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Vulcan bomber XH558 to be grounded

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Ady113/10/2012 08:23:20
4220 forum posts
591 photos

The last airworthy Vulcan bomber will fly for the final time next year, the trust which funds the aircraft has confirmed.

The XH558 has been based at South Yorkshire's Robin Hood Airport since March 2011 after the RAF Lyneham base closure was announced.

It has been decided that "challenging modifications" to both wings would not be sustainable to the old aircraft.

The Vulcan to the Sky Trust said it decided not to fund the repairs.

Trust chief executive Dr Robert Pleming told supporters: "At the end of next year, she will need a £200,000 modification to her wings to increase her flying life.

"We know that you would do your upmost to fund this work, but for a number of reasons we have decided not to ask you to take this risk."


Terryd13/10/2012 09:27:01
1935 forum posts
179 photos


The aircraft was housed at Bruntingthorpe airfield near where I live while the fundraising to make it airworthy was being organised and much of the work to get her airworthy took place here. I remember going along to see her first taxi from the hangar and her first test flight after she was finished. End of a great era.

I experienced the power of one of these while driving up to Lincoln, probably in the late 70s and on passing the airfield one of these things took off, an impressive sight.



Ian S C13/10/2012 09:56:34
7468 forum posts
230 photos

Sorry about the grounding of the Vulcan, but the Trust should keep it well maintained as an exibit, are there any of the other V bombers in museums. Its difficult to keep such a complex bit of machinery going, I imagine it was even dificult for the RAF! Ian S C

Skarven13/10/2012 10:29:26
93 forum posts
11 photos

About 10 years ago when I was working in Rugby, I made a trip to what I think was called Midland Air Museum close to Coventry. They had a Vulcan Bomber. I was very impressed! The guy who looked after it was what I would call a young old man who had flown Hurricanes during the war! You could climb into it and have a real look at it.

This was one of my best museum experiences.

Andyf13/10/2012 10:29:28
392 forum posts

There was a Vulcan indoors at Duxford when I visited 6 years ago, Ian. A fellow university student (in the 60s) joined the RAF, and his name (as a Flt Lt) topped the list of crew members stencilled on the belly of the fuselage. He was the pilot of the Vulcan which bombed Stanley Airfield at the beginning of the Falklands contretemps. I don't know if that Vulcan is the one from the raid.


Ady113/10/2012 10:49:31
4220 forum posts
591 photos

There's one at east fortune airfield

Edited By Ady1 on 13/10/2012 10:52:01

Richard Marks13/10/2012 11:07:47
202 forum posts
8 photos

Surely its time the goverment stepped in and spent some of money on trying to save our heritage instead of giving it to foreign powers who dont need it, even if they hand it over as a loan on a payback as and when basis it would help, It really annoys me to see this happening when this country pays people not to go to work yet ignores our heritage.


AndyB13/10/2012 11:39:52
167 forum posts
7 photos

There is one at Norwich: **LINK**

I have not been to see it as diesels don't really do it for me but I remember, back in the 80's, we were resurfacing all the roadways at RAF Marham, and while in the bomb dump (I kid you not!) a Vulcan was being stunt flown overhead in practice for their open day.

It was so low you could almost reach out and touch it (yes I know that is an exaggeration but it felt like it!), doing swoops and rolls. The ground was shaking and my chest vibrated with the engine thrust!



Terryd13/10/2012 11:41:21
1935 forum posts
179 photos
Posted by Ady1 on 13/10/2012 10:49:31:

There's one at east fortune airfield

Edited By Ady1 on 13/10/2012 10:52:01

While on that site I had a look at the Buccaneer which I had fond memories of. As a child it was my first Airfix kit I built, with the rear air brake open.


Edited By Terryd on 13/10/2012 11:41:35

Speedy Builder513/10/2012 11:55:01
2220 forum posts
167 photos

Didn't they strap a Bristol Sydney Olympus engine on a Vulcan for the Concord(e) - remember the (e) when the British govt succumbed to the French and added the (e). Sorry I digressed. The Vulcan was shown off at the Farnborough airshow circa 1964 flying around on just the one Olympus - great stuff.

Francis Sykes13/10/2012 12:07:27
43 forum posts
5 photos

Yes, I believe they did. The Vulcan itself used non afterburning versions of the Olympus engines.

Ian S C13/10/2012 14:00:06
7468 forum posts
230 photos

These aircraft won't last for ever if they are kept in the open, one of our local museums found that out with their Vickers Viscount, and R4D/ DC 3, they now have them hangered, I think the Transport museum in Auckland had similar problems. Trouble is aeroplanes take up a lot of space.

Think the best display I'v seen was Howard Hughs' Spruce Goose, at Los Angeles, in a large geoditic dome, next to the Queen Mary (theres been changes, things may have moved), that was 1984, mum was interested in the Queen Mary, she was at the launching 50yrs earlier. Ian S C

Ken-0113/10/2012 14:44:01
3 forum posts

I can remember the Valcun that was used by the then Bristol Sidley. It was called a flying test bed, the airdraft was all white and the houseing with the Olympus 593 engine inside was blue. It was located where the bomb doors would have been. It was housed in Bristol Sidley's Flight Shed. My dad was the man that towed it in and out of the hanger. He was on the ground crew. They had two hangers one large one with the Vulcan in and a smaller one with loads of othere aircraft in. I can remember as a boy of 13, 14 years old my dad would work it so I could go to work with him on a Sunday, when he had overtime to get ready one or two aircraft ready for flight and wait for otheres to come back. I remember a few times I went up inside the Vulcan and sat in the pilots seat. I thought it was so cool. There was the pilot and co-pilots seat and a deck behined and lower three seats for the Navigator, Filght Engineer and Bomber I think. I had never seen so many clocks, dial, switches ect in my life. I spent many happy hours on a Sunday when my dad could take me to work with him. Looking around all the Aircraft.

Stub Mandrel13/10/2012 16:56:23
4311 forum posts
291 photos
1 articles

Much as I love the Vulcan, I was amazed when teh Heritage Lotytery Fund supported the restoration - their stated policy is they don't give grants fr the restoration of historic aircraft to flying condition.

I queried this and got the response that the Trutsees do not have to follow the 'guidelines' if a special case can be made. It is definitiely useful to know that the Lottery funders can, in effect, ignore the rules if you can make a good case.


Steve Garnett13/10/2012 17:13:36
837 forum posts
27 photos

There's also a Vulcan at Newark Air Museum...

fizzy13/10/2012 17:17:26
1765 forum posts
120 photos

My old art teacher flew a Vulcan in the war, was shot down and ended up in a POW camp. The day he retired from teaching the whole school went outside to see a vulcan fly over. this was mid 80's. RIP mr. Wulley

Jo13/10/2012 18:05:06
198 forum posts

£200,000 is peanuts for the wing work she needs. I wonder if they have thought of parking her at the end of the runway at Warton, I suspect the work would get done.....

If she is looking for a long term home I am sure RAF Mount Pleasant would love to look after hercool.


YAK13/10/2012 18:26:48
58 forum posts
2 photos

My son Neil, made some parts for the fuel system for it at the time. He started an apprentiship at Lucas Aerospace in the 1980's. Two weeks ago he had an invite to attend the Lucas factory, which is at the end of Birmingham International Airport's main runway. As the Vulcan was visiting sites that helped with it's restoration and flying over and waggling it's wings. He filmed it for posteritory.

Terry Y

fizzy13/10/2012 18:58:59
1765 forum posts
120 photos

The money will be much better spent helping one legged ethiopian transvestites come to terms with their sexuality...well, thats what the lottery fund was set up for after all!

KWIL13/10/2012 19:04:07
3352 forum posts
66 photos

Fizzy, the Vulcan was post world war 2, which war did your art teacher fly in?

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