Thunder & Lightnings

English Electric Lightning - Survivor XP703

F.3 XP703 - Lightning Preservation Group, Bruntingthorpe Aerodrome, Leicestershire

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Lightning F.3 XP703 at Bruntingthorpe, 23rd October 2021; Jake Wallace

XP703 first flew on 28th September 1963 and entered service with 74 Squadron in June 1964. She also served with 56 and 29 Squadrons, retiring in February 1975.

When XP703 retired from active service she was transported back to BAC Warton to become a structural test airframe and went through 500 hours of simulated flying to see how the structure held up. She was scrapped by June 1976 and her nose was chopped up and converted to a ground procedures trainer.

It was then restored at RAF Coltishall in the 1990s to a superb condition! With Coltishall's closure, the cockpit was moved to the City of Norwich Aviation Museum, though occasionally made visits elsewhere as it is so easy to transport. By 2012 she was purchased by the Lightning Preservation Group and was moved to Bruntingthorpe and put undercover in the QRA shed.

As you can see, the cockpit is still in superb condition - being undercover helps of course!

Information on this page current as of 24/10/2021, last updated by Jake

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