Military Factory
Military Factory

WW2 British Military Aircraft

Authored By Staff Writer | Last Updated: 3/24/2014

Prior to the American involvement in World War 2, British and Commonwealth air power stood alone against the teeth of the Axis war machine.

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There are a total of 106 WW2 British Military Aircraft in the Military Factory. Entries are listed below in alphanumeric order. Flag images indicative of country of origin.




1942
Airspeed Horsa
Aircraft such as the Airspeed AS.51 "Horsa" rarely receive their due in the grand scope of World War 2 - a conflict littered ...
Thumbnail picture of the Airspeed Horsa

1937
Airspeed Oxford
The Airspeed Oxford was a critical component of the British and Commonwealth forces aerial training program during World War ...
Thumbnail picture of the Airspeed Oxford

1941
Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle
The Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle became one of those aircraft designs that evolved into a role not initially envisioned. The...
Thumbnail picture of the Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle

1936
Armstrong Whitworth Ensign
The impressive Armstrong Whitworth Ensign AW.27 series was made originally designed to a 1934 British government requirement ...
Thumbnail picture of the Armstrong Whitworth Ensign

1924
Armstrong Whitworth Siskin
The Armstrong Whitworth Siskin (a siskin being a smallish yellow-tinged finch) was the primary air mount of many-a-Royal Air ...
Thumbnail picture of the Armstrong Whitworth Siskin

1937
Armstrong Whitworth Whitley
Continuing in the tradition of ugly yet robust and reliable heavy bombers, the British Armstrong Whitworth Whitley was the he...
Thumbnail picture of the Armstrong Whitworth Whitley

1933
Avro 621 Tutor
The Avro 621 Tutor was a primary component of RAF and RN pilot training in the interwar years. Developed from the World War 1...
Thumbnail picture of the Avro 621 Tutor

1936
Avro Anson
The Avro Anson was a militarized version of the commercial passenger transport Avro 652. The Anson itself was produced to ful...
Thumbnail picture of the Avro Anson

1942
Avro Lancaster
The Avro Lancaster went on to become the most important British heavy bomber or World War 2. Interestingly, its success was b...
Thumbnail picture of the Avro Lancaster

1940
Avro Manchester
The Avro Manchester was a semi-successful attempt by the Avro firm to fulfill Air Ministry Specification P.13/36. The specifi...
Thumbnail picture of the Avro Manchester

1941
Beechcraft C-45 (Expeditor)
The Beechcraft C-45 was based on the Beech Aircraft Corporation's civilian-minded Model 18 "Twin Beech" series. First flight ...
Thumbnail picture of the Beechcraft C-45 (Expeditor)

1941
Bell P-39 Airacobra
The Bell P-39 Airacobra is yet another in the long line aircraft studies stemming from World War 2 in the "what-might-have be...
Thumbnail picture of the Bell P-39 Airacobra

1942
Bell P-59 Airacomet
The Bell-produced P-59 Airacomet series is one of those aircraft that becomes more of a study in American jet pioneering than...
Thumbnail picture of the Bell P-59 Airacomet

1943
Bell P-63 Kingcobra
At its core, the Bell P-63 Kingcobra proved a modest improvement over the relative failure that was the P-39 Airacobra. Thoug...
Thumbnail picture of the Bell P-63 Kingcobra

1934
Blackburn Baffin
The Blackburn Baffin was nothing more than a Pegasus-engined evolution of the Blackburn Ripon bomber of the mid-1920s. Both t...
Thumbnail picture of the Blackburn Baffin

1929
Blackburn Ripon
The Blackburn concern was founded in 1914 by aviation engineer Robert Blackburn as the "Blackburn Aeroplane & Motor Company" ...
Thumbnail picture of the Blackburn Ripon

1939
Boeing 314 Clipper (C-98)
The Boeing Model 314 "Clipper" was a flying boat developed by Boeing Aircraft Company to fulfill a Pan American requirement f...
Thumbnail picture of the Boeing 314 Clipper (C-98)

1937
Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress
Though the Consolidated B-24 Liberator was built in greater numbers, the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress is often regarded as the...
Thumbnail picture of the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress

1943
Boeing B-29 Superfortress
B-29 Superfortress status is often associated with the atomic bombs dropped on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki ...
Thumbnail picture of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress

1937
Boulton Paul Defiant
The inter-war years saw a vast shift to more modern and potent aircraft platforms. The Boulton Paul Defiant followed as only ...
Thumbnail picture of the Boulton Paul Defiant

1937
Brewster F2A Buffalo
The stubby F2A Buffalo series became the United States Navy's first operational aircraft of monoplane design. Despite this ho...
Thumbnail picture of the Brewster F2A Buffalo

1941
Brewster SB2A Buccaneer
The Brewster Aeronautical Corporation managed to sell the United States Navy (USN) its proposed aircraft design for a new sco...
Thumbnail picture of the Brewster SB2A Buccaneer

1939
Bristol Beaufighter
Serving until the 1960s with the Royal Air Force, the Bristol Beaufighter (or simply "Beau") became a national hero through h...
Thumbnail picture of the Bristol Beaufighter

1940
Bristol Beaufort
The Bristol Beaufort enjoyed a strong run between the war years of 1940-1943 as the primary British torpedo bomber in service...
Thumbnail picture of the Bristol Beaufort

1935
Bristol Blenheim
The Bristol Blenheim billed as a bomber though when it was officially installed into operational active service, the aircraft...
Thumbnail picture of the Bristol Blenheim

1939
CAC Wirraway
The CAC Wirraway ("Challenge" in the Woiwurrung native tongue) became one of Australia's primary trainer aircraft from 1939 o...
Thumbnail picture of the CAC Wirraway

1936
CANT Z.506 Airone (Heron)
Cantieri Riuniti dell'Adriatico ("CANT") was responsible for the excellent Italian floatplane design that was the CANT Z.506 ...
Thumbnail picture of the CANT Z.506 Airone (Heron)

1941
Consolidated B-24 Liberator
The Consolidated B-24 Liberator became a major player for Allied forces during World War 2. Its exploits ranged the world ove...
Thumbnail picture of the Consolidated B-24 Liberator

1940
Consolidated PB2Y Coronado
By the middle of the 1930's America was no longer blind to the real possibility that the war would sooner or later be waged a...
Thumbnail picture of the Consolidated PB2Y Coronado

1936
Consolidated PBY Catalina
Maritime aircraft play an understated role, especially in that of war time. Fly boats came to pass, first in peace-time devel...
Thumbnail picture of the Consolidated PBY Catalina

1938
Curtiss P-36 Hawk (Hawk 75 / Mohawk)
The Curtiss P-36 Hawk aircraft saw considerable operational service in the years leading up to, and during, World War 2. Its ...
Thumbnail picture of the Curtiss P-36 Hawk (Hawk 75 / Mohawk)

1941
Curtiss P-40 Warhawk
The Curtiss P-40 "Warhawk" series of fighter aircraft was a further development of the Curtiss P-36 "Hawk" line (detailed els...
Thumbnail picture of the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk

1943
Curtiss SB2C Helldiver
The Curtiss SB2C Helldiver was a rather unassuming dive bomber / reconnaissance aircraft serving throughout World War 2 begin...
Thumbnail picture of the Curtiss SB2C Helldiver

1938
Curtiss SBC Helldiver
In 1932, the United States Navy contracted the Curtiss-Wright Corporation to produce a modern, two-seat fighter design for us...
Thumbnail picture of the Curtiss SBC Helldiver

1942
Curtiss SO3C Seamew
The Curtiss SO3C "Seamew" (Curtiss Model 82) was an oft-forgotten navy reconnaissance/scout/patrol floatplane produced in qua...
Thumbnail picture of the Curtiss SO3C Seamew

1932
de Havilland DH.82 Tiger Moth
The famous de Havilland DH.82 "Tiger Moth" biplane was a dedicated military-minded basic trainer derived from the preceding D...
Thumbnail picture of the de Havilland DH.82 Tiger Moth

1942
de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito
Discussions of war-winning World War 2 aircraft regularly seem to leave out one of the most famous and successful of the conf...
Thumbnail picture of the de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito

1937
Dornier Do 17 (Flying Pencil)
The Dornier Do 17 was a medium-class bomber fielded primarily by the German Luftwaffe in the years leading up to World War 2....
Thumbnail picture of the Dornier Do 17 (Flying Pencil)

1941
Douglas A-20 Havoc / Boston
The Douglas A-20 Havoc served Allied forces through most of World War 2, fighting for British, American and Soviet forces. Th...
Thumbnail picture of the Douglas A-20 Havoc / Boston

1944
Douglas A-26 / B-26 Invader
The Douglas A-26 Invader was a distinguished twin-engine light bomber whose origins were well-placed in the Second World War....
Thumbnail picture of the Douglas A-26 / B-26 Invader

1940
Douglas C-47 Skytrain / Dakota
The C-47 Skytrain was a product of the Douglas Aircraft Company and is regarded as the best transport of World War 2. Interes...
Thumbnail picture of the Douglas C-47 Skytrain / Dakota

1934
Douglas DC-2
Before the DC-3 became a marketing success for the Douglas Aircraft Company - produced in some 16,000 total examples - the co...
Thumbnail picture of the Douglas DC-2

1938
Douglas SBD Dauntless
The Douglas DBS Dauntless dive bomber was a key cog in the America Navy war effort throughout the Pacific during World War 2....
Thumbnail picture of the Douglas SBD Dauntless

1937
Fairey Battle
The Fairey Battle was a prewar British light bomber design that proved a step-forward for the nation when it was designed dur...
Thumbnail picture of the Fairey Battle

1943
Fairey Firefly
The Fairey Firefly was a hugely successful, two-seat, carrierborne fighter aircraft serving with the Royal Fleet Air Arm thro...
Thumbnail picture of the Fairey Firefly

1940
Fairey Fulmar
The Fairey Fulmar became the British Fleet Air Arm's first dedicated monoplane fighter when it was introduced in 1940. The ty...
Thumbnail picture of the Fairey Fulmar

1945
Fairey Spearfish
Fairey Aviation, founded as early as 1915, had been designing, developing and building warplanes since World War 1 (1914-1918...
Thumbnail picture of the Fairey Spearfish

1936
Fairey Swordfish
The Fairey Swordfish was one of the unsung heroes of the Second World War. With Britain seemingly fighting the world war all ...
Thumbnail picture of the Fairey Swordfish

1937
Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Stork)
The seemingly fragile Fieseler Fi 156 Storch(or "Stork") does not seem to have a home in a global conflict as World War 2 was...
Thumbnail picture of the Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Stork)

1938
Focke-Wulf Fw 200 (Condor)
The German Fw 200 Condor was initially a trans-Atlantic passenger and cargo (mail) aircraft developed by Focke-Wulf and legen...
Thumbnail picture of the Focke-Wulf Fw 200 (Condor)

1944
Gloster / Armstrong Whitworth Meteor
The Gloster Meteor became Britain's first operational jet-powered fighter aircraft. It reached operational status in the latt...
Thumbnail picture of the Gloster / Armstrong Whitworth Meteor

1935
Gloster Gauntlet
Gloster Gauntlet origins lay in a Gloster design appearing in the late 1920's for the Royal Air Force and served throughout t...
Thumbnail picture of the Gloster Gauntlet

1937
Gloster Gladiator
The Gloster Gladiator was a product of the Gloster Aircraft Company and a design of one Henry Phillip Folland. Achieving firs...
Thumbnail picture of the Gloster Gladiator

1940
Grumman F4F Wildcat
The Grumman F4F Wildcat was the unsung hero of the Allied Pacific Theater campaign in the early years of World War 2. Often o...
Thumbnail picture of the Grumman F4F Wildcat

1943
Grumman F6F Hellcat
The F6F Hellcat was the successor to - and a logical evolution of - the capable F4F Wildcat series of carrier-borne aircraft ...
Thumbnail picture of the Grumman F6F Hellcat

1937
Grumman Goose (G-21)
While most every aircraft venture usually began with a military requirement or private venture undertaken by a manufacturer f...
Thumbnail picture of the Grumman Goose (G-21)

1942
Grumman TBF Avenger
Destined never to win beauty contests, the Grumman TBF Avenger series of aircraft would go down as one of the most potent tor...
Thumbnail picture of the Grumman TBF Avenger

1940
Handley Page Halifax
While the Lancaster Heavy Bomber will always be more identifiable in terms of the British night bombing campaigns of World Wa...
Thumbnail picture of the Handley Page Halifax

1931
Hawker Fury (I & II)
The Hawker Fury was the mainstay of Britain air defense throughout the 1930's until being replaced by the Gloster Gladiators....
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Fury (I & II)

1937
Hawker Hurricane
The Hawker Hurricane was the culmination of a series of capable metal biplane fighters evolved by the Hawker concern througho...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Hurricane

1945
Hawker Sea Fury / Fury
The Hawker Sea Fury was developed out Hawker's Typhoon and Tempest aircraft designs utilized by Britain during World War 2. T...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Sea Fury / Fury

1941
Hawker Sea Hurricane
When the need arose for British shipping to be protected from air attack during World War 2, the land-based Hawker Hurricane ...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Sea Hurricane

1944
Hawker Tempest
The Hawker Tempest originally appeared as an improved Hawker Typhoon, the war-winning aircraft that effectively failed in its...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Tempest

1939
Hawker Tornado
The Hawker Tornado was born of the same initiative that brought forth the Hawker Typhoon of World War 2. The initiative itsel...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Tornado

1941
Hawker Typhoon
The Hawker Typhoon (affectionate known as the "Tiffie") was initially intended as a dedicated interceptor and set to succeed ...
Thumbnail picture of the Hawker Typhoon

1939
Heinkel He 115
By all accounts, the He 115 series of floatplane aircraft was regarded as the finest such aircraft in all of World War 2. She...
Thumbnail picture of the Heinkel He 115

1933
Heinkel He 70 (Blitz)
The Heinkel 70 (Blitz) was originally born out of a need for a speedy aeroplane charged with "fast" mail delivery for the Deu...
Thumbnail picture of the Heinkel He 70 (Blitz)

1943
Junkers Ju 188 Rache (Avenger)
When the new Junkers Ju 288 - a design meant to replace the Junkers Ju 88 series of bombers - ran into developmental issues w...
Thumbnail picture of the Junkers Ju 188 Rache (Avenger)

1932
Thumbnail picture of the Junkers Ju 52

1937
Junkers Ju 87 (Stuka)
Before the Allies would gain air superiority over the skies of France and Germany, the Junkers Ju 87 "Stuka" dive bomber woul...
Thumbnail picture of the Junkers Ju 87 (Stuka)

1939
Lockheed P-38 Lightning
The Lockheed P-38 Lightning, nicknamed the "Fork-Tailed Devil" - Der Gabelschwanz Teufel - by the Germans, was the brainchild...
Thumbnail picture of the Lockheed P-38 Lightning

1941
Martin B-26 Marauder
The Martin B-26 Marauder overcame a rocky start to become one of the finest medium bombers of World War 2. The aircraft was d...
Thumbnail picture of the Martin B-26 Marauder

1941
Martin Baltimore
The Martin Baltimore (Model 187) was a light-/medium-class bomber whose design developed from the Martin Maryland series airc...
Thumbnail picture of the Martin Baltimore

1940
Martin Maryland (A-22)
The Martin-produced Maryland series was classified as a light bomber and saw action as a photographic reconnaissance plane th...
Thumbnail picture of the Martin Maryland (A-22)

1941
Martin PBM-3 / PBM-5 Mariner
The Martin PBM-3 / PBM-5 Mariner was a World War 2-era flying boat used in the maritime reconnaissance role. Martin designed ...
Thumbnail picture of the Martin PBM-3 / PBM-5 Mariner

1934
Messerschmitt Bf 108 Taifun (Typhoon)
The high performance, record-setting Messerschmitt Bf 108 "Taifun" ("Typhoon") was born as a racing aircraft under the protot...
Thumbnail picture of the Messerschmitt  Bf 108 Taifun (Typhoon)

1943
North American A-36 Apache (Invader)
The A-36 Apache was a United States Army version of the successful North American P-51 Mustang piston-engine fighter. The ori...
Thumbnail picture of the North American A-36 Apache (Invader)

1940
North American B-25 Mitchell
The North American B-25 Mitchell series of medium bombers went on to become one of the classic American aircraft designs to e...
Thumbnail picture of the North American B-25 Mitchell

1942
North American P-51 / F-51 Mustang
The North American P-51 Mustang proved an invaluable addition to the Allied cause in the latter half of World War 2. The syst...
Thumbnail picture of the North American P-51 / F-51 Mustang

1936
North American T-6 Texan
The T-6 Texan was and is a world famous single-engine aircraft primarily known for its use as a trainer. A product of the Nor...
Thumbnail picture of the North American T-6 Texan

1942
Republic P-47 / F-47 Thunderbolt
While much of the romance of World War 2 dogfighting often heads in the direction of the USAAF's North American P-51 Mustang ...
Thumbnail picture of the Republic P-47 / F-47 Thunderbolt

1936
Saunders-Roe A.27 London
The Saro London borrowed much from the British flying boat designs peppering the 1920s and, in many ways, her retirement was ...
Thumbnail picture of the Saunders-Roe A.27 London

1939
Saunders-Roe A.36 Lerwick
Along with the Short Brothers and Supermarine, Saunders-Roe (SARO) was a principle flying boat developer for the United Kingd...
Thumbnail picture of the Saunders-Roe A.36 Lerwick

1937
Short S25 Sunderland
The Short Sunderland was the premiere flying boat of British military aviators during World War 2. Oft regarded as one of the...
Thumbnail picture of the Short S25 Sunderland

1941
Short Stirling
The Short Sterling formed the backbone of British RAF heavy bomber groups beginning in January of 1941 and forged an operatio...
Thumbnail picture of the Short Stirling

1942
Thumbnail picture of the Sikorsky R-4

1933
Thumbnail picture of the Stinson Reliant

1942
Supermarine Seafire
When the land-based Hawker Hurricane was successfully converted into the carrier-based "Sea Hurricane", thought was given to ...
Thumbnail picture of the Supermarine Seafire

1938
Supermarine Spitfire
The Supermarine Spitfire the legendary British fighter aircraft developed prior to World War 2. The type earned its status as...
Thumbnail picture of the Supermarine Spitfire

1937
Supermarine Stranraer
The Supermarine Stranraer was the final evolution of the Supermarine Southampton which debuted in March of 1925. The original...
Thumbnail picture of the Supermarine Stranraer

1938
Vickers Wellington
The Vickers-produced Wellington medium-class bomber was a principle bomber of the Royal Air Force at the start of the Second ...
Thumbnail picture of the Vickers Wellington

1942
Vought F4U Corsair
One of the greatest fighter aircraft of all time, the American Vought F4U "Corsair" became the stuff of legend in its time al...
Thumbnail picture of the Vought F4U Corsair

1940
Vought OS2U Kingfisher
The OS2U Kingfisher was a product of the Vought aircraft firm, appearing initially as the VS.310 design to which the United S...
Thumbnail picture of the Vought OS2U Kingfisher

1937
Vought SB2U Vindicator
The Vought SB2U "Vindicator" became the first monoplane dive bomber adopted by the United States Navy when it was first taken...
Thumbnail picture of the Vought SB2U Vindicator

1941
Vultee A-35 Vengeance
The A-35 Vengeance was a dive bomber produced by the Vultee Aircraft Company and resulted in over a thousand examples being u...
Thumbnail picture of the Vultee A-35 Vengeance

1942
Waco CG-4 (Hadrian)
A new aerial war tactic was developed in World War 2 called "vertical envelopment" in which paratroopers dropped behind enem...
Thumbnail picture of the Waco CG-4 (Hadrian)

1944
Westland Welkin
With its origins in the Westland Whirlwind, the Westland Welkin (meaning "Vault of Heaven") was a twin-engined fighter design...
Thumbnail picture of the Westland Welkin

1940
Westland Whirlwind
The Westland Whirlwind became a capable twin-engined, heavy fighter design that might have seen even better service numbers w...
Thumbnail picture of the Westland Whirlwind