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Eleanor Wadsworth – a tribute

One of the last surviving 'Spitfire women' Eleanor Wadsworth has passed away, aged 103. Mrs Wadsworth served as a Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) pilot during the Second World War, delivering aircraft and crew around the UK.

Air Vice-Marshal Chris Elliot, Controller of the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: "All at the RAF Benevolent Fund are saddened to hear of the passing of Eleanor Wadsworth – our condolences go to her family and friends.

"Eleanor and her female colleagues were pioneers of their time, climbing into the cockpit to support the war effort at home. It was an unusual job for a woman, and they were the unsung heroes of the Second World War, selflessly flying into danger.

"I'm sure her bravery and skill will continue to inspire generations of Royal Air Force pilots."

The ATA moved 309,000 aircraft of 147 different types during the war, and Mrs Wadsworth was one of 165 women who signed up. Mrs Wadsworth flew 22 different kinds of aircraft including 132 Spitfires.

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