Spitfire Project P8331 “Sumatra” 303 Squadron RF-M

Welcome to the Spitfire P8331 Sumatra Project dedicated to the memory of Wing Commander Piotr Łaguna and the 303 Squadron Spitfire that he flew and was lost on 27th June 1941 over Coquelles, France

Many of us are aware of the heroic deeds and legendary flying skills of the Polish pilots of 303 'Tadeusz Kosciuszko' Squadron during the Second World War.

This particular project focuses in on one specific pilot, Wing Commander Piotr Łaguna (pronounced Pyotr Wagoona), Commanding Officer of 1 Polish Fighter Wing. His story would be a familiar tale similar to most of the men who endured those terrible years. Piotr was a significant and important man being the Commanding Officer of 1 PFW.

Piotr Łaguna

Piotr was already a senior officer with much experience, leading his crews prior to the invasion of Poland in 1939. After the fall of Poland he, with his other senior colleagues, led the men onto France and ultimately to Britain. Our aim is to tell Piotr’s story as a tribute to those men. We achieve this through a living history platform that includes his recovered Rolls Royce Merlin XII Engine and Propellers as well as a full scale cockpit replica of his aircraft to educate both young and old of the commitment, bravery and honour of these magnificent “Few”.

Through our fund raising activities we are planning to procure a full sized complete replica of Piotr’s MKIIb Spitfire P8331 Sumatra. This we hope will enable a full hands on experience to support public events and historic events whilst further supporting the Anglo/Polish communities through awareness aiding integration and understanding of our common bonds.

Endorsement from International Historian, Dilip Sarkar, MBE FRHistS

The Łaguna Spitfire Project is an incredibly important initiative, binding together communities for a common purpose: which is exactly what happened during the Second World War. We must remember that Nazism was defeated by a multi-national force comprising many nations, colours and creeds. No one nation can take the credit for defeating Hitler - it was a collective effort, and that is exactly how best life and problems should be approached.

The Łaguna Spitfire Project provides a tremendously refreshing opportunity to use history to bridge gaps between communities today - whilst in the process promoting an awareness of the sacrifice and suffering involved with the Second World War. Whilst this specifically concerns a Polish pilot, the story is equally owned by countless others of all nations who fought against tyranny.

This is a visionary and much-needed community-based historical project, which I am delighted to support, and commend Scott Booth and team for their exemplary approach.

- Dilip Sarkar MBE FRHistS, 21 November 2019

For more information, please visit www.ourfinesthour.net

Spitfire Project P8331 in 303 Squadron Markings RF-M

Picture courtesy of Tom Wisniewski and Simon Hill from Sim-Art Aviation

Picture courtesy of Tom Wisniewski & Simon Hill from Sim-Art Aviation