RAF Orders a Future Dud and a Future Workhorse

Wednesday 16th September 1936




The RAF announced large orders for two new types of medium bombers as part of its programme of re-equipment with up-to-date models of aircraft. In striking proof of the unpredictability of advances in military technology, one was destined to become a mainstay of the RAF’s bomber force into the middle of the war, whilst the other proved a severe disappointment.


The Vickers Wellington was designed by Barnes Wallis and used a novel geodetic structure that gave a robust structure without adding excess weight. Its dependability kept it in service well after newer types far surpassed it in performance. The Handley-Page Hampden was christened the “flying suitcase” because of its odd appearance. It proved cramped and uncomfortable with no compensating strengths in performance. It soon disappeared from front-line service.the kindest thing that might be said of it was that it did not earn Sir Frederick Handley-Page the same venomous hatred that its successor, the Halifax, drew from "Bomber" Harris, chief of RAF Bomber Command.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Eighty years ago, Chamberlain is finally held to account for his dismal record

Eighty years ago, the British land in Norway in a campaign worthy of the debacles of the eighteenth century

Eighty years ago, the British campaign in central Norway nears collapse but Franco-British relations get a big fillip