With support from John de Havilland, descendant of Geoffrey de Havilland and Philip Birtles, President of the de Havilland Aircraft Museum, the newly established Mosquito Pathfinder Trust has made it their mission to restore a de Havilland Mosquito and return it to the skies over the UK.
The Somerset-based organization’s selected aircraft is a Mosquito Mk.IV built by de Havilland at Hatfield and delivered to the RAF in early 1944. It served with 618 Squadron at various locations and was later modified to a Highball configuration in order to test mini bouncing bombs. Following the end of WW2, the machine was relocated to Australia and based at RAAF Narrowmine, eventually being acquired by a restorer from New Zealand.
The Mosquito Pathfinder Trust plans to engage Avspecs Ltd of Ardmore, New Zealand to perform the restoration, as they have extensive experience with the Mosquito. To fund the effort, the organization hopes to raise £4 million in 3 years, and £750,000 by the end of 2017. To help acheive this end, they have set up a donations page on their website.
Upon completion, the aircraft will reportedly “be made available on static and flying display for the benefit and enjoyment of the British public.”
Currently, there are three airworthy Mosquitos in the world, all of which are based in North America. Another organization, The People’s Mosquito, is also working to return an example of “The Wooden Wonder” to the skies over the UK and is making progress on NF.36/RL249, having recently received a donation of more than 20,000 newly discovered engineering drawings.
(via The Mosquito Pathfinder Trust Thanks, Pascal!)