FAIREY GANNET AEW.3 XL497
This aircraft first flew in November, 1960 and was assigned to 849 HQ Flt. Culdrose. In January 1966 it was shipped to Changi in the far east and served with 849C Flt. aboard HMS Ark Royal and then with HMS Eagle, but was back in the UK by August 1968. XL497 has always been assigned to one of the 849 Flts and in addition to Culdrose has been based at Brawdy, Yeovilton and Lossiemouth. Its last sea posting was with HMS Ark Royal.
This aircraft was written off charge and became the gate guardian at HMS Gannet, Prestwick Airport in December 1978. The MOD put the aircraft up for tender in January 2006 and the museum was successful in its bid. It arrived at the site on 13th April, 2006.
HMS Ark Royal was scrapped in 1979-80 at Cairnryan near Stranraer, and parts of the ship are displayed at either side of the aircraft.