"The Aeroplane won't amount to a damn until they get a machine that will act like a hummingbird - go straight up, go forward, go backward, come straight down and alight. It isn't easy but someone is going to do it."
Thomas Edison (1847-1931)
Leader - Nick Greenall
Treasurer & Membership Secretary - Richard Everett
The arrival at RIAT 2016 of the F-35B almost 6 years since the UK's Joint Force Harrier disbanded and HMS Ark Royal decommissioned, foresaw the future of STOVL flight in the UK at RAF Marham and on-board HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales.
While the F-35B goes from strength to strength, the Indian Navy recently bade farewell to its Sea Harriers so leaving the United States Marine Corps, Spain's Arma Aeréa de la Armada and Italy's Aviazione per la Marina as the sole operators of the iconic Harrier.
While this all happens, the Harrier Special Interest Group continues to provide members with a network of Harrier enthusiasts and modellers for the exchange of helpful information plus access to many references and extensive network which includes serving and ex RAF and RN pilots and ground crew, and a rather famous Harrier test pilot.
The SIG welcomes all levels of modelling skill and Harrier knowledge: from those with superglued-fingers to the prize-winner, from the curious to those who may have flown or maintained Harriers in the day job; and everyone in between.
Through our website, we publish biennial Harrier articles and modelling reviews, plus quarterly news bulletins. Attending model shows and working closely with the model trade to get more quality Harrier products into the marketplace are other facets of the SIG. Active membership participation is encouraged, whether writing articles, providing photos or helping at model shows.
Open to modellers globally, our only 'rule' is that members should also be members of a national IPMS group, unless they offer full-size Harrier experience to directly benefit the SIG. In countries which do not have an IPMS branch, our 'rule' may be relaxed. If you are based in the USA please contact Brad Hoskin, our Ops Leader there.
Annual fees are 5.00 GBPs for IPMS members and 10.00 GBPs for non-IPMS members; from which we fund the website and 'membership specials'. You will see that large areas of our website have members' only access. If you wish to join the SIG to access that information, then please e-mail the SIG Leader or SIG Treasurer as the first step.
Among the Harrier SIG's achievements over the years are:
- Authorship and contributions to Andy Donovan and Nick Greenall's book published by Fox Two on the Harrier GR.9 and T.12 in the 21st Century
- Major input to Kinetic's 1:48th scale Sea Harrier FA.2 and FRS.1; more to follow !
- Best Special Interest Group Silver Award, Scale ModelWorld 2011
- Participation in the UK Harrier VSTOL event at RAF Cottesmore on 15th December 2010 - Joint Force Harrier's last flying day - as guests of No.1(F) Squadron
- Visits to RAF Cottesmore; 899 Squadron, RNAS Yeovilton; 20(R) Squadron at RAF Wittering
Leading research contributions to:
- AirFRAME's Harrier Retirement Schemes decals; their "Op Telic" book and GR.7 decals
- "The Harriers of 233 OCU 1972-77" decals drawn by Dennis Robinson and produced Alistair MacLean of AlleyCat
- Xtradecals Falklands War 25th Anniversary Sea Harrier and Harrier decals
- Many pages in Andy Evans' Sea Harrier Modellers Datafile
- IPMS(UK) Best Special Interest Group Display Trophy - Scale ModelWorld 2003 and 2006
- Best Club Display - Fleet Air Arm Museum's Model Show 2003, 2004 and 2007