Code : STK0141Battle of Britain by Stan Stokes. - Editions Available
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PRINT Signed limited edition of 4750 prints.
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Print size 16 inches x 11.5 inches (41cm x 30cm) Supplied with signed and numbered certificate of authenticity.Artist : Stan Stokes£25 Off!
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PRINT Limited edition of 100 giclee art prints.
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Size 21 inches x 14 inches (53cm x 36cm)Artist : Stan Stokes£109.00

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Limited edition of 100 giclee canvas prints.
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Size 45 inches x 30 inches (114cm x 76cm)none£624.00

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Limited edition of 100 giclee canvas prints.
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Size 36 inches x 24 inches (91cm x 61cm)none£484.00

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Limited edition of 100 giclee canvas prints.
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Size 27 inches x 18 inches (69cm x 46cm)none£294.00

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Canadian Heroes by Stan Stokes.


Canadian Heroes by Stan Stokes.

James Edgar (Johnnie) Johnson was the Royal Air Forces top fighter ace in Europe with 38 confirmed victories during the War. Johnson was called up in 1939 following his training with the RAF Volunteer Reserve. Having been hospitalized for much of the Battle of Britain, Johnsons first serious action was in mid-1941 when he often flew with Douglas Baders section. Johnson was promoted quickly and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross following his fifth victory in 1941. In early 1943 Johnson was put in command of a wing of the Royal Canadian Air Force. Flying the high-performance Supermarine Spitfire Mark IX, Johnson achieved 18 victories in seven months of flying. Many of Johnsons victories were achieved against the Messersmitt Bf-109. Promoted to Group Captain in early 1945, Johnson was put in command of the 125 Wing for the duration of the War. The Supermarine Spitfire is the only Allied fighter to have been continuously produced from before 1939 to after 1945. In total more than.........


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Item Code : STK0113Canadian Heroes by Stan Stokes. - Editions Available
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PRINT Signed limited edition of 4750 prints.
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Print size 16 inches x 11.5 inches (41cm x 30cm) Supplied with signed and numbered certificate of authenticity.Artist : Stan Stokes£25 Off!
Supplied with one or more free art prints!
Now : £30.00

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PRINT225 prints from the signed limited edition of 4750 prints, with signature of Stan Stokes and pilot, and a remarque.
Full Item Details
Image size 16 inches x 11.5 inches (41cm x 30cm) Johnson, Johnnie
+ Artist : Stan Stokes


Signature(s) value alone : £70
£5 Off!Now : £130.00

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PRINTPrints from the 225 prints from the signed limited edition of 4750 prints, with signature of Stan Stokes and pilot.
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Image size 16 inches x 11.5 inches (41cm x 30cm) Johnson, Johnnie
+ Artist : Stan Stokes


Signature(s) value alone : £70
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**Signed limited edition of 4750 prints. (Two prints reduced to clear).
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Print size 16 inches x 11.5 inches (41cm x 30cm) Supplied with signed and numbered certificate of authenticity.Artist : Stan Stokes£35 Off!
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Reach for the Skies by Robert Taylor.


Reach for the Skies by Robert Taylor.

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Item Code : RST0037Reach for the Skies by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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August Victory by Simon Atack.


August Victory by Simon Atack.

Simon Atack has recreated an action flown by Pilot Officer Bob Doe during a fierce battle over the south coast, near the Isle of Wight on 18th August, 1940. Flying a Mk I Spitfire of No 234 Squadron, Boe Doe is seen bringing down an Me109 High over Southampton, one of 14 Victories he achieved during the Battle of Britain. The third highest scoring fighter pilot of the battle, 20 year old Bob Doe was one of the few Aces to fly both Spitfires and Hurricanes during the battle. Simon captures the very essence of the most tumultous of all aerial conflicts in his dramatic painting, August Victory, with Bob flying his trusted Spitfire, D for Doe.
Item Code : SA0328August Victory by Simon Atack. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 500 prints.
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Paper size 31 inches x 24 inches (79cm x 61cm) Doe, Bob
+ Artist : Simon Atack


Signature(s) value alone : £60
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Limited edition of 25 artist proofs.
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Paper size 31 inches x 24 inches (79cm x 61cm) Doe, Bob
+ Artist : Simon Atack


Signature(s) value alone : £60
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Summer of 44 by Stuart Brown.


Summer of 44 by Stuart Brown.

MkIX Supermarine Spitfires take off for evening patrol of the Normandy coast, June 1944.
Item Code : SBR0001Summer of 44 by Stuart Brown. - Editions Available
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PRINT Signed limited edition of 850 prints.
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Image size 23 inches x 16 inches (58cm x 41cm) Baxter, Raymond
+ Artist : Stuart Brown


Signature(s) value alone : £40
£30 Off!Now : £105.00

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Tangmere Wing by Robert Taylor.


Tangmere Wing by Robert Taylor.

SOLD (£1250, March 2010)
Item Code : RST0079Tangmere Wing by Robert Taylor. - Editions Available
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PRINTSigned limited edition of 850 prints.
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Paper size 26.5 inches x 20 inches (68cm x 51cm) Johnson, Johnnie
Bader, Douglas
Dundas, Hugh
Holden, Kenneth
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £315
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Squadrons which flew this aircraft
SquadronInfo
1 Wing
127 Wing RCAF
145 Wing
244 Wing
307th Fighter Squadron
309th Fighter Squadron
31st Fighter Group
322 Wing
52nd Fighter Group
67th Fighter Group
Pilot signatures for this aircraft
NameInfo
Air Chief Marshal Sir Neil Wheeler GCB, CBE, DSO, DFC, AFC (deceased)An ex-Cranwell entrant who had graduated in 1937, Wheeler had served in Bomber Command before the war. In 1940 he joined the Photographic Development Unit at Heston pioneering photographic reconnaissance, flying unarmed Spitfires deep into enemy territory. In November 1942 he was just completing his OTU on Beaufighters when the posting arrived to 236 Squadron and the North Coates Wing shortly after its first disastrous strike attack on 28th November 1942. Wheelers review and revision of the tactics involved in Strike Wing attacks, and the intensive training program he introduced, were to prove critical to the success of the whole concept. On 18th April 1943, Wheeler led the North Coates Wing in its first successful attack, on a German convoy off Ijmuiden. Leading the Wing until September 1944, Neil Wheeler went on to hold high command in the post-war RAF. Sadly, Neil Wheeler died on 9th January 2009.
Air Commodore Alan Deere DSO DFC* (deceased)Top scoring New Zealand Ace with 22 victories, Deere was born in Auckland on December 12th 1917. Alan Deere would become one of the RAFs finest pilots. Joining the RAF in 1937, in September 1938 Al Deere was posted to No.54 Sqn at the time flying Gloster Gladiators, then in early 1940 the Squadron converted to Spitfires. His first brush with death happened when his oxygen failed while at altitude and ke blacked out, coming to only in time to pull his aircraft out of a dive and certain death. At the beginning of May 1940 Deere took part in the intensive air war over Dunkirk and on 23rd May 1940 Deere took part in a daring rescue operation. He and Pilot Officer Allen escorted their flight commander, James Leathart, to France where he was to land a Miles Master trainer and pick up the CO of 74 Squadron who had made a forced landing on the airfield at Calais-Marck. While the pick up was made, Alan Deere was at low level with Pilot Officer Allen at 8000 feet. As Flight Commander James Leathart prepared for take off in the Master, Pilot Offcier Allen spotted a flight o Bf109s coming their way.

Deere scored his first victory, as a strafing Bf109 pulled out of its dive, presenting a perfect target. Deere fired a short burst and the aircraft stalled and then crashed into the sea. Deere, climbing to help Allen, crossed the path of two 109’s, one of which turned towards him. Deere also turned, firing at the second one, which rolled over and dived away. Pursuing the first one, he caught up at treetop height and pursued him, firing off his remaining ammunition before the German headed for home. During the whole event Deere and Allen accoutned for three Bf109s shot down and three damaged. All three aircraft returned to their base at RAF Hornchurch.

During four days - 23rd to 29th May - Deere shot down three Bf109’s and three Bf110’s but his luck ran out and he was shot down over Dunkirk while attacking a Dornier Do17 and luckily managed a forced landing in Belgium where he optained a bicycle and cycled to Dunkirk where he managed to get on a destroyer and returned to Hornchurch within 30 hours of taking off. In June he was decorated with the DFC by the King at a special ceremony at Hornchurch. Alan Deere destroyed seven more enemy fighters and one bomber during the Battle of Britian and was awarded a Bar to the DFC. In January 1941 became an Operations Room Controller. He returned to operations on 7th May 1941, joining 602 Squadron in Scotland as a Flight Commander.

On August 1st 1941 Alan Deere took command of 602 Squadron and on that day destroyed a Bf109. When his second operational tour ended in January 1942 Deere went to the USA to lecture on fighter tactics. In May 1942, he took command of 403 Squadron, commanding the squadron until August before being posted to staff duties. During a temporary attachment to 611 Squadron in February 1943 Deere destroyed an Fw190. Some days later he was appointed Wing Leader at Biggin Hill. He flew 121 sorties during his six months leadership and by this time his tally was twenty-two confirmed victories, ten probables and eighteen damaged.

He was also awarded the DSO and a bar to his DFC. Alan Deere was also awarded the Croix de Guerre and the DFC (USA) and in May 1945 He was awarded an OBE. In December 1977 Air Commodore Deere retired form the Royal Air Force. Iin 1959 Air Commodore Alan Deere wrote of his experiences in his book, ’Nine Lives’. Sadly, he passed away on 21st September 1995.
Air Commodore James Leathart (deceased)After flight training, he joined No.54 Squadron flying Gauntlets. He became the commanding officer of No.54 Squadron as they re-equipped with Spitfire MkIs. In a remarkable event, he was awarded the DSO when he rescued the stranded CO of No.74 Sqn. Commandeering a Miles Master training aircraft, he flew to France escorted by other pilots from No.54 Sqn, and rescued the CO before returning across the Channel. It was for this action that he was awarded the DSO in June 1940. Died in 1998.
Air Commodore Ken JamesA native of Victoria, Squadron Leader Ken James first served in the UK before going back to Australia in August 1944. He became CO of No.85 Squadron RAAF from September 1944 to March 1945, then No.790 Squadron RAAF in May 1945. Squadron Leader Ken James made the first Spitfire flight in Australia just before midday on the 25th August. He demonstrated the aircraft to an audience of assembled VIPs and film-camera men. After assembly the six aircraft were ferried up to RAAF Richmond, near Sydney, NSW. Leader Ken ‘Skeeter’ James later took charge of 457 squadron and ended the war with 2.5 victories.
Air Commodore Mickey Mount CBE DSO DFC (deceased)Flying Officer C.J Mount joined NO.602 squadron on August 8th 1940 after a brief conversion course on Spitfires. On August 18th his Spitfire L1005 was severely damaged in combat with JU 87s and BF109s over Ford. Micky was unhurt. he again escaped injury when his Spitfire X4270 was damaged landing at Tangmere. he served in many of the theatres of WW2 and he flew Hurricanes in Malta and North Africa and Wellingtons in the Middle east. Micky retired and lived in Ascot in Berkshire. He died 4th August 2002.
Air Commodore Peter Brothers CBE, DSO, DFC* (deceased)Learnt to fly at the age of 16 and joined the RAF two years later in 1936. He first saw action in 1940 when as a Flight Commander in 32 Squadron, based at Biggin Hill, he flew his Hurricane against the fighters and bombers of the Luftwaffe. He recalls this as an intensely busy period, during which he shot down an Me109 - his first enemy aircraft; by the end of August that same year his tally of enemy aircraft shot down increased to eight. Awarded the DFC, he was transferred to 257 Squadron where he joined Bob-Stanford Tuck as a Flight Commander. Promoted in 1941 to Squadron Leader, Pete Brothers then took command of 457 Squadron RAAF, equipped with Spitfires. A year later when 457 Squadron returned to Australia, Pete took command of 602 Squadron. In the early autumn of 1942 he went on to become Wing Leader of the Tangmere Wing, succeeding his old friend, Douglas Bader. By the end of the war Pete Brothers had amassed 875 operational hours over a 44-month period. He was credited with having personally shot down 16 enemy aircraft and damaged many more. He later went on to command 57 Squadron during the Malaya campaign. Upon return to the UK Pete Brothers joined the V-Force, flying Valiant-4 jet bombers. He retired in 1973. Sadly, Pete Brothers died 18th December 2008.
Air Marshal Sir John Nicholls KCB CBE DFC AFC (deceased) A Korean war veteran with 2 MiG kills in F-86 Sabres, in April 1952 Nicholls was sent to the US to convert to the F-86 Sabre before joining a USAF squadron in Korea. He was assigned to the 335th Fighter Interceptor Squadron operating from Kimpo airfield near Seoul and over the next six months he completed 100 operations On June 28th 1952 John Nicholls flew his first sortie, he flew every day and soon built up his experience. Two months later he was credited with damaging two MiGs on one sortie. He set one on fire before it disappeared into cloud and the other was seen damaged and with a lot of smoke as it made its escape across the Yalu River, an area Allied pilots were forbidden to fly over. On his 99th and penultimate operation, John Nicholls was a wingman to the Wing leader when they intercepted four MiGs just south of the Yalu. Nicholls chased one of the MiGs for some time and fired his cannons, scoring hits on the enemy fighter, which broke up and crashed. It was the first MiG to be shot down by an RAF pilot. On December 9th John Nicholls flew his last sortie in Korea and shortly afterwards was awarded a DFC to add to an American DFC and Air Medal. John Nicholls has flown every great fighter from the Spitfire to the Phantom, including the USAF century series. On his return to the RAF, Nicholls continued his career as a fighter pilot flying Meteors and Hunters before becoming a tactics instructor at the prestigious Day Fighter Leader's School. In 1959 he was attached to English Electric as RAF project test pilot on Lightnings. He commanded AFDS at RAF Binbrook where in 1963 Lightning vs Spitfire combat trials were flown and later, he commanded RAF Leuchars. He retired as Vice Chief of the Air Staff to become Director in charge, BAe Lightnings in Saudi Arabia. John Nicholls was appointed CBE (1967) and KCB (1978). Sadly, he died 17th May 2007, aged 80.
Air Marshall Sir Alfred (Freddy) Ball, KCB DSO DFCAir Marshall Sir Alfred (Freddy) Ball, KCB DSO DFC attended RAF College, Cranwell in 1939 and joined 13 Squadron in France in March 1940 on Lysanders (Army Co-operation). He joined No 1 PRU Benson early in 1941 on Spitfires. He commanded 4 PRU (later 682 Sqdn) as Squadron Leader in October 1942 and flew out to North Africa for Operation Torch, the Allied landings, flying Spitfires. He was posted to the UK as CF1, 8PR, OTU Dyce, Aberdeen in September 1943 and took over 542 Sqdn Benson in March 1944 (PR Spitfire Mk XIs and Mk XIXs). In September he was promoted to Wing Commander and given command of No 540 Squadron flying Mosquito 16s and 32s. The Squadron moved to France early in 1945 to support the Allied armies. In December, Freddy was posted to Egypt to take command of No 680 PR Sqdn (later to become 13 Sqdn), flying Mosquitoes and Spitfires. He was posted to Staff AHQ East Africa in 1946 and retired from the RAF in April 1979.
Air Vice Marshal Johnnie Johnson CB, CBE, DSO**, DFC* (deceased)James Edgar Johnson was born in Barrow on Soar near Loughborough on 9th March 1915. He lived in Melton, the first house on the left of Welby Lane as you leave Nottingham Road, with his parents - his father being a local Police Inspector. Johnnie qualified as a Civil Engineer at Nottingham University in 1937. He joined the RAFVR and did his flying training at 21 E&RFTS, Stapleford before enlisting for full-time service in the RAF at the beginning of WWII. He first went to ITW at Jesus College, Cambridge, completed his ab initio flying at 22 EFTS, Cambridge and his intermediate and advanced flying at 5 FTS, Sealand. Johnnie Johnson joined 92 Spitfire squadron in August 1940, but it was with 616 squadron that he scored his first victory on June 26th 1941 while flying with Douglas Baders Tangmere Wing. He was squadron leader of 610 squadron in July 1942, but it was as Wing Commander of the Kenley Wing in 1943 that his scores really started to mount. He was W/C of 144 wing during D-Day and led 127 and 125 wings until the end of the war when we has the topscoring allied fighter pilot with 38 air victories. Inspired by the great British WW 1 aces like Bishop and Ball, Johnnie Johnson dreamed often as a child of becoming an R.A.F. pilot. The young Johnson enthusiastically joined the Volunteer Reserve at the first opportunity. After completing his initial flight training Johnson was posted to 616 Squadron at Kenley. However, this Squadron had been hit hard with the loss of six pilots and five wounded, and the unit was withdrawn to Coltishall prior to Johnson encountering combat. With only 12 hours of flight time in a Spitfire this was no doubt advantageous. In February 1941 Billy Burton moved the Squadron to Tangmere. Douglas Bader then arrived to take over the Tangmere Wing, and fly with the 616 Squadron. Johnnie, Alan Smith and Cocky Dundas were chosen to fly with Bader. During the summer of 1941 the Battle of Britain was at its peak. Bader took the time to instruct Johnson carefully in both the art of flying and the skills necessary to attain success in aerial combat. Baders idea of an afternoon off duty, according to Johnson, was to take his section over the Channel in hopes of running into Adolph Galland and his Abbeyville Boys. On August 19, 1941 Bader failed to return from a mission when 616 Squadron was hit hard by a group of Messerschmitt 109s. Johnson flew on in Baders absence, and in the summer of 1942 he was promoted to command of the 610 Squadron. In 1943 he was promoted again to Wing Commander of the Canadian Spitfire Wing in Kenley. By that time Johnson had attained eight confirmed victories. During the spring and summer of 1943 Johnnie led the Canadian unit on more than 140 missions over Northwest Europe. Johnsons squadron attained more than 100 victories during this period, and Johnnies own personal score rose to 25. After a short leave, Johnson was posted to lead the 144 Canadian Spitfire Wing. On D-Day Johnson led his Wing on four missions in support of the Allied invasion. On June 8, Johnsons Wing was the first Spitfire group to land in newly liberated France. Johnson continued fighting in France through September 1944 when he achieved his 38th and final victory. Patrolling the Rhine Johnsons unit jumped nine 109s which were flying beneath them in the opposite direction. Five of the 109s were downed. Early in 1945 Johnson was promoted to Group Captain and put in command of the 125 Wing, which was equipped with the Spitfire XIV. Flying from former Luftwaffe airfields the 125 Wing assisted in the final Allied push to Berlin. Johnson attributed much of his aerial combat success to his ability to make tight turning maneuvers. Johnsons tightest call came on August 19, 1942 when he was unable to dislodge an Me-109 from his tail during the raid on Diepppe. Johnson raced his Spitfire flat out at a group of Royal Navy ships. The usual barrage of flak and tracer fire came right at him, and fortunately for the ace, missed his Spitfire but effectively eliminated the brave pilot on his tail. During the Korean War Johnson flew fighter-bombers with the USAF. Following his retirement from the R.A.F. in 1966 Johnson founded the Johnnie Johnson Housing Trust that has provided homes for more than 4000 disabled and elderly persons, and his sixth book Winged Victory was published in 1995. Johnson flew many of the Spitfire models. His favorite was the beautiful Mark IX, the best of them all. Johnnie passed away in 2001 at the age of 85, in Derbyshire, England.
Air Vice Marshal Sandy Johnstone CB DFC AE DL (deceased)Early in 1938, Johnstone was a civilian navigation instructor at Scottish Aviation, moving later to the Civil Air Navigation School at Prestwick. In August 1939 he was called to full-time service with 602 Squadron. After some Spitfire engagements off the Scottish coast, he received command of 602 - he was still only 24 - and led it south to the tiny airfield at West Hampnett, in West Sussex, where it was stationed throughout the Battle of Britain. Sandy was in command of no. 602 squadron during the critical days of the Battle of Britain, flying with the squadron before the war though to 1941, when he was posted to the Middle east, he also served with 229 and 249 squadrons in Malta during the Islands most fateful days of the war. Sandy became a successful author and resided near Ipswich in Suffolk. Sandy Johnstone died 13th December 2000, aged 84.

 

 

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