First Flap Of The Day Artist Proof by Nicolas Trudgian

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'HM' Stephen brings down two Me109s in quick succession over the White Cliffs of Dover, early on August 11, 1940

The log book of 'HM' Stephen, one of the Battle of Britain's top scoring fighter pilots, notes "First flap of the day at 0600hrs…" Typically all RAF fighter squadrons were at readiness at first light during the summer of 1940, and such was the case when 74 Squadron were scrambled from Hornchurch for their first intercept of the day. Having shot a Me109 off Mungo-Park's tail, 'HM' found himself behind two more Me109s. Before either could take evasive action, 'HM' destroyed them both. He joined ended this day with five air victories.

Flying Spitfires with 74 Squadron, Harbourne Stephen took part in the great air battles over Dunkirk in the build-up to the Battle of Britain. In the thick of the Battle from the outset and with 7 victories already to his credit, at the height of the fighting he destroyed 3 Me109s and 2 Me110s and damaged 3 more enemy aircraft in 3 sorties on August 11. By the end of 1940 this talented Spitfire Ace had accumulated 22 ½ victories. He later served in the Far East.

Wing Commander John Freeborn DFC*
A talented young Ace, John Freeborn flew Spitfires with 74 Squadron throughout the Battle of Britain and by November 1940 he had been with his Squadron longer than any other Battle of Britain pilot, and had flown more operational hours. Johnnie Freeborn had 17 victories in the Battle of Britain.

Overall print size: 26" wide x 20 1/2" high.