Hawker Hurricane MkI – 85 Sqn. RAF, Sqn Ldr Peter Townsend 1940 1/48
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Out of stock
Hobby Master 1/48 scale HA8608: Hawker Hurricane Mk.I P3854 of 85 Sqn. RAF, Sqn Ldr Peter Townsend, 1940 “Battle of Britain”.
Length 8 inches Wingspan 10 inches
The Hawker Hurricane was the first British single-engine fighter and the first single wing aircraft with retractable landing gear as well as an enclosed cockpit and 8 machine guns. The Hurricane went into operational service in December 1937 with the RAF 111 Squadron. The Hurricane is usually over looked as a major player in the BoB because of the Spitfire but 80% of the 1,792 German aircraft shot down were because of the Hurricane. There were 14,533 Hurricanes produced in all variants.
On August 31, 1940 Sqn Ldr P W Townsend of the RAF No. 85 Squadron was flying Hurricane Mk.I P3166 when he shot down a Do-17 named Gustav Marie and was hit by return fire damaging the Hurricane making it necessary to ditch in the English Channel. After some time recuperating Townsend returned to the No. 85 Squadron on September 21, 1940 and was assigned Hurricane Mk.I P3854.
On 17 July 1941, Townsend married (Cecil) Rosemary Pawle (1921–2004). They had two sons, Giles (1942–2015) and Hugo (b. 1945). The younger son married Yolande, Princess of Ligne, daughter of Antoine, 13th Prince of Ligne and Alix, Princess of Ligne (née Princess Alix of Luxembourg). Townsend and Pawle divorced in 1952. Pawle married, secondly, John de László (son of the painter Philip de László), and thirdly, in 1978, the 5th Marquess Camden.
After the divorce, Townsend formed a relationship with and proposed marriage to Princess Margaret, who was initially inclined to accept him. He had met her in his role as an equerry to her father, King George VI. Divorcees suffered severe disapproval in the social atmosphere of the time and could not re-marry in the Church of England if their former spouse was still alive. Their relationship was considered especially controversial as Margaret’s sister, Queen Elizabeth II, was the Church’s Supreme Governor.
The government sought to discourage their relationship by urging Princess Margaret to wait two years to marry and posting Townsend to a position in Brussels. When he was 44, he met and in 1959 married a Belgian woman, Marie-Luce Jamagne (then 20), who bore a striking resemblance to Princess Margaret. They had two daughters and one son. Their younger daughter, Isabelle Townsend, became a Ralph Lauren advertising model in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Isabelle and her family live in a house in France named “The Mill,” where the Duke and Duchess of Windsor once resided.