Corgi AA34012 RAF Consolidated B-24 Liberator Heavy Bomber - No. 223 Squadron, Bomber Support Unit, RAF Oulton, England, 1944 (1:72 Scale)
"Why should we have a navy at all? There are no enemies for it to fight except apparently the Army Air Force."
- General Carl Spaatz, Commander of the US 8th Army Air Force, after WWII
Life for the B-24 heavy bomber began in 1939, when the Army Air Corps initiated a request for a new bomber designed to exceed the performance of the B-17. Consolidated Aircraft responded quickly with its proposal, labeled Consolidated Model 32 and, on March 30th, 1939, was awarded the contract. One day short of nine months later, on December 29th, 1939, the first flight of the XB-24 bomber prototype took place.
Slightly smaller than the B-17, the turbosupercharger-equipped B-24 flew farther with a bigger bomb load than the much more publicized Boeing aircraft. Of seven service-test YB-24s, six were sent to the Royal Air Force (RAF) under the export designation LB-30A. Because they lacked turbosuperchargers and self-sealing fuel tanks, the RAF found them unsuitable for combat duty over Europe. Instead, they were stripped of their armament and put into service as transports on the Trans-Atlantic Return Ferry Service, which had been established to send air crews to Montreal to take delivery of American aircraft consigned to the British war effort.
Flying for the Army Air Corps as the B-24, and the U.S. Navy as the PB4Y-1, the plane also saw service in the Royal Air Force where it was known simply as the Liberator. There was also a transport version known as the C-87, one of which was Winston Churchill's personal aircraft, carrying him to historic meetings at Moscow and Casablanca, among other locations.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a RAF Consolidated B-24 Liberator heavy bomber that was attached to No. 223 Squadron, Bomber Support Unit, then deployed to RAF Oulton, England, during 1944. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 18.12 inches
Length: 11.25 inches
Release Date: 2008
Historical Account: "Supporting Cast" - In April 1941, No. 223 Squadron moved to Egypt, becoming an Operational Training Unit (OTU, converting aircrews onto the Martin Maryland and later the Martin Baltimore twin engined bombers. After a few months, it returned to the role of an operational light bomber squadron equipped with Baltimores, supporting the British Eighth Army over North Africa. It moved to Malta in July 1943, participating in the Allied invasion of Sicily and the Italian Campaign, being based in Italy from September 1943. It was disbanded on August 12th, 1944, being renumbered No. 30 Squadron, South African Air Force.
It was quickly reformed back in England on August 23rd as a Bomber Support squadron as part of 100 Group of RAF Bomber Command, flying B-24 Liberator and B-17 Flying Fortress four-engined bombers on radio counter measures, helping to disrupt German night defenses by jamming its radar and communications. It was disbanded again on July 29th, 1945.