Our live Blackburn Buccaneer S2, XN974 is getting a well-deserved refurbishment.
Kindly donated by British Aerospace, the aircraft flew to the Museum on 19th August 1991 and in 1999 became the Museum’s very first live aircraft exhibit. XN974 was the very first Mkll produced and during its early life carried our deck landing development work on HMS Aek Royal, HMS Eagle and USS Lexington. In 1965 it became the first Fleet Air Arm aircraft to make the trans-Atlantic crossing non-stop and unrefuelled – covering qa distance from Goose Bay, Canada to Lossiemouth in 4 hours 10 minutes. In the same year it also carried out an indurance flight of 8 hours 40 minutes, which at the time was the longest by any Buccaneer. In 1991, XN974 took part in Operation Granby (Gulf War l) in which it carried out target sorties and high level flight refuelling of Tornados.
XN974 will undergo engine tests and minor repairs whilst being repainted in its original FAA colours of Navy Blue topside with white undersides.
We are very grateful to the Buccaneer Air Crew Association and the Air Crew Association Archive Trust who have kindly contributed towards the aircraft restoration.
Further support for the aircraft can be made through the Museum’s “Sponsor a Plane” program – email: firstname.lastname@example.org; or see website.