DAP Beaufort A9-141

Background

After coming to grief in an accident in 1944, DAP Beaufort A9-141 was written off and her whereabouts were unknown. That is, until 1982 where the cockpit and fuselage section was spotted in the grounds of an Air Museum in Mildura, Victoria, by a self-professed Warbird enthusiast, Ralph Cusack. Time and the elements had been unkind to this important aircraft. Years of sitting outside in the sun, wind and rain had taken their toll (a situation that was not helped by vandals, who also gave the aircraft some unwelcome attention). Knowing that no complete surviving Beauforts existed, Ralph purchased the remains of the aircraft, with a view to restoring it to an airworthy condition.

The first stage in the process was to transport the aircraft back to Brisbane. The aircraft was loaded on to a semi-trailer and delivered to Brisbane. Parts were sourced for the aircraft from all over the world. It is estimated that, when the aircraft is fully restored, approximately 40-50% of the parts on the aircraft will be from aircraft other than Beaufort A9-141.The pace of the restoration picked up when the aircraft was moved into its new home, in the inner Brisbane suburb of Hendra, Qld. Volunteers, a group of people with a common interest in aircraft and a desire to see the A9-141 fly again help when they can, and the restoration progresses.

Following purchase of a large hangar at Caboolture, Qld by Ralph Cusack in 2015 all the stored components of DAP Beaufort A9-141 were relocated to the new accommodation. The restoration hangar/workshop is the new home for the Australian Aviation Heritage Centre Qld Inc. (formerly the Beaufort Restoration Group) who are continuing to bring DAP Beaufort A9-141 back to airworthiness.

Flashback: Beaufort Bombers

As Japanese forces headed towards Queensland aircraft were needed for the nation's defence, so 700 Beaufort Bombers were built to protect Australia.

  • Role: Torpedo Bomber
  • Primary Users: RAAF & RAF
  • Introduced: 1939
  • Retired: 1944
  • Number Built: 1,121 (700+ in Australia)
  • Developed From: Bristol Blenheim
  • Variants: Bristol Beaufighter
  • Manufacturer: Department of Aircraft Production factory
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