Masterclass

Ken Ellis continues his survey of British post-war manufacturers with the spectacularly successful Hawker fighter dynasty

Trevor ‘Wimpy’ Wade getting ready to display the prototype Sea Hawk, VP401, to the press at Langley, 1948. KEY COLLECTION

Vast numbers of Sopwith types were produced during World War One, with the Camel becoming almost a brand name for British single-seat fighters. After the Armistice of November 11, 1918 orders for warplanes vaporised and the industry braced for lean times, or worse.

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