1956 “Aeroplanes”
Barbers Tea Ltd., UK, 1956

  • Series Title: Aeroplanes
  • Issued by: Barbers Teas Ltd.
  • Country of origin: United Kingdom
  • Year issued: 1956
  • Type of card: Tea insert card
  • Number of Cards: 25-cards
  • Numbering: 1 to 25 (on reverse side)
  • Card Dimensions: 67 × 35 mm
  • Album: Barbers Tea "Aeroplanes" Picture Card Album
  • Checklist: Download


The Aeroplanes series of 25 airplane cards concentrates on aircraft used by the British during the post-World War II era. Issued in 1956 by Barbers Teas Ltd., these cards feature photographs and data supplied courtesy of the “THE AEROPLANE. ” The fronts of the cards feature nicely colored aircraft photographs surrounded by a white border. Each card contains two notations within the image area: (1) “BARBERS TEAS” is located in the top-center of the card, and (2) the aircraft manufacturer/aircraft designation are located in the lower left-hand corner of the card. The Back contains the set title, card number, and a brief description of the subject aircraft. The tan Backed cards are numbered 1 to 25, and measure 67 × 35 mm.

“Aeroplanes” Image Guide

Behind each of the following images are 600-dpi computer enhanced images that you may access. Click on the individual thumbnails to enlarge.

“Aeroplanes” Series Checklist

We have included the following two versions of the checklist: (1) the web version shown below, and (2) an Adobe® Acrobat® PDF 8½ × 11 inch format checklist. Click on the PDF icon to download.

Barbers Tea “Aeroplanes” Checklist
1De Havilland Vampire
2De Havilland Chipmunk
3Douglas Dakota
4Handley Page Hastings
5Handley Page Hermes IV
6Armstrong Whitworth A.W.52
7Auster A.2/45
8Percival Prince
9Lockheed Constellation
10Avro Lancastrian
11Gloster Meteor
12De Havilland Tiger Moth
13Airspeed Oxford
14Short Sunderland
15Avro Lancaster
16Hawker P.1040
17Supermarine Spitfire 5B
18Vickers Viking
19Short Sealand
20Boeing B-29 Superfortress
21De Havilland D.H.108
22Hawker Tempest
23De Havilland Dove
24Westland Sikorsky S-51
25Douglas DC-4
 Barbers Tea "Aeroplanes" Picture Card Album

Barbers Tea “Aeroplanes ” Picture Card Album

Bob Dros of Bel-Air Models, Amsterdam, sent us some scans of the Barbers Tea “Aeroplanes” Picture Card Album. The landscaped album measures 7.93 × 5.00 inches. Behind each of the images shown below is a 300-dpi "full-size" image that you may access.


Bob Dros — Bob was born on a Dutch island that had a small airfield and a gunnery range for naval aircraft. Bob experienced his first signs of aviation addiction at age of 7, when he was seeing and hearing “Spitfires” that flew overhead from the nearby airstrip as target tugs. Bob's childhood memories include seeing and hearing the low flying Dutch naval “Avengers”, “Harpoons”, “Neptunes” and “Sea Furies” target practicing just five miles from his island village. Bob started off his airplane trading card collection by collecting the wonderful five series of Croydon aircraft cigarette cards, and the Van Dijk's Gouda's Roem albums “History of Aviation” and “World Aviation” and Dutch aircraft gum cards. Much later, Bob started to include other Dutch sets, and airplane card sets from nearby Germany, England, and France. During 2000, Bob started collecting as many airplane sets as he could in order to create an “Encyclopedia of the World's Aviation Trade Cards” which is scheduled for publication in 2015.

Bob's interests also include music. His first group in 1962 was “The Typhoons”. Starting in 1974, Bob played drums in one of Holland's best known blues bands “Barrelhouse”. During 1978 “Barrelhouse” invited the American blues guitarist Albert Collins to Holland and toured and recorded with him. “Barrelhouse” also worked with B.B. King on his European tours. During 2014, “Barrelhouse” did a 40th Anniversary Tour in Europe.

Bob studied psychology from 1968-1975, got his degree and worked for two years, but his love of music pulled him Back into the music world.

During 1986, Bob started his own business … Bel Air Models. At first, Bel-Air Models specialized in miniature musical instruments, like electric guitars, drums and classical instruments. However, Bob's lifelong love affair with aviation later changed the focus of Bel-Air Models completely to model aircraft types. Bel-Air Models specializes in odd types of model aircraft, which are not available on the regular model aircraft market, such as the wonderful airliner designs from the Inter-War years. Bel-Air Models mostly takes commissions from specialist collectors and constructs the models by hand from solid Perspex or Plexiglas. So far, Bel-Air Models has done more than 150 aircraft types, many of them twice, three times and even 25 times, dependent on their popularity.

In Bob's spare time, he writes short articles about model history for a periodic of a group of enthusiast flying model airplane owners.

John Shupek — John is retired Aeronautical/Aerospace Engineer that lives in Southern California. John's 36 year aerospace career/adventure started in the mid-1960s when he worked for Pratt & Whitney at their “FRDC” … Florida Research and Development Center, West Palm Beach, Florida. John was part of the P&W jet engine design team for the CIA/USAF's Lockheed A-12/SR-71A “Oxcart/Blackbird” engines (J58/JT11D-20). He also worked on the RL-10 rocket engine and the JTF-17A which was P&W's entry into the United States' SST competition between Boeing and Lockheed. Several years later, John moved Back to California and worked at the AiResearch Mfg. Company at LAX and Torrance. He originally worked on the thermal design of the HRE (Hypersonic Ramjet Engine) which was a supersonic combustion Mach 7 ramjet engine that was to be tested on the North American X-15. John did about three more years of jet engine design work before he disappeared for 13 years into the classified DOE “GCEP” (Gas Centrifuge Enrichment Plant) Atomic Energy program for the enrichment of U235. After the GCEP program was cancelled by the DOE in 1985, John was hired by Northrop Aircraft to do the thermal design for Northrop's entry into the ATF (Advanced Tactical Fighter) competition, the Northrop YF-23A “Black Widow II” stealth supercruise fighter. He also worked on the Northrop Grumman B-2A “Spirit” stealth bomber. After several years on a classified stealth missile program, John worked the remainder of his Aerospace career as one of Northrop Grumman's Program Directors on the United States Navy's F/A-18E/F “Super Hornet” jet fighter program.

During John's career at Northrop Grumman he served for five years as Northrop's “Vintage Aircraft Club” Commissioner and the Curator and Webmaster for the Western Museum of Flight in Hawthorne, California. Several years later, John was the volunteer webmaster (for about 3 years) for the Yanks Air Museum, Chino, California. He also served as President and webmaster for two different NPO's after his retirement. The Whittier Historical Society & Museum and Whittier Meals on Wheels.

John's love of aviation history and aviation photography lead to the establishment of this website in 1998. The site has continued to expand and will always grow and will never be completed. It's sort of analogous to a snowball rolling down a hill without any trees to stop it. In approximately 2002, John remembered that he had collected Topps “Wings” (ACC# R707-4) airplane trading cards while in High School. Somehow the cards had disappeared over the years. So at this point, he started to re-collect airplane trading cards via eBay and become an airplane card “Image Collector” rather than a “Card Collector” per se. After John scans an airplane card for the website, he has no further use for it and he puts it Back into circulation via eBay. John's mission statement for the is basically to restore and preserve high-quality card images/artwork associated with the various airplane card sets from the early 1900s to the present. These cards are wonderful historical “snapshots” into aviation history showing which aviation events and aircraft were important at that point in time. For the website, basically if it is a trading card collection that features things that fly, but doesn't have feathers, it eligible for the consideration on the website. John always welcome inputs and high resolution scans (600-dpi) that can be used on this website. John can be reached via the “Contact Us” navigation button on the left.


  1. Bob Dros (Bel-Air Models, Amsterdam, The Netherlands), Album Scans
  2. Skytamer Images, Card scans from the Skytamer Images Collection

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