Cosford, July 9th, 1997
This section is laid out in three pages. This page describes the captured aircraft exhibited in hangar two - the other pages look at the experimental and jet aircraft exhibit in hangar one - and the other aircraft exhibited in those hangars and some of those on display outside.
The Aerospace Museum displays a unique array of aircraft captured by the British (both German and Japanese) during World War II (and one or two since). Apart from wanting to see the TSR2, these were what I'd come to see! (Motivated I should add, by the pictures on Peter Evan's Classic Warbirds of the UK site - check out his 'Captive Luftwaffe' section for more detail on these aircraft).
First up - the Me163B-1A Komet (werke no 191614) - such a tiny machine. The Walter HWK R.11 rocket moter which is displayed separately is just fascinating! (It can be seen in the foreground with the Me262 below). The Me410A-1/U2 Hornisse or Hornet (werke number 42430) is in an awkward place to photograph at an elegant angle - so I've put in two images to make up for it (some of the modellers out there might appreciate this!). Built in 1943, this is one of two still in existence, and it served with ZG46 before being captured in Denmark. The autogyro is a Focke-Achgelis FA330A-1 Bachstelze (or Water Wagtail). It was designed to be towed behind a U-boat as an observation post, on 150m of cable. The Fieseler Fi156C-7 Storch (werke no 475081) served the British for longer than it did the Germans having been with the Aerodynamics flight at RAE Farnborough as VP546. These machines are surprisingly large given their performance.
The Me262A-1 Schwalbe or Swallow (werke no 112372) was the highlight of the German aircraft for me. The history of the aircraft is not recorded, but it was evaluated at Farnborough and given the serial VK893. As I have a model kitset tucked away for eventual construction, I made sure I got images of the open gunbay and the 30mm cannon on display seperately. The cutaway Junkers Jumo was also a unique chance to take a closer look at the construction and operation of this historic engine. I didn't get any photos of me with these aircraft, but that's my partner Louise with the video camera!
A truely unique aircraft - the Mitsubishi Ki-46-III 'Dinah', or Type 100 reconnaissance plane. This sole remaining intact example (c/n 5439) was recovered from New Guinea, and restored with financial support from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. I happen to think this is a really beautiful looking aircraft, and I was glad of the opportunity to see it up close!
The Kawasaki Ki-100-1B or Type 5 Fighter is another unique example. One of only 99 aircraft built, the Ki-100 was a derivation of the Kawasaki Ki-61 airframe using a Ha-112 radial and a cut down rear fuselage for all round visibility. Little is known about this aircraft, but as the sole remaining example its a special plane! I was quite surprised by how concave the forward fuselage is.
Another captive - the FMA 1A58 Pucara (A515) was captured at Port Stanley during the Falklands Conflict. The aircraft was produced at the Argentinian military aircraft factory at Cordoba, and the design was intended for COIN and light tactical operations. This aircraft was evaluated at Boscombe down as ZD485 before being sent to Cosford
The next page looks at some of the other aircraft displayed in Hangars One and Two, as well as some of the outside exhibits.
© 1998 Phillip Treweek, all rights reserved