GMA transfers to 766 squadron at Inskip, Lancashire for Deck Landing Training.

Firefly aircraft landing on Aircraft Carrier HMS Ravager

HMS Ravager (D-70) was built as an Attacker class escort carrier in the USA at Seattle-Tacoma, being laid down on 11 April 1942, purchased by the US Navy in May 1942 and completed by Commercial Iron Works. Transferred and commissioned in the Royal Navy as HMS Ravager on 26 April 1943.

HMS Ravager saw war service in the Atlantic with 835 and 804 squadrons (embarked between September and October 1943), but subsequently she was used mainly as a Deck Landing Training vessel. Ravager was one of the main RN training carriers, operating in the North Sea off the Scottish coast.  Ravager was used to train many squadrons over the period, and included such as the Sea Hurricane of 760 squadron from RNAS Inskip in October, 1944.

Ravager was returned to the US Navy on 26 February 1946, and became mercantile Robin Trent 1948, Trent 1971, scrapped as Kaohsiung 1973.

Aircraft: FAIREY FIREFLY (deck landing) and HAWKER HURRICANE

The initial production Hawker Hurricane I entered RAF service in December 1937, with 111 RAF Squadron. Powered by the famous Rolls-Royce Merlin engine, it became the first RAF monoplane fighter with an enclosed cockpit and retractable undercarriage, its first fighter capable of a level speed in excess of 300 mph (483 km/h), and its first eight-gun fighter.

Perhaps the most important variant was the Sea Hurricane. This operated from aircraft carriers, being fitted usually with catapult spools and arrester hook. However, most Sea Hurricanes were not newly-built fighters but converted RAF types, and were deployed originally not for aircraft carrier operations but to protect merchant shipping. To combat German maritime-reconnaissance bombers, some ships were converted into CAMs (catapult aircraft merchantmen) which meant that a Hurricane fighter could be launched from the ship when danger approached. The biggest problem was that the fighter could not re-land on board, and so the pilot had to ditch it in the sea. The main areas of operation for the 'Catafighters' were in the Mediterranean and Baltic, but by 1943 the Sea Hurricane had all but disappeared from service, being relegated to second line squadrons.

Hawker Hurricane in Wartime Colours