Order Enquiries (UK) : 01436 820269

You currently have no items in your basket


Buy with confidence and security!
Publishing historical art since 1985

Don't Miss Any Special Deals - Sign Up To Our Newsletter!
Product Search         

Billy Drake

Victories : 24.5
-----------------------------
Country : UK
Fought in : WW2
Fought for : Allied
Died : 28th August 2011


Awarded the Distinguished Service OrderAwarded the Distinguished Flying CrossAwarded a Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross
Distinguished
Service Order
Distinguished
Flying Cross
Bar to the
Distinguished
Flying Cross

Joined the R.A.F. in 1936. His first posting was to 1 squadron flying Furies then Hurricanes and first saw action over France in the Spring of 1940 and was awarded his first DFC by the end of the year. As a Squadron Leader he was sent to West Africa to command 128 Squadron. 1942 saw his commanding 112 squadron in North Africa, in July saw an immediate BAR to his DFC and in December an immediate DSO. Posted to Malta as Wing Commander he won a US DFC in 1943. Back in the UK he now was flying Typhoons in the lead up to D-Day. With Pete Brothers he was sent to the States to attend the US Staff School at Fort Leavenworth. After the war he continued in the R.A.F. serving in Japan, Malaya, Singapore, Switzerland and his final posting as Group Captain RAF Chivenor, Devon. Retired in July 1963. Going to Portugal where he ran a Bar and Restaurant and dealing in Real Estate. In his flying career he accounted for more than 24 enemy aircraft. Sadly, Billy Drake passed away on 28th August 2011.

Billy Drake signing the print - Fighting Lady - by Graeme Lothian.

Click here for artwork signed by this Ace!

Artwork featuring this Ace : Prints and Paintings Available to Purchase!

 Group Captain Billy Drake in Curtiss P.40 AL161 of 112 Sqn downing a Stuka during the North Africa Campaign in 1942. The Jaws of Victory by Ivan Berryman.Click For DetailsB0293
 Group Captain Billy Drake in Hurricane JX-P of No.1 Sqn scoring his first victory, an Me109 during the Battle of France, on 20th April 1940. Billy Drake - First of Many by Ivan Berryman.Click For DetailsB0294
 Sqn Ldr Billy Drake is shown in Curtiss Kittyhawk Mk1a ET790 claiming a Ju87 Stuka  on the 31st of October 1942.  Sqn Ldr Drake commanded  112 Squadron flying Kittyhawks at Gambut on 24th May 1942.  He claimed a probable Bf109 on 6th June, another probable on  2nd July, destroyed a Bf109 on the 8th, damaged a Ju88 on the ground on the 19th, destroyed a Bf109 on the 24th, two Ju87s on  the 1st September and another Bf109 on the 13th.  Drake shared a Ju87 and probably destroyed another on 1st October 1942, got a probable Bf109 on the 22nd, destroyed another on the 26th, an Me202 on the 27th, a Ju87 on the 31st, a Bf109 destroyed and another damaged on 5th November, a Bf109 destroyed on the ground on the 11th, an He111 destroyed and a Bf109 damaged on the 15th, a Bf110 destroyed and another damaged on the 19th, an Me202 and a Bf109 destroyed on 11th December and he finally shared a Bf109 on the 13th.  Drake was awarded a Bar to the DFC (28.7.42) and the DSO (4.12.42). Tribute to Squadron Leader Billy Drake by Ivan Berryman.Click For DetailsB0442

Latest Allied Aviation Artwork !
 The daylight raid on Tokyo, led by Lt Col James H. Doolittle on Sunday 18 April 1942, has rightfully entered the history books as one of the most daring and courageous operations of the Second World War. On that day, in mid ocean, Doolittle had launched his B-25 Mitchell bomber from the heaving, spray-soaked flight deck of an aircraft carrier, a deck too short to land on, and flown on to bomb Tokyo. He knew there would be no return to the USS Hornet, either for him or the 15 heavily laden B-25s behind him, for this was a feat never before attempted, and for every crew member the mission was a one-way ticket. Yet, under the leadership of Jimmy Doolittle, they all dared to survive. The mission for the 16 bombers was to bomb industrial targets in Tokyo and surrounding areas, to slow production of strategic war material, then fly on to land in the part of south-west China that was still in the hands of friendly Nationalist forces. All being well, the mission would be so unexpected it would plant the first seeds of doubt into enemy minds. It worked – the Japanese were forced to quickly divert hundreds of aircraft, men and equipment away from offensive operations to the defence of their homeland. There was, however, another reason behind the Doolittle's raid – to lift the morale of an American public devastated by the attack on Pearl Harbor four months earlier. And the success of the mission provided the boost that was needed. If any had doubted America's resolve in the face of uncertainty, the courage, determination and heroism displayed by Lt Col Doolittle and his band of aviators restored their determination. Although it might take years, and the price would be high, America and her allies understood that the fight could, and would, be won. Commissioned to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Doolittle Tokyo Raid the painting portrays the dramatic moment that Lt Col Jimmy Doolittle lifts his B-25 off the pitching deck of the USS Hornet. Having timed his launch to perfection he climbs steeply away, ready to adjust his compass bearing for a direct line to Tokyo. On the sodden deck behind him the crews of the remaining 15 aircraft, whose engines are warmed, ready and turning, will quickly follow their commanding officer into the murky sky.

Destination Tokyo by Anthony Saunders.
  Seen here in company with other 485 Sqn machines, Spitfire Mk.IXc ML407 is depicted over the Normandy beaches shortly after D-Day.  Flown by New Zealander Fl Lt Johnnie Houlton, this aircraft claimed a Ju.88 on 6th June and shared in the destruction of another on the same day.  Coded 'V' in honour of his wife, Vickie, ML407 is still flying today, now converted to a two-seater and regularly displayed by Carolyn Grace.

Guardians of the Beaches by Ivan Berryman. (PC)
 Despite crippling damage to their Lancaster ED925 (G), the crew of AJ-M continued to press home their attack on the Mohne Dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943. With both port engines ablaze, Flt Lt J V Hopgood forced his blazing aircraft on, releasing the Upkeep bomb just precious seconds too late to strike the dam, the mine instead bouncing over the wall and onto the power station below with devastating results. ED925 attempted to recover from the maelstrom, but the fuel fire was too intense and the aircraft was tragically lost, just two of her crew managing to escape the impact to spend the rest of the war as PoWs.

No Way Back by Ivan Berryman. (PC)
  Following the successful attack on the Mohne dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943, three Lancasters of 617 Sqn turned their attention to the Eder, some twelve minutes flying time away, accompanied by Wing Commander Guy Gibson to oversee the next attack. After several aborted attempts to obtain the correct height and direction for their bomb run by Flight Lieutenant Shannon (AJ-L) and  Squadron Leader H E Maudslay (AJ-Z), Gibson called in Maudslay to try again. During his second approach, he released his Upkeep bomb too late. It struck the top of the dam wall and bounced back into the air where it exploded right behind Maudslay's aircraft, lighting up the entire valley and causing considerable damage to the aircraft that had dropped it. Despite what must have been crippling damage, AJ-Z did manage to limp away from the scene and begin the return journey, but Maudslay and all his crew were sadly lost when their aircraft was shot down by flak at Emmerich-Klein-Netterdn. The Eder was finally successfully breached by Pilot Officer Les Knight's aircraft, ED912(G), AJ-N, which returned safely.

Tragedy at the Eder by Ivan Berryman. (PC)

Billy Drake

Squadrons for : Billy Drake
A list of all squadrons known to have been served with by Billy Drake. A profile page is available by clicking the squadron name.
SquadronInfo

No.1 Sqn RAF

Country : UK
Founded : 13th May 1912

In Omnibus Princeps - First in all things

Click the name above to see prints featuring aircraft of No.1 Sqn RAF

No.1 Sqn RAF

Full profile not yet available.

No.112 Sqn RAF

Country : UK
Founded : 25th July 1917
Fate : Disbanded 1st July 1957

Swift in destruction

Click the name above to see prints featuring aircraft of No.112 Sqn RAF

No.112 Sqn RAF

Full profile not yet available.

No.128 Sqn RAF

Country : UK
Founded : 1st February 1918
Fate : Disbanded 31st March 1946

Fulminis instar - Like a thunderbolt

Click the name above to see prints featuring aircraft of No.128 Sqn RAF

No.128 Sqn RAF

Full profile not yet available.
Aircraft for : Billy Drake
A list of all aircraft associated with Billy Drake. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.
SquadronInfo

Fury



Click the name above to see prints featuring Fury aircraft.

Manufacturer : Hawker

Fury

Full profile not yet available.

Hurricane



Click the name above to see prints featuring Hurricane aircraft.

Manufacturer : Hawker
Production Began : 1936
Number Built : 14533

Hurricane

Royal Air Force Fighter, the Hawker Hurricane had a top speed of 320mph, at 18,200 feet and 340mph at 17,500, ceiling of 34,200 and a range of 935 miles. The Hurricane was armed with eight fixed wing mounted .303 browning machine guns in the Mark I and twelve .303 browning's in the MKIIB in the Hurricane MKIIC it had four 20mm cannon. All time classic fighter the Hurricane was designed in 1933-1934, the first prototype flew in June 1936 and a contract for 600 for the Royal Air Force was placed. The first production model flew ion the 12th October 1937 and 111 squadron of the Royal Air Force received the first Hurricanes in January 1938. By the outbreak of World war two the Royal Air Force had 18 operational squadrons of Hurricanes. During the Battle of Britain a total of 1715 Hurricanes took part, (which was more than the rest of the aircraft of the Royal air force put together) and almost 75% of the Victories during the Battle of Britain went to hurricane pilots. The Hawker Hurricane was used in all theatres during World war two, and in many roles. in total 14,533 Hurricanes were built.

Typhoon



Click the name above to see prints featuring Typhoon aircraft.

Manufacturer : Hawker
Production Began : 1941
Number Built : 3330

Typhoon

Single engine fighter with a maximum speed of 412 mph at 19,000 feet and a ceiling of 35,200 feet. range 510 miles. The Typhoon was armed with twelve browning .303inch machine guns in the wings (MK1A) Four 20mm Hispano cannon in wings (MK!B) Two 1000ilb bombs or eight 3-inch rockets under wings. The first proto type flew in February 1940, but due to production problems the first production model flew in May 1941. with The Royal Air Force receiving their first aircraft in September 1941. Due to accidents due to engine problems (Sabre engine) The Hawker Typhoon started front line service in December 1941.The Hawker Typhoon started life in the role of interceptor around the cost of England but soon found its real role as a ground attack aircraft. especially with its 20mm cannon and rockets. This role was proved during the Normandy landings and the period after. The total number of Hawker typhoons built was 3,330.

Known Victory Claims - Billy Drake

DATE

PILOT

UNIT

JG

CLAIMED

LOCATION

TIME

FRONT

10/05/1940Flying Officer Billy DrakeNo.1 Sqn RAFHe111Verdun

Known Claims : 1

Contact Details
Shipping Info
Terms and Conditions
Classified Ads
Valuations

Join us on Facebook!

Sign Up To Our Newsletter!

Stay up to date with all our latest offers, deals and events as well as new releases and exclusive subscriber content!

This website is owned by Cranston Fine Arts.  Torwood House, Torwoodhill Road, Rhu, Helensburgh, Scotland, G848LE

Contact: Tel: (+44) (0) 1436 820269.  Fax: (+44) (0) 1436 820473. Email:

Follow us on Twitter!

Return to Home Page