No XI Squadron was formed at Netheravon on the 14th February 1915, as the first unit in the RFC specifically tasked with fighter duties. On the 1st April 1967 XI Squadron reformed at RAF Leuchars operating the Lightning F.6 as part of the Air Defence of the UK. In March 1972 the Squadron moved to RAF Binbrook where it continued it’s long association with the Lightning, ending up as the last Lightning Squadron in service.On 30 June 1988, Sqn Ldr John Aldington had the distinction of making what was to be the final RAF Lightning flight when he delivered one of three F.6s to Cranfield in Bedfordshire.
The F6 was the final version of the Lightning which had a greater range and the reintroduction of canon armament that had been removed from the Lightning F3.It had a much larger ventral fuel tank, with twin ventral fins with a larger, more efficient wing with kinked and cambered leading edges. These modifications were also applied to some F.2 airframes, which then became known as F.2As. These were equivalent to an F.6 apart from not having Red Top missle capability. Some F.3s were also converted to F.6 standard, lacking only the overwing fuel tanks and being briefly known as F.3As in the process, before being fully converted to full F.6 standard.
The painting depicts an F6 Lightning of 11 squadron fitted with over wing fuel tanks flying low through a mountain pass.
Artist Paul Howard.
Available as an A3 size or 20x16 print.