The Spitfire Site

A Tribute to Britains Finest Fighter

» Forums Home  |  » The Spitfire Site

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
Pages: [1]
Author Topic: Supermarine Spitfire PM631 (Mk PRXIX) & Hawker Hurricane LF363 (Mk IIc) Video  (Read 2471 times)
Posts: 5

« on: July 17, 2013, 09:53:53 AM »

Filmed at Blackpool Airport on the 25th May 2013 after taking part in the Battle of the Atlantic celebrations held in Liverpool over the Bank holiday weekend.

Spitfire PR Mk XIX PM631 was built at Reading too late to see service in World War Two. It is representative though of similar high altitude photographic reconnaissance Spitfires which did serve operationally. Spitfire PR XIXs were unarmed but could fly at 370mph at 40,000 feet (with pressurised cockpits) and had a range of 1,500 miles. PM631 was delivered to the RAF on 6 November 1945 but was stored until May 1949 when it was issued to 203 Advanced Flying School. Later, after being modified for meteorological work, she was flown by civilian pilots with the Temperature and Humidity Monitoring (THUM) Flight based at Hooton Park and Woodvale. The THUM Flight made daily ascents to 30,000ft to gather meteorological information.

On 11 July 1957, PM631 was flown to Biggin Hill from Duxford by World War Two fighter ace Group Captain Jamie Rankin DSO* DFC*,in formation with two other THUM Flight Mk XIX Spitfires, PS853 and PS915, to form the Historic Aircraft Flight which later developed into the BBMF.

The amazing performance of this ultimate mark of the Spitfire is demonstrated by the fact that the world altitude record for piston engine aircraft is still held today by a PR XIX. Flying out of Kai Tak, Hong Kong, in February 1952, Flight Lieutenant Ted Powles AFC climbed his Spitfire PR XIX to a recorded 51,550ft! These aircraft truly represents the 'top end' of piston-engine aircraft development and demonstrate the potential in Reginald Mitchell's original, brilliant Spitfire design.

LF363 was built at the Hawker factory at Langley near Slough. It first flew in January 1944 and is believed to be the last Hurricane to enter service with the RAF. The aircraft served with No 63 Squadron at Turnhouse, No 309 (Polish) Squadron at Drem, where it was used on shipping protection patrols off the east coast of Scotland, and No 26 Squadron with whom it flew naval artillery spotting and reconnaissance sorties before the end of the War. LF363 was then stored in the open air at Langley, waiting to be scrapped. Fortunately, it was rescued in mid-1949, largely through the intervention of Air Commodore (later Air Vice Marshal) Stanley Vincent CB, DFC, AFC. After arranging for LF363 to be made airworthy, Stanley Vincent himself led the Battle of Britain flypast over London in the aircraft in September 1949. Between 1949 and 1956, LF363 was held and maintained, rather unofficially, by a series of front-line squadrons and Station Flights, being flown on ceremonial occasions and appearing in various films. After a major re-fit at Hawkers, LF363 became a founding aircraft of the Historic Aircraft Flight, the forerunner of the BBMF, when it was formed in 1957.
Pages: [1]
Jump to:  

Login with username, password and session length