|Air Chief Marshal Hugh Caswall Tremenheere Dowding, 1st Baron Dowding GCB, GCVO, CMG|
During the Battle of Britain the German airforce's main tactical advantage lay in the fact that their fighter force were approaching at altitude, giving them a considerable advantage in aerial combat. Dowding recognised this and and organised staggered assaults on the German bombers, so the German fighters would need to lose altitude to engage the first assault, this would negate the altitude advantage over subsequent assaults. This tactic was in direct opposition to the prevalent doctrine, which required mass assaults. This was fostered by losses during the battle of France, the Hurricane aircraft performed much better than is generally appreciated but suffered when heavily outnumbered by the opposing me109's
It seems he was also instrumental in the modification of the Hawker Hurricane, which suffered a serious design flaw in regard to its internal reserve fuel tank. He insisted that this Fuel tank, which lay aft of the engine firewall, separated only by the instrument panel from the pilot, should be protected by a fire resistant material. This incident says much about his attention to detail and his awareness of the battlefield, an awareness that was so often lacking amongst contemporaries.
Of course this state of affairs was never going to last, someone competent in charge and Dowding was soon replaced after it seems he fell foul of unrealistic demands to stem the German night time bombing campaign.