1953 “British Aircraft” (C18-113a)
10 “Turf” Cigarettes, United Kingdom

  • Series Title: British Aircraft
  • Cartophilic Reference Number: C18-113a
  • Manufactured by: Carreras Ltd.
  • Packaged with: 10 “Turf” Cigarettes
  • Country: United Kingdom
  • Number of Cards: 50
  • Card Dimensions (trimmed): ≈ 39 × 68 mm
  • Card Dimensions (box with side flaps): ≈ 57.9 × 129.8 mm
  • Circa: 1953


The House of Carreras was a tobacco business that was established in London in the nineteenth century by a nobleman from Spain, Don José Carreras Ferrer. It continued as an independent company until November 1958, when it merged with Rothmans of Pall Mall. In 1972 the name was used as the vehicle for the merger of various European tobacco interests to form Rothmans International.

During 1953, Carreras Ltd., via their “Turf Cigarettes” issued two sets of “British Aircraft” cigarette cards that were an integral part of their package designs. Both series used the same 50 sequentially numbered “British Aircraft” card artwork/images. The first series was packaged with their 10 “Turf” cigarettes which contained 10 cigarettes in the pack and one airplane card printed on the pack. The second series was packaged with their 20 “Turf 20” cigarettes which contained 20 cigarettes per pack with two vertically stacked cards printed on the pack. The second series of 50 cards was printed on only 25 cigarette packs. As noted in the series title, the cards featured “British Aircraft” of the early 1950s. The blue half-tone photos are uninspiring, but do offer an historical “snap-shot” of British Aircraft of the era.

The 20 “Turf” 20 pack included two “British Aircraft” cards as part of a 2-card panel package design. The card images were the same as contained in the 10 “Turf” pack series, except the card images were included in a two-card panel. The card images were stacked vertically, surrounded by a blue borderline separated by a blue divider-line. If carefully trimmed along the fold lines of the pack, the two-card panel with border-lines and margins would measure approximately 68.8 × 74.4 mm. The example shown below, shows cards №12 and №35 in a typical two-card panel.

When you start collecting the single-card series, the first thing you notice is the irregular borders. When collecting these cards, you are hard-pressed to find “clean” cards containing all four border-lines with equal margins. What is normally found is a card with torn or poorly cut sides, with three or four border-lines, and unequal or compromised margins. However, if carefully trimmed along the fold lines of the pack, the cards with border-lines and margins would measure approximately 68.8 × 38.6 mm. It appears that the “smokin’ collectors” of the era simply ripped off the tabs of the packs rather than leaving the pack box fully intact. If you are able to find complete pack boxes, don’t trim them!

Image-Guide, Single Trimmed Cards

Behind each “thumbnail” image is a 600-dpi image that you may access.

Option-2 Image-Guide, Single “10” packs (50)

Behind each “thumbnail” image is a 600-dpi image that you may access.

Series Checklist

1953 Turf Cigarettes “British Aircraft” Checklist for Single Cards
"10" BoxCard Title
1Gloster Meteor F.8 (Jet)
2Vickers Valiant B.1 (Jet)
3Percival Prentice T.1
4Avro Vulcan (Jet)
5Fairey F.D.1 Delta Wing (Jet)
6Short Sealand
7Fairey Gannet A.S.1 (Turboprop)
8English Electric Canberra B.2 (Jet)
9Blackburn Universal
10Westland Wyvern T.F.4 (Turboprop)
11de Havilland Venom N.F.2 (Jet)
12Bristol Type 171
13Handley Page Victor B.1 (Jet)
14de Havilland Vampire N.F.10 (Jet)
15Bristol Type 170 Mk.21
16de Havilland Vampire F.B.5 (Jet)
17de Havilland Sea Venom N.F.20 (Jet)
18de Havilland Chipmunk
19Gloster Meteor P.R.10 (Jet)
20de Havilland 110 (Jet)
21Percival Prince III
22Hawker Hunter F.1 (Jet)
23Bristol Britannia (Turboprop)
24Percival Provost T.1
25Hawker P.1072 (Jet & Rocket)
26Boulton Paul P.111 (Jet)
27Percival Sea Prince C.1
28Hawker Sea Hawk F.1 (Jet)
29Avro Ashton (Jet)
30Westland Sikorsky S.51
31Saunders-Roe Princess Flying Boat (Turboprop)
32Avro 707B Delta Wing (Jet)
33Avro Vulcan B.1 (Jet)
34Vickers Varsity T.1
35Saunders-Roe S.R.A.1 (Jet)
36Avro 707A Delta Wing (Jet)
37Airspeed Ambassador
38Short S.A.4 (Jet)
39Armstrong Whitworth Meteor N.F.11 (Jet)
40de Havilland Venom F.B.1 (Jet)
41Vickers Viking I.B
42Supermarine Attacker F.1 (Jet)
43de Havilland Comet Series 1 (Jet)
44Short S.B./5 (Jet)
45Hawker Sea Fury F.B.11
46Supermarine Swift F.1 (Jet)
47Gloster Javelin F (AW) 1 (Jet)
48Handley Page Hermes
49Supermarine 508 (Jet)
50Vickers Viscount 701 (Turboprop)


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’s 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. Card Images, 600-dpi card scans from the Skytamer Images Archive Collection
  2. Card Images, 600-dpi card scans from the Bob Dros Collection, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

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