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Rare Harrier jump jet goes up for sale in Queensbury
Harrier at Queensbury
Harrier XW269 was restored on a hillside at Queensbury

A rare Harrier jump jet is up for sale for nearly £70,000 after having been restored by a group of aviation enthusiasts on a farm in Queensbury.

Taking 12 months and around 1,000 hours of work, the two-seater T2 Harrier is now attracting bids on eBay.

The classic RAF aircraft was built in 1971 and flew on many NATO exercises in West Germany during the Cold War.

Aircraft restoration expert and Harrier fan Chris Wilson said: "It does make the ultimate garden feature."

Chris, who is managing director of Jet Art Aviation, said the decommissioned jet was a classic piece of British engineering and deserved to go to a good home.

"It is a masterpiece really. The aircraft is unique and it is the only one in the world that can do what it can do.

Harrier XW269
The Queensbury Harrier took 12 months and 1,000 hours to restore

"It does generate a lot of interest. At air shows everyone gets off their seats, everyone stares."

Famed for their ability to hover and to take off and land vertically, Harriers were one of the defining images of the Falklands war in 1982.

Taking a year to restore, Chris said it was never going to be an easy task to make a plane which had seen years of service look like new.

On the scrapheap

"It looked like a wreck and if we had not taken it on then it would probably have ended up on the scrapheap," he said.

"We did everything from replacing the tyres to the undercarriage, then we put it back together with a full paint job and rebuilt the cockpit."

At 60 ft long and 26 ft wide, this former 'Cold Warrior' looks perhaps a little out of place in its current home on a hillside in Queensbury.

But Chris said this was where all the hard work restoring Harrier XW269 was carried out.

"The elements have hindered us a little. It has all been done by working outside in all weather," he said.

The Harrier was, of course, stripped of all its equipment and weaponry before it left the RAF, but it now looks ready for action once again.

Chris said: "There is a set of inert cannon gun pods, a pair of drop tanks and a pair of inert rocket pods.

"They look very real and it looks like it is fully-armed."

A number of people have already shown an interest in the sale of the Harrier.

But with an asking price of £69,999 Chris said it was likely that the plane would end its days as a museum exhibit or in the garden of a celebrity.

In pictures: Harriers' final flight
16 Dec 10 |  People & Places


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