Page last updated at 07:52 GMT, Monday, 14 April 2008 08:52 UK

Test flights for restored bomber

Vulcan bomber
The bomber was restored at a Leicestershire airfield

A restored Cold War bomber is taking to the skies for a series of test flights over the East Midlands.

The Vulcan bomber was restored at Bruntingthorpe air field in Leicestershire using public donations.

Organisers from the Vulcan to the Sky Project said the flights at RAF Cottesmore in Rutland would take place on Monday afternoon and Wednesday.

The Vulcan was originally based at RAF Cottesmore but last flew operationally 15 years ago.

'Stringent' criteria

Project manager Andrew Edmundson said: "We will carry out a series of avionics tests at the RAF station and then return (to Bruntingthorpe) tomorrow.

"This is all dependent on the weather. If the weather is suitable for our tests we will go ahead."

The organisers said recent donations of 150,000 would pay for the flights.

Some 20,000 people worldwide have helped contribute to the restoration of the Cold War bomber - with 2.7m contributed by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Mr Edmundson said: "The plane is ready and more than 30 people are waiting to get it on the runway."

The test flights will determine if the aeroplane is ready to apply to the Civil Aviation Authority for a "permit to fly" so it can perform during the air show season.

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