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HMS Snapdragon.  Photos and history of HMS Snapdragon, a Flower Class Naval Sloop of the Royal Navy.  Built by Simons and launched 3rd September 1940, the ship was sunk on the 19th of December 1942.  

A lone bomber dropped its bombs near the ship and missed, however, at least one bomb exploded on hitting the water near to the ship and killed everyone on the bridge including the Captain.  The hull was damaged and the ship sunk

HMS Snapdragon at Beirut 1942.

Sent in by Bernard Huckstep, whose father Joe Huckstep served on this ship.  (see message board below)

Some of the crew of HMS Snapdragon.

Sent in by Bernard Huckstep, whose father Joe Huckstep served on this ship.  (see message board below)

Commander Simms R.N. D.S.O., captain of HMS Snapdragon & Senior Officer 2nd Escort Group with N.O.I.C. at Benghazi.

Sent in by Bernard Huckstep, whose father Joe Huckstep served on this ship.  (see message board below)

Joseph Bertie Huckstep, crew member of HMS Snapdragon.  

Photograph taken somewhere in the Middle East around 1942.  He survived the loss of the Snapdragon.  He has told Bernard Huckstep (his son, who sent in these photos) that a lone bomber dropped its bombs near the ship and missed, however, at least one bomb exploded on hitting the water near to the ship and killed everyone on the bridge including the Captain.  The hull was damaged and the ship sunk  Joseph had to defuse the depth charges to prevent them exploding underwater and killing the survivors of the sinking.  he was picked up by an American MTB.  Fuel oil in the water entered his ear and his hearing was affected for the rest of his life.  He was brought up around Broadstairs in Kent, but lived in Scotland after the war.  He died in 1985.

Commander Simms and Midshipman Dickin from HMS Snapdragon.

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

Bertram Scarrot of HMS Snapdragon.

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

Some crew of HMS Snapdragon, including cook Bertram Scarrot (third from left).

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

Crew members of HMS Snapdragon.

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

HMS Snapdragon, 1942.  Leading Cook Bertram Scarrot is on the far right of this photo.

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

HMS Snapdragon (remains of?), Benghazi, 1942.  Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

Bertram Scarrott was a cook on HMS Snapdargon, killed during the air attack of 19th December 1942.

Crew of HMS Snapdragon.

Contributed by Julie Brutnell.

 

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AVIATION PRINTS

Click above to see all of our aviation art index - Eight random half price aviation items are displayed to the right.

Some Current Half Price Aviation Art Offers

 When the RAF took delivery of their first Consolidated B.24 Liberators in 1941, aerial cover for trans-Atlantic convoys was strengthened, affording these brave merchant ships a modicum of protection as they forged their slow passage from the US to Britain with vital supplies. 120 Sqn was immediately pressed into this role from their initial base at Nutts Corner in Northern Ireland, before moving to Ballykelly and Reykjavik in Iceland as the U-Boat threat increased. The example shown is a Liberator V of RAF Coastal Command.

The Long Patrol by Ivan Berryman. (P)
Half Price! - £550.00
 Over three years of continuous air combat the 91st Bombardment Group The Ragged Irregulars were based at Bassingbourn in England. They flew 340 missions with honor and bravery, over occupied Europe and bore such B-17 legends as Memphis Belle, Shoo Shoo Baby, General Ike and Nine O Nine. On this day, however, the Memphis Belle is going to have to wait for the snow to be cleared before it can depart on yet another dangerous mission over enemy territory. In the meantime, to enable the Memphis Belle to leave at the earliest opportunity when the weather clears, ground crew carry on with their maintenance work in support of a crew and aircraft they all look upon with affection and admiration.
The Memphis Belle by Philip West. (Y)
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 If you had the height, you controlled the battle. If you came out of the sun, the enemy could not see you. If you held your fire until you were very close, you seldom missed. These three basic rules contributed to the prowess in aerial combat of some of the most successful fighter pilots in history and seldom were they more valuable than when outnumbered. Between July and October 1940 the brave young pilots of RAF Fighter Command were under intense pressure from the constant attacks of the Luftwaffe and the Hawker Hurricane was <i>the</i> machine of the Battle of Britain, accounting for 80 percent of Allied victories.  In this painting, Hurricanes of 32 Sqn climb high into the morning sky, gaining Height and Sun in an attempt to take the advantage over the onslaught of enemy fighters - August, 1940.  This image captures the surreal calmness above the clouds, belying the fury of action and ultimate sacrifices made in those crisp blue skies.

Height and Sun by Robert Taylor.
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17th May 1943, Sqn Ldr Frank (Jerry) Fray in his Spitfire PRX1 of 542 Squadron operating out of RAF Benson, Oxfordshire, returned alone and unarmed to gather photographic evidence from 30,000 feet of the Möhne dam having been breached earlier the same day by 617 Squadron Lancaster bombers.

Mission Accomplished by Philip West.
Half Price! - £105.00

RAF Pathfinder founder and Commander signs print featuring the four engined Halifax bomber.

Halifax Legend by Robert Taylor
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  D for Donald of 270 squadron, Royal Air Force, out of Freetown, West Africa operating in the Atlantic Ocean. It was during routine operation search that D for Donald surprised U515 on the surface and immediately attacked the submarine. U515 in putting up stiff resistance blew a large hole in the hull of D for Donald and the magazine of the starboard side 0.5 twin Browning was hit and the subsequent shrapnel wounded both blister gunners. U515 escaped but was sunk by an American naval hunter group a year later. D for Donald limped back to base and managed to make the beach before it would sink completely.
Catalina Attack by John Wynne Hopkins (B)
Half Price! - £80.00
 Whilst flying with other Hawker Tempests of 274 Sqn on 11th February 1945, Sqn Ldr David Fairbanks spotted a lone Arado Ar234 of the Kommando Sperling 1 (F) / 123 flown by Hauptmann Hans Felde returning to its base at Rheine.  A desperate chase commenced through the cloudbase until the German jet prepared to land, whereupon Fairbanks sent 4U+DH down in flames after a single short burst of his four 20mm cannon.

Tribute to Sqn Ldr David Fairbanks by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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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. (P)
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NAVAL PRINTS

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Some Current Half Price Naval Art Offers

 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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February 1942 and Viz. Admiral Ciliaxs mighty Scharnhorst leads her sister Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen up the English Channel during Operation Cerberus, their daring breakout from the port of Brest on the French Atlantic coast to the relative safety of Wilhelmshaven and Brunsbuttel. All three ships survived what became known as the Channel Dash, not without damage, but the operation proved a huge propaganda success for Germany and a crushing embarrassment for the British. A number of torpedo boats are in attendance, including Kondor and Falke and the Z class destroyer Friedrich Ihn in the distance.

Operation Cerberus, Channel Dash by Ivan Berryman.
Half Price! - £15.00
 The Dido class cruiser HMS Naiad is pictured together with the cruiser HMS Leander during the encounter with the French Guepard in 1941 whilst they were both engaged in operations against the Vichy-French forces in Syria.

HMS Naiad by Ivan Berryman (P)
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The Battle of Trafalgar was fought on a calm, almost windless day, on 21st October 1805.  Nelsons revolutionary battle plan was to cut apart the larger Franco-Spanish fleet of Vice-Admiral Villeneuve by sailing in two single column divisions directly at right angles into the combined fleet and thus rendering almost half of the leading ships useless until the could turn and join the fight, which in such calm conditions could take hours.  The battle raged for five hours in which time not one British ship was lost, however, Nelson would tragically lose his life at the very moment of his triumph, a triumph which rendered the British Navy unchallenged in supremacy for over a century.  Here HMS Mars passes between the French ship Belleisle on her starboard and the French ship Fougeux on her port, firing a murderous hail of gunfire at both ships.  Also shown in the painting on the left hand side is the Spanish ship Monarco and the French ship Pluton.

The Battle of Trafalgar - Mars Breaks the Line by Anthony Saunders. (AP)
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 Of the three E-Class cruisers proposed at the end of World War 1, only two were ever completed, Euphrates being cancelled when the war with Germany ended in 1918.  The two sisters, Emerald and Enterprise, enjoyed long and varied careers, the former remaining largely unchanged from her original appearance, the latter being much modified.  The two ships are shown together at anchor off Trincomalie between the wars.

HMS Emerald and HMS Enterprise by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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HMS Thunderbolt by Ivan Berryman. The submarine HMS Thunderbolt moves away from the depot ship Montcalm.  Another submarine, HMS Swordfish is alongside for resupply.

HMS Thunderbolt by Ivan Berryman.
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 Just seconds from opening fire with a broadside that will devastate her opponent, HMS Victory prepares to pass the stern of the French flagship Bucentaure, closely followed by the three-deckers HMS Temeraire and HMS Neptune. With guns unable to bear on the enemy fleet during the slow approach the British ships had endured terrible punishment with Victorys sails holed, her wheel smashed and her mizzen top shot away.

Breaking the Line by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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B151AP.  HMS Durban Escorts the Troopship RMS Queen Mary by Ivan Berryman.

HMS Durban Escorts the Troopship RMS Queen Mary by Ivan Berryman. (AP)
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MILITARY PRINTS

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Some Current Half Price Military Art Offers

Following Napoleons deposition of Ferdinand IV, King of Naples in favour of his brother Joseph Bonaparte, the British government ordered General Sir John Stuart to land a force in Calabria, Southern Italy. On the 6th of July the French force of 4,000 infantry and 1,000 cavalry met the British force of 5,000 infantry. The battle was a British victory with losses of 330, compared to the French losses of 700 killed and 1,000 wounded with another 1,000 prisoners.

The Battle of Maida by De Louthembourg.
Half Price! - £25.00
 Coming into action in Iraq, February 1991.

M109 Howitzers of 127 (Dragon) Field Battery Royal Artillery by David Rowlands.
Half Price! - £65.00
This picture depicts the closing moments of the life of Socrates.  Condemned to death or exile by the Athenian government for his teaching methods which aroused scepticism and impiety in his students, Socrates heroicly rejected exile and accepted death from hemlock.  Here the philosopher continues to speak even while reaching for the cup, demonstrating his indifference to death and his unyielding commitment to his ideals.  Jacques Louis David  painted this historical picture in 1787.  Commissioned by the Trudaine de Montigny brothers, leaders in the call for a free market system and more public discussion.

Death of Socrates by Jacques Louis David. (Y)
Half Price! - £300.00
 North Africa, 18th November 1941.  Italian Autoblinda armoured cars of Gen. Gambara's XX Mobile Corps trade shots with forward reconnaissance elements of the British 22nd Armoured Brigade, during the initial hours of Operation Crusader.  Their quick withdrawal to report their contact would give the Italian main force a timely warning of the unexpected attack.

Enemy Ahead by David Pentland. (P)
Half Price! - £700.00

The Hindenburg Line known also as the Siegfried Line was a vast system of German defences in northeastern France between Lens and past Verdun.  Built over the winter of 1916 and 1917, the high command in Germany believed the Hindenburg line was was impregnable.  But in 1917 during the Battle of Cambrai it was temporarily broken by the British and Newfoundland troops.  Included in these forces were tank units, and the line was successfully breached a number of times during the hundred day offensive by the Allied forces in September 1918. Shown in this painting are the wounded being taken back behind lines by medical personnel as the reinforcements and supplies move forward.

Breaking the Hindenburg Line by J P Beadle. (Y)
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 El Alamein, October 28th 1943, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel discusses the critical battle situation with the Commanding Officer of the 21st Panzer Division, in front of his Kampfstaffel.  This personal mobile headquarters comprised a variety of vehicles including a radio Panzer III, SDKfz 232 radio armoured car, Rommels famous SDKfz 250/3 communications half-track GREIF and captured British Honey light tanks.

The Desert Fox by David Pentland. (GL)
Half Price! - £300.00
Leading 30th Corps assault across the Seine at Vernon, 43rd Wessex Division gained an initial foothold on the east bank.  Heroic efforts however by the Royal Engineers of 71st, 72nd and 73rd Field Companies, succeeded in constructing a Class 9 Bailey bridge (David, shown left) and a Second Class 40 bridge (Goliath, shown right)  Despite constant enemy fire this amazing feat was achieved in only 2 days, and allowed 15/19th Hussars Cromwells and 4.7th Dragoons Guards Shermans to cross just in time to repulse a serious German counter attack by Tiger IIs of SS Panzer Abteilung 101.

David and Goliath, Vernon, France, 27th August 1944 by David Pentland. (GS)
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DHM1330GL.  The Liberation of Basra by the 7th Armoured Brigade, 6th April 2003 by David Rowlands.
The Liberation of Basra by the 7th Armoured Brigade, 6th April 2003 by David Rowlands (GL)
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SPORT PRINTS

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 Michael Schumacher and Ferrari.
Encore by Graham Bosworth
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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. (Y)
Half Price! - £75.00
 Martin strikes again with this portrait of Nigel Mansell OBE walking, perhaps to the pits, or away from the race track, characteristiclly with his hand to his forehead.  Maybe hes planning his strategy for the day or is just plain frustrated.
A Hard Day at the Office by Martin Smith.
Half Price! - £40.00
 On three occasions since their last Grand Slam in 1995 the England team had come within a whisker of completing another dream.  During this important build up towards the world cup England finally laid their ghost to rest.  After six years under the guidance of Head Coach Clive Woodward England, having beaten the big three from the Southern Hemisphere in a back-to-back series of matches at Twickenham, reached number one in the Zurich world ranking.  This Grand Slam, a wonderful achievement in itself, underlined Englands worldwide dominance.

2003 Grand Slam by James Owen. (Y)
Half Price! - £80.00

SPC5003. Rory Underwood by Rodger Towers.

Rory Underwood by Rodger Towers.
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 Valentino Rossi at speed on his Repsol Honda.
Rossi at Speed by Derrick Mark.
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 A quartet of Ferrari 801s are warmed up at Rouen-les-Essarts.  French Grand Prix 1957.

Thoroughbreds in the Paddock by Ray Goldsbrough.
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 McLaren M26 Ford Cosworth.  World Champion 1976.
James Hunt by Michael Thompson.
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