Hawker Hart - 33 Squadron
Hawker Hart Aviation Art Print by Aircraft Artist Charles J. Thompson GAvA
Without doubt one of the most important aircraft ever developed in the U.K, the Hawker Hart not only sired a whole family of successful variants (Hind, Osprey, Demon, Hardy to name a few) but was also used as a testbed for engines and aerodynamics, resulting in over three-hundred different off-shoots. Many variations were made to the same airframe and one of its claims to fame is that it was one of the first aircraft to test the Rolls Royce PV-12, later to become the famous Merlin.
In service, the aircraft followed in a long line of light bombers able to outpace the then-current fighters. As the earlier DH.4 and Fairey Fox had done in 1918 and 1925 respectively, the Hart was able to outpace the standard Bristol Bulldog by quite some margin. For trials purposes, 15 test aircraft were delivered to 33 Squadron, based at Eastleigh in Hampshire where they replaced the units Hawker Horsley’s.
Charles J. Thompson’s aviation art painting shows an aircraft from 33 Squadron exiting a thunderstorm sometime in the mid 1930s.