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Ark Royal 1914 

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HMS Ark Royal. The Royal Navy's first purpose built aircraft carrier. The Royal Navy allocated £81,000 for the acquisition and conversion of a merchant ship. Mercantile hull lying on the stocks at Blyth was purchased, possibly a hull of a general or grain carrier. The ship was built with a large aeroplane hold, 150ft x 45 x15, and workshops were also included. A sliding hatchway gave access to the flight deck, the aircraft were lifted by two 3 ton steam powered cranes. HMS Ark Royal was launched 5th September 1914 and completed in December 1914. The first aircraft operated were Sopwith seaplanes type 807, a short 135, two Wright Pushers and two Sopwith Tabloid land planes. 

After commissioning, HMS Ark Royal sailed to the Dardanelles on 1st February 1915, her aircraft were used for reconnaissance of the bombardment by the Royal Navy of the Turkish forts and covered the Gallipoli landings from the 25th April. She was withdrawn to Imbros at the end of May to become the depot ship for land based aircraft. In January 1918 two of her Sopwith ABC planes attempted to bomb the Goeben. After World War One she operated in the Black Sea transporting aircraft to Batumi. Also used in the support of the Sumali land campaign against the Mad Mullah, serving in the sea of Mamura and Black Sea. During 1920 she took part in the withdrawal of White Russian forces from Crimea. From November 1920 HMS Ark Royal went into reserve at Rosyth being refitted in this time. Recommissioned September 1922 to take aircraft out to the Mediterranean during Chanak crisis. In April 1923 she was refitted at Malta, December 1944 she was renamed HMS Pegasus as the planned new aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal was laid down. Used in various capacities during World War Two and eventually sold in December 1946, she was converted to a merchant ship Anita I but conversion was never completed and she was finally broken up in 1949.

Armament: four 12 pdr quick firers, two machine guns, two land planes, five float planes.  Complement: 180.   Speed: 11 knots.

HMS Ark Royal at Devonport

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HMS Ark Royal

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HMS Ark Royal, c.1915.

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HMS Ark Royal - Sopwith Schneider, c.1915.

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Wrecked Turkish seaplane on board HMS Ark Royal, c.1915.

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HMS Ark Royal (as Pegasus), July 1935.

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HMS Ark Royal (as Pegasus), July 1935.

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HMS Ark Royal (as Pegasus), c.1935.

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HMS Ark Royal.

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AVIATION PRINTS

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 With 39 confirmed victories to his credit, Major John Gilmour is also recognised as the joint highest scoring pilot on the Martinsyde G.100 Elephant, an unusual score given the poor performance of this aircraft in one-on-one combat. He was awarded the DSO, MC and 2 Bars during the course of his flying career and in 1917 was posted to 65 Squadron as Flight Commander flying Sopwith Camels. On 1st July 1918, he downed three Fokker D.VIIs, a Pfalz and an Albatros D.V in the space of just 45 minutes.  In 1918 he was promoted to the rank of major and posted to command 28 Squadron in Italy, staying with the trusty Camel, but he did not add further to his score, although his final un-confirmed total may have been as high as 44. He is depicted here claiming his second kill on 24th September 1916 when he destroyed a Fokker E.1 whilst flying Elephant No 7284.

Major John Gilmour by Ivan Berryman. (GL)
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 A de Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth over Hatfield Aerodrome, early in 1939.  Hatfield was the home of the de Havilland Aircraft Company and No.1 Elementary Flying Training School.

First Solo by John Young. (Y)
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 Shown in the colours of Jasta Boelke and carrying Baumers personal red / white /  black flash on the fuselage, Fokker DR.1 204/17 was the aircraft in which he scored many of his 43 victories. Although the Sopwith Triplane had been withdrawn from service, German pilots frequently found their DR.1s being mistakenly attacked by their own flak batteries and, sometimes, by other pilots. For this reason, in march 1918, Baumers aircraft bore additional crosses on the centre of the tailplane and on the lower wings to aid identification. For some reason, his rudder displayed what appeared to be an incomplete border to the national marking. Nicknamed Der Eiserne Adler – The Iron Eagle – Paul Baumer survived the war, but died in a flying accident near Copenhagen whilst testing the Rohrbach Rofix fighter.  He is shown in action having just downed an RE.8 while, above him, Leutnant Otto Lofflers DR.1 190/17 banks into the sun to begin another attack.

Leutnant Paul Baumer by Ivan Berryman.
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 A swordfish from HMS Warspite on patrol off the coast of Egypt, near the port of Alexandria.

Out of Alex by David Pentland.
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 Two Bristol Brigand B1s of 8 Squadron RAF based at Khormaksar are depicted off the Aden Peninsular in 1950.  Nearest aircraft is VS814 (L), flown by Sgt Pilot Vic Campden.

8 Sqn Bristol Brigands by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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Search Party Reaction by David Rowlands. (Y)
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Reformed in November 2000, 99 Squadron, based at Brize Norton, is now the operator of the RAF's new heavy transport, the Boeing C-17 Globemaster III, an example of which is shown on the newly extended concrete runway at Camp Bastion in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.  The C-17s have become the mainstay of the RAF's supply train, shuttling between the UK and Afghanistan, as well as providing specialist aeromedical evacuation and humanitarian relief duties.

Globemaster III by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 A BAE Viscount on final approach to Birmingham Airport, c.1962.

Elmdon Evening by Mark Postlethwaite. (AP)
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NAVAL PRINTS

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On 29th and 30th April 1944, while surfaced close to jagged reefs, and Japanese shore guns, the USS Tang rescued 22 downed flyers from Task Force 58s strikes against enemy positions on the islands - This was the largest rescue of airmen by a submarine in the war.  USS Tang (SS-306) would later be sunk by its own torpedo off Formosa, on the 24th of October 1944.

USS Tang, The Life Guard of Truk Atoll by Robert Barbour (AP)
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 The Flower Class corvette HMS Sunflower at sea in 1942. One of thirty ordered on 31st August 1939, K41 was built by Smiths Dockyard in just 9 months and 6 days, completed on 25th January 1941.

HMS Sunflower by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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Swordfish of 825 Sqn led by Lt-Cdr Esmonde begin their heroic attack on the battlescruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen as they make their way up the English Channel from Brest during Operation Cerberus on 12th February 1942.  Although all the aircraft were lost and no significant damage was done to the German fleet, all the pilots were decorated for their bravery and Lt-Cdr Esmonde received the first Fleet Air Arm VC to be awarded, albeit posthumously.  The painting depicts the first wave of Swordfish attacking the Scharnhorst with Gneisenau taking avoiding action in the distance.  A German torpedo boat has turned to confront the attacking aircraft.

Attack on the Scharnhorst by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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 HMS Ajax was built as a light cruiser at Barrow and launched in 1935. She saw service initially in the American and West Indies theatre before temporary commission in the Mediterranean. Then followed her never to be forgotten role in the Battle of the River Plate ending in the scuttling of the Graf Spey. She is seen here entering Portsmouth Harbour with the Isle of White in the background.

HMS Ajax by Ivan Berryman.
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 Sunset over Aboukir Bay on 1st August 1798 as ships of the Royal Navy, led by Nelson, conduct their ruthless destruction of the anchored French fleet. Ships shown from left to right. HMS Orion, Spartiate, Aquilon, Peuple Souvrain, HMS Defence, HMS Minotaur and HMS Swiftsure.

Battle of the Nile by Ivan Berryman. (YB)
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 The second of the Royal Navy's Vanguard Class SSBNs, HMS Victorious is shown in the Gareloch, with the naval base of Faslane in the background.

HMS Victorious Departing Faslane by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 The first submarine to carry the name, HMS Vengeance (S31) is the fourth and last of the Vanguard class, entering service with the Royal Navy on 27th November 1999.  This nuclear-powered vessel has 16 tubes for launching the Trident D5 missile and four tubes in her bow, firing Spearfish Torpedoes.

HMS Vengeance by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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B103.  HMS Royal Sovereign and HMS Warspite departing Malta by Ivan Berryman.

HMS Royal Sovereign and HMS Warspite departing Malta by Ivan Berryman
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MILITARY PRINTS

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Having taken terrible punishment from the guns of the allied French and Spanish fleet as she broke through the line, HMS Victory found herself engaged by the French Redoutable, a bitter battle that saw the two ships locked together, pouring shot into one another with terrifying ferocity and which left the British Admiral, Lord Horatio Nelson fatally wounded. In the background, HMS Neptune is emerging through the gunsmoke and is about to pass the wreck of the French flagship Bucentaure which Victory so spectacularly routed as she passed through the allied line. HMS Temeraire, which followed Victory through, and which was also to become embroiled on the Redoutables fight, is obscured by the smoke beyond the British flagship.

The Battle of Trafalgar, 1.00pm by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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 1st Battalion in action at Escaut Canal, Belgium, May 1940. The last Highland Regiment to wear a kilt in battle, attacking the Germans at the River Escaut.  From the Diary of Captain R. Leah, 1st Battalion, Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders : Tuesday 21st May : Bn left Ere about 2 a.m. to march back. Fortunately Coy Cmdr. were required for some sort of recce and we went in C.O.s car.  Arrived Taintignies 3 a.m. and self went out again with Wilkie in C.O.s car to look for for C Coy which had gone astray, and to see Q.M. about Bn rations in Wez-Velvain.  Could not find either.  Met the Battalion arriving from Ere when I left the village at 3 a.m.  Got back myself at 4 a.m. found empty house which I entered by window and slept well for 5 hours. Officers mess going in house beside M.T. park, and had good breakfast.  Fairly quiet morning and orders to move this afternoon to Bn assembly position S of Wez-Velvain.  Thence we were directed to Merlin and prepared for counter-attack to drive enemy off Western side of Escaut.

The Charge of the 1st Battalion Queens Own Cameron Highlanders by David Rowlands (AP)
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<b>Ex-display prints in near perfect condition. </b>

The Landau Gate at Wissembourg is Taken by Assault, 4th August 1870 by Carl Rochling. (Y)
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DHM504.  The Cameron Highlanders at Waterloo by Brian Palmer.

The Cameron Highlanders at Waterloo by Brian Palmer.
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 Captain F Macbeans Company, 1st Battalion Royal Artillery in action on the right of the British line, firing its 12 pounder guns against French Cavalry and Infantry. By permission of David Rowlands.  Battle of Minden  1st August 1759.  Major battle of the Seven years war.  After the French victory in April at Bergen, The French Army 60,000 strong under the command of Duc Louis de Contades marched northwards towards Hanover.   To block this French Advance the Prussian Army under Field Marshall The Duke of Brunswick decided to hold the line at Minden.  The Duke of Brunswick could only raise a force of 45,000 men including a British Contingent under Lord George Sackville of 6 regiments, a detachment of cavalry and some artillery.   The French opened the battle attacking,  the British Infantry regiments probably due to a misunderstanding, advanced and they were followed by the Hanoverian Infantry.  They attacked the French cavalry.  The Infantry advanced only stopping to let off a volleys of fire.  This unconventional use of Infantry against cavalry, the French force confused and suffering losses broke.  The victory was in Ferdinands grasp, he ordered his cavalry forward but the British general Sackville refused to send his cavalry after the French. For this action he was later court-martialled by King George II and cashiered from the army.  The French were able to withdraw in order, but their losses had been 7,000 men and 43 artillery guns.   The British and Hanoverian losses were less than 3,000 with 1500 of these casualties inflicted on the British Infantry.  This battle ended all French hopes of capturing Hanover.  British Regiments at Minden. 12th of Foot. (Suffolk Regiment)  20th Foot. (Lancashire Fusiliers ) 23rd of Foot. (Welch Fusiliers),  25th of Foot, (Kings own Scottish Borderers), 37th of Foot. (Royal Hampshire Regiment),  51st Foot   (Kings own Yorkshire Light Infantry)

The Battle of Minden, 1st August 1759 by David Rowlands. (GL)
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 Probably depicts the rescue of gunners of the Royal Horse artillery (C-Battery) during the retreat from the battle of Maiwand.

Rescue of the Wounded by Lady Elizabeth Butler (Y)
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The younger Charles, after escaping the Worcester rout, is hiding in a pollard oak, with the Roundheads hunting for him.
The Boscobol Oak, By Ernest Crofts. (Y)
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 Roveredo is a small town 30 miles south of Trent in the Adige valley, this was the scene of an engagement between the advance formations of the army of Italy (10,200 strong) commanded by Massena and the larger part of Davidovitchs Austrian force (14,000 strong) general Wurmser had entrusted Davidovitch to defend the area around Trent, while the main Austrian army headed east and South in an attempt to relieve besieged Mantua. The 14,000 Austrians deployed between the road Junction of Roveredo and the village of Marco. The French captured the main position by sending one brigade to outflank Marco. During the battle the French forces took 6,000 Prisoners and 20 artillery pieces for the loss of a few hundred men.

Battle of Roveredo by William Clarkson Stanfield. (Y)
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SPORT PRINTS

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 The legendary Welsh rugby union captain Gareth Edwards is brought to life in the triple portrait. Gareth Edwards is revered in Wales and considered one of the finest players ever. in part of the montage he is shown going over for a try against England.
Gareth Edwards by Darren Baker. (AP)
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 The English football team for 2002.
England by Peter Deighan.
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 2003 World Superbike Champion, Neil Hodgson with James Toseland in his slipstream.  British World Superbike - June 2003. 
Battle of Britain by Dave Foord.
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B42. Gerhard Berger/ Ferrari 412.T2 by Ivan Berryman.

Gerhard Berger/ Ferrari 412.T2 by Ivan Berryman.
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Lennox Lewis by Peter Deighan.
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 Kentucky - born Steve Cauthen was just 12 years old when his father Tex finally agreed to help the single-minded young man realise a burning ambition to become a jockey provided he didnt let success make him big-headed.  No parental proviso was ever more faithfully fulfilled.  In the year of his seventeenth birthday the kid rode 487 winners of 6 million dollars, including the U.S. Triple Crown on Affirmed.  He went on to captivate British hearts two years later.  By 1984 he was champion. But better was to come. No wonder the fairytale ingredients of 1985 have fired the imagination and talent of Peter Deighan to such compelling effect.

The Golden Boy by Peter Deighan.
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FAR695.  Tribute to Lester Piggott by Stuart McIntyre.

Tribute to Lester Piggott by Stuart McIntyre.
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 Damon Hill, World Champion

King of the Track by Stuart Coffield
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