FAW.2 XP919 - Scrapped? (was Blyth Valley Aviation Collection, Walpole, Suffolk)
Sea Vixen FAW.2 XP919 at Walpole, 24th October 1999; Damien Burke
Oh dear! Poor old XP919 has had a rather hard retirement. Bought from the MoD by somebody intending to restore her for static display, the first blow was struck courtesy of our ever fabulous police. They changed their minds at a late stage and would not allow the aircraft to be transported on the roads unless it was cut down to size - despite other police forces being quite happy with Sea Vixens being moved about, suitably tilted and dismantled to bring the size down. So, off went the tail booms with a disc cutter... next they weren't happy with one of the main gear legs jutting out, so it was cut off too. Arriving at Walpole for a 'temporary' stay, it lay there, in Cliff Aldred's Xmas tree plantation, for several years with nothing being done. Getting fed up with this state of affairs, Cliff badgered the owner who then sold it to somebody else (Cliff refusing to let scrap dealers near it as he didn't particularly want to watch them set light to it by mistake and burn all his trees!). The new owner claimed he'd restore it but once again nothing happened and Cliff eventually bought it from him. He hoped to have it reassembled but as far as I know no progress has been made in the last ten years or so, and this aircraft is surely not long for this world. Hopefully at least the nose will be saved, for the rest is apparently badly corroded and of little use even as spares.
As per the comment below it would appear that XP919 was scrapped in 2006.
Information on this page current as of 21/01/2009
Find other photos of XP919 on the following sites:
Air-Britain - Airliners.net - Airplane-Pictures.net - flickr.com - WorldAirPics.com - JetPhotos.net - PlanePictures.net