Thunder & Lightnings

Folland Gnat - Survivors

T.1 XR992
T.1 XR992 taxiing at Church Fenton, 2015; author

Gnats have thankfully survived retirement in fairly good form, with many surviving examples being airworthy - as a cheap high performance jet, it really can't be beaten - which of course is what the whole idea was in the first place!

The list here is compiled from a large number of sources, with particular credit to Alan Allen, Allan Barley, Victor Bingham, Dave Thomas, Warbirds of India and the contents of Ken Ellis' Wrecks & Relics (18th edition) and Otger van der Kooij's European Wrecks & Relics (2nd edition). However due to the difficulty of finding out some of the information and the swiftness with which Gnats seem to change hands, I have no doubt there are errors and omissions in the listing.

Click on the serial of a survivor entry for further information. Please comment on any individual survivor entry you feel requires an update!

Complete aircraft

SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
11601F.1Muzej Yugoslovenskog Vazduhplovsta, Belgrade Airport, Belgrade, Yugoslavia30/08/2019
11602F.1Muzej Yugoslovenskog Vazduhplovsta (stored), Belgrade Airport, Belgrade, Yugoslavia06/2003
E1051F.1AFS Ambala (displayed at war memorial), Punjab, India10/2003
E1059F.1Mayo College, Ajmer, Rajasthan, India
E1076F.1March Field Air Museum, California, USA23/09/2018
E1205F.1Indian Air Force HQ, Vayu Bhavan, Delhi, India04/08/2021
E1214F.1Planes of Fame (stored), Valle, Arizona, USA03/2009
'E1222' (really IE1222)F.1Mid America Air Museum, Liberal, Kansas, USA05/2002
E1973F.1St. Mary's School, Pune, Maharashtra, India31/01/2002
E232F.1AFS Kalaikunda (displayed in front of tower), West Bengal, India
E246F.1Indian Air Force HQ, Vayu Bhavan, Delhi, India04/08/2021
E254F.1Pragathi Maidan, Defence Exhibition, Delhi, India01/10/2002
E261F.1Canteen Stores Depot, Vayu Sena Nagar, Nagpur, India2002
E273F.1Delhi, India
E276F.1Historical Aircraft Squadron, Lancaster/Fairfield County Airport, Ohio, USA08/2002
E299F.1David Tallichet/MARC (stored), Long Beach, California, USA11/2002
E315F.1Empire State Aerosciences Museum, New York, USA10/2002
E325F.1Chembur Gardens, Bombay, India2003
E355F.1Indian Air Force Academy, Dundigal, India
GN-101 (ex G-39-6)F.1Keski-Suomen Ilmailumuseo, Tikkakoski, Finland01/08/2003
GN-103F.1Halli airfield, Finland05/2001
GN-104F.1Keski-Suomen Ilmailumuseo (gate guard), Tikkakoski, Finland01/08/2003
GN-105F.1Suomen Ilmailumuseo (stored, dismantled), Vantaa, Helsinki, Finland
GN-106F.1Suomen Ilmailumuseo, Vantaa, Helsinki, Finland
GN-107F.1Kymi airfield, Finland
GN-110F.1Rovaniemi airfield (gate guard), Finland
IE1059 (ex XK768)F.1Indian Air Force Museum, Palam, India12/2003
IE1061F.1Indian Air Force Western Air Command HQ, Subroto Park, Delhi, India15/06/1998
IE1062F.1Martyr's Memorial, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India19/01/2002
IE1071F.1Indian Air Force HQ (displayed by Officer's Mess), Delhi, India
IE1076F.1AFS Tambaram, Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
IE1078F.1AFS Tambaram, Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
IE1083F.1Pakistan Air Force Museum, Karachi, Pakistan01/2003
IE1205F.1Nagpur Park, Nagpur, India2002
IE1248F.1Madras Institute of Technology, Chennai, Tamilnadu, India15/02/2003
IE296 (aka E296, G-SLYR)F.1Gnat Display Team (taxiable, restoration to fly), North Weald airfield, Essex03/12/2020
UnknownF.1Air Force Technical College (ground instructional use), Jallahali, Karnataka, India
UnknownF.1Air Force Technical College (ground instructional use), Jallahali, Karnataka, India
UnknownF.1Airforce Bal Bharati School, Delhi, India
UnknownF.1Bangladesh (precise location unknown)
UnknownF.1Central Air Command HQ (gate guard), Allahabad, India
UnknownF.1District Collector's Office (displayed on memorial), Ludhiana, India
UnknownF.1JNTU College of Engineering, Kakinada, India
UnknownF.1Kerala Science and Technology Museum, Trivandrum, India06/04/2002
XK724F.1Midland Air Museum, Coventry Airport, Warwickshire06/02/2023
XK740F.1Solent Sky, Southampton, Hampshire05/02/2022
SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
GN-112FR.1Finnish Aviation Museum Society (stored), Vesivehmaa, Finland
GN-113 (ex XN326)FR.1Markku Lehti (restoration to fly), R06/2001
SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
N936FC (ex XR980)T.1ASTRE Air International, (flyer), Front Range Airport, Colorado, USA01/06/2013
'PF179' (really XR541)T.1Bournemouth Aviation Museum, Hurn, Dorset28/09/2023
XM693T.1Hamble Aerostructures, Hamble, Hampshire02/05/2021
XM694 (N694XM)T.1Pima Air Museum, Tucson, Arizona, USA23/02/2004
XM697 (ex G-NAAT)T.1Reynards Nursery (on display), Carluke, Scotland09/10/2010
XM698 (N698XM)T.1James Thompson, St. Cloud, Florida, USA
XM708T.1Privately owned, Lytham St. Annes02/2003
XM709T.1Privately owned, USA
XP502T.1Cotswold Airport (on display), Kemble, Gloucestershire24/08/2021
XP503 (N503KC)T.1Randal Fields, Palo Alto, California, USA09/10/2010
XP505T.1Science Museum, Wroughton19/02/2004
XP511 (N6145X)T.1Larry Henderson (flyer), Danville, California, USA
XP513 (N513X)T.1Dean Cutshall/American Horizons Ltd. Inc. (flyer), Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
XP514 (N7HY)T.1Anton Ostermeier (flyer, for sale), Chino, California, USA07/04/2006
XP516T.1Farnborough Air Sciences Trust, Farnborough, Hampshire09/10/2010
XP530 (N4347N, ex N530X)T.1Great Planes Sales Inc. (flyer), Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA09/2001
XP533 (NX533XP)T.1Tom Foley/NTC Group Inc. (flyer), Greenwich, Connecticut, USA09/10/2010
XP538 (N19GT)T.1Combat Jets Air Museum (flyer), Chino, USA11/2002
XP540T.1Classic British Jets Collection, Bruntingthorpe Aerodrome, Leicestershire09/01/2022
XP541 (N8130Q)T.1Robert Davis (flyer), Tipton, Indiana, USA
XP542T.1424 Sqn ATC, Millbrook, Southampton, Hampshire15/01/2022
XR534T.1Newark Air Museum, Newark, Nottinghamshire17/12/2021
XR535 (N8130N)T.1Dean Cutshall/American Horizons Ltd. Inc. (flyer), Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
XR537 (G-NATY)T.1Aero (UK) Holdings Ltd (restoration to fly), North Weald23/12/2020
XR538 (G-RORI)T.1Heritage Aircraft Ltd. (flyer, Gnat Display Team), North Weald, Essex23/12/2020
XR540T.1Privately owned, USA
XR569T.1Privately owned, USA09/10/2010
XR571T.1Tangmere Military Aviation Museum, Tangmere, West Sussex12/08/2023
XR572 (N572XR)T.1Michael Bertz, Jefferson County Airport, Broomfield, Colorado, USA
XR574 (8631M)T.11 SoTT, DCAE Cosford, Shropshire08/05/2003
XR951 (N81298)T.1McDownell Ent Inc., California City, California, USA06/2002
XR953 (N953RH)T.1National Aviation and Transportation Museum of Florida, Hobe Sound, Florida, USA
XR954T.1Source Classic Jet Flight (stored, dismantled), Hurn, Dorset03/01/2003
XR955 (N4367L)T.1DAC International Inc. (flyer), Austin, Texas, USA
XR977T.1RAF Museum London, Hendon, London23/04/2023
XR984 (N316RF)T.1Finch Aerospace Corporation (stored), San Diego, California, USA
XR987 (ex N7CV)T.1Matt Wilcock, Classic Flyers Aviation Museum, Tauranga, New Zealand03/02/2021
XR991 (N1CL, ex G-BOXO)T.1Aerocrafters Inc. (flyer), Santa Rosa, California, USA
'XR992' (G-MOUR, really XS102)T.1Heritage Aircraft Ltd., North Weald, Essex23/12/2020
'XR993' (G-BVPP, really XP534)T.1South Wales Aviation Museum, St. Athan, Wales24/02/2023
XR998 (N998XR)T.1Astre Air International (restoration to fly), Denver/Front Range Airport, Colorado, USA01/2003
XS101 (restoration to fly, ex G-GNAT)T.1XJET, Essendon Airport, Australia09/10/2010
XS104 (G-FRCE)T.1Red Gnat Ltd. (restoration to fly), North Weald, Essex23/12/2020
XS105 (N18GT)T.1Planes of Fame Air Museum (flyer), Chino, USA10/2002
XS107 (N107XS)T.1Albert Mangino, Danbury, Conneticut, USA
XS109 (N61457, soon to be N109XS)T.1David Dulabon, Astre Air International (restoration to fly), Denver, Colorado, USA01/2003
XS110 (N117SH, ex N110XS and N7152Z)T.1Larry Shory, Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA
SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
'DJ1992' (possibly E1992)F.2AFS Kalaikunda (displayed in front of tower), West Bengal, India
E1049?F.2Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, Tamil Nadu, India28/04/2002
E1083F.2Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (displayed in memorial park), Bangalore, India22/03/2002
E1956F.2AFS Kalaikunda (displayed by 2 Sqn hangar), West Bengal, India
E1964F.2Varanasi, India03/08/2021
E1975F.2Indian Air Force HQ, Vayu Bhavan, Delhi, India04/08/2021
E1979F.2Faculty of Aeronautical Engineering, Military College of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
E2016F.2Indian Air Force Museum, Palam, India
E247F.2National Defence Academy, Salaria Square, Khadakvasla, Pune, Maharashtra, India
E265F.2Indian Air Force Museum (flyer), Palam, India
IE1241F.2Doon Public School, Dehradun, Uttar Pradesh, India
UnknownF.2AFS Baghdogra (gate guard), Walong, India
UnknownF.2Indian Air Force Eastern Air Command HQ, Shillong, Meghalaya, India2003

Nose/cockpit/other sections

SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
N/ASimulatorNewark Air Museum, Newark, Nottinghamshire15/05/2023
N/ASimulatorNorfolk & Suffolk Aviation Museum, Flixton, Suffolk19/12/2022
N/ASimulatorJet Age Museum, Meteor Business Park, Gloucester, Gloucestershire20/12/2022
SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
'GN-101' (really XK741)F.1Midland Air Museum (fuselage), Baginton, Warwickshire02/12/2020
SerialMarkOwner & locationUpdated
XM692T.1Thameside Aviation Museum (nose), East Tilbury
XP532T.1Privately owned (fuselage, spares use), USA
XR993 (N3XR)T.1John Mulvey/Astre Air International (wreckage), Aurora, Colorado, USA
XS100T.1Andrew Martin International (nose, displayed), London21/01/2003
XS100T.1Gnat Display Team, (fuselage, dumped), North Weald airfield, Essex17/12/2021

Bluebird K7

Bluebird K7
Bluebird K7 2016 engine test; Bluebird Project

Another Gnat 'survivor', of sorts, is Bluebird K7! The T.1 prototype, XM691, was disposed of after the end of its useful life, and was acquired by Donald Campbell to use the engine as a spare for his record-breaking Bluebird K7 boat. However Donald's team soon realised the Gnat's fin could also be used on the boat, and it was incorporated into a rework of the boat's design. After some teething troubles a static test of the engine went badly wrong, with the intakes collapsing and being sucked into the Orpheus, damaging it in the process.

Bluebird K7
Bluebird K7 2018 run; Bluebird Project

The spare engine from XM691 thus came into use as a replacement, and the intake structure was beefed up. So with XM691's engine and tail, the new K7 was ready to go and take on the World Water Speed Record (already held by Donald, but he wanted to take her past 300mph). On 4th January 1967 Donald achieved 297 mph on his first run of the day on Coniston Water. Sadly on the required return run, K7's nose reared up, she became briefly airborne and somersaulted backwards, smashing into the lake. Donald was killed instantly and the boat was torn apart, sinking to the bottom. You can read more about Donald Campbell on the Across the Lake website.

The wreckage of Bluebird K7 was recovered from the lake in 2001 (as was Donald's body not long afterwards), and Bluebird has been restored by the Bluebird Project. She undertook some test runs in 2018 on the Isle of Bute, but sadly since then a legal morass has overtaken the plans to return her to Coniston. Fingers crossed that 2021 will see all parties involved come together to thrash out an acceptable solution.