Corgi AA34805 RAF Vickers Wellington Mk. VIII Medium Bomber - Squadron Leader Jeaffreson Greswell, No. 172 Squadron, Coastal Command, April 1942 (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
The twin-engine Wellington was the mainstay of Bomber Command until 1942, when the four-engine heavy bombers entered service. The Wellington prototype took to the air for the first time in June 1936 and production models entered service with the Royal Air Force in October 1938. By September 1939 Bomber Command had eight Wellington squadrons, which increased to 21 by the beginning of 1942. It was widely nicknamed the "Wimpey" after the character in the Popeye cartoon strip, J. Wellington Wimpey.
Wellingtons were the first bombers used to attack Germany in September 1939, but like all British bombers of the war they were lightly armed and suffered heavily from attacks by German fighters. In 1940 the Wellington squadrons were switched to night raids. The unique geodetic latticework construction of the Wellington made it particularly robust - able to sustain remarkable amounts of flak damage and yet still keep flying. The last Wellingtons were withdrawn from service over Germany and occupied Europe in 1943 but continued to serve in the Mediterranean theatre and over Burma until the end of the war. The Wellington proved a versatile aircraft and was also employed as a maritime patrol aircraft, a minelayer, and a transport. In all, 11,461 Wellingtons were built during the war, making it the numerous multi-engine aircraft produced by Britain.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a RAF Vickers Wellington Mk. VIII medium bomber assigned to Coastal Command's No. 172 Squadron. Features rotating gun turrets, clear canopies, working bomb doors with authentic bomb load and fully detailed crew. Also includes a working Leigh illumination light. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 14.5 inches
Length: 10.25 inches
Release Date: October 2006
Historical Account: The GR.VIII was a modified Mk.IC bomber, with ASV Mk.II radar installed and in some cases also a Leigh Light. On 3/4th June, 1942, the first attack on a surfaced submarine at night using a Leigh Light was carried out by a Vickers Wellington of No.172 Squadron, RAF Coastal Command, flown by Squadron Leader J.H. Greswell. The target was the Italian Navy Marconi Class submarine Luigi Torelli. When illuminated, the submarine initially remained on the surface and fired recognition flares, believing the aircraft to be friendly. The Wellington then dropped four Mk8 depth charges, damaging the submarine.