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Civilian Jet Provost T5

Countless RAF pilots - and, indeed, navigators - learned their trade on the Jet Provost, retired from service two decades ago this year. The Hunting Jet Provost T1 that started the line with a maiden flight in 1954 was a conversion of the piston-engined Percival Provost, but soon it was developed into something rather more, and the rest is history. It was developed through successive marks, culminating in the T5, and 741 examples were built, mainly for the RAF but also a number of export customers. Many 'JPs' have ended up in private hands following retirement from service, among them 1970-vintage T5 serial XW324, owned by Jeff Bell and operated by Jet Aerobatics. This immaculate example is marked in the colours it wore while serving with No 6 Flying Training School at RAF Finningley (now Doncaster Sheffield Airport) between 1975 and 1993, largely on navigational training duties. It will be on static display at RIAT 2016.

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Jeremy Clarkson, Television Presenter

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