Westland dragonfly


Derived from Sikorsky s-51 / R-5 / H-5


In December 1946, Westland Aircraft signed an agreement to build under licence the world's first successful operational helicopter, the US Sikorsky S-51 general utility model. This became the first production helicopter in Britain and the first helicopter in the UK to achieve an airworthiness certificate. Named the Dragonfly, the first British-built WS51 flew on 5 October 1948. Westland produced two piston engined original versions, the Series 1A with a British 500hp Alvis Leonides 521/1 and the Series 1B with a US 450hp Pratt & Whitney R-985-B4 Wasp Junior. Westland produced about 150 Dragonflys. Of these, 71 went to the Royal Navy, a further 16 went to the Royal Air Force to form the first frontline helicopter squadron in the service. Westland also produced the Dragonfly for civilian customers and in small numbers for the militaries of Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), Egypt, France, Iraq, Italy, Japan and Yugoslavia. A further private development programme produced the Westland Widgeon, based heavily on the Dragonfly.


Dragonfly 1A 1950 Civil transport helicopter powered by a 520 hp (388 kW) Alvis Leonides 521/1 radial piston engine.
Dragonfly HC.2 1950 3 Dragonfly HC.2 were initially ordered by the RAF and all were delivered in Mar 1950. These were based on the Navy Dragonfly HR.1 with composite ...
Dragonfly HR.1 1950
Dragonfly HR.3 1950
Dragonfly 1B 1951 Civil transport helicopter powered by a 450 hp (336 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-985 Wasp Junior B4 radial piston engine with metal rotor blades.
Dragonfly HC.4 1952 The prototype Dragonfly HC.4 (WT845) for the RAF was based on the Navy Dragonfly HR.3 (with all metal main rotors) and included lessons learned f ...
Dragonfly HR.5 1953
widgeon 1955 Developed from the Westland WS-51 Dragonfly HR.5 as a private venture. A 3 seat general utility helicopter, powered by an Alvis Leonides 521 ...


From Organisation with model dragonfly
thailand Royal Thai Air Force
    Dragonfly 1A 3 1950/54
united kingdom Fleet Air Arm
    71 1950/67
united kingdom Royal Air Force
    Dragonfly HC.2 4 1950/54
france Armée de l'Air
    9 1952/59
united kingdom Royal Air Force
    Dragonfly HC.4 12 1952/58
italy Aeronautica Militare Italiana
    Dragonfly 1A 3 1953/??
united kingdom Royal Air Force
    16 1953/58
yugoslavia Ratno Vazdhuhoplovstvo i Protiv Vazdusna
    10 1954/92
Construction Numbers on database of dragonfly or its versions

12Dragonfly 1A

Construction Numbers Help Us

C/NBuilt asYearHistory
wa/h/001 Dragonfly 1A 1948 UK G-AKTW : Westland-Sikorsky WS-51 Dragonfly 1st prototype f/f 05o+
UK XD649 : RAF
UK G-AKTW : widgeon Westland from 1955; reworked into Widgeon Series 2 pro+
UK G-APPR : Originally built as a Dragonfly G-AKTW, 2nd convertion+
UK G-APPR : Bristow Oct58, North Sea offshore
NG 5N-ABV : Bristow Nigeria from 1962, offshore; Nigeria-Biafra wa+
wa/h/002 Dragonfly 1A 1949 UK G-ALEG : reg Westland as G-ALEG, 1949;
UK WZ749 : hc.2 sold to MoS as Dragonfly HC2, WZ749, 09Nov51;
UK G-ALEG : rtnd Westland as G-ALEG, 24Feb52; w/o 26Sep52.
wa/h/006 Dragonfly 1A 1949 IT MM80118 : G-ALMB, I-MCOM,
wa/h/007 Dragonfly 1A 1949 UK G-ALMC : Westland Dragonfly 1A, G-ALMC, 1949?
UK WF308 : hc.2 sold MoS as Dragonfly HC.2, WF308, 15Nov50; w/o 24Oct51+
wa/h/008 hr.1 1949 UK VX595 : HR.1 ff 18 Jun 1949, rotor development airframe at Yeov+
Assignments at AFEE Beaulieu Jul and Nov 1949, and Jan +
hr.3 conv HR.3 at Yeovil by 1953
hr.5 conv HR.5 at RNAY Donibristle from Nov 1956 to Jun 195+
UK VX595 : Spent time in storage variously at Fleetlands, Gosport +
wa/h/009 hr.1 1949 UK VX596 : 705Sq Jun 1950, 705Sq/710-GJ by Jul 1951, Warrior Flt N+
hr.3 Centaur Flt/902-C Apr 1954 to Mar 1955, 705Sq/535 by Ma+
hr.5 Eagle Flt/974-J by Aug 1957, 705Sq/532 by Nov 1957, For+
wa/h/010 hr.1 1949 UK VX597 : Built as HR.1 ff Oct 1949. 705Sq by Jan 1950, Indomitab+
hr.3 HR.3 conv by Mar 1953. Culdrose Stn Flt/901 by Jun 1953+
hr.5 HR.5 conv by May 1958. Centaur SAR Flt Jan 1959, 700Sq+
wa/h/020 Dragonfly 1A 1950 UK G-AMAK : ex G-17-1, to G-AMAK, ff Apr 1950, w/o 7 Jun 1950 at Ye+
wa/h/021 hr.1 1950 UK VZ962 : ff 18 May 1950 and del RNAS Gosport 13 Oct 1950. 705Sqn+
hr.3 Repaired Westland and con to HR.3 by 1953. 705Sqn/703-G+
hr.5 To Lee-on-Solent by Oct 1956 for conv to HR.5. Brawdy +
To RNEC Manadon Jun 1968 until c Aug 1972.
To BRNC Dartmouth for much of 1974, airframe incomplete+
UK VZ962 : To Cornwall Aero Park by Jul 1981 (marked /912-CU) and +
wa/h/022 hr.1 1950 UK VZ963 : ff 14 Jun 1950, dd 3 Oct 1950 Gosport to 705 Sq;RFA For+
Engine failure immediately after take off from Seaton B+
705 Sq/704-GJ by Apr 1952
noted visiting from HMS Illustrious, 2 Jun 1952
hr.3 to RNAY Donibristle 10 Mar 1953 for HR.3 conv.; 705 Sq/+
Crashed Ichenor Sailing Club 25 May 1955; soc 10 Jun 19+
wa/h/023 hr.1 1950 UK VZ964 : ff Aug 1950. 705 Sq by Jan 1951; shipped to Far East ab+
wa/h/024 hr.1 1950 UK VZ965 : ff Sep 1950, 705 Sq Nov 1950; Indomitable Flt 12 Jan 19+
hr.3 conv HR.3 at Ilchester Mar 1953; Albion Flt/901-Z Sep 1+
hr.5 conv to HR.5 Nov 1956 at Lee, CU Stn Flt/911-CU by Nov +
wa/h/026 Dragonfly 1A 1950 TH G-AMAS : ex G-17-2, G-AMAS, to R Thai AF Aug 1950, wfu 1954
wa/h/027 Dragonfly 1A 1950 TH G-AMAT : ex G-17-3, G-AMAT, to R Thai AF Aug 1950, wfu 1954
wa/h/033 hr.3 1952 UK WG663 : dd May 1952 as HR.3 to RNAS Gosport. To HMS Campania Ju+
wa/h/034 hr.3 1952 UK WG664 : dd May 1952 as HR.3 to RNAS Gosport. To HMS Campania Ju+
hr.5 conv to HR.5 at RNAY Donibristle from Jun 1954
705Sq /533 by Aug 1957. Britannia Flt (Plymouth) by sum+
wa/h/035 hr.3 1952 UK WG665 : dd May 1952 as HR.3 to RNAS Gosport. To HMS Campania Ju+
HMS Warrior SAR Flt by Dec 1953, ditched on take-off, o+
wa/h/039 hr.3 1952 UK WG669 : HR.3 705 Sq/700-GJ by Aug 1952 to Holland 2 Feb 1953 fo+
Albion SAR Flt/902-Z by Sep 1954, Eagle SAR Flt/901-J b+
hr.5 701Sq/719 by Jan 1958; 705Sq/530 by Oct 1958, crashed P+
wa/h/040 1951 UK WG670 : dd to RN, soc to Blackbushe open storage.
WG670 : to Historic Aircraft Museum, Southend c 1969. Damaged b+
wa/h/041 hr.3 1952 UK WG671 : 705Sq/702-GJ Jul 1952 until c Aug 1953; HMS Centaur SAR+
hr.5 to Lee Aug 1957 for conv to HR.5; 701 Sq/720 by Nov 195+
wa/h/050 hr.3 1952 UK WG719 : ff 19 Sep 1952 as HR.3 Hal Far SAR Flt/901-HF by Jan 1+
To Zakynthos on HMS Bermuda (C52), arr 15 Aug 1953 for +
705Sq/710-GJ by Nov 1954; to AHU Lee-on-Solent for conv+
hr.5 Yeovilton Stn Flt/948-VL by May 1958; [776Sq 1959-1961 +
UK G-BRMA : To British Rotorcraft Museum Weston-super-Mare Jun 1978+
WG719 : 03Dec16 pictured as WG719 in bare metal finish at Inter+
wa/h/053 hr.3 1952 UK WG722 : ff 16 Oct 1952, dd 9 Dec 1952 Gosport. To Malta in HMS +
To Zakynthos on HMS Bermuda, arr 15 Aug 1953 for earthq+
RNAY Donibristle by Jul 1954; Albion SAR Flt by Jun 195+
hr.5 Eglinton Stn Flt/918-GN by Oct 1958; 705Sq/530 by Sep 1+
wa/h/058 hr.3 1952 UK WG748 : ff 10 Nov 1952. dd as HR.3 to Gosport 1 Dec 1952, 705Sq+
wa/h/059 hr.3 1952 UK WG749 : ff Nov 1952 as HR, dd Dec 1952 to RNAS Gosport. Lossiem+
hr.5 Conv to HR.5 from Jul 1958; Sold to civil market by Oct+
wa/h/061 hr.3 1952 UK WG751 : ff Nov 1952; 705Sq/710-GJ by Mar 1953; Yeovilton Stn Fl+
hr.5 Yeovilton Stn Flt/948-VL by Aug 1958; First helicopter +
WG751 : Chatham Historic Dockyard; Moved between several scrap+
Jun09 pictured at the Chatham Historic Dockyard ( The w+
Sep16 still at Chatham Historic Dockyard
wa/h/064 hr.3 1952 UK WG754 : RN Dragonfly HR.3 d/d 15dec52; conv to HR.5; 15jul97 pi+
wa/h/067 hr.3 1952 UK WH991 : ff 4 Feb 1953 as HR.3, dd 24 Feb 1953 to RN at Gosport.+
hr.5 Converted to HR.5 by May 1958.
In Mar 1959 upper surfaces painted light colour for the+
Preserved at Yorkshire Air Museum, England
wa/h/076 hr.3 1953 UK WN499 : HR.3 ff 21 Apr 1953, Illustrious SAR Flt May 1953, 705S+
hr.5 Culdrose Stn Flt/911-CU Jul 1959, Fleetlands storage b+
WN499 Torbay Aircraft Museum : Torbay Aircraft Museum Jun 1971, /-Y still there Jun 19+
to Caernarfon Airworld by 1988 still Apr 1996, in poor +
wa/h/077 hr.3 1953 UK WN500 : Indomitable SAR Flt by Jul 1953; 705 Sq/704-GJ by Sep 1+
hr.5 Lossiemouth Stn Flt/934-LM by Jun 1958
Brawdy Stn Flt/904-BY by Sep 1961
Brawdy Stn Flt/904-BY, rescued 3 crewmen from the mv Ha+
Stored Fleetlands by Jul 1963
wa/h/078 hr.3 1953 UK WP493 : ff May 1953 as HR.3 and dd May 1953 to RNAS Gosport. Lo+
hr.5 Repaired and conv to HR.5 at RNAY Donibristle by Nov 19+
wa/h/080 hr.3 1953 UK WP495 : ff 20 May 1953 as HR.3; Ford Stn Flt/982-FD by Aug 1953+
hr.5 Victorious SAR Flt/967-V by Apr 1959 to c Dec 1959; Cen+
WP495 : sold to Anglo Diesel Co Jun 1964
UK WP495 : RAF Dragonfly HR.3 f/f 20may53; 14jul58 conv HR.5; fe+
UK G-AJOV : preserved at Royal Air Force Air Museum, Cosford
wa/h/083 hr.3 1953 UK WP498 : dd Jul 1953 to RNAS Gosport as HR.3. 4 month loan to RA+
hr.5 conv to HR.5 1958.
Ditched in sea off Northern Ireland Dec 1958.
wa/h/086 hr.3 1953 UK WP501 : RN d/d Aug53; 728Sq /903-HF Station Flt Hal Far by Feb5+
hr.5 701 Sq V Flt/705 on HMS Vidal by Feb 1958, ditched on t+
wa/h/088 1953 UK WP503 : built 1953, Eagle SAR Flt by Oct 1953, Lossiemouth Stn +
WP503 : to Humberside Aviation Museum in Jun 1976, wearing /901+
to Bomber County Aviation Museum 1981, until 1996.
Sunk in lake at Capernwray Diving Centre, Lancs by Apr +
wa/h/095 1954 Y2 11501 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/096 1954 Y2 11502 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/097 1954 Y2 11503 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/098 1954 Y2 11504 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/099 1954 Y2 11505 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/100 1954 Y2 11506 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/101 1954 Y2 11507 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/102 1954 Y2 11508 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/103 1954 Y2 11509 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/104 1954 Y2 11510 : del Yugoslav Air Force (under MDAP) as Dragonfly 1B, 11+
wa/h/111 1952 FR 111 : Dragonfly 1A, f/f 24 Mar 1952, d/d 4 Apr 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/112 1952 FR 112 : Dragonfly 1A, f/f 4 Apr 1952, d/d 17 Apr 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/113 1952 FR 113 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 9 Apr 1952, d/d 18 Apr 1952. ex G-17-6+
wa/h/114 1952 FR 114 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 19 Apr 1952, d/d 23 Jun 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/115 1952 FR 115 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 19 Apr 1952, d/d 23 Jun 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/116 1952 FR 116 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 27 May 1952, d/d 23 Jun 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/117 1952 FR 117 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 22 Sep 1952, d/d 29 Sep 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/118 1952 FR 118 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 22 Sep 1952, d/d 29 Sep 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/119 1952 FR 119 : Dragonfly 1A f/f 25 Sep 1952, d/d 30 Sep 1952. ex G-17-+
wa/h/120 Dragonfly 1A 1952 TH H.1-4/96 : ex G-17-2, G-AMJW, to R Thai AF May 1953 as 305-03 H.1-+
preserved at Royal Thai Air Force Museum, Don Muang, st+
wa/h/122 Dragonfly 1A 1953 IT MM80039 : El-1 G-17-3 » G-AMOW »
wa/h/123 Dragonfly 1A 1953 IT MM80040 : EL-2 G-17-16 » G-AMOX
wa/h/132 Dragonfly 1A 1954 UK G-ANLV : w/o 14 Jun 1957, struck from UK register 7 Oct 1957
wa/h/133 Dragonfly 1A 1954 UK G-ANLW : Built as Srs.1A Reg G-ANLW Mar 1954
widgeon conv Srs.2 Widgeon 1957/8.
Made first flight into London Heliport on 8 Apr 1959, p+
1971 in movie When Eight Bells Toll
UK G-ANLW : private owner from 1973; Helicopter Hire at Southend f+
Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum by 2002
wa/h/137 CH-501 : del Sri Lankan AF as CH-501, unk; pres SLAF Museum, Rat+
wa/h/145 UK G-APBK :
MY 9M-AOP : Malaysia Air Charter
MY 9M-AOP : On display at Chi Hwa Primary School,Sandakan,Sabah, Ma+
60 C/N.

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