Fundraising to keep Avro Vulcan flying succeeds

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

An Avro Vulcan Bomber.
Image: Sgt. Davis S. Nolan, United States Air Force.

Fundraising to keep XH558,the only airworthy Avro Vulcan in the world flying have been successful. The one million pounds required to pay for licenses was successfully raised by generous sponsors.

VTST, the trust that returned the bomber to flying condition, requires £80,000 per month to cover maintenance costs and faced a shortfall due to the loss of corporate sponsorship as a result of the credit crunch.

The trust fought to keep the aircraft from being grounded or sold to a collector in the United States by turning to grassroots campaigning. This included a letter writing campaign to MPs, street collections, and the mobilisation of James Bond fans.

XH558 was returned to flying condition after 15 years of repairs and fundraising. In the summer of 2008 it flew again for the first time since its retirement in 1993.

Once a cornerstone of the United Kingdom's independent nuclear deterrent, the Vulcan bomber has earned a sentimental place in the hearts of the general public and aviation enthusiasts alike.