Where to buy Ventura Decals and Books
 Ventura products
 Our Contributors
 RNZAF Historial
 Royal Navy
 P-51 Mustang
 US Air Force
 US Navy
 Luftwaffe Research Pages
 Hist. Aviation Services
 Profile Art
 Detail photos
 Aviation art
 Motorcycle Stuff
 Links to other sites

Historical : Hist. Aviation Services : Articles/Research Last Updated: Apr 21st, 2015 - 23:52:06

Avro Lancaster B.III JN-M NE181 "The Captain's Fancy"
By Ian Wallace
Aug 26, 2013, 16:03

Email this article
 Printer friendly page
General Notes

75 (NZ) Squadron flew a mix of B.I and B.III Lancasters from the 10 April 1944 until the end of the war. Photos show a mix of early and late pitot head positions, H2S radome fittings, Rotol and de Havilland propellers, nose blister shape, chaff-dispenser chutes and bulged or standard bomb-bay doors.

All pictures of 75 Squadron Lancasters I have seen have the squadron identification code (either ‘AA’ – A/B Flights or ‘JN’ – C Flight) behind the fuselage roundel on both sides. Some also have the aircraft code letter in white in a position near the forward-most fuselage window on both sides. Many seem to have sported individual nose-art and / or mission markings.

Avro Lancaster B.III JN-M NE181 "The Captain's Fancy". Illustration by Ian Wallis.

Close up of nose-art. Most of body has probably been washed away to conform with Air Ministry regulations for nose-art size. S/L Jack Bailey in cockpit. Photo from R.Baker.

Having the 101st and 100th mission markings applied. Photo from R.Baker.

This lancaster is believed to be first RNZAF aircraft to complete over 100 operations. She was the usual mount of the C Flight commander, Squadron Leader Jack Bailey.

She arrived on squadron 25 May 1944 and flew a total of 101 operations, the final (on what was believed to be her 100 but turned out to be the 101st) to Ludwigshaven on 5 January 1945. Captain for that flight was FO Alex Simpson.

Prior to that, he had also flown ‘Mike’ on a cross-country (21 October 1944) and on an operation to the Leuna oil works at Merseberg (6 December 1944), where he returned with a ‘banana crate’ of 150 * 4lb incendiaries sliding around on the bomb-bay doors!

The aircraft was also flown on several food drops over Holland and made a couple of trips to Italy picking up POWs. Flown off-station by Alex Simpson to Waterbeach on 17 February 1945. (Details from “Forever Strong” – Norman Franks, ORBs and A. Simpson)

Close-up of nose art.
Nose-art: A reproduction of a wartime newspaper (possibly the Daily Mirror) character called ‘Captain Reilly Foull’, a typical British Army officer “old boy”. The greater part of the body has been washed away to keep within an Air Ministry edict that nose-art had to be kept within a certain size. The face, neck and hands were originally a ‘flesh’ colour, but had faded to be almost white. The uniform was Army khaki. He holds a pint of ale in his right hand, a 25lb practice bomb in his left and a corn-cob pipe in his mouth. The devil that he was, he has two horns sprouting from his temples. (A. Simpson)

Notes: de Havilland propellers, chaff-dispenser chute, ‘late’ nose-blister and ‘late’ pitot head. H2S radome likely to have been fitted but not known for sure. Same for positioning of squadron codes. Of interest is that this aircraft flew several operations to Italy, to pick up returning POWs. Photos of 75 Sqn. Lancasters in Bari, Italy show serial numbers painted under-wing (probably white) and outlined fuselage code letters (probably yellow around red).

© Copyright 2004-2013; VenturaPublications and contributors.

Top of Page

Latest Headlines
Avro Lancaster B.III JN-M NE181 "The Captain's Fancy"
Avro Lancasters B.I JN-F HK554, and B.III AA-U ND782
Research Service