Historic British aircraft becomes shining star

A distinctive, English Electric (Lightning) P1 Fighter has been returned to its former glory and is now a shining star in the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection in Wiltshire.

The English Electric Lightning, which served as an interceptor for the RAF and other national forces, remains the only UK-designed-and-built fighter capable of Mach 2.

Boscombe Down Aviation Collection’s aircraft – the second prototype of the English Electric Lightning that first flew from Boscombe Down – was in a sorry state after sitting on display as a guest at another museum for several years.

The collection’s team of volunteers, who are dedicated to restoring the past and educating the future, turned to surface coatings company, Indestructible Paint, for support. Armed with a supply of Wadpol – a trusted solution for cleaning and polishing weathered or corroded aluminium and painted surfaces – the team soon had the aircraft gleaming.

Wadpol’s impregnated wadding is known for creating a super shine finish and is so effective that it is still used on aircraft and helicopters flying around the world today. The solution is often used for polishing wing leading edges and removing stains and exhaust deposits from engine cowlings. It is also used on aircraft flown by the Red Arrows aerobatic team and remains popular due to the long-lasting protection offered by in-built corrosion inhibitors.

Indestructible’s experts are known for being pioneers of high-performance surface coatings, providing not just traditional solutions like Wadpol but developing the sustainable solutions of tomorrow.

“We’re very grateful for the supply of Wadpol donated by Indestructible Paint,” said Graham Horner, visits manager, Boscombe Down Aviation Collection. “One of our volunteers – who was once an RAF airframe technician (rigger) – said this would be the best solution for brightening up our English Electric Lightning and we’re delighted to return it to display with such a brilliant result for visitors to enjoy.”

Visitors wishing to see the aircraft on display at Boscombe Down Aviation Collection, based at Old Sarum Airfield, can find out more at boscombedownaviationcollection.co.uk.


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