Although not generally regarded as one of the most fashionable British aircraft to see service during the Second World War, the Avro Anson was nevertheless one of the most important aircraft not only of the inter-war years, but also during WWII itself and is deserving of more recognition than it usually receives. An aircraft which began its development in 1933 as a high speed, long range, modern mail carrying charter aircraft, the Avro 652 was still in development when the British Air Ministry issued a requirement for a twin engined, general reconnaissance and multi-role aircraft capable of performing a variety of roles for both the Royal Air force and the Royal Navy.
The Avro team felt that their new aircraft would be perfect for the role and later entered it in an official evaluation programme with the competitor de Havilland DH89M, the military version of their biplane Dragon Rapide. The Avro design was found to possess greater range and endurance and whilst not without a few areas which would require some design modifications, an initial order for 174 militarised aircraft was placed. The Avro 652 would be given the name Anson after an Eighteenth Century British Admiral of the fleet, a development which did not please everyone at the Air Ministry, but as the aircraft was intended to undertake maritime patrols, the name did seem rather appropriate.
Highlighting the importance of the Avro Anson as a British aircraft type, when it entered service with No.48 Squadron at RAF Manston in March 1936, it became the first monoplane type to achieve squadron service status, but was also the first RAF aircraft to feature a retractable undercarriage. At this time, the advanced Anson quickly began to attract attention from several other countries and in order to capitalise on this interest, some aircraft were diverted from existing RAF orders to fulfil these requirements, with full production forcing Avro to open new manufacturing facilities in the North West of England. The RAF Anson Mk.I was equipped with a fixed forward firing .303 machine gun operated by the pilot and a single Lewis gun mounted in the manually traversed dorsal turret. It could also be equipped with a modest bomb load, something which was required by submarine hunting aircraft operated by Coastal Command and whilst there were no reports of an Anson sinking a U-Boat, their presence would keep these feared hunters submerged.
During the Dunkirk evacuations, Ansons used to cover the operation came under attack by Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters, which had real difficulty engaging the slow flying British aircraft. Consistently overshOOting the Ansons, they came in the sights of the aircraft's forward firing gun and astonishingly, two of the Luftwaffe fighters were shot down and a third was badly damaged, with all the Ansons escaping from the engagement unscathed. Despite the fact that the RAF entered the Second World War with 26 squadrons equipped with Avro Ansons, they were basically obsolete as a fighting machine and particularly for the ones assigned to Bomber Command, they were quickly withdrawn to secondary training roles, a task for which the 'Faithfull Annie' was particularly well suited. As part of the Empire Air Training Scheme, many thousands of aircrew destined for service with Bomber Command were trained both in the UK and overseas, including those destined to serve in the Avro Lancaster, the mighty bomber which was produced in some of the same factories previously used to produce Ansons.
With just under 11,000 Ansons eventually produced, the final RAF example was only withdrawn from service as a station communications aircraft in 1968.
Shipping and Delivery
Access Models offers efficient delivery services within the UK and overseas, aiming to dispatch orders within 48 hours of receipt, contingent on payment confirmation. Standard UK deliveries are conducted via Royal Mail, typically arriving within 2-3 days, though customers are advised to allow up to 5 days. For expedited deliveries, the express service ensures next-day delivery for orders placed before 1pm, with specific provisions for orders placed over the weekend or on bank holidays.
Shipping charges vary based on the order value and destination. UK standard shipping costs range from £4.99 to £7.99, with additional surcharges for heavy items and non-mainland UK destinations, including specific regions like Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, Guernsey, and Jersey. We do not ship to PO Boxes and BFPO addresses.
For heavy, bulky, or restricted items such as large model kits and items containing hazardous materials, special shipping considerations apply. International shipping starts at £18, with varying costs and delivery times based on destination zones. Access Models does not ship to certain countries including Spain, USA, and Australia.
Customers may encounter customs fees on international orders, which are not included in our shipping costs and are the responsibility of the customer. In case of postal losses or damage, claims may take up to 30 days to process, and we require customer confirmation to initiate this process.
Returns are accepted within 14 days for change of mind and 30 days for faulty items, in line with the EU Distance Selling Directive. Access Models offers repair, exchange, or refund for eligible returns, excluding faults due to misuse or wear and tear. Customers are responsible for return postage costs, except in cases of damage or fault. Refunds are issued in accordance with the returns policy, excluding opened packages unless they are faulty.