Supermarine Spitfire MkVIII VH-HET, ex-RAAF A58-758 / MV239, painted as A58-602 “Grey Nurse”. At a time when World War 2 aircraft were pretty much worthless in Australia, Sid Marshall (of Marshall Airways at Bankstown NSW) managed to acquire a nice little collection – a Ki-43 Hayabusa, a Bf109 and two Spitfires.
When Sid died his collection was broken up, with the Hayabusa regrettably going overseas, first to New Zealand and then to the USA. The Bf109 narrowly avoided illegal export, ending up in the Australian War Memorial collection at Canberra. Sid’s “prettier” Spitfire, MkVIII MV154, was illegally exported to Britain and restored to flying condition, and VH-HET was fortunately rescued, restored and flown by the late Col Pay at Scone. It now flies regularly at Temora, and bares its sharktoothed grin at foreign collectors.
Above:- Ok, so radials aren’t the only engines that blow smoke. But Merlins do it with style.
One of the great things about Temora is that it’s a working museum. It has static exhibits, of course – engines and the like – but the “static” display aircraft in the museum hangar are properly maintained and regularly flown. Which means that a visit to Temora is a worthwhile treat, even on a “non-special” weekend. Case in point – April 20th this year. No long queues to get into the air show, no problems finding parking; but plenty of action from the Boomerang, Spitfire, Ryan, Tiger Moth and Dragonfly. A thoroughly worthwhile visit.
To start off, here are some of the hangar exhibits:-Above and Below:- Lockheed Hudson VH-KOY, ex-RAAF A16-112, ex-East West Airlines VH-EWA, ex-Adastra Aerial Surveys VH-AGS. I’m guessing the turret probably wasn’t installed when East West owned the Hudson; although, knowing those Tamworth boys, anything is possible…
Below:- Gloster Meteor F.8 VH-MBX, “A77-851”, ex-RAF VZ467.
Below:- Commonwealth CA-27 Sabre, VH-IPN, ex-RAAF A94-983, currently displayed carrying drop tanks and Sidewinder missiles.
Below:- Supermarine Spitfire MkXVI, VH-XVI, ex-RAF TB863, minus its propeller on the day.There were other aircraft in the hangar, but movies were being shown and the lights were dimmed, so the Wirraway, Canberra, Vampire et al will have to wait for another day.
A few more images from Temora, November 2009 – Spitfire VIII A58-758 / VH-HET and Mustang Mk 21 A68-110 / VH-MFT in formation, their outlines blurred by the summer heat (above).
Spitfire XVI TB863 / VH-XVI (above) and Mustang VH-MFT (below) performing their individual displays.