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Hawker Fury

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Considered the 'ultimate biplane' the Fury would be the first Royal Air Force fighter to break the 200 mph barrier. The aircraft would spend eight years in frontline service with the RAF and six squadrons would use the Hawker Fury for home defence.

Quick Facts
Hawker Fury side profile image
First flight
25th March 1931
Entered service
May 1931
Total built

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

During 1927 Hawker's chief designer Sydney Camm began developing their Fury biplane fighter to meet Air Ministry Specification F.20/27. A sense of urgency would be given to the Fury's development when the Hawker Hart bomber entered Royal Air Force service in February 1930. This was 11 mph faster than the RAF's latest fighter, the Bristol Bulldog, which had entered service the previous year in May 1929.

Powered by the 525-hp Rolls-Royce Kestrel IIS engine on the 25th March 1931, flying from Brooklands and piloted by Hawker test pilot George Bullman, the first Fury Mk I flew. With a top speed of 207 mph the aircraft would be the Royal Air Force's first fighter able to break past the 200 mph barrier. Range was 270 miles with a service ceiling of 28,000 ft. Armament consisted of a pair of 0.303-in machine-guns. The Fury Mk I would enter service during May 1931 with No. 43 Squadron at RAF Tangmere.

The only other variant to be produced was the Fury Mk II. This benefited from information gained from a High Speed Fury aircraft. Powered by the 640-hp Rolls-Royce Kestrel VI engine the Fury Mk II had a top speed of 223 mph, range of 270 miles and a service ceiling of 29,500 ft. Armament was the same as the Fury Mk I, two 0.303-in machine-guns. During 1936 it was No. 25 Squadron, RAF Hawkinge, who were using Fury Mk Is, who would be the first Royal Air Force squadron to be equipped with the Fury Mk II.

In total six squadrons would be equipped with the Hawker Fury with their main role being that of home defence. The types frontline service in the RAF came to an end in January 1939 when No. 41 Squadron, RAF Catterick began to replace their Furys with the Supermarine Spitfire, although some would remain in service as trainers.

Both the Fury Mk I and Mk II would be exported with Norway, Spain and Yugoslavia among the purchasers. Some Yugoslavia Hawker Furys would see action against German aircraft, including the Messerschmitt Bf 109, when the Axis forces invaded the country on the 6th April 1941.

In total 317 were built and the Fury would also provide the basis for the Hawker Hurricane.

Technical Details

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Top Speed Range Service Ceiling Armament
Fury Mk I 207 mph 270 miles 28,000 ft two 0.303-in machine-guns
Fury Mk I side profile image
Fury Mk II 223 mph 270 miles 29,500 ft two 0.303-in machine-guns


Click on a photo to view a larger version.
Fury Mk I

See This Aircraft

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

Fury Mk I Brooklands Museum
Fury Mk I Imperial War Museum, Duxford

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