'Sally B' makes welcome return to Biggin Hill in June
PUBLISHED: 17:10 15 May 2015 | UPDATED: 17:21 15 May 2015
Memphis Belle star takes to the skies in her 40th year of flying in displays
A Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress will be making a welcome return to Biggin Hill Airport on June 13 to feature in the display at the Festival of Flight.
As the UK’s last remaining airworthy American bomber, the famous aircraft known as the Sally B will be marking her 40th display season in 2015 and at the same time celebrating her 70th birthday.
The historic aircraft has been kept in the air with the help of 6,500 members of the B-17 Supporters Club along with charitable donations, supportive sponsorships and souvenir sales.
Elly Sallingboe, the aircraft’s operator, her crew and a team of volunteers have managed to reach the 40-year milestone without any form of official help.
She said: “Fundraising is an ongoing struggle. It is a constant challenge – no sooner do we secure sufficient funds for one year than we have to look ahead and plan for the next. But we are determined to continue fighting for the survival of this important living piece of our history and wartime heritage because Sally B flies as a memorial to all Allied airmen who fell in the Second World War.”
Colin Hitchins, event organiser, says that some visitors will remember this B-17 landing at Biggin Hill 40 years ago this summer when it was rescued by Ted White from an uncertain future in Africa with a bold restoration plan in the UK.
He said: “It is marvellous to see the aircraft maintained 40 years on in such fine flying condition – a great tribute to Elly and her team for determination and perseverance.”
Sally B’s TV and film credits include a leading role in the Memphis Belle film, also We’ll Meet Again, Over Here, Bomber Crew and the 2007 film called Black Book.
For more information and ticket sales on-line, visit www.bhfof.com or call the box office on 01689 300005 during office hours.