As the new generation of monoplane aircraft began to enter RAF service, the Air Ministry recognised the need for a modern elementary trainer which related to the technical advances and operational flying requirements of their future pilots.
Based on satisfactory experience with the Miles Hawk Trainers used in the Elementary Flying Training School the Air Ministry decided, unusually when they had for some years been specifying metal construction, to adopt an all wooden airframe. Thus the Miles M 14 was developed from the civil Hawk series of low-wing cantilever monoplanes and was basically a Hawk Major with enlarged cockpits to accomodate parachutes and fitted with blind flying equipment. With a low wing, meaningful stall and split flaps it mirrored the handling charactersitics of the new breed of RAF fighters. In fact in 1938 spinning problems were encountered and its handling was then â€˜softenedâ€™ by modifications to the rudder and rear fuselage. The Magister was then given full Air Ministry approval for aerobatics.
The Magister entered RAF service in 1937, initially at the Central Flying School and thereafter with a further 16 Elementary Flying Training Schools. As the aircraft entered operational use the outdated Avro Tutor biplane was gradually withdrawn from the elementary flying training role. Between 1937 and 1941 a total of 1,229 Magisters was delivered to the RAF.
A number also saw service with the Army and the Fleet Air Arm with others delivered for service in Ireland, Egypt, New Zealand and Turkey.
THIS EXHIBIT: P6382
This aeroplane was acquired in 1971 bearing the bogus civil registration G-AJDR, but the logbook revealed an earlier change of fuselage (to which an aeroplaneâ€™s identity is attached) to that of P6382 which had never borne a civil registration. It was restored to flying condition by Shuttleworth apprentices using components from three other specimens and is one of only three airworthy examples in the world.