Visitors to the Canada Aviation and Space Museum (CASM) now have the rare privilege of admiring a legendary Second World War aircraft – the last remaining of its kind – exactly 70 years after the D-Day beginning of the Normandy landings.
The Royal Air Force Museum (RAFM) of London, U.K., has bestowed upon CASM the prestigious honour of lending its iconic Hawker Typhoon Mk. IB MN235. This Typhoon is the sole remaining complete aircraft of its kind.
Hawker Typhoons saw active service during the Second World War, notably during operations leading to the Liberation of Normandy, and were flown by several Royal Canadian Air Force squadrons during the War, notably the City of Ottawa 440 Sqdn.
The Typhoon on loan to the CASM by the RAFM was originally allocated to the United States Air Force (USAAF) for evaluation and comparison trials. After the War, it was allocated to the U.S. National Air Museum, and eventually placed in storage with the Smithsonian Institute, before being returned to the RAFM and the U.K. in 1968. It was the centrepiece of the RAFM’s “D-Day” commemorative display in 1994.
“We are incredibly grateful to the RAFM for honouring us with their trust by lending us this unique artefact, the last remaining witness of its kind to some of the most important events of the Second World War,” said Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation (CSTMC) Interim President and CEO Fernand Proulx. “Showcasing such a legendary aircraft flown by Canadian pilots in their finest hour gives Canadians an unforgettable way of commemorating the Royal Canadian Air Force’s 90th anniversary.”
AVM Peter Dye, RAF Museum Director General
“The Royal Air Force Museum is privileged to support the Canadian Air & Space Museum in honouring those thousands of Canadian airmen who served alongside the Royal Air Force in two world wars, many of whom lost their lives in the defence of freedom and the shared values that unite our two nations. We are also delighted to be able to recognise the invaluable support that Canada has played in helping to train British aircrew over the past century and the close professional partnership and mutual respect between our air forces that continues to this day. In loaning Hawker Typhoon MN235 we hope to be able to repay a small part of the immeasurable debt owed to the Royal Canadian Air Force and to honour its veterans for their selfless and enduring achievements.”
Stephen Quick, Canada Air and Space Museum Director General
This is an incredible collaboration between two national Museums to commemorate the memory and the stories of men and women who gave so much. It simply could not have happened without the inspired leadership and support for the project of Director Peter Dye and his superb team at the Royal Air Force Museum and the dedication of the Royal Canadian Air Force.
Editor: Ajay Srivastava
RAF/MOD Crown Copyright 2014