The donation of more than 20,000 recently discovered de Havilland Mosquito engineering drawings will help put an example of “the Wooden Wonder” back in the skies over the UK.
The collection was found by an engineer earlier this year in the former de Havilland building in Broughton. Recognizing their “tremendous historic value”, he rescued them from the building, which was slated for demolition and torn down just days later.
The archive of microfilm cards contains what is believed to be the only complete set of drawings for the type in existence, and includes details of Mosquito variants that never made it into production. They have since been donated to “The People’s Mosquito”, a Leicestershire-based charity which is working to restore an example of the type to airworthy condition.
Project Engineering Director Ross Sharp states that the newly discovered plans “enable us to glean a new level of understanding and connection with the brilliant designers who developed the world’s first, true, multi-role combat aircraft.”
As previously reported, The People’s Mosquito build is based around the remains of NF.36 / RL249 of No. 23 Sqn, which were recovered in 2010. The aircraft had crashed and burned at RAF Coltishall in February 1949, leaving “very little, if anything, that is in an airworthy state”. However, the machine’s identification paved the way for a “dataplate restoration”.
The aircraft will be used for “heritage, conservation and educational purposes” and the organization plans to allow as much access to RL249 as possible to achieve these ends. When complete, the Mossie will likely be based at Lincolnshire or Cambridgeshire.
(via The Telegraph Thanks, Pascal!)