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About this event
It is with great pleasure
that we announce this excusive and rare photographic opportunity as we bring this wonderful 20 year restoration project to life at close quarters for sunset through into after dark. Spitfire Mk IX: PT879, a WW2 survivor of the Russian Airforce and the only spitfire with Russian markings to exists in the West will be shown in all her glory at her home, the Hanger 11 Collection, North Weald Airfield. After spending 20 years restoring and seeking her flying permit, in late 2020 Peter Teichman took PT879 to the skies for the first time in many years, a dream come true for the him and the Hanger 11 Collection.
Our event will begin circa 17:00 and finish up at 21:00 to take advantage of sunset and the evening as the light fades into dark. As darkness falls we will bring out our powerful lighting to illuminate this rare and beautifully restored Spitfire in all her Russian glory. Joining us will be some convincingly dressed re-enactors acting as ground crew and pilot to further add to the scenes. The Spitfire will be positioned on the apron adjacent to the hanger and we will do an engine run before and after dark to add plenty of variety. This is an event not to miss for any aviation enthusiast as PT879 has rarely been seen before at close quarters in her newly restored condition.
The history behind PT879
For the aircraft, a Supermarine Spitfire Mk IX with the serial number PT879, was one of 1,328 of the iconic British warplanes supplied to the Russian air force from 1942 to 1945 during the Second World War under a scheme by the Allies known as " Lend LeaseĒ to help fight Adolf Hitlerís forces on the Eastern Front. Built at the Vickers Armstrong factory at Castle Bromwich, PT879 arrived in the Russian port of Murmansk to join her Russian squadron in October 1944, only to be lost in a flying accident on May 18, 1945 on the nearby Kola Peninsula. There it remained as surface wreckage - but basically intact - until recovered more than half a century later by a Russian farmer.
Official reports say PT879 had completed a total of 18 hours 29 minutes of flying time before itís career was ended by the accident, which happened during a training dogfight when another Spitfire collided with it cutting off its tail unit and rendering it uncontrollable. PT879ís Red Army Russian pilot Lieutenant Grigoriy Vasilievich Semyonov bailed out and was unharmed.
Following its recovery in 1997, PT879 was sold to a UK purchaser. Six years later, it was sold on to Peter Teichman, who runs The Hangar 11 Collection in North Weald, Essex.
Images for illustration purposes only and courtesy of Darren Harbar.
Currently all of our events will run in line with our Covid-19 policy that follows government guidelines. You can find our Covid-19 policy information page here.
- Spare batteries
- Lense cloths
- Camera protection - rain covers etc
- All levels welcome
- Sturdy outdoor shoes
- Warm clothing
- Wet weather gear
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