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Date added: 21 April 2009

Flying high price to pay 

Swindon-built Spitfire fetches 1.6 million
 
Swindon-built Spitfire T9 Serial No. SM520
As gentlemen's toys go, no one would deny it was a lot to pay. But for financier Steve Brooks it was worth every penny when he bought a Swindon-built Supermarine Spifire at auction yesterday.
 
1.58 million, the price for a piece of aviation history that first flew on what is now the test track of the Honda plant in South Marston, when in 1944 it was part of factory that produced 121 Spitfires for service during the second world war.
 
It was the first fighter of its kind to go under the hammer for over 20 years.
 
Swindon MkIX Spitfire being restored by Classic Aero Engineering
Back to her best:
Spitfire model number SM520 being restored
 
Swindon Spitfire restored
Classic Aero Engineering
 
Manufactured after the famous Battle of Britain, the plane, a Vickers-Supermarine Mk IX Spitfire, was first delivered to nearby RAF Lyneham on 23 October 1944 before being sold to the South African Air Force in 1948.
 
After leaving service, it was saved from a Cape Town scrapyard in the late 1970s before eventually being completely restored - and modified as a two-seater - by Classic Aero Engineering based at Thruxton.
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