The Vulcan Experience Unable to Meet the Fundraising Deadline

(photo by Robin Pettifer)
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PRESS RELEASE – The Vulcan to the Sky (VTTS) charity has been unable to meet the fundraising deadline to raise the £2.2m needed to progress plans to build The Vulcan Experience at Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Michael Trotter, development director at the Trust said: “It is with a heavy heart that we have announced that our plans for The Vulcan Experience will not be going ahead as we had hoped due to a fundraising shortfall. We were unable to meet the fundraising deadline of December 31, 2021, to raise the money needed to build the hangar as a result we are unable to meet the terms of a lease for the land at Doncaster Sheffield Airport.”

One of the proposed designs for the Heritage Hangar which will house the Vulcan XH558 alongside her historic stablemate, English Electric Canberra WK163. (photo via Vulcan to the Sky Trust)

“This is obviously a huge blow to The Vulcan to the Sky Trust, as a charity, we have had big ambitions since XH558 was grounded to create the kind of inspirational home we believe this iconic aircraft deserves.” Trotter continued “Our time in a hangar here at DSA proved that the appetite was there for people to visit XH558 in a visitor setting and when our lease expired in 2017, we set about plans to build our own space. Sadly, the £2.2m needed to enable us to progress a mortgage to build The Vulcan Experience was not reached as we had agreed, and we acknowledge the airport has been more than patient in holding the availability of land for many years on the premise funding would be secured to complete a lease.”

People who donated to Operation Safeguard continue to benefit from Guardian Membership for 12 months and the offer of a name permanently displayed under the wing of the iconic Vulcan XH558. Donors also received either a sample set of genuine Avro/ Hawker Siddeley Aviation fasteners or reproduction of Vulcan XH558’s Aircraft Identification Plate depending on the level of donation.

(photo by Robin Pettifer)

Michael added “We are currently considering the implications for donors of being unable to complete the fundraising campaign and we will be in touch with all those who have donated shortly. to discuss the position including their final recognition of names under XH558’s DeltaYou will appreciate that this is a difficult time, and we will update donors further as soon as we are able. We are obviously devastated to not be in a position to build the visitor attraction we dreamed of but we will continue with our education outreach work that is currently live across the region and will look for ways to continue to inspire future generations of engineers and STEM specialists. XH558 will continue to be looked after and be maintained to the high standards she has been kept at through her flying years and after. In keeping her at these high standards we are able to demonstrate her at events and tell her story to all who visit.”

“This is now a period of reflection for us as a charity as we consider how we continue to provide the best we can for our supporters working with Doncaster Sheffield Airport” explained Trotter.

Vulcan XH558 is the last flying example of a large, all-British jet from that exciting period when British aviation was the envy of the world. The first flight of a Vulcan in 1952 was only 11 years after the first flight of her predecessor, the Avro Lancaster, yet the step in technology was immense. Initially designed to carry Britain’s strategic nuclear deterrent, Vulcans eventually moved into a wide variety of roles ranging from tactical deterrent to reconnaissance. They saw active service only during the Falklands Conflict in 1982 when Vulcan XM607, captained by Martin Withers, embarked on the now-legendary mission to disable the runway at Port Stanley. Martin was the chief pilot with Vulcan to the Sky Trust.

XH558 outside Woodford ( via

Since leaving the Avro factory in 1960, Vulcan XH558 has led a charmed life. Thanks to a series of coincidences, she has been flying for far longer than anyone could have expected. Since her return to flight in 2007, following what is widely regarded as the most complex aviation heritage project ever undertaken, she has been maintained by a professional team of ex-RAF engineers and technicians using the same procedures and quality standards that they employed during their RAF service. The considerable funding required to allow this complex operation has been provided largely by the aircraft’s passionate and generous supporters, many of whom also devote their spare time to the project.

To continue supporting the Vulcan to the Sky Trust , visit 


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