Brylcreem Boys

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In Karrie Gillett’s otherwise excellent article (25 September) Wing Commander Wylie speaks of the Brylcreem Boys flying their Spitfires over the villages of Britain. He should know better.

The majority of RAF fighters at that time were Hurricanes, and even though they were 
later greatly outnumbered by Spitfires, Hurricanes still accounted for 55 per cent of all British and Commonwealth aerial victories throughout the entire war.

In other words, Hurricanes scored more than the Spitfires, Typhoons, Tempests, Beaufighters, Mosquitos, Mustangs, Thunderbolts and all other fighters used by the RAF during the war.

Not only that, but Hurricanes could operate from jungles, deserts, aircraft carriers, merchant ships’ catapults and other inhospitable bases from which many other fighters could not operate.

Moreover, they could carry and launch a much wider range of armaments than the dainty Spitfire, itself a fine aircraft.

Finally, the highest-scoring RAF ace in the Battle of Britain and the highest RAF scorer in the whole 1939-45 war respectively were both South African Hurricane pilots (“Sailor” Malan and “Pat” Pattle).

Please would the British public give credit where credit is due: the Hawker Hurricane was the most effective RAF fighter in the 1939-35 war. That’s not an opinion; it’s a statistic.

Alasdair Drysdale