Hurricane Mk1 P2921 flown by Flt Lt Pete Brothers,
32 Squadron, July, 1940
FINE ART PRINT BY SIMON SMITH
now available as a stunning artist signed AND NUMBERED Limited Edition print from an edition of only 200 copies
Pete Brothers was a flight commander on No 32 Squadron and had seen action in May 1940 during the hectic, and often chaotic, fighting during the Battle of France, when he downed two enemy fighters.
As the Battle of Britain began in July 1940, the squadron was operating Hurricanes from Biggin Hill and was soon involved in furious fighting. Flying three, sometimes four, times a day, Brothers shot down seven fighters and a bomber over Kent before the end of August.
Leading his flight of eight aircraft during one patrol, he encountered around 100 enemy bombers. He dived to attack them, but before he could open fire he was engaged by a number of Messerschmitt fighters. Despite being heavily outnumbered he was able to break away and close on a bomber, which he shot down. Later in the day, on a second sortie, he shot down a fighter.
In order to relax as he was returning from combat, Brothers would open the cockpit canopy and light up a cigarette. After a particularly exhausting day in late August, he woke the following morning to discover that a line of bomb craters crossed the officers' mess lawn a few yards from his bedroom and that there were many spent anti-aircraft shells scattered around the base. He had heard nothing.
By the end of August No 32 was reduced to eight pilots and was rested. Brothers was sent as a flight commander to No 257 Squadron, which had also suffered heavy losses and where morale was very low.
Between them, Brothers and the new CO, Squadron Leader Bob Stanford-Tuck, helped to restore the confidence of the inexperienced pilots. When he and his wingman jointly destroyed a bomber Brothers would not claim the victory for himself but insist that it was the work of his inexperienced colleague. On September 15, the climax of the battle, Brothers shot down two bombers over London. Two days earlier he had been awarded a DFC.
After the Battle of Britain, Brothers trained as a flying instructor and on promotion to squadron leader formed and commanded No 457 (RAAF) Squadron, flying Spitfires. On March 26 1942 he shot down a Messerschmitt Bf 109, and a month later probably downed another enemy fighter. In June he was given command of No 602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron, leading it during the ill-fated Dieppe raid in August. His pilots destroyed five enemy aircraft and he himself claimed a fighter. One of his pilots was forced to bail out over the sea, and Brothers orbited his dinghy until rescue arrived.
By now Brothers had been identified as one of the RAF's outstanding fighter pilots, and he was promoted to wing commander to lead the Tangmere Wing of three Spitfire squadrons.
He took them on sweeps deep into France as the RAF took the offensive to the Luftwaffe. During one of these operations, on January 26 1943, he shot down a Focke Wulf 190. In June he was awarded a Bar to his DFC and rested from operations.
In 1944 Brothers took command of the Exeter Wing, leading his six squadrons on attacks against transportation targets and enemy airfields on the Brest peninsula and in Normandy. Heavily involved in the lead-up to the Allied invasion in June 1944, his squadrons operated in support of the beachhead.
On August 7 he achieved his sixteenth and final success when he shot down a Focke Wulf 190 over the river Loire. Later he wrote of this period: "With great excitement we participated in the invasion of Europe, sweeping over the beaches and deep into France, top dogs now, hammering the enemy in the air and on the ground." He was awarded a DSO for his "courage and brilliant leadership".
Print size overall approx: (24 inches x 16 inches)
The print quality of this print can only be appreciated first hand. Printed to Fine Art Trade Guild standards, on thick(300gsm)German etching paper using the latest 6 colour Giclee print technology. The vibrant and accurate lightfast colours will last forever. This is printing at its very best quality!
each print is hand signed and numbered by the artist Simon Smith from an edition of only 200 prints! buy now to avoid disappointment!!
Prints are despatched with a certificate rolled in tissue paper in a strong tube by signed for delivery.
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