When Sweden put a jet engine on a Lancaster

Jan Forsgren recalls Sweden’s five-engined Lancaster

Asked to name a European operator of the Lancaster other than the RAF, I’m sure many readers would say France. From 1951 until the mid-1960s the French flew a fleet of 59 ‘Lancs’ on maritime patrol and air-sea rescue duties. Four of these veterans survive, including the Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre’s Just Jane.

The Tp 80 Lancaster with the jet engine nacelle blanked off.
The Tp 80 Lancaster with the jet engine nacelle blanked off. Via Jan Forsgren

Full marks if you also knew that Sweden’s air force (Flygvapnet) used a Lancaster as a jet engine test-bed. It began life as a standard B.I, RA805, built in mid-1945 by Metropolitan Vickers in Manchester. It didn’t enter service and was placed in store until being struck off charge on February 6, 1948.

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