Yorkshire Air Museum secures the future of Avro Shackleton Cold War aircraft – one of just three left in a running condition

The team at Yorkshire Air Museum in Elvington has added to its growing cohort of aircraft.

Shackleton WR963 – nicknamed “Ermintrude” - has been preserved by the Shackleton Aviation Group. Photo submitted
Shackleton WR963 – nicknamed “Ermintrude” - has been preserved by the Shackleton Aviation Group. Photo submitted

It has managed to secure a rare RAF maritime patrol aircraft that used to scour the waters around the UK.

The Avro Shackleton MR2, a distant cousin of the famous Lancaster bomber, was built to search for Russian submarines in the early years of the Cold War as well as helping in search and rescue operations.

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Shackleton WR963 – nicknamed “Ermintrude” – has been preserved by the Shackleton Aviation Group at Coventry Airport for 31 years.

The Avro Shackleton MR2, a distant cousin of the famous Lancaster bomber, was built to search for Russian submarines in the early years of the Cold War as well as helping in search and rescue operations. Photo submitted

However, a redevelopment of the airport means it is looking for a new home.

An agreement has been reached for the aircraft to come by road in 2023.

Work will begin next year to disassemble Ermintrude for the trip north.

The air museum’s spokesman Jerry Ibbotson said: “This is great news all round.

“WR963 has its future secured and will be kept in a running condition, we receive an exciting new addition to our collection and the team at Coventry, who have worked so hard over the years, see their pride and joy being cared for in an environment where she can continue to be enjoyed by generations of aircraft enthusiasts for years to come.”

The Shackleton Aviation Group added: “The new location had to be a strong heritage environment, and as WR963 is one of only three Shackletons left in a running condition, it had to give the possibility of continuing to keep the aircraft’s engines active.

“This meant just a handful of locations fit the bill, but with its enviable collection of Cold War aircraft, a number of running aircraft, and of course the mighty Handley Page Halifax right at its heart, Yorkshire Air Museum naturally fell at the top of the list.”