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Spitfires - Malta Bound by Philip West. (AP) - MilitaryArtCompany.com

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Spitfires - Malta Bound by Philip West. (AP)

Spitfires - Malta Bound by Philip West. (AP)

On the 11th August 1942, Flight Lieutenant Geoffrey Wellum DFC, having just taken off from the deck of HMS Furious, leads his section of gathering Spitfires on the long journey to Malta. They are much-needed reinforcements for the beleaguered island, now in the twenty-sixth month of its siege. To enable each of the 38 Spitfires dispatched from Furious to reach Malta, over three hours flying time away, they carry maximum fuel together with a centre-line over-load tank. Even their ammunition is removed to save weight. Escorting Furious to her aft is the Cruiser HMS Manchester together with Destroyers Brave and Lithe. To their port side is the Ohio tanker laden with fuel during what became an epic voyage. In the distance HMS Eagle succumbs to an Axis torpedo attack. The success of Operation Pedestal was absolutely critical for the survival of Malta, bringing desperately needed fuel, food and ammunition to the Island. Losses were heavy but the courage and determination by all involved prevailed: five of the fourteen merchant ships, including the Ohio, made it through and the island was saved.
Item Code : DHM2310APSpitfires - Malta Bound by Philip West. (AP) - This EditionAdd any two items on this offer to your basket, and the lower priced item will be half price in the checkout! Buy 1 Get 1 Half Price!
Limited edition of 75 Artist Proofs.

Paper size 28 inches x 20 inches (71cm x 51cm) Moon, Harry
Lynn, Vera
Owen, Les
Sprake, Tom
Goodenough, Les
Davenport, Fred
Shute, ted
Wellum, Geoffrey
+ Artist : Philip West
£40 Off!
Supplied with one or more free  art prints!
Now : £250.00

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FREE PRINT : Malta Relief by Tim Fisher.

This complimentary art print worth £40
(Size : 12 inches x 8 inches (31cm x 20cm))
has been specially chosen by Cranston Fine Arts to complement the above edition, and will be sent FREE with your order.

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Other editions of this item : Spitfires - Malta Bound by Philip West.DHM2310
PRINTSigned limited edition of 400 prints. Paper size 28 inches x 20 inches (71cm x 51cm) Wellum, Geoffrey
+ Artist : Philip West
£40 Off!
Supplied with one or more  free art prints!
Now : £195.00VIEW EDITION...
PRINT Signed limited edition of 100 prints, signed by the artist only. Paper size 28 inches x 20 inches (71cm x 51cm)Artist : Philip WestAdd any two items on this offer to your basket, and the lower priced item will be half price in the checkout!£180.00VIEW EDITION...
PRINTLimited edition of 25 Artist Studio Proofs. Paper size 28 inches x 20 inches (71cm x 51cm) Moon, Harry
Lynn, Vera
Owen, Les
Sprake, Tom
Goodenough, Les
Davenport, Fred
Shute, ted
Wellum, Geoffrey
+ Artist : Philip West
£245.00VIEW EDITION...

Signatures on this item

Dame Vera Lynn
Fred DavenportFred Davenport joined aircraft carrier HMS Eagle as Able Rating (supply branch) in July 1941 and saw action in the south Atlantic and Malta convoys ten convoys in all, supplying over 300 much needed aircraft for the defence of Malta. He survived the sinking of HMS Eagle by u-boat number 73 during operation Pedestal in August 1942. He subsequently served in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean theatres of war including the European landings, Greek and Palestine campaigns
Les GoodenoughLes Goodenough enlisted in the Royal Navy in 1941 and joined HMS Eagle in December of that year at Gladstone Dock, Liverpool. HMS Eagle joined Force H at Gibraltar, where they convoyed and flew aircraft to Malta. Together with aircraft carriers Argus, USS Wasp and Furious, a total of 367 planes were flown to Malta. On 11 August 1942 at 13.15 Eagle was hit by four torpedoes, fired from U73 and at 13.21 HMS Eagle sank. One hundred and fifty eight ratings and two officers lost their lives, but 930 were saved. Les helped to save a rating, by passing him a carly raft which got fouled on a bolt on the flight deck, which he cleared, but they both tobogganed across the flight deck and down into the water. Later, Les served in HMS Brissenden and then in a landing party Fustian taking part in the landing at Augusta, Sicily. He left the Royal Navy in 1946, a Class A release.
Les OwenLes Owen joined the Navy on 12th August 1941 as a seaman and his first weeks were spent at HMS Collingwood on a seamanship course. In December 1941 he was drafted to HMS Eagle and in January 1942 sailed to Gibraltar and took on 16 Spitfires which were sent there in crates to be assembled on the jetty and hoisted on the flight deck. After two days out the Spitfires flew off to Malta. This they did about ten times and on 9th August they sailed to meet 16 merchant ships and the largest Naval fleet to be assembled since the First World War. From the second day they were attacked relentlessly by the German and Italian airforce and on 11th August were struck by four torpedoes and the Eagle sank in six minutes. Les jumped about 14 feet into the water, unable to swim, he joined other shipmates who were clinging on to a mess deck table and after a while they were picked up by a rowing boat from the tug Jaunty and transferred to the destroyer HMS Malcombe. After 14 days leave, Les was drafted to Whale Island gunnery school and in January 1943 was drafted to HMS Wren, a sloop of the bird class attached to the second Escort Group under the command of Capt Jonny Walter. Their duties were to protect convoys through the gap in the Atlantic, which could not be covered by aircraft. After a while they joined the North Sea fleet, helping to protect the convoys to Russia, which was a very arduous and frightening task with a great loss of ships and men. During D Day the group was detailed to protect the fleet from u-boats in the English Channel. On leaving the Navy in May 1946 Les went back to his old employment.

Squadron Leader Geoffrey Wellum DFC
Joined the RAF with a Short Service Commission in August 1939. He joined 92 Squadron flying Spitfires in June 1940 at the time of Dunkirk. He flew throughout the Battle of Britain, later completing over 50 fighter sweeps and escorts over northern France and Belgium until August 1941. He then joined 65 Squadron as Flight Commander in March 1942 operating over northern France and flew off aircraft carrier HMS Furious on Operation Pedestal, to Malta. Geoff was a Flight Lieutenant during Operation Pedestal. He returned to the UK as a test pilot for Gloster Aircraft and finished the war as a Pilot Attack Instructor. Geoffrey was credited with three destroyed, four probables and several damaged and was awarded the DFC in July 1941.

Squadron Leader Harry Moon
Flying his Hurricane off the carrier Ark Royal for Malta on June 30th 1941, Harry Moon was fortunate to arrive on the island to join 249 Squadron in a period when the opposition was provided by the Italians. The Hurricane were equal to this task and Moon took part in many combats. However, in December the Lufttwaffe appeared again and losses rose sharply. In February 1942, he was transferred to 126 Squadron when 249 was temporarily disbanded as a result of losses and pending the arrival of Spitfires. In April 1942, he was posted to the Middle East.
Ted ShuteTed Shute manned a Hotchkiss Gun on SS Troilus during the Operation Harpoon convoy to Malta where he arrived on 16th June 1942. He then served as a Coxswain on various RAF Craft including both Inshore Rescue Seaplane Tenders and the Offshore High Speed Rescue Launches. During the Siege of Malta GC the RAF Marine Branch Launches rescued a total of 224 British and Allied Airmen, 38 German Airmen, 24 Italian Airmen and captured one spy. With the Allied advance North through Sicily and Italy the Launches from Malta were also at the landings at Sicily, Salerno and Anzio. Ted Shute returned to the UK and continued on ASR and MCS Launches spending a few months at RAF Calshot in the UK in early 1945 before going to Gibraltar until being demobilised in September 1946.
Tom SprakeTom Sprake joined the Royal Navy as a boy seaman at the age of 15 in October 1936 and served on the South African Station joining HMS Eagle in Hong Kong on 1st July 1939. Eagle was involved on active service in the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, Eastern Med, South Atlantic, North Atlantic and the Western Med, where she was employed in ferrying Spitfires to Malta, making ten trips in all. Over 300 were taken to Malta in this way. His duties on Eagle were Anti-Aircraft Gun Director, his station being on the top of the foremast where he was when the Eagle was sunk by four torpedoes, sinking in six and one half minutes. On returning to the UK he qualified as a Gunnery Instructor serving on Atlantic convoys and at HMS Excellent. He left the RN in October 1968.

The Aircraft :
SpitfireRoyal Air Force fighter aircraft, maximum speed for mark I Supermarine Spitfire, 362mph up to The Seafire 47 with a top speed of 452mph. maximum ceiling for Mk I 34,000feet up to 44,500 for the mark XIV. Maximum range for MK I 575 miles . up to 1475 miles for the Seafire 47. Armament for the various Marks of Spitfire. for MK I, and II . eight fixed .303 browning Machine guns, for MKs V-IX and XVI two 20mm Hispano cannons and four .303 browning machine guns. and on later Marks, six to eight Rockets under the wings or a maximum bomb load of 1,000 lbs. Designed by R J Mitchell, The proto type Spitfire first flew on the 5th March 1936. and entered service with the Royal Air Force in August 1938, with 19 squadron based and RAF Duxford. by the outbreak of World war two, there were twelve squadrons with a total of 187 spitfires, with another 83 in store. Between 1939 and 1945, a large variety of modifications and developments produced a variety of MK,s from I to XVI. The mark II came into service in late 1940, and in March 1941, the Mk,V came into service. To counter the Improvements in fighters of the Luftwaffe especially the FW190, the MK,XII was introduced with its Griffin engine. The Fleet Air Arm used the Mk,I and II and were named Seafires. By the end of production in 1948 a total of 20,351 spitfires had been made and 2408 Seafires. The most produced variant was the Spitfire Mark V, with a total of 6479 spitfires produced. The Royal Air Force kept Spitfires in front line use until April 1954.

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