England

Vulcan XH558 to honour Queen's Diamond Jubilee

Vulcan XH558
Image caption The aircraft has a wingspan of 99ft (30m) and a top speed of 610mph

The last airworthy Vulcan bomber is to take part in a tour of UK airshows in honour of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, it has been announced.

The British delta-winged aircraft, owned by the Vulcan to the Sky Trust, will fly at more than 30 displays.

The trust said the tour will celebrate Britain's aviation and engineering achievements during the Queen's reign.

A leather-bound book of supporters names will fly with the aircraft and be presented to Her Majesty.

Jubilee flypast

Richard Gotch, from the trust, said the Queen and the Vulcan were both celebrating their Diamond Jubilees in 2012.

He said: "She first flew in August 1952 - so we wanted to put the two things together.

"We want to fly the Vulcan at as many major airshows as possible," he said.

The Cold War bomber, named Spirit of Great Britain, was restored to flying condition in 2007 after a £7m fundraising campaign by the Leicestershire-based Vulcan to the Sky Trust.

Mr Gotch said that it was important the aircraft flew at the Waddington International Airshow next year, because that was the venue where it first flew after its restoration.

The Vulcan is now based at Robin Hood Airport in South Yorkshire.

The trust said "the tour will honour all that is great in Britain, particularly its aviation and engineering achievements, during the sixty years of Her Majesty's reign".

Organisers have said that although no plans for an official Jubilee flypast over London have been announced, they are already making preparations to meet safety requirements should an aerial tribute be launched.

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