Collector's Editions

Salute to the Few

Salute to the Few Salute to the Few
Please note: images show different views of same print.

Print ID: SE3


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Flight Lieutenant James Paterson of No.92 Squadron, Biggin Hill, roars across the Darent Valley, Shoreham, Kent during the summer of 1940.

Signed by these Battle of Britain pilots:

  • Flight Lieutenant Don Anderson (604 Squadron)
  • Wing Commander Peter Ayerst (7 OTU)
  • Air Commodore Clive Baker (23 Squadron)
  • Squadron Leader Paddy Barthropp (602 Squadron)
  • Wing Commander Peter Brown (611 & 41 Squadrons)
  • Flight Lieutenant Joseph Chamberlain (235 Squadron)
  • Flight Lieutenant Terry Clarke (219 Squadron)
  • Flying Officer Jimmy Corbin (610 & 66 Squadrons)
  • Flying Officer Mike Croskell (213 Squadron)
  • Wing Commander Bob Doe (234 & 238 Squadrons)
  • Wing Commander Billy Drake (213 & 1 Squadron)
  • Flying Officer Roy Ford (41 Squadron)
  • Flight Lieutenant Trevor Gray (64 Squadron)
  • Flight Lieutenant Les Harvey (54 Squadron)
  • Flying Officer Donald Hulbert (257 & 501 Squadrons)
  • Flying Officer Richard Jones (64 & 19 Squadrons)
  • Colonel Henry Lafont (615 Squadron)
  • Wing Commmander Keith Lawrence (234 & 603 Squadrons)
  • Flight Lieutenant Robin Lucas (141 Squadron)
  • Wing Commander Ken Mackenzie (501 Squadron)
  • Squadron Leader Jocelyn Millard (1 & 242 Squadrons)
  • Wing Commander Tom Neil (249 Squadron)
  • Group Captain Hubert Penfold (56 Squadron)
  • Wing Commander Jack Rose (32 & 3 Squadrons)
  • Group Captain Desmond Sheen (72 Squadron)
  • Flight Lieutenant Arthur Smith (229 Squadron)
  • Squadron Leader Gerald "Stapme" Stapleton (603 Squadron)
  • Squadron Leader Geoff Wellum (92 Squadron)

Please note: each print is individually hand-signed. Signatures are not reproductions.

James A. Paterson was born in Dunedin, New Zealand in 1919. Having learned to fly with the RNZAF, in 1939 he came to Britain and joined the RAF. When war broke out he served in France flying observation and service flights for the retreating British Army.

Escaping France without any belongings, James transferred to fighters and joined No.92 Squadron in July 1940. Immediately in action, he claimed a share of a Ju88 on July 24th, another on August 19th and a Bf110 on September 11th, but that same day his luck changed. On his second sortie, James fell prey to Bf109's over Folkstone. His Spitfire burst into flames and before he could clear the cockpit his clothing was alight. Delaying the opening of his parachute, he fell hundreds of feet until the slipstream extinguished his burning clothes. After a safe landing he was rushed to hospital with severe burns to the face and neck.

Within days James had discharged himself to return to his unit, where he insisted on carrying out his normal flying duties in spite of impared vision caused by his burns.

On September 27th, No.92 Squadron engaged a large incoming enemy force high above Maidstone. James' aircraft was again hit and it span in flames towards the ground pursued by three Bf 109's. Fellow pilots saw him struggling to open his canopy. He died, still in his Spitfire, when it crashed at Sparepenny Lane, Eynsford, Kent.