Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft

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Sir W. G. Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft Company
Industry Aviation
Fate Merged with Gloster Aircraft Company & Hawker Aircraft
Successor Hawker Siddeley
Founded 1912 (as Sir W. G. Armstrong Whitworth (Aerial Department))
Defunct 1961
Headquarters Gosforth, Parkside, Whitley, Baginton, Bitteswell

Sir W. G. Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft Company, or Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft, was a British aircraft manufacturer.


Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft was established as the Aerial Department of the Sir W. G Armstrong Whitworth & Company engineering group in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1912, and from c. 1914 to 1917 employed the Dutch aircraft designer Frederick Koolhoven (hence the "F.K." models).

The last of 100 Gloster Meteor NF.14 night fighters built for the RAF at AWA’s factories demonstrating at the 1954 Farnborough Air Show

In 1920, Armstrong Whitworth acquired the engine and automobile manufacturer Siddeley-Deasy. The engine and automotive businesses of both companies were spun off as Armstrong Siddeley and the aircraft interests as the Sir W. G. Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft Company. When Vickers and Armstrong Whitworth merged in 1927 to form Vickers-Armstrongs, Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft and Armstrong Siddeley were bought out by J. D. Siddeley and did not join the new grouping. This left two aircraft companies with Armstrong in the name - Vickers-Armstrongs (usually known as just "Vickers") and "Armstrong-Whitworth".

In 1935, J. D. Siddeley retired and Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft was purchased by Hawker Aircraft, the new group becoming Hawker Siddeley Aircraft. The component companies of Hawker Siddeley co-operated, but operated as individual entities.

During the 1950s Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft built many Gloster Meteor, Hawker Seahawk and Hawker Hunter jet fighters at their Bitteswell and Baginton factories for delivery to the Royal Air Force, the Royal Navy and the Royal Belgian Air Force.

The company was eventually merged with another Hawker Siddeley company, Gloster Aircraft Company, to form Whitworth Gloster Aircraft in 1961. In 1963 Hawker Siddeley dropped the names of the component companies from its products, the last Armstrong Whitworth product, the Argosy, becoming the Hawker Siddeley Argosy.



Date of first flight in parenthesis.

Armstrong Whitworth Aerial Department
Armstrong-Siddeley Aircraft
Armstrong-Whitworth Aircraft



See also


  1. ^ "The Armstrong-Siddeley Sinaia" FLIGHT page 605, 8 September 1921

External links

  • The History of Sir W. G. Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft Limited
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