B.2/TT.18 - WK126
WK126 at Hurn
WK126, with Airwork Services Ltd at Hurn in Sept 1971
(Photo : B.Lewis)
WK126 Staverton
In the old, crowded, Jet Age Museum at Staverton
(Photo : Chris Hunt)

Built by A.V.Roe at Woodford, WK126 was ready for collection on 1 June 1954. Taken onto RAF charge it was first issued to 9 Sqd at RAF Binbrook. WK126 was next transferred to the ownership of 100 Sqd (RAF Wittering) where it served until 1959 when 100 converted to the Canberra B.6. This B.2 next surfaces in 1968 so where was it for nine years?

On 21 May 1968 WK126 was transferred to BAC (Warton) for conversion to TT.18 Target Towing configuration. It was delivered to 27 Maintenence Unit on 13 November 1969 and into the charge of the Royal Navy . Then, on 19 June 1970, WK126 was moved to Flight Refueling Ltd to take part in missile trials and Research and Development flying. In the November of 1970 it transferred again to Airwork Services Ltd (Hurn) and they operated this TT.18 in target towing duties for the Navy's Fleet Requirements Unit (FRU) [see photo above]. Eventually it was transferred to the charge of the Fleet Requirements and Air Direction Unit (FRADU) at RNAS Yeovilton. No detail on how long it stayed with FRADU but it is next noted as going into store at RAF St Athan in 1989. FRADU brought it out of storage briefly in January 1990 and it flew again until it was put back in store at RAF St Athan in October 1990.

After storage at RAF St. Athan, WK126 was auctioned off in 1993 and arrived at the Jet Age Museum June 1995. It is currently on loan to the museum from Gary Spoors and David Price.

The Canberra, and all the other Museum exhibits, were recently moved. Chris Hunt has put up some very good pictures of the move on the Jet Age Museum's web site. Two are shown below to give you a taste.

Chris Hunt of the Museum, reports . . .

The Jet Age Museum has now closed temporarily. The Airport Authority has terminated the lease and the hanger will be demolished in mid January 2001. Therefore we must find a new home. Smaller items have been moved to Smiths Industries based in Bishops Cleeve, just outside Cheltenham and the first of the airframes, (Gloster Gamecock and Hawker Hurricane) have been moved to a Company named "Van Moppes" in Gloucester. The complete airframes will be stored outside at a third secure location when an agreement is reached.

WK126 move
On the crane at Staverton, December 2000
(Photo : Chris Hunt)
WK126 moving
On the trailer for the journey by road
(Photo : Chris Hunt)