Local restoration of WW II aircraft planned
Two Second World War aircraft owned by the City of Calgary are going to be saved from the dustbin of history.
After years of debate and delay, a council committee voted Wednesday to rebuild the Hawker Hurricane and the de Havilland Mosquito.
The aldermen unanimously agreed to spend up to $800,000 in matching funds to see the planes restored and ultimately displayed in the Aero Space Museum of Calgary.
The disassembled planes have languished in storage for decades.
There was a proposal on the table to sell the Mosquito to a British millionaire and use the money to restore the Hurricane, but it was rejected.
Richard de Boer of the Calgary Mosquito Society said his group would raise money and volunteer to work on the planes.
"The combination of the key airplanes, of the Lancaster bomber that the museum is currently restoring, the Mosquito and the Hurricane together, would be a collection of absolute top-drawer, Grade A airplanes that exist in perhaps a half a dozen museums in the world," said de Boer.
"To have them all in one place would be a spectacular accomplishment."
Ald. Jim Stevenson said the city-owned planes shouldn't be left in boxes.
He said by agreeing to match private donations, the city is encouraging Calgarians to get behind the restoration effort.
The funding proposal will go before city council next week for a final decision.
The Hawker Hurricane was a single-seat fighter aircraft famous for its role in the Battle of Britain. The de Havilland Mosquito was a multi-purpose combat aircraft noted for its all-wood frame.