|Fly a Harvard Texan
If you canít find a Spitfire to fly, why donít you try a Harvard?
We are now delighted to be able to offer flights in the classic Harvard aircraft! Take control of this dual control ex-military aircraft under the guidance of your instructor and, if you wish, sample the delights of Spitfire style aerobatics.
Why fly a Harvard?
The Harvard is the most powerful aircraft in our inventory - it's three times as powerful as an Extra and twice
that of a Stearman. This aircraft is the one which every current spitfire pilot in the world has to master first and, realistically,
the chances of you ever flying in a Spitfire are, unfortunately, dreadfully low.
North American AT6 Harvard
Originally built by North American Aviation, the 15,495 aircraft that were manufactured over the life of the model
served primarily as advanced trainers, helping pilots convert from basic trainers such as the Tiger Moth or Stearman
and front-line tactical aircraft such as the Spitfire, Hurricane and P-51 Mustang.
Flying the Harvard in the UK
It is now possible to fly the mighty Harvard Texan at a choice of venues around the UK!
Harvards in Service
With the threat of war looming in Europe, the RAF were on the lookout for new aircraft to supplement
production for what would be a hard pressed home aircraft industry. In June 1938 an order was placed for 200
Texans, which in RAF service were known as the Harvard. They began to arrive at Liverpool Docks for reassembly
at RAF Shawbury in January 1939.
When production ceased more than 10,000 British pilots had been trained on Harvards, not to mention those from Canada, America, Rhodesia and South Africa, with many moving onto Spitfires, Mustangs and other types. Even the Japanese built a variant under license in 1940, albeit with a Japanese engine and in the 1960's were to receive AT-6's from the US Government to enable former Japanese Navy pilots to re-qualify. The Luftwaffe's new Flying Training School was opened in 1955 with 145 brand new Canadian built Harvard 4's under the US Military Defence Aid Program and manned by RAF instructors. At some time, nearly every Air Force in the world operated the type, with 14 Air Forces still using them as recently as 1985. Sadly, there is now only a handful being operated by military forces, particularly since the replacement of South Africa's fleet of over 100 Harvards in 1996.
With an estimated total of 350 Harvards flying world wide the majority of the aircraft are probably in the
USA. There are 30 flying examples in Australia, 30 in South Africa, 50 in Canada, at least 16 New Zealand aircraft
and about 30 in the UK.
Fly the Harvard
Harvard flights are available from an ever growing range of locations. Vouchers are selling fast so get yours now!
Want to fly the Harvard from another location?
We are always seeking feedback for planning of future locations for trial lessons in the Harvard.
Please let us know if you would like to have a Harvard flying experience near you.