Appeal to get Culdrose crash landing plane back in the sky

The historic Sea Fury crash landing at RNAS Culdrose Air Day last month. Picture: Bob Sharples

The historic Sea Fury crash landing at RNAS Culdrose Air Day last month. Picture: Bob Sharples

First published in Cornwall
Last updated

Donations are needed to help get an historic aircraft flying again, after it crash landed at RNAS Culdrose Air Day.

Fleet Air Arm historians are hoping aviation enthusiasts and the general public alike will get behind the campaign, to get the Royal Navy’s last propeller-driven fighter, the Sea Fury, back in the sky again.

It is after the aeroplane made an emergency landing at the Helston air display last month. The vintage Sea Fury skidded to a halt on the grass after pilot Lt Cdr Chris ‘Goaty’ Götke brought her down rapidly, when the aircraft began developing engine trouble mid-display.

His skill in bringing down the 60-year-old fighter earned praise from the Navy’s greatest pilot, Capt Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown, and drew applause from the 22,000-strong audience at Culdrose Air Day.

The fighter’s undercarriage collapsed on landing, providing some dramatic images as sparks flew off the runway before the Sea Fury careered over the grass and finally came to a stop.

Although the landing gear was damaged, it is the Sea Fury’s Bristol Centaurus engine which requires the most work.

Around 2,500 Centaurus engines were produced in the second half of World War Two for more than 20 different aircraft types, including the Tempest fighter and the gigantic Bristol Brabazon prototype airliner.

The Fly Navy Heritage Trust, which now operate the aircraft, has said that replacing the Centaurus will be tricky, as production stopped nearly 70 years ago and there are only a small number of working models left. Alternatively, experts face the painstaking task of restoring the damaged engine.

Either way, the trust is determined to restore the veteran fighter to flying order.

Tim Manna, from the trust, said: “We have the specialists and the spares to rebuild her and get her back in the air again as soon as possible. The offers of help from Fly Navy Heritage ambassadors and supporters have been incredible.

“A beautiful historic aircraft like the Sea Fury needs to be flying.”

Nearly 900 Sea Fury aircraft were built between the end of World War Two and the mid-1950s, seeing extensive service in Korea.

Donations to the restoration appeal can be made by credit card or Paypal at http://www.fnht.co.uk/t20-appeal.html or by cheque, payable to Fly Navy Heritage Trust, to Fly Navy Heritage Trust,Room 112 Unicorn House, RNAS Yeovilton, Ilchester, Somerset, BA22 8HW.

Comments (6)

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1:07pm Mon 25 Aug 14

victoriameldrew says...

thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back
thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back victoriameldrew
  • Score: 4

4:13pm Mon 25 Aug 14

Gill Z Martin says...

victoriameldrew wrote:
thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back
Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew.

I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires.
[quote][p][bold]victoriameldrew[/bold] wrote: thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back[/p][/quote]Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew. I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires. Gill Z Martin
  • Score: 4

7:54pm Mon 25 Aug 14

victoriameldrew says...

Gill Z Martin wrote:
victoriameldrew wrote:
thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back
Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew.

I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires.
thank you Gill it is nice to be able to leave a comment with no fear of being put down so to speak. I love the sound of the Lancaster bomber - there was a programme on the other week about them and they just have that certain something. I live on the flight path of the Red Arrows when they visit Falmouth - they fly around my house when they are here, they seem close enough to be able to touch - brings a lump to my throat!
[quote][p][bold]Gill Z Martin[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]victoriameldrew[/bold] wrote: thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back[/p][/quote]Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew. I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires.[/p][/quote]thank you Gill it is nice to be able to leave a comment with no fear of being put down so to speak. I love the sound of the Lancaster bomber - there was a programme on the other week about them and they just have that certain something. I live on the flight path of the Red Arrows when they visit Falmouth - they fly around my house when they are here, they seem close enough to be able to touch - brings a lump to my throat! victoriameldrew
  • Score: 3

8:29pm Mon 25 Aug 14

Gill Z Martin says...

victoriameldrew wrote:
Gill Z Martin wrote:
victoriameldrew wrote:
thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back
Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew.

I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires.
thank you Gill it is nice to be able to leave a comment with no fear of being put down so to speak. I love the sound of the Lancaster bomber - there was a programme on the other week about them and they just have that certain something. I live on the flight path of the Red Arrows when they visit Falmouth - they fly around my house when they are here, they seem close enough to be able to touch - brings a lump to my throat!
Yes I agree, I was insulted on another website (non news) which I believe was by the same person, it was posted under 'anonymous' which I think makes it even worse, it puts me off commenting there in case I am insulted again.

Completely agree about the Lancaster bomber, I remember years ago seeing a Lancaster bomber with a spitfire one side of it and a hurricane the other, they were off to an airshow as far as I remember. Fantastic hearing and seeing any of these old planes. Perhaps they could apply for grants to repair the one in the article, I really hope they do restore it. Fantastic atmosphere they create. Agree with you the Red Arrows are great too.
[quote][p][bold]victoriameldrew[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Gill Z Martin[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]victoriameldrew[/bold] wrote: thanks admin - guess HJ put one of his obscure comments on here which you took off - now we can air our own opinions without fear of ridicule from him - it's nice to be back[/p][/quote]Nice to see you commenting victoriameldrew. I think it would be nice if it were possible to keep all the old planes in working order, I particularly like Spitfires.[/p][/quote]thank you Gill it is nice to be able to leave a comment with no fear of being put down so to speak. I love the sound of the Lancaster bomber - there was a programme on the other week about them and they just have that certain something. I live on the flight path of the Red Arrows when they visit Falmouth - they fly around my house when they are here, they seem close enough to be able to touch - brings a lump to my throat![/p][/quote]Yes I agree, I was insulted on another website (non news) which I believe was by the same person, it was posted under 'anonymous' which I think makes it even worse, it puts me off commenting there in case I am insulted again. Completely agree about the Lancaster bomber, I remember years ago seeing a Lancaster bomber with a spitfire one side of it and a hurricane the other, they were off to an airshow as far as I remember. Fantastic hearing and seeing any of these old planes. Perhaps they could apply for grants to repair the one in the article, I really hope they do restore it. Fantastic atmosphere they create. Agree with you the Red Arrows are great too. Gill Z Martin
  • Score: 4

1:23pm Sat 30 Aug 14

titanium says...

I agree with previous comments. These few survivors of WW11, part of our recent history, should be maintained and kept flying for as long as possible.

When you think of all the aircrew who died flying these aircraft to defeat the nazis, it's not asking a lot for our government to help look after these aircraft. After all, we can afford to give billions away in foreign aid !!.
I agree with previous comments. These few survivors of WW11, part of our recent history, should be maintained and kept flying for as long as possible. When you think of all the aircrew who died flying these aircraft to defeat the nazis, it's not asking a lot for our government to help look after these aircraft. After all, we can afford to give billions away in foreign aid !!. titanium
  • Score: 2

1:37pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Gill Z Martin says...

titanium wrote:
I agree with previous comments. These few survivors of WW11, part of our recent history, should be maintained and kept flying for as long as possible.

When you think of all the aircrew who died flying these aircraft to defeat the nazis, it's not asking a lot for our government to help look after these aircraft. After all, we can afford to give billions away in foreign aid !!.
Completely agree, they should at least halve foreign aid.
[quote][p][bold]titanium[/bold] wrote: I agree with previous comments. These few survivors of WW11, part of our recent history, should be maintained and kept flying for as long as possible. When you think of all the aircrew who died flying these aircraft to defeat the nazis, it's not asking a lot for our government to help look after these aircraft. After all, we can afford to give billions away in foreign aid !!.[/p][/quote]Completely agree, they should at least halve foreign aid. Gill Z Martin
  • Score: 2

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