March marks fifty years since the Sunderland ML824 was transported from Pembroke Dock to the RAF museum in London.

The ML824 is one of the Sunderland flying boats that were the most powerful, and widely used throughout the second world war.

It was preserved by Pembroke Dock Sunderland Trust in the 60's, and was the towns first tourist attraction. Displayed behind the Royal Dockyard Chapel, where the Heritage Centre is located today.

Referring to its departure flying boat historian, John Evans said:

"this was a moment of great sadness for a community and a county which had lost a unique heritage attraction."

In wartime Pembroke Dock station became the largest flying boat station in the world, with nearly 100 flying boats there at one time in 1943. Having the ML824 as a tourist attraction in Pembroke Dock, would have commemorated its works during this time.

There was a large campaign to keep the ML824 in its ancestral home, but as we now know this campaign was not strong enough to stop the removal.

This month also commemorates the last flight of the ML824 onto the Haven in 1961, as shown in the photo below. 

Western Telegraph:

The ML824 now resides in the RAF museum in London, and has been there since it was dismantled and sent up in 1971. The RAF museum officially opened in 1972.