Thunder & Lightnings

Folland Gnat - Survivor 'XR993' (G-BVPP, really XP534)

T.1 XR993 - South Wales Aviation Museum, St. Athan Airport, Wales

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Gnat T.1 XR993 at St. Athan, 4th August 2019; Damien Burke

First flown on 28th March 1963, XP535 served with the CFS initially, transferring to 4 FTS in 1965 and spending time with both Schools until ending her active career with 4 FTS. Retired to ground instructional duties as 8620M at in November 1978, initially at RAF Abingdon, then onward to RAF Halton in 1979. Disposed of in 1990, she ended up owned by a consortium and maintained by Kennet Aviation. Painted up as XR993 in Red Arrows colours, she is, as usual it seems, not a genuine ex-Red Arrow airframe.

After a few years on the airshow circuit she suffered a forced landing short of the runway at North Weald in September 2004 (because of a fuel supply failure) - she has not flown since and on 26th August 2010 was transported by road to Bruntingthorpe. She was looked at for a possible return to taxiing condition, but this didn't come to fruition and in May 2019 she moved on to SWAM at St. Athan. Since I visited she's had her paintwork cleaned up and looks rather shinier than this.

Information on this page current as of 19/01/2022, last updated by Damien

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