HistoryNet.com is brought to you by Historynet LLC, the world's largest publisher of history magazines. Brown, Eric, CBE, DCS, AFC, RN. [24], Originally scheduled for 21 October 1940, the Taranto raid was delayed until 11 November to allow for key reinforcements to arrive and other commitments to be met. gun models: 5

Ruth Handler, businesswoman, toy designer who co-founded Mattel with her husband and created the Barbie doll. William III, Prince of Orange, later King of England, Scotland and Ireland. The most numerous version of the Swordfish was the Mark II, of which 1,080 were completed. [22] During one record month, 98,000 tons of shipping were reportedly lost to the island's Swordfish-equipped strike force. The British were the first to begin construction of a purpose-designed carrier, Hermes, commissioned in 1924. Armed with depth charges and rockets, the type soon proved to be a capable submarine killer. On occasion, when the wind was right, Swordfish were flown from a carrier at anchor. Jeff Probst, game show host and executive producer, best known as the host of the US version the reality show Survivor. RAF losses totaled 35 aircraft. Six months later a venerable Swordfish incapacitated the mighty Bismarck, enabling the Royal Navy to close on and sink the pride of Adolf Hitler’s navy.

The Swordfish was intended to be replaced by the Fairey Albacore, also a biplane, but it outlived its intended successor, and was succeeded by the Fairey Barracuda monoplane torpedo bomber. Stott 1971, p. 25. He threatened to resign unless naval aviation reverted to the Royal Navy, which it finally did in 1939. [29] This made Bismarck unmanoeuvrable and unable to escape to port in France. ships: 47, World War Photos 2013-2020, contact: info(at)worldwarphotos.info. Nicholas O’Dell served in RAF Bomber Command from 1958 to 1962. [6] By early 1940, Fairey was busy with the Swordfish and other types such as the new Fairey Albacore torpedo bomber. But opting out of some of these cookies may affect your browsing experience. The Mark II had metal lower wings to allow the use of rockets and the Mark III added a large centrimetric radar unit. [30] When the Swordfish formation arrived and commenced an initial attack run coming astern of the ships, the Swordfish were intercepted by roughly 15 Messerschmitt Bf 109 monoplane fighter aircraft; the aerial battle was extremely one-sided, quickly resulting in the loss of all Swordfish while no damage was achieved upon the ships themselves.

[2] Development of the T.S.R. It set the pattern for future aircraft carriers: a flush flight deck with command superstructure “island” to starboard. Fired in pairs or a salvo of all eight, one or two hits usually sufficed. On 30 June, operations re-commenced with an opening night raid upon oil tanks at Augusta, Sicily. Captain Lindemann and his officers had good reason to respect this apparent relic of a bygone era. The company chose initially to pursue development of the project as a self-financed private venture while both customers and applicable requirements for the type were sought. [22] On 22 August, the three aircraft destroyed two U-boats, one destroyer and a replenishment ship present in the Gulf of Bomba, Libya, using only three torpedoes. At the beginning of World War II, Britain had seven aircraft carriers, more than any other nation (reduced to six when Courageous was torpedoed with the war just 14 days old), but two were 15 years old and four had been launched in the previous war. The notion that flimsy flying machines could sink great warships was considered absurd. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. [22], Shortly after the Mers-el-Kébir attack, a detachment of three Swordfish were sent to support British Army operations in the Western Desert, in response to a request for torpedo aircraft to destroy hostile naval units operating off the coast of Libya. The crew of course stated they had flown from Ballykelly, not far from Limavady. The original 690-hp Bristol Pegasus engine, which Royal Navy test pilot Captain Eric Brown wrote “from appearances seemed to have been added as an afterthought,” was noted for its reliability, an important consideration to crews flying at night over water.

I-IV[60], Aircraft of comparable role, configuration, and era, "Stringbag" redirects here. The Italian navy’s fleet of fast, modern warships—six battleships, nine heavy cruisers and multiple destroyers—was twice the size of the British Mediterranean fleet. Esmonde was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross. The Mark II and Mark III variants were both introduced in 1943. (Military History Collection/Alamy). [7] The Admiralty approached Blackburn Aircraft with a proposal that manufacturing activity for the Swordfish be transferred to the company, who immediately set about establishing a brand new fabrication and assembly facility in Sherburn-in-Elmet, North Yorkshire. Six Swordfish led by Lieutenant Commander Eugene Esmonde sortied from Manston to intercept the battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau as they traversed the English Channel towards Germany. Built in 1941, the Royal Navy Historic Flight’s Fairey Swordfish W5856 is the oldest of its kind still flying. The battleship’s anti-aircraft guns unleashed an intense barrage. 4 AACU), Singapore, Unknown – Swordfish II on static display at the, HS491 – Swordfish IV under restoration at the, HS554 – Swordfish III under restoration to airworthy with private owners in, HS618 – Swordfish II on static display at the, LS326 – Swordfish II airworthy with Navy Wings in, NF370 – Swordfish III on static display at the. The heavy cruiser Pola was brought to a stop by torpedoes from Formidable’s Swordfish. Fairey Swordfish. I, standing for Torpedo-Spotter-Reconnaissance I, the proposed design adopted a biplane configuration and a single 645 hp Bristol Pegasus IIM radial engine as its powerplant. It could detect a submarine up to five miles away and larger vessels up to 25. This page was last edited on 20 September 2020, at 20:43. Art Carney, actor; best known for playing Ed Norton, sidekick to Jackie Gleason's Ralph Kramden on the TV series The Honeymooners, he received an Academy Award for Best Actor for his starring role in the film Harry and Tonto.

[6] All three pre-production aircraft were powered by the Pegasus IIIM3 engine, but adopted a three-bladed Fairey-Reed propeller in place of the two-bladed counterpart used on the earlier prototype. The two crew members names were confirmed with the help of Hans Houterman from the unithistories.com website, and this eventually allowed them to be traced, although the pilot had been contacted by researchers many years before my attempts. The type was in frontline service throughout the Second World War. [10], In Spring 1940, the first combat use of the Swordfish occurred during the Norwegian Campaign; on 11 April 1940, several Swordfish aircraft were launched from the aircraft carrier HMS Furious for the purpose of conducting a torpedo attack upon several German vessels that had been reported in anchor at Trondheim. [16], In July 1936, the Swordfish formally entered service with the Fleet Air Arm (FAA), which was then part of the RAF; 825 Naval Air Squadron became the first squadrons to receive the type that month. [30] In the submarine-hunter role, the Swordfish made critical contributions to both the Battle of the Atlantic, detecting and attacking the roaming U-boat packs that preyed upon merchant shipping between Britain and North America, and in support of the Arctic convoys which delivered supplies from Britain to Russia.



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