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|Signatures on this item|
|*The value given for each signature has been calculated by us based on the historical significance and rarity of the signature. Values of many pilot signatures have risen in recent years and will likely continue to rise as they become more and more rare.|
Flight Lieutenant Richard L Jones (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45
|Richard Jones was born in 1918 and in July 1940 Richard Jones was posted to 64 Squadron at Kenley, flying Spitfires. He was involved in heavy fighting over the Channel during the Battle of Britain, with the squadron suffering many losses during July and August. Towards the end of the Battle of Britain, in October, he moved to 19 Squadron flying Spitfires from Fowlmere, and was heavily involved in the fighter sweeps taking place at that time. Near the end of the Battle of Britain, Pilot Officer Richard Jones was shot down during a dogfight over Kent with Me 109s. Jones crash landed his Spitfire in a field, colliding with a flock of sheep - he would go on to write in his log book "Crashed into a load of sheep. What a bloody mess!"After the Battle of Britain, Richard Jones became a test pilot for De Havilland at Witney in Oxfordshire, and test flew thousands of Hawker Hurricanes and other types, including civil types. After the war Richard Jones joined the RAFVR and started a long career in the motor industry. Sadly Richard Jones passed away on 7th March 2012.|
Squadron Leader Iain Hutchinson (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50
|Squadron Leader Iain Hutchinson was born in Charminster. Posted to join 222 Squadron at Hornchurch, Iain Hutchinson flew with them from June 1940 throughout the Battle of Britain. He said of his experience; "On our first sortie we lost half the squadron. I myself was shot down the next day. "I was flying again the next day but I was shot down five times during the next month, though I didn't end up in hospital until the last time." That happened when he was shot down in flames over south west London, miraculously managing to bale out, although he was badly burned. Hutchinson was treated for burns at RAF hospital Uxbridge where he was one of the last to receive a tannic acid treatment then used for burns. He said: "The acid produced great scabs that covered my face and legs while the whites of my eyes turned bright red." As the fighting grew towards its crescendo, on 30th August his Spitfire was damaged in fighting and he force landed unhurt in Essex. Returning to the fray he downed an Me109 on 6th September, another the following day, and a third a week later. On 18th September, after combat over Kent, he was forced to bale out near Canterbury, and then on 30th September following action over London he was wounded and made a forced landing at Denham. His Battle of Britain totals were three Me109 German fighters as confirmed kills, one Heinkel bomber, an Me109 and one Me110 twin-engined heavy fighter as probably destroyed and one Me109 damaged. It was Hutchinson who shot down the German Ace Oberleutenant Eckhardt Priebe, who was taken prisoner and sent to Canada Squadron leader Hutchinson conitnued his service flying reconnaissance un armed spitfires. He was on a long range mission in a specially adapted Mosquito when he was shot donw by a Me109 over Norway. He landed despite the tail being shot off and his navigator fired a Verey pistol into a pool of petrol, blowing up the Mosquito. Hutchinson spent the rest of the war in Stalag Luft 3 the prisoner of war camp of Wooden Horse and Great Escape fame. After the war he returned and stayed with the RAF flying the Vampire jet aircraft and helped pioneer innovations in aircraft safety, finally retiring form the Royal Air Force in 1957. Sadly he died on April 27th 2007 in Dorchester aged 88.|
|The Aircraft :|
|Spitfire||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.|
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