The last two Lancaster bombers still flying in the world will come together in a series of events this summer, in a meeting unlikely to happen ever again.
The Royal Air Force Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (RAF BBMF) based at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire will welcome the arrival of a very special guest during August 2014 when the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum (CWHM) fly their prized Avro Lancaster to the UK for a month long visit.
The Canadian Lancaster will join the only other airworthy Lancaster in the world, owned and operated by the RAF BBMF, and participate in several events and activities while overseas.
The CWHM Lancaster will depart from Hamilton, Ontario on August 4th with plans to arrive in England on August 8th. The North Atlantic crossing will include en-route stops at Goose Bay, Labrador, Canada, Narsarsuaq, Greenland, and Keflavik, Iceland, prior to arriving in the UK.
Shortly after arriving, the Lancaster will undergo a scheduled maintenance inspection. The CWHM crews will then complete a short training program with the BBMF in preparation to participate in several air displays and fly pasts with the BBMF Lancaster and fighters starting on August 14th. These displays will celebrate the exceptionally close British/Canadian relationship and to commemorate the sacrifice and dedication of Commonwealth Bomber crews and the professionalism of both nations’ air forces today. The CWHM Lancaster will also conduct a limited number of UK Bomber Membership flights from Humberside Airport, flying over historic Lincolnshire for those fortunate few who have obtained CWHM UK Bomber Memberships. Further information on the UK Bomber Memberships can be found at www.warplane.com.
Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum President and CEO, Sqn Ldr (Ret.) David G. Rohrer C.D. who is a current Lancaster pilot, stated that this Trans Atlantic crossing and visit to the BBMF and England is a “Once in a Lanc Time” event as it will not happen again. Rohrer indicated that this year, “a rare window of opportunity was identified to bring the last two flying Lancasters in the world together as a special salute to all the veterans of Bomber Command, many of whom are in their late 80s or older now.” It is also an opportunity for the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum to fly together and showcase a flying display and tribute to all those who served in the time of need, in Canada, Britain, and the entire Commonwealth, that likely will never be seen again.
Officer Commanding the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, Sqn Ldr Dunc Mason said “To see these two aircraft flying at events together will be a unique sight and also the opportunity to truly commemorate those who paid the ultimate sacrifice. Lest We Forget.”