One of the advantages of helping an eleven-year-old with her homework is that you get to learn stuff.... She's doing the Second World War and has to do a presentation of one aspect of the conflict. I suggested the Battle of Britain and so we started Googling....
We were looking at the Wikipidia page on The Few and it had a list of the ten top 'Aces' of the Battle of Britain - mainly Spitfire and Hurricane pilots. Of the ten, how many would you think would be British? You'd assume all of them, right? So wrong! Only four of the ten were! The leading ace was from Czechoslovakia, there were two from New Zealand (go Kiwis!), one from Poland, one from Australia, and one from the United States. (I'm sure there's a joke about why there are were no Irish pilots but for the life of me I can't think of one!) Of the ten aces, five were killed in action. God bless them.
Anyway, for anyone who is interested, the top ten Aces were:
1) Sgt J Frantisek (Czechoslovakia) 17 kills
2) Plt Off ES Lock (United Kingdom) 16 1/2 kills
3) Sgt JH Lacey (United Kingdom) 15 1/2kills
3) Fg Off BJG Carbury (New Zealand) 15 1/2 kills
5) Plt Off RFT Doe (United Kingdom) 15 kills
5) Fg Off W Urbanowicz (Poland) 15 kills
7) Flt Lt PC Hughes (Australia) 14 3/2 kills
8) Plt Off CF Gray (New Zealand) 14 2/2 kills
9) Flt Lt AA McKellar (United Kingdom) 14 1/2 kills
10) Flt Lt CR Davis (United States) 11 1/s kills
There were 3,080 classed as The Few, of whom only six per cent went to the top 13 public schools. The biggest public school contingent came from Eton. (Go Eton!)