The Sanders Roe SR.A1 Or “Squirt”. A Fighter That Didn’t Need A Carrier.

by Daniel Russ on July 22, 2012

Sanders Row SR.A1 Flying Boat

Sanders Row SR.A1



The SR.A1 was a prototype jet powered sea plane/fighter. The idea was to use the ocean itself around British military assets, particularly in the Pacific, as away to launch air defense or reconnaissance flights when carriers were unavailable. In May of 1944 the three prototypes were commissioned. They mimicked the fuselage of a typical flying boat like the Catalina. The powerful new turbojet engine, the Metropolitan-Vickers F2/4 Beryl turbojets could compensate for the drag on the plane caused by the distinctly less aerodynamic sausage like profile.



Sanders Row SR.A1 Flying Boat

Sanders Row SR.A1


The cabin was pressurized and the crew had escape seats. These were the very first Martin Baker Ejection Seats. The first prototype did not fly until July 1947. One of the prototypes hit flotsam and crashed. The plane was cancelled in light of a shortage of the engines. The manufacturer, Metropolitan-Vickers, closed and so the projects was prorogued.  The plane was equipped with four Vickers 22mm guns and the capacity to carry bombs.



It was resurrected in 1950 but by then the fantastic speed of aviation innovation had left the Squirt behind.



Sources: Wikipedia, Military History Channel, Imperial War Museum, History Channel


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