Guy Martin's Spitfire

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Guy Martin's Spitfire
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Review

Here’s a rousing, nostalgic look at a remarkable restoration project. Guy Martin joins in the attempt to rebuild a Mk I Spitfire that lay rusting for decades on a French beach. It was there that its pilot, Geoffrey Stephenson, ditched after being shot down during the battle to evacuate Dunkirk in 1940.

His story is extraordinary enough (he wound up in Colditz and was George VI’s personal pilot), but the programme mostly focuses on the work to rebuild the plane, carried out by men in blue overalls who give almost religious care to every rivet and bolt. There are interesting snippets of history along the way, such as the fact that 40 per cent of the original workforce that built Spitfires was female.

Summary

In May 1940, a Mark 1 Spitfire was shot down and crash-landed on a beach in northern France, where it slowly sank into the sand. The wreckage was finally recovered in the 1980s and stored in France for more than 20 years. In this programme, motorcycle racer and mechanic Guy Martin joins a two-year project to rebuild the aeroplane, revealing the engineering and skills involved, and providing a fitting homage to the bravery of everyone involved in its service.

Cast & Crew

Performer Guy Martin
Director James Woodroffe
Executive Producer Neil Duncanson
Executive Producer Steve Gowans
Producer James Woodroffe
Documentary