Is aircraft fan plane daft?

AN AIRCRAFT enthusiast bagged the bargain of a lifetime when he bought a fighter plane on internet auction site eBay

AN AIRCRAFT enthusiast bagged the bargain of a lifetime when he bought a fighter plane on internet auction site eBay.Neil Banwell, aged 39, bought the Sea Harrier jump-jet and sneaked it into the village where he lives in the middle of the night. Neil, a builder, said: "I didn't plan to buy it. It was just a spur of the moment thing and I didn't really know what I'd done."We have got quite a bit of land so I knew I'd have somewhere to put it. I guess it was an early Christmas present to myself."The father-of-three, from Wedmore, is not planning to fly the plane, but has always been fascinated by harriers. Neil said: "I just saw it advertised on eBay and thought I'd get it. They really are remarkable things."The plane was delivered to the village on two lorries in December, one carrying the wings and the other carrying the main body of the plane. A crane was then used to lift it into place and assemble the plane at Neil's home. The plane was bought from an aircraft dealer in Suffolk, who had purchased the jet after the Falklands war, which last week marked its 25th anniversary. The Sea Harrier was built in 1979 and led the first attack in the Falklands and was flown by the commanding officer. Neil refuses to reveal how much he paid for the unusual purchase, but rubbished claims that it cost £10,000. He said: "I don't really want to say how much it cost. Some people have said it was £10,000, others said it was the price of a small car, but neither is true." The Harrier Jump Jet XZ494 could have cost about £35million new, but it lacks an engine and several other major parts.Neil added: "I'll be working on the plane now and doing it up a bit. I'm also hoping to find out a bit more about it from records and history books.


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