Fighter jet to go on display at Shannon aviation museum

Mike Dwane

Reporter:

Mike Dwane

ATLANTIC AirVenture in Shannon has acquired a fighter jet to go on display at its aviation museum.

ATLANTIC AirVenture in Shannon has acquired a fighter jet to go on display at its aviation museum.

The centre - which offers aviation education and flight simulation - has taken delivery of the Blackburn Buccaneer just in time for its aviation show on Sunday, August 26.

Developed for the RAF during the Cold War, the fighter aircraft had nuclear weapon delivery capability, but it has not seen active service since the 1990s.

The plane is fitted with two Rolls Royce engines and was capable of a top speed of 1074 kph. Its wings fold to fit on aircraft carriers but when extended have a span of 44 feet. And at 63 feet in length, the Buccaneer “will certainly make an eye-catching display at the museum”, a spokesman for Atlantic AirVenture said.

The particular aircraft that is going on static display in Shannon, however, has never seen combat, he added.

“It was used exclusively as a test model to trial the Foxhunter radar used on the Tornado. It was sold on retirement in 1993 to Source Classic Jet Flight at Bournemouth Airport, where she next changed hands in 1998 to Quicksilver whose primary interest was in her engines, to use them in a waterborne craft in an attempt on the world water speed record.

“This didn’t actually happen and now it’s bound for a new home in Shannon just in time for the 3rd Annual Aviation Show.”

Over 1500 people attended last year’s show for exhibits, workshops, flight simulation and other attractions. Weather permitting, there will also be an aerobatics display.

The show costs €5 for adults, €2.50 for children and is free for the under-fives. See www.atlanticairventure.com