'˜Spectacular' model plane collection in Lancing needs new home

A retired teacher from Lancing who has spent more than 60 years hand-making almost 300 model planes is hoping to pass them on to a good home.

Cliff White with some of his 270 model planes
Cliff White with some of his 270 model planes

Cliff White, who did two years of national service in the Air Force working as a carpenter, made his first model plane in 1956 when he was stationed in Hendon and finished his final piece last year.

Now, to mark the 100th year anniversary of the Royal Air Force, the Lancing Beach resident is hoping to get rid of his creations which take up two walls of space in his garage.

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He said of his collection: “Overall, the impression is spectacular.”

Mr White taught woodwork and engineering for 30 years at the Forest School, a school for boys in Horsham where his wife also taught maths.

He said: “It was stressful, so this was my little escape.”

The models vary in size and some of them took him three months to painstakingly create.

But after six decades, he has decided: “I need to move them on. 
“I would like them to go to a really good home, to someone who is going to appreciate them and maybe even add to the collection.

“Someone who is going to enjoy them as much as I have.”

The pensioner has a passion for aviation and history.

A member of the Royal Air Forces Association, he is often invited to events in Hendon at what is now the The Royal Air Force Museum.

When he was based in Horsham, he also wrote and published a book called When the Sirens Sounded, about the war years.

Mr White hopes the collection can be taken in its entirety and exhibited or auctioned off for charity.

He said: “I don’t want to make any money from it. I’m open to ideas and offers.”

He said it would be nice if money could be raised to help the victims of the Shoreham airshow tragedy.

Anyone interested in the collection should contact the Herald at [email protected]