I just spent the morning in Nanton which is about a 45 minute drive south of Calgary, at the not so small Nanton Lancaster Society museum which features one of the few remaining Lancaster bombers from the Second World War. This plane (FM159) was in service with the Canadian Air Force till 1958, and after being decommissioned was purchased in 1960 for $513 to be used as a Nanton war memorial/tourist attraction and it then sat outside for the next 31 years ! Since 1991 it has been undergoing restoration and this has been very much a community led project – currently the engines are progressively being restored with two in service now, and a third under repair.
When my Dad was here for a short visit a few weeks ago, I took him down for a look, and we were slightly disappointed to discover that the Merlin engine run-up would be happening just after he flew home ! Luckily, another engine run-up was scheduled for today, so I made certain I made it there in time to take it in. I’m not sure where else in the world you can stand within 40 feet of a real WWII Lancaster bomber, parked on the side of a major highway, with its engines running – but you can do that here, and its great ! I shot a short video which can be seen below – the strobe effect you see with the propellers is due to the slow sample rate of the camera and not because they are made out of rubber ! Enjoy !