The Victor ably served the RAF for 35 years. Doug Gordon examines the design, development and service of the futuristic-looking V-bomber.


In early 1947 the Ministry of Supply (MoS) issued Operational Requirement B35/46 which was for a bomber capable of carrying a 10,000lb (4,536kg) bomb load at a speed of 575mph (920km/h), a range of 3,800 miles (6,115km) and a ceiling of 50,000ft. The bomb load would include the carriage of a nuclear weapon in an internal bomb bay.

The Handley Page (HP) company had started work on the design of such an aircraft as early as February 1946 and had designated the project HP.80. By the time that B35/46 was issued, the company’s design was well advanced and was submitted in May 1947. A unique and innovatory feature of the HP.80 was the crescent wing.

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