Предшественник "Сандерленда" - патрульная летающая лодка Шорт "Сингапур" III
With the unmistakable Rochester Bridge in the background, a Singapore III flies over the Medway after its completion at the nearby Short factory. The Singapore III would ultimately be replaced by the same company’s superlative Sunderland, examples of which entered RAF service in the summer of 1938.
Singapore III K4577 of No 203 Sqn on the step while taking off from Basra in August 1939. The type’s first overseas posting was with No 230 Sqn to Alexandria, Egypt, in January 1935, and the Singapore IIIs of Nos 209 and 210 Sqns were used for anti-piracy patrols from Malta to protect British shipping during the Spanish Civil War.
The Singapore III was the last of Short’s long line of biplane flying-boats for the RAF. Based on the single-finned Singapore Mks I and II, the Mk III made its first flight in June 1934 and entered RAF service with No 230 Sqn at Pembroke Dock in April 1935. This example, K6921, served with No 209 Ыйт until it was struck off charge in August 1939.
THE F.24 CAMERA (an example of which is seen attached to the outward-opening nose-hatch of a Short Singapore), was the primary RAF aircraft camera for 30 years.
A poor-quality but previously unpublished photograph of three of No 203 Sqn’s Singapore IIIs at anchor off Aden in September 1939, just after the outbreak of war. The Singapores were soon put into “sand and spinach” camouflage and, following 203 Sqn’s conversion to Blenheim IVs, were left in Aden Harbour, partly as a deterrent to raiders from Somaliland across the Gulf of Aden.
Singapore IIIs of No 203 Sqn undergo maintenance on the slipway beside the hangar at Basra. Some 37 examples of the Singapore III were built, 19 of which were still in RAF service when war broke out in September 1939. Four of No 205 Sqn were sent to Fiji to become the nucleus of No 5 Sqn RNZAF, which used them until 1945.