|"JET PROVOST HEAVEN"|
|KNOWN JET PROVOST T.5 SURVIVORS|
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|BAC JET PROVOST T.5 XW322 (N199ER)|
|BAC Jet Provost T.5 XW322 was built at Warton, Lancashire, and was rolled out in early 1970. After thorough testing it was declared ready for
delivery to the Royal Air Force a couple of months later.
Its first tour of service was with the Royal Air Force College at Cranwell. During 1971, XW322 was one of two Jet Provosts selected to be the personal aircraft of HRH Prince Charles, during his Fleet Air Arm pilot training. As aircraft '1', XW322 ultimately became the primary aircraft used, and had the royal cipher painted on the air intake.
In August 1975 the aircraft was flown back to Warton for conversion to T.5A specification. Given the plane set number PS5069, the 69th JP to be upgraded, XW322 was test flown on 15th January 1976, and returned to Cranwell on the 30th the same month. Put back in service immediately it remained with the RAFC until 1988, when it was transferred onto the strength of No.6 Flying Training School (6FTS), RAF Finningley. Brought up to unofficial T.5B status and re-coded 'D', its new role was to help train the RAF's next generation of navigators. On 23rd June 1993 it was officially retired and ferried to RAF Shawbury for storage.
In February 1994, Global Aviation bought XW322 from the MoD, along with sixty-four other Jet Provost aircraft. It was ferried to Binbrook airfield in Lincolnshire in October 1994 and offered for sale.
XW322 was subsequently exported to the USA. It was originally registered as N8086U but was quickly changed to N199ER, with the ER representing its Royal connections. Previously owned by Wayne Rodgers and based in Denver, Colorado, XW322 is now owned and pampered by a 10-strong syndicate led by former RAF pilot Brian D. Childs. Nicknamed the 'North American Royal' it undertook a 4-hour ferry flight from Denver to its new home at Ellington Field, Houston, Texas in August 2004, before later moving onto Brazoria County Airport, also in Texas.
On 12th June 2008, N199ER crashed while landing at Bay City, Texas, USA. The aircraft was destroyed, but both occupants escaped without major injuries. A sad end to the "Royal JP".
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