TSR2: an Aeroguide special by Anthony M. Thornborough

TSR.2 was a potentially world-beating advanced military aeroplane, developed by the British Aircraft Corporation to meet ever-changing operational requirements from the RAF. It was scrapped by the incoming Wilson Labour Government of 1964 for a number of reasons – political, economic and military. Very few of them were good reasons. Some of them are alluded to in this book, but the book is mainly concerned with the short development and service history of the type and providing detail pictures for modellers.

When the project was cancelled, the Wilson Government ordered that all trace of it be erased from the record and all examples, work in progress and tooling should be reduced to scrap metal “no bigger than a fist”. The reasons for this remarkable vindictiveness have never been revealed (and are not here). However, two airframes survived – I gather, anecdotally, through at least one instance of bloody-minded concealment and bare-faced lying to superiors – and can today be seen, one at RAF Cosford in Shropshire and the other at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford, near Cambridge.

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