Handley Page Halifax

The Handley Page Halifax was a heavy bomber powered by four Rolls-Royce Merlin engines (later Bristol Hercules engines) which was utilised by the squadron for training and operational purposes from November 1940 to April 1944

HP57 Halifax B MKI.JPG

HP57 Halifax B MKI Profile © Malcolm Barrass


When the Halifax was originally introduced, the plan was to have a five man crew, a Pilot, 2nd Pilot, Observer and 2 x Wireless Operator / Air Gunners. However, it was quickly recognised that the Halifax needed a specific airman to deal with the complex fuel, oil, electric, hydraulic and pneumatic systems and the composition of the crew was changed to include a Fitter II (Flight Engineer) – read more – 

Crew Positions

The crew compartment in a Handley Page Halifax consisted of an upper deck to accommodate the Pilot, 2nd Pilot and Fitter II [Flight Engineer] and a lower deck for the Wireless Operator, Observer / Navigator and Air Bomber  – read more –

Halifax variants utilised by No. 35 Squadron

The Halifax evolved throughout its life and the following variants were introduced and utilised by No 35 Squadron.

  • The Halifax Prototype
  • The HP57 B.MKI, which had three variants (Series 1, 2 and 3) and it is quite easy to distinguish which aircraft serial numbers fell within each series.
  • The HP59 B.MKII, which also had three variants (Series 1, Series 1 Special and Series 1a) but production changes and modifications evolved, making it difficult to establish which aircraft serials fell within each series.

    It is thought that all the newly introduced Halifaxes operating with the squadron from 11/12 February 1943 until the end of April 1943 were HP59 (Series 1 Special)
  • The HP61 B.MKIII

(Note: Other variants were manufactured, but these were not used by the squadron)

The following pages provide more details regarding the variants utilised by the squadron:


  • Armament
  • Automatic Pilot
  • Navigation Aid(s) / System(s)
  • Communication System(s)
  • Warning / Notification System(s)

Aircraft on charge of No. 35 Squadron

Aircraft losses and incidents were as follows: