"There's a wrecked HPT-32 at Chennai" was the message that Vijay Reddy once sent me. He went on to write that the HPT-32, probably got wrecked sometime back and was bought here and dumped. We would not have given a second glance if the pictures of the wrecked HPT-32 were sent, but when Vijay sent in the actual pictures, we stood up and listened!
|Dumped among the shrubs and creepers the classic lines of the Percival Prentice can only be just made out. The aircraft has severe damage to the control surfaces including the Ailerons and Elevators. Pic Courtesy : Vijay Simha Reddy|
This aircraft was no ordinary HPT-32 , but a very rare vintage Percival Prentice. Our doubts about the aircraft were cleared as we saw the pictures of the tail section. Vijay also sent in a picture of an identification plate that sealed any doubts we had. This was one of the rare original Prentices manufactured by HAL in the late 40s. The date on the Identification plate mentions August ’51 as a probable date of manufacture for this aircraft.