Thunder & Lightnings

Folland Gnat - Survivor XR977

T.1 XR977 - RAF Museum London, Hendon, London

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Gnat T.1 XR977 at RAF Museum London, 15th April 2023; Jake Wallace

Part of the collection at the RAF Museum London, Hendon is this rather nice example of a Gnat in orginal Red Arrow colours, wearing one of many variations on the colour scheme that the team tried out during their Gnat years.

XR977 first flew on 1st January 1964 and served with 4 FTS, suffering several incidents including a Cat.4R accident in June 1964 and a belly landing on 7th May 1970. Transferred to the Central Flying School (CFS) in March 1976 based at Kemble (now Cotswold Airport), and then went on to join the Red Arrows which were based at Kemble at the time. XR977 became No.3 aircraft in the display team and stayed with them until it was flown into RAF Cosford on 5th October 1979 for ground instructional use as 8640M until she was allocated to the RAF Museum, replacing Gnat XP514 as XR977 was in much better condition.

In December 2017, the airframe was moved from Cosford to their other site, RAF Museum London, where it is one of the first exhibits you will see when walking through the door, mounted in a flying position.

Information on this page current as of 23/04/2023, last updated by Jake

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