No.263 Sqn RAF
Founded : 27th September 1918
Ex ungue leonem - From his claws one knows the lion
No.263 Sqn RAF
|Aircraft for : No.263 Sqn RAF|
|A list of all aircraft known to have been flown by No.263 Sqn RAF. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.|
Manufacturer : Gloster
Production Began : 1935
Retired : 1945
Number Built : 746
GLOSTER GLADIATOR: A continuation form the Gloster Gauntlet aircraft the Gloster Gladiator (SS37) becoming designated the F.7/30 was named Gladiator on the 1st July 1935. The first 70 Gladiators had Under wing machine guns (Vickers or Lewis) before the browning became standard The first aircraft arrived at Tangmere airfield on in February 1937 to no. 72 squadron. at the outbreak of world war two a total of 218 Gladiators had been received by the Royal air force with a total of 76 on active service. They served also in the Middle eats and in 1940 when Italy joined the war was nearly the only front line fighter in the middle east. Between 1939 and 1941. the Gloster Gladiator flew in many war zones. flying in France, Greece, Norway, Crete Egypt Malta and Aden. The Aircraft claimed nearly 250 air victories. It stayed in front line duties until 1942, then becoming fighter trainer, and other sundry roles. It continued in these roles until the end of world war two. The Naval equivalent the Sea Gladiator a short service in the Middle east and European waters. A Total of 746 aircraft were built of these 98 were Sea Gladiators.. Performance. speed: 250mph at 17,500 feet, 257 mph at 14,600 Range 430 miles. Armament: Two fixed .3-03 browning machine guns
Manufacturer : Hawker
Retired : 1971
Number Built : 1972
Hawker Hunter F-1 to Fr-10 jet fighter and fighter reconnaissance aircraft first flew with No43 squadron Royal Air Force in July 1954. The Hawker Hunter continued service until 1971. The Hunters were used by two RAF display units, the Black Arrows of No. 111 Squadron who set a record by looping and barrel rolling in formation 22 Hunters, and later the Blue Diamonds of 92 Squadron that used 16 Hunters. A total of 1,972 Hunters were produced by Hawker Siddeley and under licence.
Manufacturer : Hawker
Production Began : 1936
Number Built : 14533
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.
Manufacturer : Gloster
Production Began : 1944
Number Built : 3947
The Gloster Meteor was the first British jet fighter and the Allies' first operational jet. Designed by George Carter, and built by the Gloster Aircraft Company, Armstrong-Whitworth, the Meteor first flew in 1943 and commenced operations on 27 July 1944 with 616 Squadron of the Royal Air Force (RAF). The Gloster Meteor was not an aerodynamically advanced aircraft but the Gloster design team succeeded in producing an effective jet fighter that served the RAF and other air forces for decades. Meteors saw action with the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in the Korean War and other air forces used the Meteor. The Royal Danish Air Force, The Belgian Air Force and Isreali Air Force kept the Meteor in service until the early 1970's. A Total of 3947 meteors were built and two Meteors, WL419 and WA638, remain in service with the Martin-Baker company as ejection seat testbeds.
Manufacturer : Supermarine
Production Began : 1936
Retired : 1948
Number Built : 20351
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.
Manufacturer : Hawker
Production Began : 1941
Number Built : 3330
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.
Full profile not yet available.
|Signatures for : No.263 Sqn RAF|
|A list of all signatures from our database who are associated with this squadron. A profile page is available by clicking their name.|
Air Vice-Marshal George Black CB OBE AFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Vice-Marshal George Black CB OBE AFC
| Air Vice-Marshal George Black CB OBE AFC |
Air Vice-Marshal George Black CB OBE AFC was born on the 10th of July 1932 in Aberdeen and joined RAF in 1950. Black was awarded the first flying scholarship in Scotland, gaining his private pilots licence at Strathtay Aero Club, Perth. e left No.107 (Aberdeen) Squadron Air Training Corps where he gained the rank of Sergeant to commence National Service duty in the RAF. After undergoing flying training in Canada he joined No.263 Squadron RAF at RAF Wattisham in the rank of Flying Officer. George Black served as a fighter pilot. In 1952 his National Service was converted to a permanent commission and he was seconded to the Fleet Air Arm as a carrier pilot. Flying Officer Black returned to the RAF in 1961 in the rank of Flight Lieutenant and served with No.74 Squadron RAF flying English Electric Lightnings. After a period as a flying instructor at HQ Fighter Command, in 1964 he became squadron commnader of No.111 (Fighter) Sqdn (1964-66,) and ldr of the Lightning Aerobatic Team in 1965. In 1967 he became Cdr Lightning Operational Conversion Unit (1967-69,) then Cdr No.5 (Fighter) Sqdn between 1969 and 1970. On promotion to Group Captain in 1972 Black was appointed Station Commander at RAF Wildenrath in Germany. He became Commander Allied Sector One, Brockzetel in May 1980 on promotion to the rank of Air Commodore and was later appointed Aide-de-Camp to HM The Queen in July 1981 until 1983. Air Vice-Marshal George Black retired from the RAF in July 1987. He was awarded an Air Force Cross in 1962 while with No.74 Squadron and achieved a bar in 1971. He was awarded an OBE in 1967 and became a Companion of the Order of the Bath in 1987. Air Vice Marshal Black is a member of the RAF Historical Society and during his career recorded over 5,000 flying hours on around 100 different types of aircraft.
Flt. Lt. John (Chips) Carpenter DFC
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt. Lt. John (Chips) Carpenter DFC
| Flt. Lt. John (Chips) Carpenter DFC |
Flt. Lt. John Chips Carpenter DFC was born on 9 April 1921. He began elementary flying instruction at Redhill and later on Harvards at Turnhill with the RAF in February 1939 and on completion of his training he joined 263 Squadron at Filton in November. On 21 April 1940 the squadron embarked on HMS ‘Glorious’ for Norway, flying off three days later to land on a frozen lake. By the 26th all the Gladiators were either destroyed or unserviceable, so 263 Squadron re-embarked for the UK. In May another attempt was made. From the 21st until it re-embarked on HMS ‘Glorious’ on 6 June the squadron gave a good account of itself, covering the evacuation of the Army and flying offensive patrols. The carrier was sunk by enemy action soon after sailing and nearly all 263’s pilots were lost. Carpenter had not flown on to the carrier and returned to the UK by another ship. He joined 222 Squadron on Spitfires at Hornchurch in late June 1940 in time for the evacuation of Dunkirk. On 31 August he claimed a probable Bf109, on 1 September he destroyed another Bf109, on the 3rd a Bf110 and on the 4th a further Bf109. Soon afterwards he was shot down and wounded and returned to the squadron in October. Carpenter stayed with 222 Sqn. until April 1941, when he was posted to 46 Squadron, just as it prepared to go to the Middle East. The squadron embarked on HMS ‘Argus’, before transferring to the ‘Ark Royal’, from which they flew off to Hal Far, Malta on 6 June. 46 Squadron was kept in Malta and re-numbered 126 Squadron. On 30 June Carpenter shot down a Mc200, on 4 September he claimed another, on 8 November a Mc202, on the 12th another Mc202 and on 27 December he shot a Ju88 down into the sea. Carpenter, who had been a Flight Commander since early October, was awarded the DFC (2.1.42) and posted to 92 Squadron in the Western Desert. In May 1942 he covered the invasion of Sicily and Italy and was given command of 72 Squadron at Anzio. After a rest Carpenter was given command of 72 Squadron at Lago, Italy in January 1944. On 11 April he was posted away, received a Bar to the DFC (7.7.44) and returned to the UK. He went to Hawker’s as a production test pilot. Carpenter was granted a Permanent Commission in September 1945 and he retired on 31 December 1959, as a Flight Lieutenant, retaining the rank of Squadron Leader. Post war he served as CO in Kai Tek, Hong Kong. He died 11th February 2005.
Air Vice-Marshal Eric Macey
Click the name above to see prints signed by Air Vice-Marshal Eric Macey
| Air Vice-Marshal Eric Macey |
Eric Macey joined the RAF in 1954 and, after graduating as a pilot, flew Hunter fighters with 263 and 1 Sqns. He next joined the rapidly-expanding V-Force, initially flying Valiants of 214 Sqn on in-flight refuelling trials, and completed the first non-stop flight to Singapore. Then followed a Vulcan captaincy with 101 Sqn on which, over the next several years, he served as Sqn Pilot, Training Officer and Sqn Cdr (and which formed part of his Wing when he was OC Waddington). Between times, he was Chief Instructor of the Vulcan OCU at Scampton and, for a short time, also Stn Cdr there. Posted to Germany in 1979, he flew the Wessex, Puma, Jaguar, Phantom and Harrier and later served as AOC (of the University Air Squadrons) and Commandant of the RAF College Cranwell where he re-qualified on the Jet Provost. His final tour as Director-General Training added another 15 aircraft types bringing his total flying hours to about 3400 (1900 on the Vulcan) and total types flown to 60.
Flt. Lt. John Shellard
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt. Lt. John Shellard
| Flt. Lt. John Shellard |
Flight Lieutenant George Sheppard
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flight Lieutenant George Sheppard
| Flight Lieutenant George Sheppard |
Volunteering initially in October 1940 and called up in January 1941, George Sheppard learnt to fly in America and graduated and was commissioned in April 1942. He stayed on as an instructor in America returning to England in March 1943. He joined 198 Typhoon Squadron and after the invasion moved to Normandy in July 1944. He stayed with the squadron all the way through to Germany, becoming a flight commander in February 1945. He flew a total of 84 operational sorties. He felw Meteors with 74 Squadron and Spitfires with 263 Squadron in Italy before demob in May 1946. -- At the time of the Falaise battle we were operating from B7 Martragny and checking my log book I flew 16 ops during this time. The targets in and around Falaise were troop concentrations, tanks, trucks, armoured vehicles and gun positions. A flight which I was in, claimed many tanks, trucks etc, these being the ones that could be identified. One did not hang around after firing rockets and cannons to check results of attacks as the flak was intensive. In our flight we lost 2 pilots killed, 2 baled out but returned to base. Many planes were damaged by flak. I was hit and lost my brakes. Crash landed back at B7. I was also hit by 88mm flak on July 31st and forced landed over our lines at Cuverville, near Caen. After the battle a few of us went down to the Falaise area in our Commer 15 cwt truck. The destruction was incredible, burnt out vehicles, tanks, dead animals in the fields and dead Germans on the roadside. The smell was overwhelming. I thought at the time what it must have been like on the ground being under constant attack from the air. It was the first time I had seen on the ground the destruction caused by rockets, bombs and 20mm cannon fire.
S/Ldr. Ronnie Sheward
Click the name above to see prints signed by S/Ldr. Ronnie Sheward
| S/Ldr. Ronnie Sheward |
137, 263, 266 and 197 Squadrons
Squadron Leader L F W Stark DFC* AFC C de G (Belg)
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Squadron Leader L F W Stark DFC* AFC C de G (Belg)
| Squadron Leader L F W Stark DFC* AFC C de G (Belg) |
Lawrence W F Stark was born on 16th November 1920 in Bolton, Lancashire and was educated at Bolton School and then The Lancashire and Manchester Technical College. Pinkie Stark joined the RAF in 1941 and trained to be a pilot in Canada. On his return to England he spent some time flying Avro Ansons and Boulton Paul Defiants before being sent to a Typhoon OTU and and to 182 Squadron, then posted on operations the 10th January 1943 to 609 Typhoon Fighter Squadron, based at Manston. The squadron had been tasked to counter the hit and run attacks over South-East England by Fw190s. On 12 March 1943 Lawrence W F Stark had his first victory when he downed a Fw190 over Dunkirk. He shot down two Ju88 bombers over France, one in October and the other on 2 November 1943. He flew so low when claiming the first of these Ju88s that he clipped the top of some trees, returning to base with branches in the now misshapen nose of his Typhoon. On 4th January 1944 he shared in the destruction of a Dornier Do217, he also shot down a Caudron Goeland transport and another Fw 190, with 5½ victories and another aircraft destroyed on the ground he qualified as an Ace. He served on with 609 Squadron throughout occupied Europe, eventually taking over as the Squadron Commander and, awarded the DFC, became an Ace as one of the most successful Typhoon pilots in aerial combat. In February 1944 he moved to 263 Typhoon Fighter Squadron as a flight commander, to carry out ground-attack operations, still with the Typhoon. He flew sorties in support of the D-Day landing attacking ground targets in Northern France but in July 1944 he was shot down in Brittany. With the help of the French resistance he evaded capture and returned to England in a motor boat. Stark later returned to 609 Squadron as commanding officer to continue the ground-attack work. Stark continued flying in the RAF and gained a Bar to his DFC. In 1947 he completed the Empire Test Course and was posted to Boscombe Down as a test pilot, in particular with the Blind Landing Experimental Unit performing automatic landing trials. He was awarded the AFC and C de G (Belg). He retired from the RAF in 1963 and later became manager of Rochester Airport.. Sadly Squadron Leader Stark passed away on the 1st of August 2004.
Citation for DFC, 7th March 1944 :
Citation for the Bar to the DFC, 3rd October 1944 :
Flt. Lt. George Wood
Click the name above to see prints signed by Flt. Lt. George Wood
| Flt. Lt. George Wood |
Whilst with 263 Sqn flying a twin-engined Whirlwind he was shot down over Morlaix airfield on 30th October 1943 and successfully evaded capture and made it back to the UK with the help of the Résistance. He rejoined 197 Sqn flying Typhoons for the rest of the war.
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