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Painstaking restoration work underway on Second World War German Bomber the Dornier 17 recovered by Hendon RAF Museum
The last remaining Dornier 17 German bomber was resurfaced thanks to a ground-breaking recovery mission organised by the Hendon RAF Museum
A German warplane recovered from the English Channel is being restored piece-by-piece, ready for display at the Hendon RAF museum.
The Dornier 17 bomber, used by the Nazis in air raids during the Blitz, was pulled from the seabed at Goodwin Sands, just off the Kent coast, eight weeks ago.
Now conservationists are working meticulously to try to restore the plane - the last remaining example of its type - some way to its original condition.
The Second World War aircraft was recovered in a ground-breaking £600,000 project organised by the Hendon RAF museum and funded by the National Heritage Memorial Fund, as well as private and individual donors
The wreckage was transported to the RAF museum at Cosford when it finally surfaced on June 10, following a recovery mission that had suffered repeated setbacks due to poor weather.
Scientists have now begun the slow process of restoring the craft in the early stages of a process that will eventually see it displayed at Hendon within two years.
Restorers are using several thousand original Dornier 17 production drawings recently acquired to aid the rebuilding process.
Darren Priday, deputy conservation centre manager at RAF Museum Cosford, said: “Any metal removed from a salt water environment is subjected to an accelerated corrosion process if it’s not treated quickly.
“As the Dornier lay at the bottom of the sea, the currents and tides have effectively been like rubbing sand paper over the aircraft for 73 years, but she’s survived remarkably well.
“This is a truly unique project with lots of unknowns and we are still learning day by day. All the signs from the work we have carried out so far are very positive, but there is still a long way to go.”
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