A new addition to the museum’s collection of Royal Navy aircraft has arrived. The Hawker Hunter T8 WT722 was originally built as a type F4 and first flew on 4th February 1955. She was delivered to the RAF on 25th May 1955 and served with 54(F) and 26(F) Squadrons. In 1957 she was sold back to Hawkers who then converted the aircraft to a type T.8 before she was delivered to the Royal Navy in April 1959.
WT722 then served with 703 and 764 Naval Air Squadrons at RNAS Lossiemouth, and 759 NAS at Brawdy. In 1970, she was moved to RNAS Yeovilton and into service with the Air Direction Training Unit (ADTU). The aircraft was eventually retired from flying in 1994 after accumulating a total of 9,500 flying hours and 12,500 landings. Eventually she ended up at Newquay as part of the Cornwall Aviation Heritage Collection 2015, where she remained until the CAHC was forced to close in spring 2023. Thankfully, WT722 was bought by Bournemouth Aviation Museum where she arrived in early August 2023 and is now on display at the front entrance. In due course we hope to restore the aircraft to her former glory with a refurbishment and new paint job – watch this space.