Bristol Beaufort Mk I
Bristol Beaufort Mk I OA-X N1016 42 Squadron, Coastal Command.
Flying Officer K Campbell Victoria Cross, April 1941.
Scale 1:144 Wingspan 4.84" (123 mm)
Base size 4.84" (123 mm) square (No. 3)
Weight not including base 4 ozs (115 grams)
Total number of models produced 313
In the early part of WW2 the Bristol Beauforts and Blenheims (from which
the Beaufort was developed) bore the brunt of the early losses in attacks
against enemy shipping. The Beauforts in fact suffered the highest casualty
rate of any type of aircraft during WW2. The aircraft featured was on
April 6th 1941 piloted by Flying Officer K Campbell in an attack on the
Gneiseneau in Brest harbour.
The Air Ministry account of the part played by Coastal Command in the
battle of the seas 1939-1942 and published at the time states “..
Six were given the task, three became bogged down while trying to take
off. The fourth failed to find Brest in the haze.. The fifth went into
attack a few minutes too late.” This aircraft pressed home
its attack through continuous streams of fire but found a bank of haze
completely hiding the Battie Cruiser.
“The sixth and last Beaufort had attacked a few minutes before..
. The Beaufort came in very low and was at once under the fire of some
270 anti-aircraft guns..... the barrage of the guns of the warship itself
and from those of the three fiak ships.” The torpedo attack
was successfully made and the Gneisenau badly damaged. It is believed
that the Beaufort was subsequently shot down by 20mm cannon fire from
the mole protecting the warship. All of the crew “A graduate
from Cambridge a Canadian from Toronto, a farmer from Somerset and a chauffeur
from North London" were killed. Frying Officer Campbell was
posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross.
The Beaufort Mk I normally carried a Mk XII 18" torpedo and was armed
with a single Vickers gun in the turret, a forward-firing Browning in
the port wing and a backward firing Browning in a blister turret under
the navigator's position in the nose.