Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Hawker Hurricane Mk I

The Hurricane will always be remembered for the vital role it played, with its partner the Spitfire, in hectic battles during the summer of 1940. Hurricanes destroyed more enemy aircraft during the Battle of Britain than did all the other air and ground defences combined.

Designed by the Hawker Aircraft Company in 1934 it first entered service in 1937. It provided the RAF with a fighter 160kph (100mph) faster than aircraft then in service; with an increased fire power of eight machine guns.

When war was declared, on the 3 September 1939, about five-hundred Hurricanes were in service and several squadrons were sent to France. During the 1940 German Blitzkrieg through the Low Countries and France they fought a punishing rearguard action in which over 25% of all Fighter Command’s aircraft were destroyed.

As the Battle of Britain raged in the skies overhead aircraft production increased so that by September 1940 the number of Hurricane squadrons had risen from eighteen, a year earlier, to thirty-two.

It was in a Hurricane of No.249 Squadron that Flt Lt J.B. Nicholson was awarded Fighter Command’s only Victoria Cross.

Later in the War Hurricanes made a significant contribution to the defence of Malta, the desert war in North Africa and war against the Japanese in the Far East.

Hawker Hurricane Mk IIb at the Imperial War Museum Duxford

Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc at RAF Cosford

Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc

The Hawker Hurricane is a British single-seat fighter aircraft of the 1930s–40s that was designed and predominantly built by Hawker Aircraft Ltd. for service with the Royal Air Force (RAF).

This Hawker Hurricane was on display at RAF Cosford.

It was overshadowed in the public consciousness by the Supermarine Spitfire’s role during the Battle of Britain in 1940, but the Hurricane inflicted 60 per cent of the losses sustained by the Luftwaffe in the engagement, and fought in all the major theatres of the Second World War.

Hawker Hurricane Mk IIb

Hurricane Mk IIb Z2315, a former Russian operated aircraft on display at the Imperial War Museum Duxford displayed in No. 111 Squadron RAF markings.

The Hawker Hurricane is a British single-seat fighter aircraft of the 1930s–40s that was designed and predominantly built by Hawker Aircraft Ltd. for service with the Royal Air Force (RAF). It was overshadowed in the public consciousness by the Supermarine Spitfire’s role during the Battle of Britain in 1940, but the Hurricane inflicted 60 per cent of the losses sustained by the Luftwaffe in the engagement, and fought in all the major theatres of the Second World War.