RAF Cosford’s Spitfire honoured with prestigious award
It is one of the nation's favourite planes, and 80 years ago played a key role in the Battle of Britain.
Now RAF Cosford's Supermarine Spitfire Mk 1 – the oldest Spitfire still in existence – has been given a prestigious award.
The museum's Spitfire, which has the serial number K9942, has been given the Engineering Heritage Award by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. This is the 129th award distributed by ImechE.
Tom Hopkins, the RAF Museum Cosford curator, said: "The Spitfire is the most famous British fighter aircraft in history. It won immortal fame during the summer months of 1940 by helping to defeat the German air attacks during the Battle of Britain.
Although Hurricanes outnumbered Spitfires throughout the Battle of Britain, it was the Spitfire which captured the imagination of the British public and enemy alike."
ImechE's awards, which started in 1984, recognise the contribution of mechanical engineering past and present as well as the significance of engineering importance.
The Cosford Spitfire was acknowledged for the role it played protecting the nation, as well as its pioneering engineering.
John Wood, the chairman of ImechE's Engineering Heritage Committee, said: "The Institution of Mechanical Engineers is delighted to present this award to the Spitfire to recognise the huge contribution, its designers and pilots made during the Battle of Britain. The UK's largest aerospace industry is built on the rich heritage of engineering innovation which is a legacy of aircraft such as the Spitfire."
The award was presented to RAF Museum CEO Maggie Appleton by Mr Wood.
Report by Stephen Bramhill