What-If “High Speed Handley Page Bomber” as a wartime BOAC transport

The Specification P.13/36 is best known for leading to the development of the Avro Manchester (and through that aircraft, the Lancaster) and the Handley Page Halifax, but the latter company also looked at a much different class of aircraft to meet the RAF’s need. This design would have lacked defensive armament, relying on its great speed to deter interception. Additionally, without the guns, fewer crewmen would be needed, and the aircraft would be easier and faster to build. This concept went nowhere at the time, but of course would be exemplified during the war by de Havilland’s Mosquito.

Handley-Page High Speed Bomber color profile


For this “what if” I postulated that a few of the “High Speed H-Ps” were indeed built, and ended serving with BOAC as priority transports, shuttling between the UK and Sweden to carry VIPs and important cargos such as ball bearings. In reality, some of these flights were carried out by BOAC-marked Mosquitos, and the profile borrows the registration from one of those aircraft.


British Secret Projects 3: Fighters and Bombers 1935-1950