07 September 2009
The first monoplane bomber to enter RAF service was the Fairey Hendon when it become operational in 1936 with No. 38 Squadron at RAF Marham, beating the Handley Page Harrow by just a few months. At a time when aviation technology was rapidly improving, the Hendon took nearly six years to develop and when it entered service, it was so hopelessly antiquated that only 14 aircraft were built and were rapidly replaced in operational service by Vickers Wellingtons.
Despite being a twin-engined aircraft, the wingspan of the Hendon was only 3 inches less than that of the Avro Lancaster yet a single engine on the Lancaster had more horsepower than both of the 600 hp engines of the Hendon. The Hendon's performance was only marginally better than the Handley Page Heyford biplane bomber it replaced.
Source: Military Aircraft Monthly, Volume 8, Issue 7. "...Peace in Our Time..." by Martin Derry, p14.
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