The Royal “Navy’s Most Modern Aircraft Carrier” circa 1955

British Movietone just posted this great short about the newly commissioned HMS Ark Royal (R09) in October 1955, “shortly leaving for the Mediterranean.”

The video includes a short clip of her plankowner skipper, Capt (later RADM) Dennis Royle Farquharson Cambell, CB, DSC– the pioneer who shot down the first German aircraft in WWII by a British pilot and later went on to invent the angled carrier flight deck. Also shown are Ark Royal‘s interesting 1950s FAA airwing to include early Hawker Sea Hawk jets, which were just joining the fleet, and late-model Grumman TBM-3E Avengers, which were on their way out.

Notably, Ark Royal would go on to be the last large deck British carrier in service in the 20th Century, only retiring in 1979, at which point she flew F-4 (FG1) Phantoms and Buccaneer S2 strike aircraft.

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