Mark Schuster©2007-2013  Contact mark@panoradiant.co.uk

de Havilland Aircraft Heritage Centre

(Once there click the FULL SCREEN button for best view)


You are in a hangar on a farm where the prototype de Havilland Mosquito aircraft were built in 1941 in great secrecy, lest the Germans got wind of this fast fighter-bomber.  The yellow fuselage is what remains of one of the four original prototypes.


Still in the prototype hangar which is situated just five or six miles from Hatfield in Hertfordshire which was the home of de Havillands.  The factory which became British Aero Space closed some years ago but I think lives on, in part, near Bristol where the wings, undercarriage and aeronautics are built.  In this hanger are other de HavillandFor more information visit http://www.dehavillandmuseum.co.uk/index.html


The twin seat Vampire T-11 jet trainer is just one derivative of the single seater fighter like the one in the main hanger. Another derivative is the Sea Venom carrier bourn fighter seen here to the left. The T-11 brings back fond memories of myself as a nineteen year old sprog at RAF Swinderby where, if I was helpful around the tower, I got rides in the old bus and sometimes given the controls by one of the instructors putting in an hours solo flight every few months in order to claim his flying pay.  The de Havilland Vampire was the second jet fighter built. The Glouster Meteor was first but neither saw active service in the war although test flights took place before 1945.



The Sea Vixen was an all de Havilland aircraft. Airframe, engines, missiles, electronics, in fact almost everything.  Apparently it was not a pleasure to fly especially for the navigator who sat in a small space beneath the cockpit with just a small window and no forward view at all.  It was in  service with the Royal Navy from 1959 till 1972. See it in action at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXHEINfO4pg


The Dove was a successful small twin engine passenger aircraft built not only in Hatfield but also in under license other countries including the United States.  I was a passenger in one that had seen better days taking off crabwise in a rain storm from an airstrip in Abadan with the ex-RAF pilot operating the windscreen wiper manually as its motor had given up, the cockpit door had long since been removed. At the same time the co-pilot was fiddling wih the engine revs trying to counter the cross wind, I think. The pretty jet to the left is a prototype I think built for Bristol Siddley as a test bed for the Bristol engines.


This is a four engine derivative of the Dove sharing many small and major components including the engines. 


You might well ask what a Spitfire is doing in with  de Havilland aircraft. Well I don't have a category for it so for now here's where it's to be.  It was a flower sculpture modeled mostly from daffodils for the Spalding Flower Festival in spring 2011.



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