Vickers Wellington

This was the most modern strategic bomber the Royal Air Force had when World War Two began. Unfortunately, it was slow…220 to 235 MPH with a ceiling of 18,000 feet. Once four engine bombers went into service with Bomber Command, the Wellington’s were pushed aft to the lowest level of the bomber stream. They could barely keep up with the 4 engines and often didn’t which them extremely vulnerable to German fighters.


A close-up view of a Vickers Wellington DWI (Directional Wireless Installation) on the ground at Ismailia, Egypt, showing the electromagnetic ring used to explode magnetic mines. (Original IWM caption: Close-up of a Vickers Wellington DWI Mark II of No. 1 General Reconnaissance Unit at Ismaliya, Egypt, , showing the 48-foot diameter electromagnetic ring, for exploding magnetic mines, suspended from the wings and fuselage of the aircraft. The ring weighed over two and a quarter tons.)

(This is photograph CM 5312 from the collections of the Imperial War Museums)



IWM caption : Vickers Wellington GR Mark XIII, JA412 ‘S’, of No 221 Squadron RAF based at Kalamaki/Hassani, Greece, in flight over the Aegean Sea while on a mission to drop relief supplies over isolated villages in Macedonia.

(Baker L H (Flt Lt), Royal Air Force official photographer – This is photograph CNA 3535 from the collections of the Imperial War Museums).


 Wellington Mark I aircraft, with the original Vickers turrets, of the RNZAF — anticipating war, the New Zealand government loaned these aircraft and their aircrews to the RAF in August 1939. 


Beuteflugzeug, Vickers Wellington

A captured Vickers Wellington Mk.IC (RAF serial L7842) in service with the German Luftwaffe, probably at the test center at Rechlin, circa 1941. L7842 was delivered in mid-1940. It was lost on 6 February 1941 while in service with No. 311 Squadron, RAF, while on a mission to Boulogne (France).

From the BBC

A group of WWII veterans have been reunited with the world’s last remaining Wellington Bomber aircraft to have seen active service.
Surviving members of the RAF Wellington crew gathered at Brooklands Museum, in Weybridge, Surrey, to see the restored plane on Wednesday.

The plane was unearthed by a team searching for the Loch Ness monster in Scotland in 1985.

Staff at Brooklands were given an award for the restoration work.

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) presented the museum with its prestigious heritage hallmark award and unveil a plaque.

‘Engineering history’

Vickers created the Wellington Bomber, which served throughout WWII, using a pioneering lattice-structure design.

The crew of the restored plane had to ditch the aircraft because of engine failure while they were flying over Loch Ness in 1940 on a training exercise.

The aircraft had not decayed despite spending decades in Loch Ness because of the lake’s fresh water.

It took staff more than 15 years to restore the plane. Its side panels have not been replaced to allow museum visitors to see the lattice structure.

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: