Hawker Hurricane IIb BH238
Unfortunately we do not have an engine or the entire airframe.
and what we have received is in a very poor condition.
Hawker Hurricane IIb BH238 was originally manufactured by Gloster Aircraft Company at Brockworth in Gloucestershire in early 1942, as part of a batch numbered BH215 to BH264. First delivered to No. 52 Maintenance Unit (MU) at Pangham Moors, Cardiff, it was dismantled ready for packing before transportation to Russia. Leaving the UK on 26 January 1942, it may have travelled to Russia via Arctic convoy PQ9 or PQ11 arriving at Murmansk in February 1942. No information is available relating to its Russian service but the skeletal remains of the aircraft arrived back in the UK and taken to Sandown Airport on the Isle of Wight around 2000. It went on display at the now closed Frontline Aviation Museum on the island before arriving in the workshop of MAPSL where it will undergo restoration before going on display at an unknown destination.
1,884 Hurricane Mk.IIb's were sent or handed over to Russia but before this the Hawker Hurricane was the mainstay aircraft in the Battle of Britain, there being more squadrons of this type than the Spitfire. Its construction of metal, wood and canvas allowed it to take more punishment than the Spitfire and although slower in speed, many pilots preferred to fly this type in combat. After the Battle of Britain a change of policy at the Air Ministry dictated that the Spitfire was to be the main attacking aircraft for the Luftwaffe escort Messerschmitt 109s whilst the Hurricane was to attack the enemy bomber formations.
AIR DEFENCE IN RUSSIA
Mk II Hurricanes played an important air defence role in 1941 when the Soviet Union was under threat from the German Army approaching on a broad front stretching from Leningrad, Moscow, and to the oil fields in the south.
Britain's decision to aid the Soviets meant sending supplies by sea to the far northern ports, and as the convoys would need to sail within range of enemy air attack from the Luftwaffe based in neighbouring Finland, it was decided to deliver a number of Hurricane Mk IIBs, flying with Nos. 81 and 134 Squadrons, to provide protection. Twenty-four were transported on the carrier HMS Argus arriving just off Murmansk 28 August 1941, and another 15 crated aircraft on board merchant vessels. In addition to their convoy protection duties, the aircraft also acted as escorts to Russian bombers.
Enemy attention to the area declined in October, at which point the RAF pilots trained their Soviet counterparts to operate the Hurricanes themselves and, by the end of the year, the RAF's role had ended, but the aircraft remained behind and were just the first of thousands of Allied aircraft that would be accepted by the Soviet Union.