Percival Provost, Old Warden 2007 ©Nigel Key
24 February 1950.
The Percival Provost was designed by Henry Millicer as a single engine basic trainer as a replacement for the Percival Prentice.
A contract was given to Percival on the 13th January 1950, to produce 2 prototype P.56's powered by a Armstrong Siddeley Cheetah engine. The company also built a third prototype with an Alvis Leonides Mk 25 engine.
The Cheetah powered prototype, serial number WE522, first flew on 24 February 1950. However, after evaluation at Boscombe Down, the Leonides powered P.56 was selected for production as the Provost T.1.
An initial order for 200 aircraft was placed on 29 May 1951 with production ending in 1956 with 461 aircraft being manufactured.
The Percival Provost was produced from 1950 to 1956, with 461 built.
Alvis Leonides 126, producing 550 hp.
The Percival Provost entered service with the RAF in 1953 and had more than twice the power of its predecessor, the Percival Prentice, higher performance and better manoeuvrability.
The aircraft served with the RAF until the early 1960s and formed the basis of its replacement the Jet Provost.
A few Percival Provosts continued in service until the last example was retired in 1969. Several retired airframes were renumbered with maintenance serials and used for training of airframe and engine tradesmen.
At least five Percival Provost have survived as civilian aircraft.
|Crew - 1 or 2|
|Length - 28ft 8in (8.74m)|
|Wingspan - 35ft 2in (10.72m)|
|Height - 12ft 2.5in (3.73m)|
|Empty Weight - 3,350lb (1,520kg)|
|Max. Weight - 4,400lb (1,996kg)|
|Max. Speed - 201 mph (322 km/h)|
|Range - 648 miles (1,036km)|