Sea Fury VR930 was delivered to the Royal Navy at Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Culham in March 1948 and spent from May to December of that year in front-line service with 802 Naval Air Squadron aboard HMS Vengeance and ashore at RNAS Eglinton. Between December 1948 and August 1953 she was held in reserve at various Aircraft Holding Units at Anthorn, Abbotsinch, Sembawang and Fleetlands, undergoing a Category 4 repair at the Royal Naval Aircraft Yard Donibristle before returning to front-line service again with 801 Naval Air Squadron. Between August 1953 and July 1954 she flew a further 284 hours with the squadron before going to RNAY Fleetlands for reconditioning, which effectively reset the airframe to zero hours.
VR930 was held in reserve at Anthorn and Lossiemouth before being transferred to the Fleet Requirements Unit at Hurn (now Bournemouth Airport) in November 1959, where she flew a further 828 hours.
The aircraft was put up for disposal in January 1961 having flown an absolute total of almost 1280 hours during Service. In ‘retirement’ VR930 spent several years at RAF Colerne, and periods at RNAS Yeovilton and Boscombe Down, being used as a spares source for the Royal Navy Historic Flight’s (RNHF) original Sea Fury FB.11 (TF956). With the loss of the latter aircraft in 1989 the decision was taken to rebuild VR930 and she was duly moved to British Aerospace’s Brough works for restoration to flying standard, eventually returning to flying condition in 1998 in 802 Naval Air Squadron Korean War markings.
VR930 now bears her authentic, original 802 Squadron code of ‘110/Q’ as allocated when she first joined the unit at the shore base of RNAS Eglinton, Northern Ireland, and embarked on HMS Vengeance in 1948. This early scheme was applied to all F.10 and the early FB.11 aircraft.
VR930 was formerly owned and operated by the Royal Navy and following the decision to remove historic naval aircraft from the military register was gifted by Parliament in November 2019 to Navy Wings where she will be operated on the civil register.