Monday, January 03, 2005

Progress at Duxford

The restoration of Blenheim G-BPIV following it accident in 2003, continues. In the latter half of 2004, the forward fuselage section was detached, and it now sits in front of the rear fuselage section. The centre wing section is currently being restored in Building 66, behind the main hangars. The teams unrestored Mark I Blenheim nose has been placed beside the Blenheim, and it has been suggested that the aircraft will fly with this nose fitted instead of the the Mark IV nose. The Mk.I nose had been converted into a car after World War 2, and was placed in on an Austin 7 chassis. It still requires a lot of attention, but the present restoration work gives an oppertune moment to fit it. The appearance of a Mark I Blenheim in the skies will be a very rare sight, as there are no airworthy or static Mk.I's anywhere in the world.

Blenheim G-BPIV at Duxford in October, with the Mk.I nose to the right, photo taken by Martin Claydon

Also at Duxford, The Fighter Collection have fitted their Bristol F2b Fighter (G-ACAA, "D-8084") with its Rolls Royce Falcon II engine, and it will hopefully fly again soon. Another Bristol Fighter has turned up at Duxford - this is G-AANM "D-7889", which belongs to the Historic Aircraft Collection. It is currently being stored here, but there are plans to get it in the air in 2005 for the first time.