Handley Page Victor

The Victor was the third of Britain's V bombers to fly and despite being less well known than the Vulcan it was arguably the best of the three. The Victor was faster, higher flying and capable of carrying a heavier bombload than both the Valiant and Vulcan. The aircraft featured a unique crescent shaped leading edge on the swept wings and tail horizontal surfaces. The 50 initial Victor B.1's entered service in 1958 and these were powered by four Sapphire turbojets. From 1960 24 were fitted with additional ECM gear to become B.1A's. The Victor B.2 entered service from 1962 and featured more powerful Rolls-Royce Conway 200 turbofans. Thirty four were built and most were later upgraded to B.2R standard with even more powerful Conway 201's. Nine B.2's were converted to B(SR).2 standard with cameras and SLAR for the strategic reconnaissance mission. By 1968 the B.2R had been withdrawn from service and the B(SR).2's had followed by 1975. However Victors retired from their frontline role moved on to become tankers. Thirty-one B.1/B.1A's were converted to K.1/K.1A tankers from 1965 and from 1972 they were joined by 24 converted B.2s and SR's as K.2's. The K.2's saw extensive service in the Falklands and the 1991 Gulf War before being finally retired in 1993.

Crew Five (Pilot, Co-pilot, Air Electronics Officer, Nav-Radar Operator and Nav-Plotter)

Number Of Engines Four
Powerplant type Rolls Royce Conway RCo17 Mk 201 non-afterburning turbofan
Max Power Rating 9,344kg

Length 35.03m (114ft 11in)
Height 8.57m (28ft 1.5in)
Wingspan 34.44m (113ft)
Wing Area 204.38m2 (2,200sq ft)


Empty Weight 51,936kg (114,500lb)
Max Take-off Weight 107,955kg (238,000lb)
Internal fuel load 45,359kg (100,000lb)
External Fuel Load 12,247kg (27,000lb)

Landing Gear

Type Retractable tricycle type with eight-wheel main units and a twin-wheel nose unit
Wheel Track 10.06m (33ft)


Maximum Range 3997nm (7403km; 4,600mi)