The following comes directly from Hampson's notes.

"The basic idea is to present a 'Service Hero' against a contemporary background. Raff Royal is given command of a NATO team of fighter pilots, ostensibly formed to give aerobatic displays but in fact, to be used as a 'fire brigade', in incidents where armed fighters on the spot are of more value than a stockpile of nuclear weapons. (It is necessary to recognise that the cold war exists.)

"As an example of the kind of action which might provide plots, let us assume a rocket range in 'Northern Waters' is being observed by 'innocent' Red trawlers, and that an 'innocent' aerobatic flight is used as a counter measure against them.

"Raff's flight should soon re-equip with a new type of VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) fighter to get rid of the servicing problems of the heterogeneous flight - introduced in episode one to add interest and novelty.

"This first episode is in 'scamp' form since research is needed to complete the finished artwork. I have contacted the French and Italian embassies for details of up-to-date service uniforms, flying kit, rank insignia, medals and so on."

Although it would have cut no ice with his publishers, but rather would have alienated them since it involved a great deal of time and some extra cost, Frank added this thought. "It would be my hope that the Raff Royal strip should be as technically accurate as the famous 'Terry and the Pirates' in the USA. It would therefore demand considerable research".

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge
by Don Harley (Sept 2007)
We sent photostats of the strip above to Hampson's assistant Don Harley and asked him to redraw the pages adding and clarifying detail as he went. Here is page one.

You will notice frame three contains detailed background whereas frames five and seven contain no backgrounds at all. Hampson would have found references of the Freighter interior before dawing the finished version.  
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Second Page finished 30th November 2007. Click to enlarge