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W/O J W Hill

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Joined 196 Squadron on his 18th birthday, 25th November 1939, having cycled ten miles to the nearest recruiting office, hoping to enlist as an air gunner. However there were no vacancies and they eventually contacted him to suggest becoming a ground gunner. After square bashing on Blackpool promenade, he found himself guarding West Raynham aerodrome in Norfolk, where they were regularly strafed by German aeroplanes, flying extremely low. He then decided he would like to get his own back and volunteered for aircrew, this time as a pilot. After ACRC, Lords cricket ground, then ITW Scarborough, he found himself crossing the Atlantic in a convoy. There were numerous ships, containing budding aircrews, evacuated children and Italian prisoners of war. The fact that he had to sling his hammock at the very front of the ship, below the waterline, did nothing to boost his confidence, but they did have a number of destroyers for protection. Eventually, they docked at New York and then trans-shipped by rail to Moncton, New Brunswick, the holding terminal. His first experience of flying was at 32 EFTS Bowden, Alberta, where he flew Stearmans. He then moved on to Weyburn, Saskatchewan, where he obtained his wings, flying Harvards. Then it was back to England, this time travelling solo on a fast liner. He flew Tiger Moths at Banff, Scotland, then moved to twin-engine Oxfords, followed by Wellingtons. This was where he crewed up – he did one bombing raid on Wellingtons. Next he moved to 1665 Heavy Conversion Unit at Woolfox Lodge, flying Stirlings, then joined 196 Squadron on 5th November 1943. At the time of joining the Squadron, Stirlings were taken off bombing, and joined 38 group, assisting glider pilots with circuits and bumps, interspersed with operations to France, dropping supplies to the maquis. These trips were done at low level on moonlit nights, the theory being that they would be too low for both fighters and ground gunners to get at them. The biggest problem seemed to be avoiding high ground. On the night of 5th June, D-Day minus one, he dropped paratroopers near Caen, close to the now famous Pegasus Bridge. Then on D-Day itself, he towed a heavy Horsa glider to the Caen beachhead. During June he dropped more containers in the area. In September he made various trips to Arnhem. On one trip, due to fog over the North Sea, his glider became detached, finishing up in the sea. Luckily he later learnt the occupants were picked up by Air-Sea Rescue. These trips were done at a very low level, making them sitting ducks for the ground gunners. Aircraft losses were very severe: on one day, less than half the squadron got back to base, although some put down at other aerodromes. On one day, in addition to the gunners, there were German fighters overhead. He would have to take the decision to dive to the deck, lifting over the high-tension cables; the aeroplane escaped relatively lightly, with not much damage. He left the Squadron on completion of his tour in 38 group, on 6th June 1945. He then went back to 1665 HCU, this time as an instructor. Apart from a course on Oxfords at 7 FIS, he finished flying on 25th September 1945 and was demobbed on 27th March 1946, having completed a total of 1,021 hours flying.

Items Signed by W/O J W Hill

 The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber.  A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. ......Stirling Service by Philip West.
Price : £90.00
The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber. A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. ......

Quantity:
 The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber.  A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. ......Stirling Service by Philip West (AP)
Price : £115.00
The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber. A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. ......

Quantity:
The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber. A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. We......Stirling Service by Philip West. (Y)
Price : £65.00
The Short Stirling won the distinction as the RAFs first purpose built four engine monoplane bomber. A strong, highly complex design it gained a reputation as a pilots aircraft to fly being agile for a big bomber and demonstrating great character. We......

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Packs with at least one item featuring the signature of W/O J W Hill

W/O J W Hill

Squadrons for : W/O J W Hill
A list of all squadrons known to have been served with by W/O J W Hill. A profile page is available by clicking the squadron name.
SquadronInfo

No.196 Sqn RAF

Country : UK
Founded : 7th November 1942
Fate : Disbanded 16th March 1946

Sie fidem servamus - Thus we keep the faith

Click the name above to see prints featuring aircraft of No.196 Sqn RAF

No.196 Sqn RAF

Full profile not yet available.
Aircraft for : W/O J W Hill
A list of all aircraft associated with W/O J W Hill. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.
SquadronInfo

Harvard

Click the name above to see prints featuring Harvard aircraft.

Manufacturer : North American Aviation
Production Began : 1935
Retired : 1995
Number Built : 15495

Harvard

The Texan originated from the North American NA-16 prototype (first flown on April 1, 1935) which, modified as the NA-26, was submitted as an entry for a USAAC "Basic Combat" aircraft competition in March, 1937. The first model went into production and 180 were supplied to the USAAC as the BC-1 and 400 to the RAF as the Harvard I. The US Navy received 16 modified aircraft, designated the SNJ-1, and a further 61 as the SNJ-2 with a different engine. The BC-1 was the production version of the NA-26 prototype, with retractable tailwheel landing gear and the provision for armament, a two-way radio, and the 550-hp (410 kW) R-1340-47 engine as standard equipment. Production versions included the BC-1 (Model NA-36) with only minor modifications (177 built), of which 30 were modified as BC-1I instrument trainers; the BC-1A (NA-55) with airframe revisions (92 built); and a single BC-1B with a modified wing center-section. Three BC-2 aircraft were built before the shift to the "advanced trainer" designation, AT-6, which was equivalent to the BC-1A. The differences between the AT-6 and the BC-1 were new outer wing panels with a swept-forward trailing edge, squared-off wingtips, and a triangular rudder, producing the canonical Texan silhouette. After a change to the rear of the canopy, the AT-6 was designated the Harvard II for RAF/RCAF orders and 1,173 were supplied by purchase or Lend Lease, mostly operating in Canada as part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. Next came the AT-6A which was based on the NA-77 design and was powered by the Pratt & Whitney R-1340-49 Wasp radial engine. The USAAF received 1,549 and the US Navy 270 (as the SNJ-3). The AT-6B was built for gunnery training and could mount a .30 in machine gun on the forward fuselage. It used the R-1340-AN-1 engine, which was to become the standard for the remaining T-6 production. Canada's Noorduyn Aviation built an R-1340-AN-1-powered version of the AT-6A, which was supplied to the USAAF as the AT-16 (1,500 aircraft) and the RAF/RCAF as the Harvard IIB (2,485 aircraft), some of which also served with the Fleet Air Arm and Royal Canadian Navy. No. 1340 Flight RAF used the Harvard in Kenya against the Mau Mau in the 1950s, where they operated with 20-lb bombs and machine guns against the rebels. Some operations took place at altitudes around 20,000 ft above mean sea level. A Harvard was the longest-serving RAF aeroplane,

Oxford

Click the name above to see prints featuring Oxford aircraft.

Manufacturer : Airspeed
Production Began : 0
Retired : 0
Number Built : 6695

Oxford

The Oxford was built by Airspeed (4,960), De Havilland (1,515), Percival Aircraft (1,525) and the Standard Motor Group (750) during WW2. It was capable of training pilots, navigators, air gunners, radio operators and flight engineers. As well as equipping service flying schools in Great Britain, they spread out all over the globe, training aircrew in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, and Southern Rhodesia. Nearly 50% of all aircrew who served in the RAF, RCAF, RAAF and RNZAF went through the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan, The Oxford was the preferred trainer for the Empire Air Training Scheme (EATS) and British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP), which sent thousands of potential aircrew to Canada for training. 27 Oxfords were on the strength of No 4 Flying Training School RAF Habbaniya, Iraq in early 1941 and some were converted locally, for use as light bombers to help in the defence of the School against Iraqi forces. Airspeed Ltd was founded by Neville Shute Norway in 1931. N.S. Norway had trained as an aeronautical engineer, and worked under Barnes Wallis (of ‘Bouncing Bomb’ fame) at Vickers Ltd. on the successful R.100 airship. His first design for the new company was the Airspeed A.S.6 Envoy, he was responsible for devising a retractable undercarriage for the Envoy, and it enjoyed both civil and military success – an Envoy served in ‘The King’s Flight’, and was used to convey members of the Royal Family, and the South African Air Force ordered a batch of seven ‘Convertible Envoys’ which could be fitted with an Armstrong Whitworth gun turret and carriers for small bombs, as needed. In 1941, the aviatrix Amy Johnson went missing in an Airspeed Oxford, presumably crashing into the Thames Estuary. After the war, 152 surplus Oxfords were converted into small 6-seat commercial airliners called the AS.65 Consul. A few Oxfords were acquired by the Hellenic Air Force and used during the Greek Civil War by No. 355 Squadron RHAF. Although the Oxford was equipped with fixed-pitch wooden or Fairey-Reed metal propellers, the cockpit contained a propeller pitch lever, which had to be moved from "Coarse" to "Fine" for landing. This was to reinforce this important step for trainee pilots. Oxfords continued to serve the Royal Air Force as trainers and light transports until the last was withdrawn from service in 1956. Some were sold for use by overseas air arms, including the Royal Belgian Air Force.

Stirling



Click the name above to see prints featuring Stirling aircraft.

Manufacturer : Short
Production Began : 1939
Number Built : 2381

Stirling

The Royal Air Force's first four engined monoplane Bomber, the Short Stirling first flew in May 1939 and entered front line service in August 1940 with no. 7 squadron. Due to its poor operational ceiling the aircraft sustained heavy losses and by mid 1942 the Stirling was beginning to be replaced by the Lancaster. Improved versions of the Short Stirling were built for Glider towing, paratroopers and heavy transport. also from 1943 many of the Stirling's were used for mine laying. A total of 2381 Stirling's were built for the Royal air Force and from this total 641 Stirling bombers were lost to enemy action. Crew 7 or 8: Speed: 260 mph (MK1) 275mph (MKIII) and 280mph (MKV)Service ceiling 17,000 feet Range: 2330 miles. (MK1) 2010 miles (MKIII) and 3,000 miles (MKV) Armament: two .303 Vickers machine guns. in nose turret, two .303 in browning machine guns in dorsal turret , Four .303 Browning machine guns in tail turret. Bomb Load 14,000 Lbs Engines: four 1150 Hp Bristol Hercules II (MK1) four 1650 hp Bristol Hercules XVI (MK111 and MKV)

Tigermoth



Click the name above to see prints featuring Tigermoth aircraft.

Production Began : 1932
Retired : 1947
Number Built : 8800

Tigermoth

The Royal Air Force last bi-plane, which served as a trainer from 1932 to 1947. Its design remained nearly the same throughout its history, and was well constructed and able to do aerobatics. A total of 8800 Tiger Moths were built which included 420 Radio Controlled Pilotless Target aircraft. (The Queen Bee). For the Royal Air Force. It was also used for a short period during the first months of world war two for coastal reconnaissance. Maximum speed 109 mph, Ceiling 14,000 feet, and can remain airborne for three hours.

Wellington



Click the name above to see prints featuring Wellington aircraft.

Manufacturer : Vickers
Production Began : 1938
Retired : 1953

Wellington

The Vickers Wellington was a Bomber aircraft and also used for maritime reconnaissance. and had a normal crew of six except in the MKV and VI where a crew of three was used. Maximum speed was 235 mph (MK1c) 255 mph (MK III, X) and 299 mph (MK IIII), normal operating range of 1805 miles (except MK III which was 1470miles) The Wellington or Wimpy as it was known, was the major bomber of the Royal Air Force between 1939 and 1943. The Royal Air Force received its first Wellingtons in October 1938 to 99 squadron. and by the outbreak of World war two there were 6 squadrons equipped with the Vickers Wellington. Due to heavy losses on daylight raids, the Wellington became a night bomber and from 1940 was also used as a long range bomber in North Africa. and in 1942 also became a long range bomber for the royal Air Force in India. It was well used by Coastal Command as a U-Boat Hunter. The Wellington remained in service with the Royal Air Force until 1953. Probably due to its versatile use, The aircraft was also used for experimental work including the fitting of a pressure cabin for High altitude tests. The Vickers Wellington could sustain major damage and still fly, probably due to its construction of its geodesic structure and practical application of geodesic lines. Designed by Sir Barnes Wallis

Aviation History Timeline : 12th December
DAYMONTHYEARDETAILS
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, F/O A. W. N. Britton of 263 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, P/O J. H. Harrison of 145 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, P/O W. H. DFM & Bar Franklin of 65 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, S/L G. W. Montagu of 236 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt. M. H. Hine of 65 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt. R. S. Hutton of 85 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1940British Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt. R. V. Hogg of 616 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1941Former British Battle of Britain pilot, P/O J. J. F. H. Bandinel of 3 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1941Former British Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt. J. K. Pollard of 232 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1941Former Canadian Battle of Britain pilot, P/O A. L. Edy of 602 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1941Former Polish Battle of Britain pilot, F/O B. Groszewski of 43 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1942Former British Battle of Britain pilot, F/O G. Ashfield of F.I.U., was Killed.
12December1942Former British Battle of Britain pilot, P/O G. A. Denby of 600 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1942Former British Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt. C. R. Hewlett of 65 Squadron, was Killed.
12December1942Former Canadian Battle of Britain pilot, Sgt E. G. Ford of 3 and 232 Squadrons, was Killed.
12December1944Alexander Preinfalk, a WW2 Ace with 76.00 victories, died on this day
12December1944Knight's Cross recipient Alexander Preinfalk of 5./Jagdgeschwader 77 died on this day
12December1945William Tipton, a WW1 Ace with 5.00 victories, died on this day
12December2006Knight's Cross recipient Hans-Karl Stepp of 7./Sturzkampfgeschwader 2 died on this day
12December2006Oberstleutnant Hans-Karl Stepp, whose signature is on some of our aviation art, died on this day
12December2006Wing Commander R C Dick Cresswell, whose signature is on some of our aviation art, died on this day
12December2007Former British Battle of Britain pilot, P/O E. G. Barwell of 264 & 242 Squadrons, Passed away.
12December2007Joe Robbins, a WW2 Ace with 5.00 victories, died on this day
12December2007Wing Commander Eric Barwell, whose signature is on some of our aviation art, died on this day

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