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Avro Lincoln

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The last piston-engined bomber used by the Royal Air Force the Lincoln was intended to serve with the 'Tiger Force' which would participate in operations leading up to the invasion of Japan. However the war ended before the Avro Lincoln would see service.

Quick Facts
Avro Lincoln side profile image
First flight
9th June 1944
Entered service
August 1945
Total built

Front view
Lincoln front view photo
Side view
Sorry, no view photo available
Rear view
Sorry, no view photo available

Although the Avro Lancaster was proving a success as the mainstay of Bomber Command, due to the speed of development required during war time the Air Ministry released Specification B14/43 during 1943 to find a successor to the Lancaster. For which Avro submitted a new design, designated Lancaster Mk IV with power to be supplied by the Rolls-Royce Merlin 85 engine. The new aircraft would be a long-range high altitude version of the Lancaster, although with so many changes including an increased wingspan and fuselage the aircraft was re-identified as the Avro Lincoln Mk B.I.

The prototype flew for the first time on the 9th June 1944 at Ringway with Captain H.A. Brown at the controls before being sent to Boscombe Down for service trials just four days later with a second prototype flying five month later on the 13th November 1944.

The Mk B.II followed next and would be powered by either Merlin 66 or 68 engines. The proposed Avro Lincoln Mk B.III ended up becoming the Avro Shackleton and the Royal Australian Air Force would use a Lincoln with its nose extended by 6ft 6in to enable two radar operators and the required equipment to be housed and this would become the Mk 31. A small number were also used by the Argentine Air Force.

With everything going to plan 2,254 examples were to be built at various factories around the United Kingdom with No. 57 Squadron and No. 75 Squadron, Royal New Zealand Air Force receiving their first Lincolns in late August 1945, but they wouldn't be used operationally during the Second World War (1939 - 1945). They had been earmarked to be used as part of Bomber Command's 'Tiger Force' in the Pacific but after the Japanese surrender brought an end to hostilities only about a quarter of the proposed 2,254 were built. The type would be used during the Berlin Airlift (1948 – 1949).

It was to be a Mk B.II that would make the last flight by a piston engined bomber aircraft for Bomber Command when it flew on the 28th September 1960. Although the type would stay in service with the RAF elsewhere before eventually being retired on the 12th March 1963 with the Argentine Air Force using theirs until 1967, bringing an end to the service career of the 624 aircraft produced.

Technical Details

Click on the aircraft image to view a larger version.

Top Speed Range Service Ceiling Armament
Lincoln Mk B.I 295 mph 1,470 miles 30,500 ft six 0.50-in machine-guns
14,000lb bombs
Lincoln Mk B.II 319 mph 2,930 miles 22,000 ft six 0.50-in machine-guns
14,000lb bombs
Lincoln Mk II side profile image
Lincoln Mk B.III Became the Avro Shackleton.
Lincoln Mk B.IV A Rolls-Royce Merlin 85 powered Mk B.II.
Lincoln Mk 15 Designation given to a single aircraft produced by Victory Aircraft in Canada.
Lincoln Mk 30 310 mph 4,280 miles 28,000 ft four 0.50-in machine-guns
four 20mm cannons
14,000lb bombs
Lincoln Mk 31 General reconnaissance and anti-submarine version used by the Royal Australian Air Force.


Click on a photo to view a larger version.
Lincoln Mk B.II

See This Aircraft

(C) = Cockpit only exhibit. (F) = Fuselage only exhibit. (R) = Remains of an aircraft.

Lincoln Mk B.II Royal Air Force Museum, Midlands

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