Congratulations to Peter Monk in his latest endeavour the Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar. Peter has long been a friend of the Spitfire Museum, when asked he has willingly arranged visits by the 'Spirit of Kent' Spitfire, for which the Trust is most grateful. We wish him well in his new endeavour.
THE BIGGIN HILL HERITAGE HANGAR
Tuesday June 12 2012 saw the launch of the Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar situated on the former wartime airfield near the village of Biggin Hill. Now a commercial airport, the hangar was the inspiration of long time Spitfire owner and pilot, Peter Monk, who is the owner of Spitfire Mark 9 TA805 known as ‘The Kent Spitfire’ and named ‘Spirit of Kent’. Acquiring this aircraft in 2006 he has recently added another Mark 9 Spitfire to his stable which is named ‘Borough of Bromley.
It was the intention from the beginning to name the collection in memory of No. 131 (County of Kent) Fighter Squadron which was formed in 1941 entirely with donations sent in by the good people of Kent. The words ‘Spirit of Kent’ were emblazoned on the Spitfire flown by the CO, Squadron Leader Pedley, with the rest of the squadron bearing the names of Kentish towns such as ‘Folkestone and Hythe’ and ‘Medway Meteor’. The squadron was unique in Fighter Command as the only squadron to be purchased by a county. It was stood down at the end of hostilities in 1945.
Two further Spitfires are also residents of the hangar, these being a privately owned very rare Mark I and a Mark 16. In addition Peter has recently acquired an American Piper Cub and a North American Harvard with further warbirds to follow over the following months.
The launch was attended by two veterans, Squadron Leader Nigel Rose and Flight Lieutenant Rodney Scrase DFC both of whom cut the launch ribbon and gave interviews to the local TV and press.
With the sad demise of the annual Biggin Hill Air Fair two years ago the heritage hangar has once again placed the airfield firmly on the vintage aviation map and will soon rival similar sites based in different parts of the country. The hangar and collection will be open at certain times during the year together with several twilight evening viewings for photographers.
Click here for the details of Aircraft
Robin J Brooks. Publicity The Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar.