XV163 - International Aircraft Solutions Park, Zeist, Netherlands
Buccaneer S.2A XV163 at Lelystad, 16th August 2005; author
First flown on 13th September 1966, XV163 began active life with the RN at Lossiemouth and her first squadron was 800 NAS. With several cruises on HMS Eagle under her belt, she spent part of 1969 undergoing modifications and was re-issued, this time to 809 NAS in early 1970. They bounced between cruises on HMS Ark Royal and stints back at Lossiemouth and Honington. In 1974 she was upgraded to S.2A and transferred to the RAF - 237 OCU initially and then 208 Squadron. She went back and forth between these two units, ending her career with the OCU at RAF Lossiemouth - where she had started, after all! In February 1992 she was retired to storage at RAF Shawbury and scrapped in 1994. The nose section was saved, and by 2003 had turned up in Holland with Action Events - they had kitted her cockpits out with a games console and took her around various events as a 'Top Gun Simulator'. A couple of years later I saw her at the Aviodrome museum at Lelystad (see pictured above), but in late 2006 the Aviodrome sold her to a fledgling museum - the International Aircraft Solutions Park
. They intend to restore the cockpits to their original condition (minus games consoles and TV screens!) and are looking for a replacement canopy as well as any cockpit internals that they can get hold of. If you can assist please get in touch via the Contact section of this site and I will pass your email on.
Information on this page current as of 18/05/2012
Find other photos of XV163 on the following sites:
Air-Britain - Airliners.net - Airplane-Pictures.net - flickr.com - WorldAirPics.com - JetPhotos.net - PlanePictures.net - Blackburn-Buccaneer.co.uk