Wellington, British Medium Bomber

Photograph of Wellington bomber

Wikipedia Commons

Vickers Wellington Mk.III


Crew 5 or 6
Dimensions 86'2" by 60'10" by 17'5"
26.26m by 18.54m by 5.31m
Weight 18,556-29,500 lbs
8417-13,400 kg
Maximum speed       255 mph at 12,500 feet
410 km/h at 3800 meters
Climb rate 16 feet per second
4.9 meters per second
Service ceiling 19,000 feet
5800  meters
Power plant 2 1500 hp (1118 kW) Bristol Hercules XI 14-cylinder radials driving three bladed propellers
Armament 6 to 8 0.303 machine guns in nose and tail turrets and beam positions
Bomb load
4500 lbs
2000 kg
Range 2200 miles
3500 km
Production 11,462 of all models:
    1 prototype
    3055 MkI
    1519 Mk.III
    220 Mk.IV
    64 Mk.VI
    397 GR.VIII
    3803 Mk.X
    180 GR.XI
    58  GR.XII
    844 GR.XIII
    841  GR.XIV
    80 T.XVIII
Variants The GR. versions were for maritime patrol while the T.XVIII was a trainer. Most of the maritime variants had ASV radar and Leigh lights.

The Wellington "Wimpey" was the main RAF bomber until the four-engine models came into production. Introduced in 1938, the aircraft was a significant step forward for the British in its day. Wellingtons contributed to the first 1000-plane raid (on Cologne)  and saw service in India. They proved versatile, being adapted to a number of roles, including magnetic minesweeping using a 48' coil and antisubmarine patrol using Leigh lights and airborne radar.

The design used the geodetic construction of Barnes Wallis and the prototype flew on 15 June 1936. Production began in December 1937.


Murray and Millett (1996)

Wilson (1998)

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