Corgi AA38102 Royal Flying Corps Sopwith Camel Fighter - William George Barker, No. 28 Squadron, October 1918 (1:48 Scale)
"When my brother and I built the first man-carrying flying machine we thought that we were introducing into the world an invention which would make further wars practically impossible."
- Orville Wright, 1917
The Sopwith Camel Scout is a British First World War single-seat fighter aircraft that was famous for its maneuverability. Intended as a replacement for the Sopwith Pup, the Camel prototype first flew in December 1916, powered by a 110 hp Clerget 9Z. Known as the "Big Pup" early on in its development, the aircraft was armed with two .303 in (7.7 mm) Vickers machine guns mounted in the cowl, firing forward through the propeller disc. A fairing surrounding the gun installation created a hump that led to the name Camel. The top wing was flat - but the bottom wing had dihedral, so that the gap between the wings was less at the tips than at the roots.
The type entered squadron service in June 1917 with No. 4 Squadron of the Royal Naval Air Service, near Dunkirk. The following month, it became operational with No. 70 Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps. By February 1918, 13 squadrons were fully equipped with the Camel. Approximately 5,500 were ultimately produced.
Pictured here is a 1:48 scale replica of a Sopwith Camel fighter piloted by William George Barker of No. 28 Squadron. Sold Out!
Length: 5.25 inches
Wingspan: 6.75 inches
Release Date: January 2009
Historical Account: "Victoria Cross" - William George Barker VC, DSO & Bar, MC & Two Bars (November 3rd, 1894 – March 12th, 1930) was a Canadian First World War fighter ace and Victoria Cross recipient.
He was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions on Sunday, October 27th, 1918. While delivering his Snipe to an aircraft depot, he crossed enemy lines at 21,000 feet above the Forêt de Mormal. He attacked an enemy two-seater which broke up, its crew escaping by parachute; aircraft of FAA 227-Lt Wattenburg KIA . By his own admission, he was careless and was bounced by a formation of Fokker D.VIIs of Jagdgruppe 12 consisting of Jasta 24 and Jasta 44. In a descending battle against 15 or more enemy machines, Barker was wounded three times in the legs, then his left elbow was blown away, yet he managed to control his Snipe and shoot down or drive down three more enemy aircraft (Two German pilot casualties were Lt. Hinky of Jasta 44 WIA; and Vfw Schymik of Jasta 24 KIA). The dogfight took place immediately above the lines of the Canadian Corps. Severely wounded and bleeding profusely, his life was saved by the men of an RAF Kite Balloon Section, who transported him to a field dressing station.
At the hospital in Rouen, France, Barker clung to life until mid-January 1919, and then was transported back to England. He was not fit enough to walk the necessary few paces for the investiture at Buckingham Palace until March 1st, 1919.
He is officially credited with one captured, two (and seven shared) balloons destroyed, 33 (and two shared) aircraft destroyed, and five aircraft "out of control;" the highest "destroyed" ratio for any RAF, RFC or RNAS pilot during the conflict. The Overseas Military Forces of Canada recognized Barker as "holding the record for fighting decorations" awarded in the First World War.