The Hurricane was the RAF's first monoplane fighter, going into service before its famous partner in RAF service the Spitfire. The Hurricane was available in greater numbers for its finest hour in the Battle of Britain, where it played a crucial role in the defence of this country, shooting down more enemy aircraft than the Spitfire.
Hurricane Mk XIIa 5711 (G-HURI) was built in 1942 by the Canadian Car Foundry as part of their sixth production batch and it joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1943. It is believed to have served with 123 Squadron at Debert before going to 127 and 129 Squadrons at Dartmouth and onto 1 Operational Training Unit at Bagotville.
Struck of charge from the RCAF in 1947 it was purchased by a syndicate in Saskatchewan. It was restored by Paul Mercer in 1985 and made its first post-restoration flight in 1989. Historic Aircraft Collection acquired the Hurricane in 2002; it is still based at Duxford where it is the perfect stablemate for HAC's Spitfire Mk.Vb.
After undergoing an 18 month extensive programme of repairs and maintenance the Hurricane reappeared in an entirely new paint scheme for 2004. G-HURI now flies as 'Z5140' with the code letters HA-C and is in a paint scheme that was worn by a Gloster-built Hurricane IIB, flown with 126 Squadron during the siege of Malta. Z5140 arrived at Malta on June 6th, 1941 during Operation Rocket, having flown off HMS Ark Royal. Whilst it would be expected that the aircraft would be in a tropical paint finish, the Malta squadrons were desperate to receive any aircraft regardless of colour and the first ones were kept in the familiar "Battle of Britain" green and brown scheme.
In September 2005 Hurricane “Z5140” became the first Hurricane to return to the Mediterranean island of Malta since the Second World War. It flew there together with Spitfire BM597 as part of the Merlins Over Malta project.
Hurricane Mk XIIa G-HURI is on permanent display in Hangar 3 at the Imperial War Museum, Duxford.