Thunder & Lightnings

Hawker Hunter

Survivor WN904

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WN904 - Sywell Aviation Museum, Sywell Aerodrome, Northamptonshire

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Hunter F.2 WN904 at Sywell, 19th August 2012; author

WN904 flew with 257 Squadrom at RAF Wattisham but had a short service life in common with the other F.2s produced. She has spent much of her life as an instructional or display airframe as a result, spending the last 20 years or so on display at the former RAF Waterbeach (Waterbeach Barracks), in memory of the long-gone Hunter squadrons of the 1950s that operated from there. WN904 wore dual 1 and 56 Squadron colours as a result (though never flew with either squadron). Owned by the IWM, the Army apparently chose to have WN904 on display at Waterbeach both because of their own RAF links (39 Engineers Regt. have preparation of airfields as one of their tasks) and because of its historical significance to the area - well done lads. It's years in the open had left it a bit the worse for wear, and it moved to Duxford for a respray in late 1998 before returning to Waterbeach. By 2012 she was looking rather faded again and with the army vacating the barracks, her time on the gate was at an end. Happily WN904 has found a new home at the Sywell Aviation Museum - their first complete airframe - and was moved there on 2nd August 2012. Your webmaster is part of the team now looking after her - I've spent a couple of weeks on some cleaning, polishing and painting along with a handful of the other Sywell Aviation Museum volunteers and hopefully the photo above shows what a bit of hard graft (and some fresh vinyl national markings) can achieve! We'd love to see any photos anybody may have of WN904 (or indeed any 257 Squadron F.2s) at Wattisham or Wymeswold from 1955/56 - if you can help, please get in touch.

Information on this page current as of 22/08/2012

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