A collection of photographs of various individual Catalinas.
The Consolidated PBY Catalina was an American flying boat of the 1930s and 1940s produced by Consolidated Aircraft. It was one of the most widely used multi-role aircraft of World War II. The aircraft served with every branch of the US military and in the air forces and navies of many other nations.
During World War II, they were used in anti-submarine warfare, patrol bombing, convoy escorts, search and rescue missions (especially air-sea rescue), and cargo transport. It was the most successful aircraft of its kind and no other flying boat was produced in greater numbers. The last active military Catalinas were not retired from service until the 1980s and, even today, the aircraft continues to fly as an airtanker in aerial firefighting operations all over the world.
The initials PBY were determined in accordance with the U.S. Navy aircraft designation system of 1922 - PB representing Patrol Bomber and Y being the code used for the aircraft's manufacturer Consolidated Aircraft.
For more information on the Catalina, see Wikipedia: Consolidated PBY Catalina.
Photographs of Consolidated PBY Catalina 'P' VP-BPS were taken on 18 July 1998 during the Festival of Flight 1998 held at East Fortune Airfield.
VP-BPS was a 28-5ACF Super Catalina and met with it's untimely demise shortly after these photographs were taken when it crashed and sank in the Solent on 27 July 1998.
At the time these photographs were taken, it was wearing the colour scheme of the Scottish Victoria Cross recipient John Cruickshank who flew Catalinas during World War II against the German U-Boats.