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Joy Lofthouse (14th Feb 1923 – 15th Nov 2017)--single Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) pilot figure--LAST ONE!!

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Thomas Gunn Miniatures

Item Number: RAF006A

Joy Lofthouse (born 14th Feb 1923 – died 15th Nov 2017) Joy was a British pilot, having joined the ATA pilot in December 1943 together with her sister, Yvonne, after seeing a magazine advert asking seeking women to learn how to fly.  They were two of only 17 out of 2,000 applicants accepted, including Joy, who had never even driven a car.  She flew 18 types of aircraft and Lofthouse was based at White Waltham, in Berkshire.  Her first solo flight was in a Miles Magister, her initial work focused on delivering Magisters and Tiger Moth biplanes to flying schools.  She later went on to fly Spitfires and bombers.    In 2015, she returned to the skies, taking control of a dual control tandem Spitfire, 70 years after last flying in one in 1945.   She died in November 2017, at the age of 94.   Before she died, Lofthouse was one of the two surviving WWII "Spitfire Girls".  

The Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) The ATA was a British civilian organization set up at the beginning of WWII, headquarters at White Waltham Airfield in Berkshire.  The ATA ferried new, repaired, and damaged military aircraft between factories, assembly plants, transatlantic delivery points, maintenance units, scrapyards, and active service squadrons and airfields, but not to naval aircraft carriers.  Also ferrying service personnel performed some air ambulance work.  During the war, around 10% of ATA pilots were women, were 168 female pilots, one in eight of all ATA pilots, and they volunteered from Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the United States, the Netherlands, and Poland.  The female pilots, nicknamed "Attagirls", had a high profile in the press, and from 1943 they received equal pay to their male colleagues, a first for the British government. 

In Feb 2024, we are releasing the first two of our ATA Women.  We are extremely pleased with the figures and will look to be releasing several figures representing these pioneering women, who stepped up to serve when they were asked.  This is the first of the new ATA female pilots from Thomas Gunn.  The masters for these WAAF girls were all painted by a national champion award winning model painter and we hope you can see the quality shining through on these figures.

Limited to 100 in number.

Released in FEBRUARY 2024.