It has been confirmed that the Spitfire from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight that is lined up to undertake a flypast at the Thunder Day event at Yorkshire Air Museum on Sunday 1 June is perhaps the ‘prize’ of the Flight’s collection.
The aircraft is Spitfire MKIIa ‘P7350′ which is the oldest flying Spitfire in the world and the only Spitfire still flying to have taken part in the Battle of Britain.
It is understood to have been the 14th example of 11989 built at Castle Bromwich, Birmingham, and entered service with the RAF in August 1940, with 266 Squadron at Wittering and Hornchurch at the height of that epic battle. It was one of 13 MKIIa’s later transferred to 603 City of Edinburgh AuxAF Squadron.
The aircraft was damaged in combat with a German ME Bf109 on 25th October 1940, suffering a hit by cannon fire Polish pilot, Ludwick Martel was wounded by shrapnel, but managed to bring the aircraft through cloud to make a rough landing, fighting pain and unconsciousness.
Back in service in 1941 after repair at the No. 1 Civilian Repair Unit at Cowley, run by Morris Motors, P7350 served with 616 Squadron in occupied France as Fighter Command went on the offensive. It was withdrawn from operational service in April 1942.
The aircraft is currently being presented in the colours of Spitfire MK1a N3162 of 41 Squadron, as flown by top scoring Battle of Britain ace Eric Lock, who famously shot down 3 enemy aircraft in one sortie on 5 September 1940.
Other attractions of the Thunder Day event are of course the live engine start ups of a number of our aircraft, including the WWI Se5a fighter; the WWII Douglas C-47 Dakota; the post war De Havilland Devon twin prop; the loud and proud jet powered Blackburn Buccaneer XN974 and the Victor V-bomber / K2 Tanker XL231 “Lusty Lindy”. A great day of activity for all the family to enjoy, along with all the Museum’s normal exhibits.
Admission: £10 adults; £8 Concession; £5 Children and £26 Family.
Note: All aircraft runs and flypast subject to serviceability and weather conditions on the day.