Thunder & Lightnings

McDonnell-Douglas/BAC F-4K/M Phantom II - Survivor XV591

FG.1 XV591 - RAF Museum Midlands, RAF Cosford, Shropshire

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Phantom FG.1 XV591 at Cosford, 21st April 2022; Jake Wallace

First taking to the skies in June 1969, XV591 entered service with 892 NAS the next month. Passed to the RAF in December 1978, she re-entered active service with 111 Squadron in early 1979 and stayed with them until a structural fault was discovered in December 1987, at which point she was grounded forever.

The fuselage was dumped and the wings and tail was used for BDRT at Abingdon. Thankfully the nose was at least saved and was put on display at the RAF Museum at Cosford, in a colour scheme representing XV424 on its Alcock and Brown commemorative transatlantic flight in 1979. Ironically the real XV424 is actually on display at the RAF Museum at Hendon - in a stock 56 Squadron scheme! With the opening of the Cold War Exhibition, XV591 was repainted back to the Queen's Silver Jubilee colours she wore with 892 NAS in 1977.

The cockpit remains on display in the Cold War Hangar at Cosford today, although the front canopy has been removed, assuming for health and safety reasons in case someone bangs their head when taking a look at the cockpit, allowing better access for visitors.

Information on this page current as of 24/04/2022, last updated by Jake

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