Luftwaffe plane uncovered off Ramsgate coast

The discovery of a unique German warplane off the Kent coast left experts “incredulous”. New images suggest the Dornier 17 is still intact and there are hopes that it will go on show.

They called it “the flying pencil”: a slim, elegant aircraft originally designed in 1934 to carry passengers, which by the start of World War II had been converted into a deadly weapon of war.

The Dornier 17 was one of the mainstays of the Luftwaffe bombing fleets which began their assault on British cities and RAF airfields in the summer of 1940, in what became known as the Battle of Britain.

A total of 1,700 Dorniers were built, but the plane discovered in Goodwin Sands is thought to be the last remaining one.

Dornier 17 Z-2, serial number 1160, of number 7 squadron, 3 Group, third Bomber Wing, was shot down on 26 August 1940 and made an emergency landing in the sea just off the Kent coast.

Two of the four crew members died, two – including the pilot – survived to become prisoners of war.


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