Many thanks to Gerard Tyrer for sending in a photo of the former Hoylake Spitfire (here’s some other photos) that now resides in Palm Springs, CA. Gerard comments:
I happened to be in Palm Springs CA in May this year and visited the air Museum there. The Spitfire was on display there here is a picture of it.
There was a TV next to it running a video of the plane and it’s pilot. The story was that the Spitfire was on photo reconnaissance missions over occupied Europe and as unarmed. The video showed the plane undertaking a controlled crash landing due to under carriage problems. It then shows an interview with the pilot, now in his 80’s, and it was the first time he had seen the footage of the crash. He explained he was circling the airfield for quite a while which indicated to the ground crew he had a problem. The emergency crews were on hand when he landed.
He still had in his possession a piece of one of the wooden propellers which broke off in the crash.
Quite amazing really …to start with a garage owner in Hoylake was restoring a WW2 Spitfire at his premises on Market Street and it ends up, fully restored in California!