BM597 Spitfire Mk Vb in 317 Squadron RAF Colours
Related Notes by Caz
BM597 [G-MKVB] a Supermarine Spitfire Mk Vb is a combat veteran that was flown by 315 and latterly by 317 Squadrons RAF during 1942 then spent most of its time with various MU's [maintenance units] and finishing its wartime service with 58 O.T.U.
In January 1967 it was used by Pinewood Studios as the master for the moulds that were made to cast the fibre glass replicas used in the film Battle of Britain. It was then acquired by Historic Flying Limited (HFL), for rebuilding, which was completed in August 1997 and then sold to HAC [Historic Aircraft Collection], normally flying in the colours of 317 Squadron Coded JH:C.
HAC has managed to make contact with a number of Polish veterans that flew BM597 whilst in service with the Polish 315 (PK-C) and 317 (JH-C) Squadrons RAF. Squadron Leader Ludwik Martel and Squadron Leader Tadeuz Anderz were reunited with the aeroplane in July 2000. The above Photograph was taken at the Shoreham RAFA display on 16th September 2006.
Although normally in 317 Squadron RAF Colours, in 2005 BM597 took part in the 'Merlins over Malta' Project for which it was given a special scheme and coded U-2. See the next page for a Linda Chen Picture of the Aircraft in these colours .
Historic Flying Limited
Historic Aircraft Collection (HAC)
For a detailed history see:
Spitfire Mk Vb, BM597 [G-MKVB] - City of St Albans Spitfire Squadron Page