BOMBING UP TOMMY
Operation Chastise - the famous attacks on the great dams of the Ruhr valley by the Lancasters of 617 Sqn are known as perhaps the most daring precision air raid in history. As a fitting tribute, Richard Taylor's outstanding painting depicts the scene just a few hours before departure, on the afternoon of 16 May 1943 at RAF Scampton as the hardworking ground crews of 617 Squadron ready their Lancasters in preparation for the night’s raid.
In the foreground Lancaster AJ-T ‘Tommy’ is loaded with Barnes Wallis’ ingenious bouncing bomb ‘Upkeep’ which will later be called into use by Pilot Joe McCarthy. After their original aircraft AJ-Q ‘Queenie’ developed a last minute coolant leak McCarthy and his crew switched to Lancaster AJ-T which as a reserve aircraft was not fitted with the twin Aldis lamps needed to calculate the correct height; Bomb Aimer George ‘Johnny’ Johnson and the crew knew that once they reached the target the odds would be stacked against them. Nevertheless with dogged determination they finally got airborne at 22.01 hrs and headed for their target – the Sorpe Dam.
‘Concentration was key and everyone was playing his part. Joe never took us above about 100 feet or below 200mph, with Bill (Radcliffe, the Flight Engineer) coaxing every last morsel of performance out of the Merlins to try to make up time.’
George ‘Johnny’ Johnson MBE DFM
After nine aborted attempts, ‘Johnny’ was satisfied enough to release their mine and at 00.46 hrs on the morning of 17 May, they scored a direct hit!
Each print is individually numbered and signed by the artist Richard Taylor.
For those collectors who want something more Richard Taylor will hand-craft an original drawing in the lower margin of each print.
Each print in the exclusive remarque editions is personally signed by the Bomb Aimer of Lancaster T-Tommy – the last surviving British Dambuster:
- Squadron Leader George Johnson MBE DFM
Richard is regarded as one of the most gifted pencil artists in the industry and these exclusive editions, limited to just fifteen copies worldwide plus ten DOUBLE remarques – with a larger and even more elaborate drawing – are finished in the graphite and paint combination that has gained him such international acclaim.
Every remarque is individually drawn to order making each one different and unique, allowing enthusiasts to acquire a special collector's item.
If you have any particular idea in mind, such as a specific Dambusters aircraft, please ask and we will do our best to accommodate.
- 24 x 12.5 inches
- Release Date:
Editions that feature original and unique artwork, such as Remarque, Tribute and matted editions, are specifically hand-crafted to order. As a result, our normal delivery policies do not apply to these items but we’ll be sure to update you as soon as your drawing is complete. If you have any particular request for your remarque drawing – such as specific aircraft markings – please ask when placing your order and we will do our best to accommodate.
Framing Service available on this item
Interested in having this item framed? Our expert team are on hand to review your bespoke requirements. Simply tick the framing box at the checkout and we’ll contact you to discuss the best framing choices for your piece plus delivery options. For further information about our framing service click here.