|Vickers Valiant B1|
|Vickers Valiant in RAF anti-flash white default livery|
|Aircraft||Type 706 Valiant B1|
|Primary Use||Military, Strategic Bombing|
The Air Ministry’s exacting criteria for the Vicker’s contract were met. Vickers had developed a high altitude Wellington with a pressurized cabin during the 1940s, and Vickers had developed a lot of experience of jet engines when Wellington was used as a test bed for Whittle’s new jet engine. There were therefore no major hiccups in the development, and the Valiant entered service in 1955.
Until the Vulcan raids on the Falkland Islands in 1982, the Valiant was the only V-bomber to see active service in the Suez campaign. Flying from air-bases in Malta, Valiants dropped conventional bombs onto Egyptian airfields and were not intercepted, despite a capable Egyptian airforce. The Valiant’s next starring role was in dropping Britain's first atomic bomb over Maralinga, Australia in 1958 and then Britain’s first hydrogen bomb over Christmas Island in 1958.
The Valiants were withdrawn from the strategic bombing role in 1960 when the Vulcan and Victor were up to strength. The Valiant squadrons were converted to photo-reconnaisance, refuelling and low level tactical bombing roles.
Low level flying resulted in a series of fatigue caused incidents in the Valiant fleet. The aircraft were grounded and inspection revealed that a costly refit would be required to the main spars. With the Vulcan and Victor in service this option was not progresses and the Valiant was retired by the end of 1964.
Of the 107 Valiants built, only one survives at the RAF Cold War Museum at Cosford
There are no additional liveries with this aircraft