HAWKER HURRICANE

          LF363          

LF363 - Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc, Duxford 2013 - pic by Nigel Key
LF363 - Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc, Duxford 2013 ©Nigel Key

PZ865 | LF363 | Z7015 | Z5140 | R4118 | BE505

The Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc - LF363, first flew on the 1st January 1944 and is believed to be the last Hurricane to enter service in the RAF. It was in service with 63 Squadron and 26 Squadron.

After hostilities, LF363 was spared the scrap yard and used on various station flights and also appeared in films 'Angels one five', 'Reach for the Sky' and 'The Battle of Britain'.

Whilst flying to Jersey in September 1991, LF363 suffered engine problems and had to be diverted to RAF Wittering but on the final approach the aircraft suffered complete engine failure and had to make an emergency landing. The pilot was saved with relative minor injuries (a broken ankle and minor burns) but the aircraft suffered severe damage.

Historic Flying Limited completely rebuilt LF363 and by 1998 it was flying again as part of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (B.B.M.F.).

LF363 wore the colour scheme of a Mk I Hurricane of 17 squadron, P3878 'YB-W' which was flown by Flying Office Harold Bird-Wilson at Debden and Tangmere. Harold 'Birdy' Bird-Wilson had previously been badly burned in a pre-war flying accident. Upon his recovery he joined 17 squadron and fought through the 'Battle of France' and the 'Battle of Britain' achieving 6 confirmed kills.

On 24th September 1940, 'Birdy' was shot down by Adolf Galland, his 40th 'kill', and had to bail out. 'Birdy' survived the war and when he retired from the RAF he had reached the rank of Vice Marshall and had been awarded the CBE, DSO, DFC & Bar and the AFC & Bar.

LF363 appeared with the livery of aircraft JX-B, armed with eight machine gun as flown during the Battle of Britain era.

Since June 2017, LF363's port side is marked up as GN-F, representing Tom Neil and his 249 squadron Hurricane and the starboard side is marked up with SD-A, representing one of the 501 squadron Hurricanes flown by Paul Farnes.

SPECIFICATION (Mk IIc)
Length - 32ft 3in (9.84m)
Wingspan - 40ft 0in (12.19m)
Height - 13ft 1.5in (4.0m)
Engine - R.R. Merlin XX
Power - 1,280 Hp
Max. Speed - 340mph (547km/h)
Range - 460 mile (740km)

ARMAMENT
Machine Guns - 8 x 0.303" Browning


PZ865 | LF363 | Z7015 | Z5140 | R4118 | BE505


PHOTOGRAPHS

LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2015 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2016 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2016 - pic by Nigel Key
RIAT 2015 RIAT 2016 RIAT 2016
LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - Duxford 2013 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2015 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2015 - pic by Nigel Key
Duxford 2013 RIAT 2015 RIAT 2015
LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - RIAT 2007 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - Duxford 2010 - pic by Nigel Key LF363 Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIc - Duxford 2013 - pic by Nigel Key
RIAT 2007 Duxford 2010 Duxford 2013


Photos copyright of ©Nigel Key


Battle of Britain Memorial Flight
The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight or BBMF presently consist of twelve aircraft :-
  6 Spitfires,
  2 Hurricanes, (PZ865 & LF363)
  Lancaster,
  Dakota,
  2 Chipmunks.

They are operated by the Royal Air Force and have been based at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire since 1976.

The BBMF participate in scores of Air Displays and events every year.


Movie Appearances

Battle of Britain
Starring: Michael Caine, Kenneth More, Christopher Plummer.

An all star cast, the Battle of Britain is a spectacular film of a true story that shows courage at its inspiring best. The film shows how when the outnumbered Royal AIr Force (RAF) defied insurmountable odds when engaging the German Luftwaffe, they may well have altered the course of history!

Reach for the Sky
Starring: Kenneth More.

A story of Douglas Bader who loses both legs in an aeroplane crash and his determination and courage to conquer this handicap and then go on to become a famous Battle of Britain pilot. He is eventually shot down over Germany and spends the rest of the war as a prisioner of war at Colditz.

Bader is played magnificently by Kenneth More and the film receives a BAFTA Award for Best British Film.

ANGELS ONE FIVE
Starring: Jack Hawkins and John Gregson.

A film set during the Battle of Britain focusing on a VR pilot "Septic" Baird (John Gregson) who joins a squadron bringing in a much needed replacement aircraft which he, through no fault of his own, prangs! Although vindicated by his fellow pilots he has to spend time in the Operations Room and prove himself to his superiors, helped by Wing Commander "Tiger" Small (Jack Hawkins).

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