Volunteers of the Dutch Aircraft Recovery Group '40-'45 (ARG 40-45) are reconstructing the cockpit of the Short Sterling WWII bomber. As drawings were hardly available, tThe shape of the 1:1 cockpit was mainly reconstructed with the aid of photo's, as were the control yokes and the painstakingly crafted chairs. The cockpitpanel is now almost complete, but a lot of work still has to be done. The cockpit is on display at the ARG's airwar museum at Fort Veldhuis (Veldhuis Fortress) near the city of Heemskerk, north of Amsterdam.
Before and during WWII 2.383 Sterling bombers were built. None survived.
The Aircraft Recovery Group '40-'45 aims to trace the location and history of aircraft that were downed over the Netherlands in WWII and became hidden in the ground or under water. The group also tries to find relatives of the airmen who died in the crashes and does its utmost to secure a proper burial. The museum in the fortress contains an enormous amount of remnants of aircraft that have been recovered so far. Over 600 wrecks must still be in Dutch soil.
The Veldhuis Fortress was built in 1893 for the defence of the Dutch "waterline", which should deter possible enemies from approaching the Netherland's big cities. The advent of aircraft made the defence line obsolete, as became apparent in 1940 when the German army overran the Netherlands in four days with the aid of paratroops.The fortresses airwar museum is open to the public on Sundays.
Related images in this EnoAeroPics gallery:
See cockpit images of various aircraft
Website of the Dutch Aircraft Recovery Group '40-'45
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