New Brunswick City Transfers Lancaster Ownership to the National Air Force Museum of Canada.
November 16, 2016 (8 Wing Trenton) – The National Air Force Museum of Canada (NAFMC) is privileged to announce that the City Council of Edmundston, New Brunswick has unanimously agreed to transfer the ownership of Lancaster KB 882 to the NAFMC. KB 882’s unique history and service in RCAF operations make this aircraft an extremely desired addition to the Museum’s ever expanding aircraft collection.
For over 50 years, KB 882 has been proudly displayed in Edmundston, NB. The city’s remarkable foresight in 1964, to recognize the importance of this aircraft, saved her from ultimate dismantlement and destruction. However, time erodes even the strongest warriors, and in recent years KB 882 has felt the effects of outdoor storage. In order to save the aircraft for a second time, Edmundston made the difficult decision to seek out another qualified location for her care and preservation.
In 2014, the Alberta Aviation Museum (AAM) took on this challenge and began the process to stabilize the aircraft from further deterioration. Their intention was to move KB 882 to Edmonton, AB where she would be fully restored. Unfortunately the AAM, under considerable financial challenges, was unable to follow through with their plans and returned ownership back to Edmundston in early in 2016. It was at that time that the NAFMC became aware of this situation and offered their services to the City of Edmundston to complete this demanding restoration.
“The National Air Force Museum of Canada is honored to have been selected as the final resting place for this historic aircraft”, stated the NAFMC Executive Director Chris Colton. “KB 882 will be fully restored to its Area Reconnaissance (AR) configuration thus enabling all who visit her to understand not only the heroic role that she and her crew played during the Second World War, but also her post war operational taskings. Her appearance along with our Halifax Mk. VII bomber will be unique in the world as the only museum having both in a fully restored condition. KB 882 will be reborn and proudly displayed as the NAFMC’s premier exhibit celebrating the 100th anniversary of the RCAF on the 1st of April, 2024”.
Major Bill March, NAFMC Board Chair commented, “In war and peace the Lancaster aircraft has been a symbol of a Canada’s resolve to do what needed to be done to make the world a safer place. I am delighted
that the City Council placed their faith in the NAFMC to preserve and restore this national treasure.”
Built by Victory Aircraft Ltd. in Malton, Ontario, KB 882 flew several combat missions over Europe before returning to Canada in 1945. In 1952 she underwent a major overhaul and conversion to the Mk. 10AR. Assigned to the photo-reconnaissance role with 408 Squadron at RCAF Station Rockcliffe in 1953, KB 882 proved instrumental in the mapping and charting of Canada’s Arctic, as well as performing as an electronic and photographic intelligence gathering platform during the Cold War. KB 882 also served over the Atlantic during the Cuban Missile Crisis monitoring and photographing Russian trawlers. Shortly after retirement in 1964, she was sold to the City of Edmundston.