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" BERLIN BUSTERS - AVRO LANCASTER "
245 Signed & Numbered Print 20" x 30" Email-price
Signed by Neil Fuller - DFC - Canadian Lancaster Pilot
The Scene: In this scene Canadian Lancaster pilot Neil Fuller is portrayed in the opening round of a Berlin bombing run. Here he is guiding his Lancaster "Fearless Freddie's Office" through the perils of a so called "Milk Run" in early 1944, just before D Day. Hundreds more Lancasters can be seen emerging from the darkness, approaching the target area which will soon be glowing as bright as day from the fires below.
A typical bombing run would start at about 20,000 to 25,000 feet and Neil would start a slow decent toward the target to pick up speed. As soon as the bombs were on their way, he would immediately turn 90 degrees and dive to about 6,000 feet in an attempt to avoid enemy fighters waiting on the far side of the target area. In this scene ME110 fighters can be seen approaching from the rear and Neil's gunners are applying their best effort to discourage them. One more ME110 is commencing a flair drop to illuminate the entire area for other fighters.
The famous and highly successful Avro Lancaster depended on stealth and the cover of night to carry out its mission. If they were discovered, the .303 cal machine guns on board were often no match for the 20mm cannon of the opposing fighters. The Lancasters would approach the target in several streams of many aircraft. Often over 1000 aircraft would pass over the target within a 15 minute time period.
The bomber streams were protected from radar by dropping clouds of small metal foil strips called "chaff" or coded named "window" by the British. This would prevent individual aircraft in the stream from being accurately tracked by radar. Accurate navigation within the stream could be very difficult and visibility at night could approach zero. If an aircraft strayed outside the protected stream, they were often picked up by radar and immediately shot down by radar predicted flak or illuminated by search light for night fighters to destroy. One such unlucky aircraft can be seen in the distance. Blue "master" search lights were guided by radar and other white search lights would follow their lead to "cone" the helpless victim.
In all his 55 missions Neil managed to avoid and survive the perils of these daring attacks and bring his Lancaster home each time. Neil was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his war time efforts which he received from H.M. King George VI in January 1945.
Berlin Busters - Avro Lancaster
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