1997 Reach for Sky Bader Cover signed Pickering & Barthropp Battle of Britain

This is a cover produced as a fund raiser for the RAF Benevolent Fund Battle of Britain Appeal.

It is cancelled with a special Spitfire R J Mitchell Duxford Cover - It is a first day of the Architects of the Air set but with only one stamp

The illustrations are all from the' Reach for the Sky' film based on the career of Douglas Bader

It is signed by

1 Patrick Barthropp DFC AFC - a Battle of Britain ACE Spitfire Pilot.

On 17th May 1942 Barthropp was escorting six Bostons bombing a factory near St Omer when Focke Wulf 190s attacked his formation. He shot down one of the enemy, but then the controls on his Spitfire were hit and damaged and he was forced to bale out. He was soon captured, and later that evening met the pilot who had shot him down. Four weeks later Barthropp arrived at Stalag Luft III at Sagan, where he and a colleague attempted to escape by hiding in a drain covered by a manhole cover; they were soon apprehended.

Over a period of 18 months Barthropp spent 100 days in solitary confinement for a serious of misdemeanours before being transferred to a camp in Poland. Here he was involved in digging a tunnel. After six months it was ready, and 32 men escaped. Barthropp was the third to break out, and he headed for Warsaw with a companion. A few days later they were caught

On January 28 1945 the prisoners were herded from their camp and marched westwards during the intensely cold winter. They eventually reached Lubeck, where they were liberated in May. Barthropp managed to acquire a Mercedes fire engine and he and a friend drove it to Brussels via Hamburg, where they met two ladies who were happy to spend the night with them in return for a tin of corned beef

2 James Pickering AFC AE*

There is an insert

It is a limited edition with these signatures No 1/1

Album - Flight Covers 1

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