Battle of Briatin Film

 
         
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The survivors

Spitfire Mk.LFXVIe TE476

Squadron: no crest.

Type: VS361

Engine: Packard Merlin 266

Serial/Reg. TE476, (G-XVIB), (N476TE)

Sqdn – code: No.1 CAACU-D (Civilian Anti Aircraft Co-operation Unit), GE-D

Role in film: Taxy, Currently: airworthy

History

TE476 was delivered from Castle Bromwich to No.39MU Colerne on 30th June 1945 and placed in store, from which it was removed on 19th October 1949 and transferred to No.33 MU at Lyneham. It was not until 4th July 1951 that 476 was actually issued to a flying unit, this being No.1 CAACU at Hornchurch Essex where it served with the code ‘D’ until retired to No.5 MU Kemble on 11th September 1956. Here it was declared as a non-effective airframe (7451M-never carried) and on 17th January 1957 it was transferred to No.32 MU at St Athan and prepared for use in the Royal Tournament that July.

Following the Royal Tournament, TE476 was restored to flying condition and on 1st March 1958 was placed on charge with the Station Flights of both Biggin Hill and North Weald alongside SL574, this being the start of the BBMF. It moved on to the station flight at Martlesham Heath on 16th May, but on 10th September 1959 it was involved in a flying accident. This was quickly repaired and on the 14th it was issued to No.11 Group Communications Flight (the ‘umbrella’ for the BBMF) with which it served until struck off charge on 5th January 1960. It was reclassified as Cat.5 (exhibition) on 31st January and issued to Neatishead for ground display duties, where it remained untiln2nd February 1967, when it was moved to Henlow and restored to taxying condition for use in The Battle of Britain. With the film over TE476 moved to Kemble, where it was refurbished and issued to Northolt for display duty as 8071M (never carried) on 2nd June 1970, being totally refurbished during 1976/77. Oddly enough this was the only Spitfire to retain the mocked-up wingtips fitted for the Battle of Britain.

To Tim Routsis/Historic Flying in June 1988, registered G-XVIB on July 3rd 1989. To Kermit Weeks, Florida on February 1st 1990 and stored. To Weeks Air Museum as N476TE on April 1991. Shipped to UK in May 1992 for restoration at Booker. First flight on June 20th 1995.

Current location – Weeks air museum, Tamiami, Florida - airworthy.

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