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Vital Support by Robert Taylor. (B)- Ivan Berryman .com
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Vital Support by Robert Taylor. (B)


Vital Support by Robert Taylor. (B)

Crucial to every squadron in the RAF were the unsung heroes of World War II - the ground crew. Without the vital support of these dedicated men who refuelled the aircraft, rearmed them, maintained them and kept them flying, the pilots and aircrew would, quite simply, never have got into the air. Robert Taylors drawing Vital Support shows ground crew bombing up a Mosquito of RAF Bomber Command.
AMAZING VALUE! - The value of the signatures on this item is in excess of the price of the print itself!
Item Code : DHM2640BVital Support by Robert Taylor. (B) - This Edition
TYPEEDITION DETAILSSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSYOUR PRICEPURCHASING
PRINTDe Havilland Prototype limited edition of 95 prints.


Great value : Value of signatures exceeds price of item!
Paper size 14.5 inches x 11 inches (37cm x 28cm) Cunningham, John
Cheshire, Leonard
Harrington, Ray
Burbridge, Branse
Barwell, Eric
Tempest, Ken
Winwood, Bert
Broom, T J Tommy
Hilliard, Aubrey
Perks, Geoffrey
Webb, Maurice
Youens, Jack
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £475
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Other editions of this item : Vital Support by Robert Taylor.DHM2640
TYPEEDITION DETAILSSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSYOUR PRICEPURCHASING
PRINTSigned limited edition of 200 prints.
Great value : Value of signatures exceeds price of item!
Paper size 14.5 inches x 11 inches (37cm x 28cm) Harrington, Ray
Burbridge, Branse
Barwell, Eric
Tempest, Ken
Winwood, Bert
Broom, T J Tommy
Hilliard, Aubrey
Perks, Geoffrey
Webb, Maurice
Youens, Jack
+ Artist : Robert Taylor


Signature(s) value alone : £330
£40 Off!
Supplied with one or more free art prints!
Now : £135.00VIEW EDITION...
General descriptions of types of editions :

Signatures on this item
*The value given for each signature has been calculated by us based on the historical significance and rarity of the signature. Values of many pilot signatures have risen in recent years and will likely continue to rise as they become more and more rare.
NameInfo
The signature of Flight Lieutenant Aubrey Hilly Hilliard

Flight Lieutenant Aubrey Hilly Hilliard
*Signature Value : £25

'Hilly' Hilliard trained as a pilot on Blenheims and Beaufighters, and in April 1943 was posted to 618 Squadron on Mosquitos, specially formed to carry Barnes Wallis's famous bouncing bomb. In August he transferred to the Mosquitos of the Banff Strike Wing. Whilst attacking and damaging a number of U-boats, one of which returned fire, damaging his aircraft. Forty years later 'Hilli' met the U-boat's capitan, Gunther Heinfich, and became good friends.
The signature of Flight Lieutenant Geoffrey Perks DFC

Flight Lieutenant Geoffrey Perks DFC
*Signature Value : £40

Joining the RAF in July 1941 he trained as a pilot in the USA and was posted to 420 Sqn as part of no 6 Group (RCAF) initially flying Wellingtons. The unit then converted to Halifaxes and he moved firstly to 427 Squadron and then 434 Sqn still flying this aircraft. In November 1944 he joined OTU as an instructor on Halifaxes, converting to Mosquitoes in January 1945. He then joined 571 Sqn as part of the Light Night Strike Force, flying the B Mk XVI and dropping 4000lb cookie bombs over Germany. He left the RAF in 1946 but rejoined, finally leaving in 1958


Flight Lieutenant Ken Tempest (deceased)
*Signature Value : £15

Pilot, No.139 Squadron. Kenneth Tempest, who has died aged 93, flew with the RAFs Pathfinder Force as a navigator and later became a pilot with BOAC; during his flying career he completed 788 crossings of the Atlantic. Tempest joined the RAFs Light Night Striking Force (LNSF) – part of the Pathfinders - in the summer of 1944 as part of No 139 Squadron, operating the Mosquito. His first operation was to bomb Berlin on October 30, the first of numerous sorties to the Big City. In addition to dropping markers as aiming points for the main bomber force, the Mosquitos of the LNSF carried out nuisance raids, dropping a single bomb on a number of industrial cities during one sortie. The aim was to deny sleep to the German work force and keep the emergency services busy every night. These raids had the additional benefit of acting as a diversion for the main force and confusing the enemys air defence organisation. On March 3rd 1945 Tempest and his pilot were returning from Berlin when there was a loud explosion in the rear of the aircraft. Unaware of the cause, they crossed the Dutch coast with no navigation or radio aids before discovering that the hydraulic system had also failed, disabling the brakes. They headed for the emergency airstrip at Woodbridge, one of three 9,000ft strips built near the coast to receive damaged aircraft returning from Europe. Before landing, one of the two engines failed but the crew managed to crash-land and survive unhurt, although the Mosquito was wrecked. Three nights later Tempest returned to Berlin, which, by this stage of the war, was almost a nightly event for the Mosquitos of the LNSF. On the night of May 2/3, Tempest headed for Kiel on his 43rd operation. It was also Bomber Commands final operation of the war. Shortly after, Tempest was awarded the DFC. Kenneth Tempest was born in Cawnpore, India, on April 9 1922 and educated at Keighley Grammar School. After a brief period with Lloyds Bank he joined the RAF and trained as a navigator in Florida under a US/UK bilateral training programme. On completion of his training and return to Britain, he and two colleagues were given an unusual posting when they joined BOAC at Poole and changed from their RAF uniforms to that of the commercial airline. He entered the flying boat division and after specialist training started to fly routes to West Africa on BOAC’s Boeing 314 A Clipper aircraft. On January 3 1943 he completed the first of many hundreds of transatlantic flights, when he flew to Belem in Brazil. In February he was sent to BOACs post at Baltimore in the US. The following September he was the navigator on flights to support the Quebec Conference, when Anthony Eden, the foreign secretary, Lord Mountbatten and the three service chiefs were his passengers. He returned to the RAF in the summer of 1944 and trained for the RAFs Pathfinder Force. Tempest left the Air Force as a flight lieutenant after the war and rejoined BOAC, initially as a navigator before training as a pilot. He returned to Baltimore and also operated from the airlines base in Canada, initially on converted wartime bombers and then the Lockheed Constellation. By the end of 1951 he had completed 237 transatlantic flights as a navigator and started his pilot training. After a period operating in the Caribbean, he started flying the Bristol Britannia. In 1964 he converted to the VC 10 and a year later carried the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh on a return flight to Addis Ababa. He made his final flight on June 25 1975 having amassed more than 14,000 hours flying time. Kenneth Tempest, born April 9 1922, died June 2 2015.


Flight Lieutenant Ray Harington
*Signature Value : £40

Ray joined the RAF in 1941, completing his training in South Africa. In January 1944 he was posted to 603 Squadron flying Beaufighters in North Africa. Here he teamed up with navigator, Warrant Officer A.E. ‘Bert’ Winwood, and from where they launched attacks across the Mediterranean into Crete, Greece and the Aegean Islands against shipping, harbour installations and enemy aircraft with much success. In December 1944 they were posted to 235 Squadron Coastal Command, part of the Banff Strike Wing, converting to Mosquitos. In April 1945 they were shot down following a strike in the Kattegat, but avoided capture and with the help of the Danish resistance made it home, where they continued to fly again from Banff.


Flying Officer Jack Youens
*Signature Value : £15

Flying Officer Jack Youens went to Gravesend Sea School in 1938 and was on the SS Sacramento as a 16 year old in British Columbia when the 2nd World War broke out. Jack Youens joind the RAF, Bicester O.T.U in July 26th 1944 on Mosquito Conversion, until September 10 1944 along with F/o Scott, F/o Hall, F/o Binnie, F/Lt King, and a F/o Cummimngs who were also there at that time. Whilst there his younger brother Lawrance Youens was killed in action wile serving as a Navigator on Pathfinder Mosquitos. A S/Leader Thomas flew Jack to Gravely to see his C/O. Jack Youens was transfered to Mosquitoes, having been a Staff Pilot at No 2 (OAFU) from September 9th 1942 to Feb 29th 1944. Jacks first introduction to the Mossy was at Swanton Morley, prior to going to Bicester. He was then sent to No 21 Squadron 140 Wing, which included 464 Australian Sqd and 487 Newzealand Sqd, of 2nd Tactical Airforce. Jacks first operations were first from Gravesend and finally at Thorney Island Hants.


Flying Officer Maurice Webb DFM
*Signature Value : £40

Maurice joined the RAF in 1942, and trained as an observer/ wireless operator/ gunner. In October 1943 he was posted to 235 Squadron based at RAF Portreath, flying Beaufighters attacking shipping and harbour installations. In 1944 he converted to Mosquitos, and joined 248 Squadron, moving on to serve with the Banff Strike Wing until March 1945. He was awarded the DFM in August 1944, and then spent time flying in a RAF Walrus on Air Sea Rescue operations. He had flown with Harold Corbin as his co-pilot / observer from 1943 until the end of the war.


The signature of Group Captain John Cunningham CBE DSO DFC AE DL FRAeS (deceased)

Group Captain John Cunningham CBE DSO DFC AE DL FRAeS (deceased)
*Signature Value : £70

John Cunningham joined the RAF in 1935 with 604 Squadron. At the outbreak of World War Two he was based at North Weald flying Blenheims on day escort and night fighter operations. In September 1940 he converted onto Beaufighters equipped with radar, the first aircraft that made night fighting really possible. In November he had the Squadrons first successful night combat. He took command of 604 Squadron in August 1941. After a period at HQ81 Group, he was posted on his second tour to command 85 Squadron equipped with Mosquitoes. In March 1944 with 19 night and 1 day victory he was posted to HQ11 Group to look after night operations. The most famous Allied night fighter Ace of WWII - 20 victories. He died 21st July 2002. Born in 1917, Group Captain John Cunningham was the top-scoring night fighter ace of the Royal Air Force. Cunningham joined the RAF in 1935 as a Pilot Officer. He learned to fly in the Avro 504N and was awarded his wings in 1936. While assigned to the Middlesex Squadron Auxiliary based at Hendon, Cunningham received instruction in the Hawker Hart prior to moving on the Hawker Demon. The Demon was a two-seat day and night fighter. Cunningharns squadron was mobilized in 1938 following the Czechoslovak crisis. His No. 604 unit was moved to North Weald. Later in 1938 his unit returned to Hendon and was reequipped with the more modern Blenheim 1 fighter. In August of 1939 the unit was again mobilized and returned to North Weald. The Squadron was primarily utilized to provide daylight air cover for convoys. Lacking radar the Blenheim was relatively useless as a night fighter. In September of 1940 the unit was moved to Middle Wallop and the first Bristol Beaufighters arrived. The Beatifighter had a modestly effective, although often unreliable radar. It was an excellent aircraft with reliable air-cooled engines and four 20mm cannons. Cunningham attained the units first night victory in the Beaufighter, and his tally rose steadily. He was promoted to Wing Commander of 604 Squadron in August of 1941. Cunningham completed his first combat tour of duty in mid-1942 with a total of 15 victories. He was then posted to H.Q. 81 Group, which was an operational training group under the Fighter Command. In January of 1943 Cunningham was transferred to command of No. 85 Squadron which was equipped with the Mosquito. With the higher speed of the Mosquito, Cunningham was successful at downing Fw-190s, something impossible in the slower Beaufighter. Cunningham completed his second tour in 1944 with a total of nineteen victories at night and one by day. He was promoted to Group Captain at that time, and was assigned to H.Q. 11 Group. Cunninghams radar operator Sqd. Ldr. Jimmy Rawnsley participated in most of Cunninghams victories. The 604 Squadron was disbanded in 1945, but in 1946 Cunningham was given the honor of reforming the Squadron at Hendon - flying the Spitfire. Cunningham left the RAF in 1946 and joined the De Havilland Aircraft Co. at Hatfield as its Chief Test Pilot. Cunningham had a long and distinguished career in the British aviation industry, retiring from British Aerospace in 1980. Cunningham was appointed OBE in 1951 and CBE in 1963. He was awarded the DSO in 1941 and Bars in 1942 and 1944; the DFC and Bar in 1941, also the Air Efficiency Award (AE). He also held the Soviet Order of Patriotic War 1st Class and the US Silver Star. Group Capt John Cunningham died at the age of 84 on the 21st July 2002.


Group Captain Leonard Cheshire VC OM DSO** DFC* (deceased)
*Signature Value : £75

One of the most courageous and determined bomber leaders of World War II, Leonard Cheshire flew four operational tours, starting in June 1940 with 102 Squadron on Whitley bombers at RAF Driffield. In November 1940, he was awarded the DSO for getting his badly damaged aircraft back to base. He completed his first tour in January 1941, but immediately volunteered for a second tour, this time flying Halifaxes with 35 Squadron. He became Squadron Leader in 1942, and was appointed commanding officer of 76 Squadron later that year. Leonard Cheshire ordered that non-essential weight be removed from the Halifax bombers in a bid to increase speed and altitude, hoping to reduce the high casualty rates for this squadron. Mid-upper and nose turrets were removed, and exhaust covers taken off, successfully reducing the loss rate. In July 1943 he took command of 617 Squadron. During this time he led the squadron personally on every occasion. In September he was awarded the Victoria Cross for four and a half years of sustained bravery during a total of 102 operations, leading his crews with careful planning, brilliant execution and contempt for danger, which gained him a reputation second to none in Bomber Command. Sadly, Leonard Cheshire died of motor neuron disease on 31st July 1992, aged 74.


The signature of Squadron Leader TJ Tommy Broom DFC (deceased)

Squadron Leader TJ Tommy Broom DFC (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45

Thomas John Broom was born on January 22 1914 at Portishead, Bristol, and educated at Slade Road School, leaving when he was 14 to work as a garage hand. As soon as he reached his 18th birthday he enlisted in the RAF and trained as an armourer. He served in the Middle East, initially in Sudan, and in 1937 was sent to Palestine to join No 6 Squadron. With the threat of war in Europe, however, there was an urgent need for more air observers; Broom volunteered and returned to Britain for training. In February 1939 he joined No 105 Squadron at Harwell, which was equipped with the Fairey Battle. On the day the Second World War broke out No 105 flew to Reims in northern France to support the British Expeditionary Force, and within three weeks Broom had flown his first reconnaissance over Germany. During a raid on Cologne in November 1940 his aircraft was severely damaged by anti-aircraft fire, but the crew managed to struggle back to England where they were forced to bail out as they ran out of fuel. For the next 12 months Broom served as an instructor. He returned to his squadron in January 1942, just as the Mosquito entered service, and on August 25 was sent to attack a power station near Cologne. As the aircraft flew at treetop height across Belgium, the crew spotted an electricity pylon. The pilot tried to avoid it but the starboard engine struck the top of the pylon and the aircraft ploughed into pine trees. Both men survived the crash, and were picked up by members of the Belgian Resistance. They were escorted to St Jean de Luz by the Belgian-run "Comet" escape line, and Broom crossed the mountains under the aegis of a Spanish Basque guide on September 8; his pilot followed him two weeks later. Twenty-five years after the event Broom returned to St Jean de Luz to meet the woman who had sheltered him from the Germans. After the German advance into the Low Countries on May 10 1940, the Battle squadrons were thrown against Panzers and attacked the crucial bridges across the main rivers, suffering terrible losses. After the fall of France, Broom and some of his comrades managed to reach Cherbourg to board a ship for England. No 105 Squadron was re-equipped with the Blenheim, and during the Battle of Britain Broom attacked the German barges assembling at the Channel ports in preparation for an invasion of England. After spending a period as an instructor at 13 OTU he rejoined 105 Squadron on Mosquitoes, they were in fact the first squadron in the RAF to receive them. Through early 1942 he was navigator on many of the daylight raids carried out by 105 Squadron. In August 1943 Tommy Broom was the chief ground instructor at the Mosquito Training Unit when he first met his namesake Flight Lieutenant Ivor Broom (later Air Marshal Sir Ivor Broom), an experienced low-level bomber pilot. They immediately teamed up and flew together for the remainder of the war, in 163 Squadron as part of the Light Night Strike Force forming a formidable on Mosquitoes including the low level attack on the Dortmund - Ems Canal and completing 58 operations together, including 22 to Berlin. Known as The Flying Brooms Initially they joined No 571 Squadron as part of Air Vice-Marshal Don Bennetts Pathfinder Force, and on May 26 1944 they flew their first operation, an attack on Ludswigshafen. On August 9 they took part in a spectacular night-time mission to drop mines in the Dortmund-Ems Canal. They descended rapidly from 25,000ft to fly along the canal at 150ft, releasing their mines under heavy anti-aircraft fire. The force of eight Mosquitos closed the canal for a number of weeks. Tommy Brooms brilliant navigation had helped ensure the success of the raid, and he was awarded a DFC. The Brooms took part in another daring attack on New Years Day 1945. In order to stem the flow of German reinforcements to the Ardennes, the RAF mounted operations to sever the rail links leading to the area, and the Brooms were sent to block the tunnel at Kaiserslauten. They were approaching the tunnel at low level just as a train was entering it. They dropped their 4,000lb bomb, with a time delay fuse, in the entrance and 11 seconds later it exploded, completely blocking the tunnel – the train did not emerge. Tommy Broom received a Bar to his DFC and his pilot was awarded a DSO. When Ivor Broom was given command of No 163 Squadron, Tommy went with him as the squadrons navigation leader and they flew together until the end of the war. Their last five operations were to Berlin, where searchlights posed a perpetual problem. On one occasion they were coned for as long as a quarter of an hour. After twisting, turning and diving to escape the glare, Ivor Broom asked his disoriented navigator for a course to base. Tommy replied: "Fly north with a dash of west, while I sort myself out." A few weeks later Tommy Broom was awarded a second Bar to his DFC – an extremely rare honour for a bomber navigator. Tommy Broom left the RAF in September 1945, but he and his pilot remained close friends until Sir Ivors death in 2003. Sadly Tommy Broom passed away on 18th May 2010


Warrant Officer Bert Winwood (deceased)
*Signature Value : £40

WO A.E. 'Bert' Winwood was a Navigator on Mosquitoes and Beaufighters, flew only with pilot Ray Harrington attached to 603 sqn in the Greek Campaign. Bert did his Navigator training in Canada and in January 1944 was posted to 603 Squadron on Beaufighters, based at Gambut, near Tobruk. From here they launched attacks right across the Mediterranean into Crete, Greece and the Aegean Islands against shipping, harbour installations and enemy aircraft with much success. In December 1944 he was posted to 235 Squadron at RAF Banff flying as navigator on Mosquito's flying in the Banff Strike Wing. In April 1945 he was shot down when returning from a strike in the Kattegat, he and his pilot Ray Harrington avoided capture, and with the help of the Danish resistance made it home to England. After a short rest he continued to fly again from RAF Banff, he left the RAF in 1946. Bert Winwood passed away in 2012.


The signature of Wing Commander Branse Burbridge DSO* DFC* (deceased)

Wing Commander Branse Burbridge DSO* DFC* (deceased)
*Signature Value : £50

Posted to 85 Squadron on night-fighters in October 1941, Branse Burbridge flew Havocs on his first tour, scoring just a single claim, but when he returned to 85 Squadron for a second tour - this time on Mosquitos, he was far more successful. His first enemy kill was in Febraury 1944 when he shot down a Messerschmitt 410 fighter plane off the Sussex coast. On the night of March 24, 1944 he became embroiled in a life-or-death dogfight with a Dornier 217 bomber over the Channel. His Mosquito chased the aircraft from 19,000ft to just 3,000ft before it crashed into the sea, with Wg Cmdr Burbridge pulling up with just 1,000ft to spare. During the period of the build up to the invasion of Normandy, and after, together with his radar navigator, Bill Skelton, They flew 30 sorties over Germany to provide escort cover to RAF bombers. His greatest achievement came on November 4, 1944 during a bombing raid over Bonn. He shot down three Junkers 88 bombers and a Me 110, firing just 200 rounds in the process. In total they claimed 21 victories in a ten month spell. In the days after D-Day, he shot down a Junkers 88 bomber on the France/Belgium border that was piloted by Major Herget, who was credited with 72 aerial victories. In June 1944 he also shot down three V-1s. With his final air victory, in January 1945, he passed the total set by John Cats Eyes Cunningham to become the highest scoring RAF night fighter Ace of the war. Following the war Wg Cmdr Burbridge studied theology at Oxford before becoming a lay preacher for the Scripture Union. He now lives in care in Chorleywood, Herts.


Wing Commander Eric Barwell (deceased)
*Signature Value : £20

Born in Suffolk in August 1913, Eric Barwell joined the RAFVR in 1938 to train as a pilot. He was commissioned into No.264 Sqn in February 1940, flying the Boulton-Paul Defiant. His squadron flew in support of the evacuation of Dunkirk, and he claimed two Me109s, two Ju87 Stukas and a Heinkel during this evacuation. However, in the combat with the Heinkel, his aircraft was damaged and he was forced to ditch, managing to put it down in the water between two British destroyers. He and his gunner were rescued by HMS Malcolm. On 24th August, while scrambling to intercept bombers, he and his wingman were attacked by five fighters, his wingman being immediately shot down. His gunner managed to shoot down one of the enemy fighters before the Defiant managed to escape, but it was clear that the aircraft was no match for the German fighters. They were withdrawn from combat and used in a night-time training role. Barwell was awarded the DFC for the six victories scored. In April 1941, he scored a night-time victory over a Heinkel, with a second also probable. He transferred to No.125 Sqn flying Beaufighters, claiming a Dornier damaged on 1st July 1942. By March 1943, No.125 Sqn were equipped with Mosquitoes. He shot down two Ju-88s in this aircraft, and also recorded his final victory, over a V-1 rocket. He was awarded the bar to his DFC and transferred to various experimental squadrons before leaving the RAF in September 1945. Sadly, Eric Barwell died on 12th December 2007.
The Aircraft :
NameInfo
MosquitoUsed as a night fighter, fighter bomber, bomber and Photo-reconnaissance, with a crew of two, Maximum speed was 425 mph, at 30,300 feet, 380mph at 17,000ft. and a ceiling of 36,000feet, maximum range 3,500 miles. the Mosquito was armed with four 20mm Hospano cannon in belly and four .303 inch browning machine guns in nose. Coastal strike aircraft had eight 3-inch Rockets under the wings, and one 57mm shell gun in belly. The Mossie at it was known made its first flight on 25th November 1940, and the mosquito made its first operational flight for the Royal Air Force as a reconnaissance unit based at Benson. In early 1942, a modified version (mark II) operated as a night fighter with 157 and 23 squadron's. In April 1943 the first De Haviland Mosquito saw service in the Far east and in 1944 The Mosquito was used at Coastal Command in its strike wings. Bomber Commands offensive against Germany saw many Mosquitos, used as photo Reconnaissance aircraft, Fighter Escorts, and Path Finders. The Mosquito stayed in service with the Royal Air Force until 1955. and a total of 7781 mosquito's were built.

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