The Battle of Britain raged between July and October 1940. The German Luftwaffe (Airforce) attempted to wipe out the Royal Air Force (RAF) in preparation for an invasion of Britain. After the loss of over a thousand pilots and planes of both sides, the RAF was victorious, and Hitler abandoned his plans for an invasion.
In 2015, the 7th Anniversary of the Battle of Britain was celebrated with a flyby of 17 Spitfires, single-seat British fighters that fought in that battle.
More Supermarine Spitfires, to give their full name, were produced by the British more than any other aircraft. After the Battle of Britain, they became the most important British fighter and were used in many theaters of war. In fact, it was the only British aircraft to be made without interruption throughout the War.
Other countries used them and their many variations as well, and even after World War II. Fifty-four surviving Spitfires can still fly, and many others are in aviation museums throughout the world.
The Spitfires that flew for the anniversary were lead by a pilot who had actually fought at the Battle of Britain. He was Wing Commander Tom Neil. He was 95 years old! Beside Spitfires, he also flew Hurricanes. The planes took off in groups of four, or wings, circled Goodwood Aerodrome, and then set off for Selsey Bill in Sussex.
From Selsey Bill, the wings took different routes across the south of England. Some landed in Battle of Britain airfields such as Biggin Hill, Duxford, Northweald, and Northolt, while others returned to Goodwood.
The flight was a fitting tribute to the pilots who gave their lives for the defense of their country, as well as to all who contributed to the defense of Britain.
Don’t forget to turn up the volume!!