Thunder & Lightnings

Avro Vulcan - Survivor XA893

B.1 XA893 - RAF Museum Cosford (Stored), Shropshire

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Vulcan B.1 XA893 at RAF Cosford Museum, 8th May 2003; Damien Burke

Vulcan B.1 XA893 first flew in January 1956 and was delivered to the Royal Air Force later that same year. The airframe was broken up at Boscombe Down just six years later in 1962 before being moved to Abingdon as 8591M as a maintenance cockpit.

Once Abingdon had finished with XA893, the RAF moved it to their museum in Cosford for display. Here, the cockpit section was re-painted into camouflage colours which B.1s never flew in. As you can see in the above photo, the museum has cut two large holes in the side of this nose making it a walk-through exhibit so you don't have to try and squeeze up the ladder if it was back at the correct height. This was good in that the cockpit was easily accessible, but sadly many items had to be removed so you could walk through the cockpit. You first walk into the rear crew compartment, which has a platform surrounded by railings in place of the seats, and the view up into the pilot's area is nice and clear as they've removed just about everything on the starboard side up there. The visual bomb aiming blister is gone, as the exit from the nose now runs down the centre and into where the radar would have been.

Sadly in 2005, XA893 disappeared and had moved into deep storage at RAF Cosford, this may have been due to radioactive instrument dials? The cockpit is still in deep storage to this day.

Information on this page current as of 01/09/2021, last updated by Jake

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