Whirlwind
Fighter
Project

About imageAbout imageAbout image
The primary aim of the “Whirlwind Fighter Project” is to reproduce a single (and the world's only) example of the Westland Whirlwind Mk 1 twin-engine single-seat fighter-bomber aircraft.

It is intended that the project will result in far more than another 'replica' - P7056 will be a complete non-airworthy reproduction of the Westland Whirlwind, a reproduction aircraft which is indistinguishable inside and out from an aircraft in Squadron service during the Second World War.

As sections are completed they are put on display for the purpose of public education in the Kent Battle of Britain Museum, Hawkinge - Link to Museum

Available for public view from June 2024 are the fully-equipped cockpit and rear fuselage sections incorporating top-secret radar identification systems not displayed in-situ any any other collection and the exposed cannon arrangement in the nose. Alongside is an alternative experimental cannon configuration and the remains of an excavated Whirlwind including the only two known remaining Rolls Royce Peregrine engines in the world.

From the Museum

The Kent Battle of Britain Museum received the first phase of the project in June 2023

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Research

There were only 13 general drawings surviving - how do we know it's authentic?

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From the Workshop

Building a complete twin-engined fighter aircraft from scratch - mostly in a garage

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P7056

We are re-creating a very special Whirlwind

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Dave Brocklehurst MBE

Chairman

At the age of seventeen Dave became a Trustee of the Kent Battle of Britain Museum, where P7056 will be displayed. Dave has come to know hundreds of Word War Two airmen from around the world and is committed to maintaining their memory as well as being a practical preservationist of WWII aircraft.

Group Captain Tom Eeles

Life President

Group Captain Tom Eeles served in the RAF for 44 years and totalled over 8000 hours of flying in twenty-eight different aircraft types. He is also the son of Air Commodore Henry 'Harry' Eeles, commander of 263 Squadron when first equipped with the Westland Whirlwind during the Battle of Britain.

Jim Munro

Life Vice Chair

Jim is the son of 263's second Whirlwind Squadron Commander, John Munro. A Whirlwind fan all his life as a result, Jim has researched a documentary film about the forgotten aircraft and the men who flew it - including many interviews - and has been a material and financial supporter from the outset

Pete Smith

Chief Engineer

Pete, an enormously experienced professional precision engineer, picked up the challenge of actually fabricating and assembling the airframe in his own time, in his own garage workshop. He walks the fine line between obsessive genius and obsessive madman but the results speak for themselves.

Chris Hayward

Secretrary

Like many of us Chris caught the Whirly bug from the Airfix kit. Scratching the itch meant time the Public Records Office and the IWM. The idea was to write a book but children came along and the information was filed away - until he came across the project online and offered up his research - and soon volunteered to put us on an official footing.

Matt Bearman

Treasurer / Researcher

Matt fell off Pete's line into 'obsessive madman' long ago, and also blames it on Airfix. A researcher in the darker corners of aviation history, Matt is never to be trusted with a rivet gun, never mind an English wheel (or a CMS). Once we had gathered in enough information to start work Matt was appointed treasurer to keep him out of trouble.

Gunnar Olsen

Engineering Design Lead

Gunnar appears sane, so it is a mystery why he has taken on the virtual re-engineering of an extinct aircraft to the point at which it can be authentically built again . He combines enormous insight with a mastery of CAD - his actual day job in Norway. Like Pete, his fees would amount to hundreds of thousands already, if he asked for any.

Peter Lancaster

Membership Secretary

Growing up in Lincolnshire in the 60s the aura of the RAF and Bomber Command - as Pete says - 'just soaks into your skin'. Pete learned to drive his Dad’s Austin Maxi on the wartime concrete of Woodhall Spa airfield. A chance meeting with George Wood, Whirlwind pilot, at a meeting of a group building a flying Typhoon sparked an interest in the Whirlwind and on hearing of the project Pete signed up to help.

Mike Eastman

Engineer

Mike started working life as an apprentice at Hawker-Siddeley, working on Nimrods and Victors;. Retiring after a career in the aero-industry Mike was determined not to waste a lifetime’s expertise and so he formed the Aircraft Restoration Group which has been responsible for replicas and rebuilds across the UK. It was Mike who first took on the task of rebuilding a Whirlwind.

Robert Bowater

Project Archivist / Historian

Rob was born in England some 20 years after the Whirlwind was retired from service. His passion for Second World War aviation began at an early age and ‘263 and 137 Squadrons: The Whirlwind Years’ – his first book – was the culmination of many years research. His ultimate ambition is that in addition to having the only Westland Whirlwind in the World, the Project will house the biggest archive of Whirlwind documents and photos – both to be housed in the Kent Battle of Britain Museum.

The Team

All of the people on this page have an input into the ongoing build. Also, we have had considerable assistance from Matt Painter (with laptop), Rene Peters, Paul Fitzgerald, Jeff Beaumont, Jerry Brewer, Steve Vizard (right), Patrice Moreau, Steve Smith, Brian Marsh, Niall Couduroy, Colin Smithson, and several others. Also in the memory of founder member and the driving force that made it all real when others said it couldn't be done - Stuart Hawkins (left).

If you notice this notice...

We are committed to replicating every detail even if forgotten for 80 years,, no matter how inexplicable, and regardless of whether the viewing public are likely to ever see it. One example of this is the curious warning placard behind a door within a door.

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Whirlwind Fighter Project Wins Prestigious Award

The Whirlwind Fighter Project have been honoured to receive the Robert Pleming Memorial Prize from Aviation Heritage UK, the supporting professional body behind the British aircraft restoration and preservation scene. More details to follow.

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Dartmoor Whirlwinds – A Developed Hypothesis

A little bit of digging into navigation procedures and a fly-through on Google Earth has refined Matt's thoughts further on the likely location of the 'Dartmoor Pair'.

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When the Wind Won't Whirl - or the real reason the Whirlwind suffered at height.

The Whirlwind was said to have been let down by its engines. This never added up to the WFP's Matt Bearman and in an article originally published in The Aviation Historian quarterly Matt unearths some surprising facts,

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What it's all about - from our Chief Engineer.

A couple of buttons from 1942 represent real Social History- Pete Smith, WFP C.E, reflects on the real meaning of some eighty year old components.

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The Legendary Dartmoor Whirlwinds

The WFP is investigating a wartime tragedy and a mystery that has exercised Aviation Historians for decades - what happened to the Dartmoor Whirlwinds?

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Flying the Royal Air Force Westland Whirlwind

Group Captain Arthur H. Donaldson, DSO, DFC, AFC, RAF, Ret. reflects on operating the Whirlwind

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Whirlwinds over Jersey

A member from Jersey corresponds on the memorial to two Whirlwind pilots shot down there, and a salvaged propeller.

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Gunnar Olsen on CAD for the project

Gunnar Olsen, another childhood victim of Airfix, on how he became the project's CAD Engineer.

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Operation Starkey.

P7056 took part in a fake invasion of occupied France. Painted in white stripes 263 Squadron attacked shore installations - at the height of Squadron morale.

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Bellows

An extraordinary story of subterfuge, bravery and generosity - and the reason so many Whirlwinds had 'Bellows' painted or even chalked on them.

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  • Kent, UK

We are a non-geographical organisation, and for obvious reasons do not publicise the precise location of P7056 while under construction, although it will be housed and displayed by the Kent Battle of Britain Museum, Hawkinge.


Club P7056 Annual Membership

  • Annual membership costs £25.
  • Annual membership includes of a PDF copy of the memoirs of Rev. George Wood (fourth from left, back) – a WW2 fighter veteran who flew Whirlwinds and Typhoons. George’s memoirs are not widely available so this is a unique gift. 
  • We include a high-quality member’s badge and a membership card, giving half-price entry to the Kent Battle of Britain Museum, Hawkinge.*
  • You will receive a quarterly newsletter
  • We will announce further ad hoc benefits and bonusses for our members.
  • All proceeds go towards the build. 

Please use the link below:

Our Membership Secretary, Peter Lancaster, is notified when a membership subscription is purchased and will be in touch. Please ensure that you leave the correct contact details.

Should there be no contact please check that the payment was successful - PayPal does not always notify of incomplete transactions..

Alternatively, please email us at p7056club@gmail.com

* There are annual members who have chosen not to renew their membership as the project has progressed. The Kent Battle of Britain  Museum staff have a list of CURRENT members - who, with their WFP membership card, will gain half-price entry.

Life membership costs £250.

As well as the benefits of the Annual Membership, permanent membership brings the undertaking from the project that their name and a short inscription/dedication be added onto the inside of one of the open undercarriage doors of P7056 for permanent display.

Please use the link below:

Alternatively, please email us: p7056club@gmail.com

Please note that, as of 9th Feb 2023, we have had to change our membership email account - as above.

Our membership secretary, Peter Lancaster, is notified when a membership subscription is purchased and will be in touch. Please ensure that you leave the correct contact details

Should there be no contact please check that the payment was successful - PayPal does not always notify of incomplete transactions..

Thank you.

£25

Donation Amount

2023 AGM Minutes and Reports

Reports to and minutes of AGM held at the Kent Battle of Britain Museum Hawkinge on October 6th 2023 are below:

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2022 AGM Minutes and Reports

The reports to and minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on the 20th of November at the KBOB museum Hawkinge are below.

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2021 AGM Minutes and Reports

The reports to and minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on the 9th of October at East Kirby are below.

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2020 AGM Minutes and Reports

The reports to and minutes of the Annual General Meeting held online on the 27th of September are below.

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2019 AGM Minutes and Reports

The reports to and minutes of the Annual General Meeting held at East Kirby on the 5th of October are below.

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2018 AGM Minutes and Reports

Minutes of 2018 AGM held at White Waltham Airfield below:

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2017 AGM Minutes and Reports

Minutes of 2017 AGM held online are below:

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2016 AGM Minutes and Reports

Minutes of 2016 AGM at Fishburn airfield below

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2015 AGM Minutes and Reports

Minutes of 2015 AGM held in Nottingham below:

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2014 AGM Minutes and Reports

Minutes of the first AGM after establishment of the WFP in 2011, held in Yeovil n 2014, below:

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Merchandise
A range of high-quality Whirlwind-related items is availabe through the Redbubble store of Committtee Member  and Trustee Matt Bearman.

There wil also shortly be a range of WFP-branded clothing available from the WFP via the second button below, watch this space!

All proceeds from the sale of these items after manufacturing costs go directly to the Whirlwind Fighter Project.
This is where members can talk amongst ourselves, not just about building Whirlwinds but anything you want to chat about - within reason!

1. Key Definitions

The key terms that we use throughout this privacy notice are defined below, for ease:

Data Controller: under UK data protection law, this is the organisation or person responsible for deciding how personal information is collected and stored and how it is used. 

Data Processor: a Data Controller may appoint another organisation or person to carry out certain tasks in relation to the personal information on behalf of, and on the written instructions of, the Data Controller. (This might be the hosting of a site containing personal data, for example, or providing an email marketing service that facilitates mass distribution of marketing material to a Data Controller’s customer-base.)

Personal Information: in this privacy notice we refer to your personal data as ‘personal information’. ‘Personal information’ means any information from which a living individual can be identified.  It does not apply to information which has been anonymised.

Special Information – certain very sensitive personal information requires extra protection under data protection law.  Sensitive data includes information relating to health, racial and ethnic origin, political opinions, religious and similar beliefs, trade union membership, sex life and sexual orientation and also includes genetic information and biometric information. 


2. Details of personal information which we collect and hold about you

Set out below are the general categories and details of retention periods in relation to those categories (see section 7 below for more details about retention and in each case the types of personal information which we collect, use and hold about you:

General Category 

Types of Personal Data in that category 

Retention Periods

Identity Information

This is information relating to your identity such as your name (including any previous names and any titles which you use), gender, marital status and date of birth

Data where provided will be kept for the duration of Membership. We will never ask for gender, marital status or Date of Birth.

Contact Information

This is information relating to your contact details such as e-mail address, addresses, telephone numbers

Data where provided will be kept for the duration of Membership.

Account Information

This is information relating to your account with us (including username and password)

Data where provided will be kept for the duration of Membership.

Payment Information

This is information relating to the methods by which you provide payment to us such as [bank account details, credit or debit card details] and details of any payments (including amounts and dates) which are made between us.

This will not be kept by the WFP. All such data is handled by a third-party processor (PayPal). 

Transaction Information

This is information relating to transactions between us such as details of the goods, services and/or digital content provided to you and any returns details.

Data where provided will be kept for the duration of Membership.

Survey Information

This is information which we have collected from you or which you have provided to us in respect of surveys and feedback.

Any surveys will be anonymous and personal information will not be kept.

Marketing Information

This is information relating to your marketing and communications preferences.

Data where provided will be kept for the duration of Membership.

Website, Device and Technical Information

This is information about your use of our website and technical data which we collect (including your IP address, the type of browser you are using and the version, the operating system you are using, details about the time zone and location settings on the device and other information we receive about your device

This information will not be kept.


3. Details of special information which we collect and hold about you

Special information is explained in section 1 above. 

We do not collect or hold any special information about you.

We do not collect information from you relating to criminal convictions or offences.


4. Details of how and why we use personal information

We are only able to use your personal information for certain legal reasons set out in data protection law.  There are legal reasons under data protection law other than those listed below, but in most cases, we will use your personal information for the following legal reasons:

Contract Reason: this is in order to perform our obligations to you under a contract we have entered into with you;

Legitimate Interests Reason: this is where the use of your personal information is necessary for our (or a third party’s) legitimate interests, so long as that legitimate interest does not override your fundamental rights, freedoms or interests.

Legal Obligation Reason: this is where we have to use your personal information in order to perform a legal obligation by which we are bound; and

Consent Reason: this is where you have given us your consent to use your personal information for a specific reason or specific reasons.

So that we are able to provide you with membership benefits we will need your personal information.  If you do not provide us with the required personal information, we may be prevented from supplying membership benefits.   

It is important that you keep your personal information up to date.  If any of your personal information changes, please contact us as soon as possible to let us know.  If you do not do this then we may be prevented from supplying membership benefits.

Where we rely on consent for a specific purpose as the legal reason for processing your personal information, you have the right under data protection law to withdraw your consent at any time.  If you do wish to withdraw your consent, please contact us using the details set out at the beginning of this notice.  If we receive a request from you withdrawing your consent to a specific purpose, we will stop processing your personal information for that purpose, unless we have another legal reason for processing your personal information, in which case, we will confirm that reason to you. 

We have explained below the different purposes for which we use your personal information and, in each case, the legal reason(s) allowing us to use your personal information.  Please also note the following:

  • if we use the Legitimate Interests Reason as the legal reason for which we can use your personal information, we have also explained what that legitimate interest is; and

  • for some of the purposes we may have listed more than one legal reason on which we can use your personal information, because the legal reason may be different in different circumstances.  If you need confirmation of the specific legal reason that we are relying on to use your personal data for that purpose, please contact us using the contact details set out at the start of this privacy notice.

Purpose

Legal Reason(s) for using the personal information 

To enrol you as a member

In order to provide membership enrolment pack.

Order updates

Advising you of any updates in relation to your order

Membership updates

Advising you on the status of your membership

Audit and accounting

Financial Audit including overseas transactions

Record keeping in the case of life members

To enable inscription on airframe. (where this has been requested)

To maintain member benefits

In order to provide goods, ongoing benefits, services and/or digital content

Sometimes we may anonymise personal information so that you can no longer be identified from it and use this for our own purposes. In addition, sometimes we may use some of your personal information together with other people’s personal information to give us statistical information for our own purposes.  

Because this is grouped together wither other personal information and you are not identifiable from that combined data we are able to use this.  

Under data protection laws we can only use your personal information for the purposes  we have told you about, unless we consider that the new purpose is compatible with the purpose(s) which we told you about.   If we want to use your personal information for a different purpose which we do not think is compatible with the purpose(s) which we told you about then we will contact you to explain this and what legal reason is in place to allow us to do this.


5. Details of how we collect personal information and special information

We usually collect Identity Information and Contact Information directly from you when you fill out a form on our website or contact us by e-mail, telephone, in writing or otherwise.  We may receive some of your personal information from third parties or publicly available sources.  This includes Contact Information and Payment Information from third-party suppliers, such as Paypal.

We may also receive Website, Device and Technical Information automatically from technologies such as cookies which are installed on our website.  This data is processed by a third party, Site123.com and is never kept by the WFP.

 

6. Details about who personal Information may be shared with

We may need to share your personal information with other organisations or people.  These organisations include third parties such as:

  • IT support services and payment providers

  • Government bodies and regulatory bodies: such as HMRC and fraud prevention agencies

  • Our advisors: such as lawyers, accountants, auditors, insurance companies

  • Our bank

  • E-mail platforms

Depending on the circumstances, the organisations or people whom we share your personal information with will be acting as either Data Processors or Data Controllers.  Where we share your personal information with a Data Processor we will ensure that we have in place contracts, which set out the responsibilities and obligations of us and them, including in respect of security of personal information. 

We do not sell or trade any of the personal information which you have provided to us.

We do not transfer your personal information outside of the UK


7. Details about how long we will hold your personal information

We will only hold your personal data for as long as is necessary.  How long is necessary will depend upon the purposes for which we collected the personal information (see section 4 above) and whether we are under any legal obligation to keep the personal information (such as in relation to accounting or auditing records or for tax reasons).  We may also need to keep personal information in case of any legal claims.

We have set out above the details of our retention periods for different types of data. You can find them in in section 2.


8. Your rights under data protection law

Under data protection laws you have certain rights in relation to your personal information, as follows:

  • Right to request access: (this is often called ‘subject access’).  This is the right to obtain from us a copy of the personal information which we hold about you. We must also provide you with certain other information in response to these requests to help you understand how your personal information is being used.

  • Right to correction: this is the right to request that any incorrect personal data is corrected and that any incomplete personal data is completed.

  • Right to erasure: (this is often called the “right to be forgotten”). This right only applies in certain circumstances.  Where it does apply, you have the right to request us to erase all of your personal information.

  • Right to restrict processing: this right only applies in certain circumstances.  Where it does apply, you have the right to request us to restrict the processing of your personal information.

  • Right to data portability: this right allows you to request us to transfer your personal information to someone else.

  • Right to object: you have the right to object to us processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes.  You also have the right to object to us processing personal information where our legal reason for doing so is the Legitimate Interests Reason (see section 4 above) and there is something about your particular situation which means that you want to object to us processing your personal information.  In certain circumstances you have the right to object to processing where such processing consists of profiling (including profiling for direct marketing).

In addition to the rights set out in this document where we rely on consent as the legal reason for using your personal information, you have the right to withdraw your consent.  Further details about this are set out in section 4.

f you want to exercise any of the above rights in relation to your personal information, please contact us using the details set out at the beginning of this notice.  If you do make a request then please note:

  • we may need certain information from you so that we can verify your identity;

  • we do not charge a fee for exercising your rights unless your request is unfounded or excessive; and

  • if your request is unfounded or excessive then we may refuse to deal with your request.


9. Marketing

You will not receive marketing from us about similar goods and services.

We do not pass your personal information on to any third parties for marketing purposes.

 

10. Complaints

If you are unhappy about the way that we have handled or used your personal information, you have the right to complain to the UK supervisory authority for data protection, which is the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).  Please do contact us in the first instance if you wish to raise any queries or make a complaint in respect of our handling or use of your personal information, so that we have the opportunity to discuss this with you and to take steps to resolve the position.  You can contact us using the details set out at the beginning of this privacy notice. 


11. Third Party Websites

Our website contains links to third party websites. If you click and follow those links then these will take you to the third party website.  Those third party websites may collect personal information from you and you will need to check their privacy notices to understand how your personal information is collected and used by them.