Battle of Briatin Film


The survivors home


The Making of the film:

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4


The survivors

Spitfire Mk.F21 LA255


Type: VS356

Engine: Griffon 57A

Serial No. /Reg. LA255

Sqdn - code: 1-JX-U, 91-

Role in film: Allocated not used, Currently: Display


LA255 was built at South Marston under Contract No. Air/1951/CB.23(c) and delivered to No.39 MU Colerne, on 10th April 1945, from where it was allocated to No.1 squadron on 29th June that year. Records indicate that it may have served briefly with No.91 squadron before it was returned to the makers on 17th July 1945 for a refit, returning to No.1 squadron by March 1946. Its flying days were numbered on 13th November 1947 when an apparently major accident resulted in Cat.E damage and the aircraft was technically written off, being downgraded to an instructional airframe and issued as such to RAF Tangmere as 6490M.

Following its use in an instructional role the aircraft was transferred to RAF Cardington as a gate guardian, but Leslie Hunt alerted its former unit, No.1 (Fighter) squadron, of its plight and by 1964 the squadron had obtained it for display at its West Raynham base alongside its Hawker Hunters. It was briefly transferred to Henlow for use in the film The Battle of Britain but was not used. With the closure of the base and the squadrons transfer to Wittering, LA255 went along to join the Harriers, which had replaced the Hunters, and has remained there ever since, apart from a brief spell between 25th September 1974 and the summer of 1975 when it was transferred to Coltishall to help with installation trials of the Rolls-Royce Griffon 57A engine taken from a Shackleton MR.2C, which was being investigated at that time as a way of prolonging the flying life of the BBMF PR19s. LA255 is now jealously guarded by the squadron and housed at their hangar at Cottesmore.

Current location - No1 Squadron association, RAF Cottesmore, Leics display.

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