The Royal Navy’s Last Biplane Fighter

Gladiators at Sea

Adapted for service from aircraft carriers, the Gloster Gladiator saw considerable action with the Royal Navy in 1939-40, as Tom Spencer explains

Sea Gladiator (interim), N2275, shows the dinghy pack under the fuselage and the arrestor hook. With 804 NAS in 1940 it helped bring down two He 111s

During the mid-1930s the Royal Navy’s standard single-seat fleet fighter was the elegant Hawker Nimrod, but it was reaching obsolescence and urgently in need of replacement. To meet this pressing need, the RAF’s Gloster Gladiator was developed for service at sea.

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