George Haye has fulfilled the dream of owning a Spitfire having bought RW382/G-PBIX, which is also known as the Suffolk Spitfire. He tells Key Aero’s Dino Carrara whether the reality of owning this iconic warbird has lived up to the dream.
Q. What's the best thing about owning a Spitfire?
A. The most enjoyment I get out of it is other people's enjoyment. What I mean by that is there's so much enthusiasm among the public for these airplanes and Spitfires in particular. The reaction people have when they come and have a look, touch it, feel it and sit in it and see it fly is just extraordinary and you realise how iconic the Spitfire has become amongst the British public.
We are only looking after these aircraft for the next generation – we're not really owners as such, we're custodians. With that comes all the responsibility. Yes, it's lovely to fly and a really nice thing to own and it's an awesome piece of engineering, but all that pales into insignificance compared with people's reaction to it.
Q. What is the worst thing about owning a Spitfire?