Hawker’s Hurricane was pivotal to Britain’s aerial defence in the Battle of Britain. In the first of our new mini-series on BoB types in this 80th anniversary year, Malcolm V Lowe recounts the Hurricane’s importance during the summer of 1940

The 242 Squadron Hurricane Mk.I flown by Sqn Ldr Douglas Bader, from RAF Duxford in October 1940.

Often overshadowed by the exploits of the iconic Supermarine Spitfire, Hawker’s Hurricane was the mainstay of the RAF’s fighter squadrons during the Battle of Britain (BoB). More numerous than the Spitfire in mid-1940, the type’s creation preceded the ‘Spit’ and when the first Hurricanes were delivered to frontline squadrons from late 1937 onwards, they represented a leap forward in both performance and capability.

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