Veterans

RAF Veteran Achieves 'Ambition Of A Lifetime' With Spitfire Flight

The 85-year-old's flight was organised to thank him for his "selfless" care of his wife.

John Allinson served with the military police for five years (Picture: PA).

A Royal Air Force veteran has achieved the "ambition of a lifetime" by taking a flight in a Spitfire organised as a thank you for his "selfless" caring for his wife.

John Allinson served in the military police for five years from the age of 17, reaching the ranks of corporal.

Now 85 years old, Mr Allinson has spent the last 12 years caring for his wife and rarely able to go out.

In return for the selfless nature of the Berkshire-based veteran, his granddaughter Lauren returned the favour with a dream Spitfire flight.

The ride from Solent Airport in Lee-on-the-Solent, Hampshire, was met with nerves from Mr Allison, who left the military 60 years ago.

He said: "I have always loved the Spitfire since I joined the RAF and I did have a chance to fly in a small Harvard two-seater but it's nothing like this.

"I didn't know anything about this until a week ago, they kept it from me."

John Allinson enjoyed the experience, despite a nervous start (Picture: PA).

He was taken for a 20-minute flight in the Mark Nine Spitfire, which was originally built in 1944, with the journey taking him over the Isle of Wight and the Needles.

Granddaughter Lauren used the gift experience company Red Letter Days, and was pleased to see Mr Allinson tear through the sky to fulfil his goal.

"He is overwhelmed, he's petrified but underneath it all he's very happy," she said.

Dan Mountain, chief executive of Red Letter Days, said it had gifted the trip to Mr Allinson as part of its '#NoMoreSlippers' campaign to challenge preconceptions of what older people are capable of.

"John is a fantastic role model, proving that you're never too old to have adventures and live life to the fullest," he said.