Supermarine Spitfire Mk.I – 92 Sqn. RAF, Sgt R Havercroft, Battle of Britain 1940 (Unboxed Displayed)
1 in stock
1 in stock
Oxford 1/72 scale AC001: Supermarine Spitfire Mk.I of 92 Sqn. RAF, Sgt R Havercroft, 1940. This model has a spinning propeller with a yellow spinner, unlike the original model. It has fixed raised undercarriage and a display stand.
Length 5.75 inches Wingspan 6.5 inches
Please note: this is a previously displayed, unboxed model. It is complete and ready for you to display at a much reduced price from the boxed original. This is perfect if you are on a low budget and/or not bothered about having a box. It will have the odd minor paint defect but is guaranteed to look superb in your display cabinet alongside any other models. As it is being purchased with potential minor defects reteurns are not permitted for this model.
Ralph Edward Havercroft was born on 4th June 1916 and joined the RAFVR in April 1937 as an Airman u/t Pilot. He trained at 4 E&RFTS Brough and had 250 hours flying by April 1939 when, being of suitable standard and experience, he took the opportunity to train with the regular RAF. Havercroft was attached to 41 Squadron at Catterick from 1st May to 10th July for Spitfire instruction, after which he returned to his job with a Hull cement company. Called up on 1st September 1939, Havercroft went to 11 Group Pool, St. Athan on the 2nd. He converted to Blenheims and was posted to 604 Squadron on the 13th. His short stature made flying the Blenheim difficult (he was nicknamed ‘Titch’ by his colleagues) and on 14th March 1940 Havercroft went to 92 Squadron at Croydon, operating Spitfires. On 23rd May Havercroft claimed a Me110 destroyed, another damaged and a Ju87 probably destroyed and on the 24th he got a probable Do17. On 8th July Havercroft damaged a Do17 and on 13th August shared a Ju88. The next day he destroyed a Ju88 but during the action northwest of Cardiff the radiator of his Spitfire, N3285, was hit by return fire and he made an engineless forced-landing on Maerdy Mountain, near Aberdare. On 8th September he damaged a Me109 and on 13th November shared in the probable destruction of a Do17. Havercroft got a probable Me109 on 21st June 1941 and destroyed another on the 26th. On 15th July 1941, with 181 operational sorties completed, he was appointed test pilot to the Aircraft Gun Mounting Establishment at Duxford. Commissioned in November 1941, Havercroft moved to Boscombe Down, when his unit was incorporated into the A&AEE on 18th January 1942. He was then with the Armament Testing Squadron for two years. In April 1944 Havercroft was selected to go to the newly-formed Test Pilots’ School on Course No.2, after which he joined the team of test pilots at Vickers Supermarine, testing production Spitfires. He returned to Boscombe Down to the Performance Testing Squadron and in 1945 was appointed as test pilot to the British Air Commission at Wright Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio.
In 1946 Havercroft was granted an RAF Permanent Commission and returned as a tutor to the Test Pilots’ School. He held a series of commands and appointments in the post-war RAF, including command of a V bomber squadron. Awarded the AFC (gazetted 1st January 1949), he retired on 4th June 1963 as a Wing Commander. He then worked for Hunting Engineering until 1981. Havercroft died in May 1995.
The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft that was used by the Royal Air Force and many other Allied countries throughout the Second World War. The Spitfire continued to be used as a front line fighter and in secondary roles into the 1950s. It was produced in greater numbers than any other British aircraft and was the only British fighter in production throughout the war.
The Spitfire was designed as a short-range, high-performance interceptor aircraft by R. J. Mitchell, chief designer at Supermarine Aviation Works (since 1928 a subsidiary of Vickers-Armstrong). Mitchell continued to refine the design until his death from cancer in 1937, whereupon his colleague Joseph Smith became chief designer. The Spitfire’s elliptical wing had a thin cross-section, allowing a higher top speed than several contemporary fighters, including the Hawker Hurricane. Speed was seen as essential to carry out the mission of home defence against enemy bombers.
During the Battle of Britain, the Spitfire was perceived by the public as the RAF fighter of the battle, whereas in fact, the more numerous Hurricane actually shouldered a greater proportion of the burden against the Luftwaffe. The Spitfire units did, however, have a lower attrition rate and a higher victory to loss ratio than those flying Hurricanes.
After the Battle of Britain, the Spitfire became the backbone of RAF Fighter Command, and saw action in the European, Mediterranean, Pacific and the South-East Asian theatres. Much loved by its pilots, the Spitfire served in several roles, including interceptor, photo-reconnaissance, fighter-bomber, carrier-based fighter, and trainer. It was built in many variants, using several wing configurations. Although the original airframe was designed to be powered by a Rolls-Royce Merlin engine producing 1,030 hp, it was adaptable enough to use increasingly more powerful Merlin and the later Rolls-Royce Griffon engines; the latter was eventually able to produce 2,035 hp