Friday, August 07, 2009

The Avro Lancaster Came to Winnipeg

Avro Lancaster at the Western Canada Aviation Museum
OK, let's leave trains for a moment and talk about planes. I used to be a big plane fan (second only to my fascination for all things naval) and one of my favourite planes was the old Avro Lancaster bomber. The Lancaster was one of the most important Allied bombers in WW2. 7,377 were built, delivering 608,612 tons of bombs in 156,000 sorties. Sadly 3,249 planes were lost in action, just over 44%. The life of a bomber crewman was short.
Avro Lancaster at the Western Canada Aviation Museum
One of the only two flying Lancasters in the world, B X FM213 the "Mynarski Memorial Lancaster", owned by the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum, came to Winnipeg earlier this week. It landed at the airport Monday around 3 PM and parked at the Western Canada Aviation Museum. I took my kids down to see it, and after waiting in line for quite some time, we were able to walk around and see the outside. There was another line to go in, and my kids' patience was already worn thin so we did not try to get in.
Avro Lancaster at the Western Canada Aviation Museum
There were quite a few people around. My kids seemed pretty impressed by the plane. The tires on the plane are taller than they are!
Avro Lancaster at the Western Canada Aviation Museum

There are several videos of the landing on YouTube but I think this is the best.

I was glad to be able to see the old Lanc!


Unknown said...

I'm not sure how you come up with the statement that the Lancaster was "the most important Allied bomber in WW2" - when the US built 12,731 B17's, which delivered 640,036 tons of bombs. Even the US built B24 had a greater presence in the war, with 18,482 being produced. The Lancaster was certainly an important weapon, but I think hardly THE most important.

Canadian Train Geek said...

Well, perhaps I was overcome by hyperbole.

Anonymous said...

As a resident of Hamilton, ON, I often see the Lancaster bomber either in the air partocularly around Remembrance Day services or in its hangar at Hamilton Airport. It s site to see.

On one Sunday a few years back, I was in my parish church in Mount Hope. The Lanc used the east west runway that morning. even though the church wa snot on the direct flight path, the noise of bomber was incredible. Hundreds of these hitting targets in Europe would have been devistating to the ears!

Coincidentally, the churchyard cemetery at St. Paul's contains the final resting place for 14 RAF airmen who passed away in training accidents while stationed at the Commonwealth Air Training School (Navigation) # 33. The site is now known at John C Munro Hamilton International Airport.

Jody R said...

Hey Steve. I'm a big WW II buff myself. My uncle flew 34 missions over Germany and German held territory in first a Halifax and later a Lancaster bomber. The yanks did a max of 25 and their war was over. I guess you can say the Lancaster was the most important British/Canadian bomber! lol

Rockeiro said...

Nice video Steve. much better than the one I got here in Edmonton when she landed here.

7,377 Lancasters carried out a total of 156,000 missions and dropped 608,612 tons of bombs. In the four years of combat service 3,249 Lancasters were lost in action and another 487 were destroyed or damaged while on the ground. Only 24 Lancasters completed more than 100 successful missions.

Between 1941 and 1945 the Halifax made over 75000 bombing sorties and dropped 227610 tons (231300 tonnes) of bombs