Fairey Battle "Belgian Air Force" 23042005
Fairey Battle Mk. 1 R3950 (c/n unknown) light bomber in the colors of the Belgian Air Force under restoration in the aviation hall of the Belgian Army Museum in Brussels, photographed on 23 April 2005. At the time the aircraft was still uinder restoration. 18 Battles were assembled by Avions Fairey in Belgium for the Belgian Air Force in 1938. In 1940 they proved no match for the advancing Germans and were hopelessly outclassed by the German fighters. Most of them were shot down. The Battle in the Brussels museum is one of five surviving Battles in museums worldwide, none of them airworthy. The other four can be found in The RAF Museum in Hendon, the Canada Aviation Museum in Ottawa, the Commonwealth Air Training Museum in Manitoba, Canada and the South Australian Aviation Museum in Port Adelaide. Another Battle was found in an Icelandic glazier, but there are no plans to retrieve the aircraft. The Battle Mk. 1 R3950 was acquired by the Belgian Museum from the Charles Church collection in 1990 in exchange for Spitfire RN201. Previously it had been on loan to the Imperial War Museum in Duxford, which exhibited it as HA-L.