Short SB.5

The Short SB.5 (serial WG768) was a “highly unorthodox, adjustable wing” British research aircraft designed by Short Brothers in response to the UK Air Ministry requirement ER.100; to provide input for the design of the English Electric P.1 (prototype of the English Electric Lightning) by testing the low speed flight characteristics of various configurations of wing-sweep required for supersonic flight.

 

 

Handley Page HP.137 Jetstream

The Handley Page HP.137 Jetstream is a small twin-turboprop airliner, with a pressurised fuselage.

This Jetstream which served at RAF Finningley was on display at RAF Cosford.

Jetstream T Mk.1

The aircraft was designed to meet the requirements of the United States commuter and regional airline market. The design was later improved and built by British Aerospace as the BAe Jetstream 31 and BAe Jetstream 32, featuring different turboprop engines.

26 Jetstream T Mk.1 aircraft were ordered from Scottish Aviation Ltd at Prestwick for RAF Training Command (XX475 – XX500) to serve as multi-engined pilot training aircraft to replace the Vickers Varsity, with 16 later modified and diverted to the Royal Navy.

Lockheed SP-2H Neptune

This Lockheed SP-2H Neptune was on display at RAF Cosford.

The P-2H Neptune is a land based maritime patrol and anti-submarine aircraft. It was designed during WWII and is powered by two piston engines and two jet pods to assist in take-off and for extra power when required to reach submarine contacts.

Its first flight was on 15 May 1945 and squadron delivery was in March 1947.

More than 1100 were built and no other post war maritime patrol aircraft has been built in such large numbers.

Bought by several armed forces, the Neptune served with the Royal Air Force in six squadrons of Coastal Command and on one flight (No.1453 Flight) for Airborne Early Warning Trials during the period 1952 to 1957.

Hawker Siddeley Nimrod R1

Hawker Siddeley Nimrod R.Mk.1

The Nimrod maritime reconnaissance aircraft was derived from the Comet airliner. It originally entered RAF service in 1969 in MR.1 variant to replace the Avro Shackleton. From 1979 35 aircraft were upgraded to the improved MR.2 standard. Nimrod continued in service until 2010 when its successor, the MRA4 was cancelled. The aircraft was modified to carry wing mounted Sidewinder air-air missiles for self -defence during the Falklands conflict in 1982 were known as the RAF’s biggest fighter! Less successful was the airborne early warning version, Nimrod AEW3 which was test flown but did not enter service.

The three Nimrod R.1 electronic-intelligence gathering aircraft entered service in 1971. They carried up to 29 crew and were involved in all major conflicts in the latter part of the 20th and early 21st centuries. When one of the original aircraft was lost following an accident in 1997, XV249 selected as a replacement and, after conversion, flew with No 51 Squadron from RAF Waddington. It took part in operation Ellamy over Libya in 2011 thus remaining operational until its withdrawal from squadron service on 28 June 2011.

It arrived at RAF Cosford in 2012.

Hawker Siddeley Nimrod R.Mk.1

The Hawker Siddeley Nimrod was a maritime patrol aircraft developed and operated by the United Kingdom. It was an extensive modification of the de Havilland Comet, the world’s first operational jet airliner. It was originally designed by de Havilland’s successor firm, Hawker Siddeley; further development and maintenance work was undertaken by Hawker Siddeley’s own successor companies, British Aerospace and BAE Systems, respectively.

Three Nimrod aircraft were adapted for the signals intelligence role, replacing the Comet C2s and Canberras of No. 51 Squadron in May 1974.

Hawker Siddeley Nimrod R.Mk.1

It was fitted with an array of rotating dish aerials in the aircraft’s bomb bay, with further dish aerials in the tailcone and at the front of the wing-mounted fuel tanks. It had a flight crew of four (two pilots, a flight engineer and one navigator) and up to 25 crew operating the SIGINT equipment.

Lockheed Hercules C130K Mk3

First flown as a prototype for the United States Air Force in August 1954, the C-130 Hercules, as a troop transport, disaster relief and aerial tanker aircraft has been a mainstay of the RAF transport fleet since the late 1960s (along with those of many other air forces); it has seen extensive operational use including the Falklands, Iraq and Afghanistan.

The example at RAF Museum Cosford was the last RAF C130K Mk.3 to be retired.

This Hercules C3 XV202 served with the Royal Air Force from 1967 to 2011.

I’ve always liked the concept of gaming scenarios which include the C-130 Hercules, probably down to the Raid on Entebbe, which of course has been the subject of many films.

There are plenty of 1/72 model kits of the Hercules, but for 15mm or 28mm games there is less or no choice.

Fairchild F-24 Argus

The four-seat Fairchild F24, sporting and training aeroplane, made its first flight in 1932. The design attracted attention from the civilian American market and improved models soon began to appear. With the appearance of the F24W series, the aircraft’s potential as a light military transport was recognised by the United States Army. An initial contract for 161 aircraft for the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) was placed in 1941. However, all the aircraft were re-allocated to the Royal Air Force under the American Lend-Lease Act which allowed war materials ordered for the United States armed forces to be given to other nations for the duration of the war.

Fairchild F-24 Argus - RAF Cosford Museum

Further contracts led to the delivery of more than 600 aircraft to the United Kingdom. Known in the USAAF as the Forwarder, those arriving in Great Britain were given the official name Argus.

The Argus was used in the light communications role by the RAF and found a particular niche ferrying pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary.

The Museum’s aircraft was used during the war as a hack for the US 8th Air Force. After purchase from private owners in 1973, it spent many years in deep storage, before restoration for the Museum by the Medway Aircraft Preservation Society in 1999.

Armstrong Whitworth AW.660 Argosy

This Armstrong Whitworth Argosy was on display at RAF Cosford having been flown there on its last flight in May 1975.

The Armstrong Whitworth Argosy was a British post-war transport/cargo aircraft; it was the final aircraft to be designed and produced by aviation company Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft.

Although given different internal design numbers, the AW.650 civil and AW.660 military models were, for most practical purposes, the same design, while both models also shared the “Argosy” name.

 

Scottish Aviation Bulldog T1

This Scottish Aviation Bulldog T1 was on display at RAF Cosford.

The Scottish Aviation Bulldog is a British two-seat side-by-side (with optional third seat) training aircraft designed by Beagle Aircraft as the B.125 Bulldog.

The largest customer was the Royal Air Force, which placed an order for 130 Bulldogs in 1972, entering service as the Bulldog T.1 in 1975. It was used by the Royal Air Force as a basic trainer, in particular as the standard aircraft of the University Air Squadrons and, later, Air Experience Flights, providing flying training.

Hawker Siddeley Andover E3A

The Andover was developed from the Avro 748 airliner to meet the requirement for Short Take-off & Landing (STOL) transport aircraft to operate in the trooping, paratrooping, airdropping, freighting and casevac roles.

The modified aircraft incorporates a hydraulic kneeling arrangement in the main undercarriage to allow the rear loading door to adjust to any truckbed height.

The aircraft is powered by two Rolls-Royce Dart engines. It has an operational range of 602km (374miles) with a maximum payload of 6691kg (14750lbs) of freight.

It has a maximum speed of 512kph (320mph) at 4572m (15000ft).

The aircraft displayed was one of seven modified from the basic CMkI aircraft for use in navaid calibration.

The first Andover flew in July 1965 and a total of 31 were built.

Plastic Spitfire Kit

1:1 scale Airfix Spitfire as featured on the James May Toy Stories series shown on BBC2, complete with a model pilot.

To see if he can entice a new generation of kids into enjoying model kits, James May assigns a group of pupils with constructing a life-size model of Airfix’s notable kit – the Spitfire. While May must train up the pupils in becoming an organised model-making team, the kit’s life-size parts require a specialist company in Cornwall to create these and handling the issues their creation cause. When the kit is finally created and brought to an air museum for construction, the real test comes with the completed model being able to hold itself together, especially when the supports for the main body are removed. The project proves a success when the completed kit can be showcased to an audience that include the pupil’s parents and RAF WWII veterans.

Behind it is the BOAC de Havilland Comet 1XB.