Of six examples of Supermarine's masterpiece on strength with the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, four will be attending RIAT 2015 - all of them Rolls-Royce Merlin-engined marks, the most appropriate representatives of those that flew in 1940. One actually did so, MkIIa P7350, which served in 1940 with No 266 Squadron and is today presented as the No 41 Squadron mount of Flt Lt Eric Lock, the top-scoring Allied 'ace' of the Battle.
Following a major service by the Aircraft Restoration Company at Duxford, a new look this year has been adopted by MkVb AB910, painted with D-Day invasion stripes as a No 64 Squadron aeroplane flown by Flt Lt Tony Cooper in 1944. The LFIXe, MK356, also wears invasion stripes in a No 126 Squadron scheme (and is a D-Day combat veteran), while LFXVIe TE311, the most recent addition to the BBMF, depicts a No 74 Squadron Spitfire serving in Germany at the end of the war in Europe. To see them all together at RIAT 2015 will be a rare opportunity indeed.