It has been 50 years since two Avro Lancaster Bombers flew side by side. These marvels of mechanical engineering, part of a proud lineage that is credited with bringing an end to WWII, are now preparing for an epic mission to finally meet high above the English Countryside. But making that reunion possible is a monumental task.
In early August, The Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum Avro Lancaster will depart from Hamilton, Ontario to meet her British counterpart, the only other surviving flight worthy Lancaster Bomber, the RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) Lancaster in England. It’s a mission unlike any other this Lancaster has ever undertaken; flying thousands of miles across the ocean, requiring multiple landings on remote runways from Goosebay to Greenland to make it across the vast Atlantic Ocean, and a crew that will be on their own, far away from any mechanical support or facilities that keep the plane flying. If anything goes wrong, needs to repaired or replaced, they’ll have very limited options to get the Lancaster flight worthy to continue the journey.
The Hamilton Lancaster Crew has a tight timeline to get the plane ready. An extended and demanding voyage like this will test the aircraft and crew in every way. Avionics, engines, landing gear, and controls will all need to be upgraded to more modern systems to make the voyage possible, and then rigorously tested to make certain the aircraft and crew are prepared. Test flights to fine tune mechanical issues, mission planning and schedules will all need to be prepared in advance of this historic flight.
Although they have never met, these two legendary bombers, separated by war, time, and the Atlantic Ocean will finally meet at an unprecedented historical event in Lincolnshire, England where they will fly together, side by side, this time, in peace.
It will be the first time in history these two Lancasters have flown together and for one month only, the bombers will visit the cities and towns the Lancasters protected in World War II and to say goodbye to veterans of Bomber Command who played a part in their proud history.
First-hand accounts from the men and women who experienced the war and have a connection to the Lancaster will take us back in time as they recount what it was actually like during the Lancaster’s glory days. This historic mission will be covered as it unfolds, though the eyes of our key characters and the real veterans who are part of the bombers’ history. The transatlantic crossing is a massive logistical undertaking
and we will capture it all.
Run Time: 60 Minutes