1st October to 5 th November 1972. Recovery of Hurricane Z7010

Recovery of Hurricane Z7010.
1st October to 5th November 1972.
The Chiltern Historical Aircraft Preservation Group
See here for the loss article: Randall RAF 1941

Following reports of an aircraft crash believed to be a Spitfire, the CHAPG obtained permission to investigate the site located
on the edge of a pig farm, at Holly Green near Princess Risborourgh, Buckinghamshire.

The dig was undertaken by hand, this photo was taken at the start of the dig
where fragments of the aircraft soon began to appear.


Randall recovery 4.jpg
Here founder of the CHAPG Peter Haliday (left) and the groups recorder Les Mason (right)
examine parts recovered to establish the identity of the aircraft

Numerous small parts recovered like the one shown above soon helped to reveal the true identity of the aircraft, a Hurricane built in Canada by The Canadian Car Foundry.The full inscription reads. FRONT SPAR PORT. DR (Drawing number) D85150/1.SER (Serial) CCF (Canadian Car Foundry) /41H/4894. It also has two Air Inspectors stamps CCF 92 and CCF 45, followed by ASTD 921 2.

The reverse of the same part shown above with additional information which reads OUTER FRONT ST BD (Starboard) BOTTOM BOOM TOP BOOM WEB.

After digging for a few feet the corroded tip of a propeller blade still attached to the boss was revealed, on further digging a second blade was also found to be attached.

Once further soil had been removed from the second blade, it was soon established that the boss was no longer attached to the engine; this therefore made it possible for it to be removed from the hole to provide easy access to the engine. Above members of the group are seen dragging the hub and blades from the hole.

The propeller is seen here being inspected by CHAPG recording officer Les Mason. (Note: Blade on the right still retains much of its original paint, including yellow tip.)

Clearly visible on the hub, the manufacturers marks. SERIAL NO DH (De Havilland) 504056.

With the propeller removed it soon became possible to remove the soil from around the engine.

Work continues to free the engine from the blue clay.

With the assistance of a timber section the Merlin becomes totally free. A few days prior to this the nearby RAF Station of Halton became aware of the recovery in progress, and offered their assistance as part of an exercise.

So it was that a large RAF crane arrived to retrieve the engine, here group members are seen attaching a chain to the Merlin prior to its recovery.

The signal to lift is given.

Up she comes.

The excellent condition of the Merlin is evident in this photo as it is directed towards the truck, also supplied by the RAF.

The lowering of Hurricane Z7010's Merlin brings the recovery to a close.

(All photos King/Mason, Aircrew Remembrance Society.)

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