A major milestone has been reached as supporters continue rallying to the call to ensure that Vulcan XH558 is seen in the skies around the UK this summer. A campaign launched last month to bridge a funding gap created by the current economic conditions is proving successful. The Vulcan to the Sky Trust is announcing the start of the work to resume the remaining test flights to return the aircraft to air displays.
“The response we are receiving from our supporters to our appeal for funds to ensure we reach the air display season this year is very heartening, so much so that in the last few days, I have felt confident enough to authorise the commencement of preparations for the remaining test flights”, says Dr Robert Pleming, Chief Executive of the Vulcan to the Sky Trust (VTST). “Every week’s delay in starting this work was costing us money, so despite our need to keep on raising funds, it is the right thing to do.”
“Once again, our supporters are significantly exceeding our expectations”, continues Robert Pleming. “Thanks to their ongoing hard work and generosity I am delighted to announce that we have also received, from two major supporters, dedicated donations of £150,000 to specifically fund the Test Flight Programme. But the decision to proceed could only be made by trusting in our supporters that the fund-raising momentum will continue. We still need to maintain a donation income of at least £50,000 per month to make it to the airshow season. Once we make it to our first few airshows, we are convinced that we will see fund-raising momentum continue and sponsorship interest increase substantially.”
The Vulcan to the Sky Trust has the goal of ‘Honouring the Past, Inspiring the Future’, and in particular bringing a spectacular part of British heritage to a new generation of young people.
More than £6million has been spent on returning Vulcan XH558 to flight, of which £2.7million has come from the Heritage Lottery Fund. The rest – the majority – has come from public donations, making XH558 truly ‘the people’s aircraft’. The result of which was that in October 2007 the Vulcan flew triumphantly for the first time in over fourteen years.
Donations should be sent to VTST, Bruntingthorpe Airfield, Lutterworth, Leicestershire, LE17 5QS, or by ‘phone to 0116 247 8145, or online at www.vulcantothesky.com
Companies who want to take advantage of the valuable corporate sponsorship opportunities should contact Michael Trotter on 07803 141483.