Sunday, 6 January 2013

"Just Jane" and a story

I'm delighted to spot the BBC has been running a piece on "Just Jane", the Lancaster that Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre at East Kirby maintain. She's currently certified to taxy with passengers, but they've now taken delivery of four air-certified Merlins, and the big project's on the go - making her fly again.

I had the sheer joy of going to visit the airfield with James a couple of years ago. Sadly, the taxy ride was outside my budget (though I'd really like one as a 50th present this year - pity the wife doesn't read the blog, and they're nearly booked up for the year according to @NX611_pilot on Twitter, so I may have to hint strongly...), but we did get to watch.

The video on the right is shot with my iPhone - the sound isn't ideal, but you get some kind of idea. 'Awe-inspiring' comes closest, I think.

While we were there, I got talking to a lady, Janet, who, it transpired, was the daughter of a Lancaster pilot, Jack Marsden, who crash-landed in occupied France after the raid on Mailly Le Camp and made it back to England after some hair-raising adventures. Her mother was doing the taxy ride, so I took a couple of photos for her, and she told us some of the story of her father. As James was doing a project on WW2, she promised to send him something - the resulting package arrived a couple of weeks later, containing a letter with her father's story (you can read the full story of the raid, BTW, in A Bomber Raid - Mailly Le Camp: Not Just Another Milk Run, or in shorter form on the BBC website) as well as four twisted, corroded pieces of metal.

<pictures to follow, just as soon as I find where James has put them!>

As I observed to James at the time, it's fascinating how 'just a few pieces of metal' become something much more when you know the story behind them.

1 comment:

  1. That's really something. Last year I watched a Merlin engine running (though it was for a tank not a plane) and that was very loud. Four of them at the same time must have been quite something.



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