Dam Busters tanker owned by Wiltshire museum for sale

AEC 1943 Bowser petrol tanker The tanker has been parked outside the Wiltshire museum for the past 20 years

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A petrol tanker used by the famous 617 Dam Buster squadron in World War II is to be sold at auction.

The AEC 1943 Bowser has been on show at the Atwell-Wilson Motor Museum in Calne, Wiltshire for the past 20 years.

Built in January 1943, the machine was sent to the 617 Squadron at RAF Scampton where it served with Bomber Command until 1949.

The museum said it needed restoring and should go to "someone who will invest in it and look after it".

"As you enter the museum it is the first thing you see and we are now more of a car museum," said museum volunteer Michael Bennett.

"It still goes and the chassis is in excellent condition but the cab could do with a bit of work."

'Piece of history'

The AEC tanker, reported to be one of only two of its kind in existence, was in service refuelling the Lancaster Bombers of the Dam Busters unit from January 1943 until 1949.

The unit was formed at RAF Scampton in 1943 and charged with breaching dams in the Ruhr area of Germany which provided vital power to key German industrial centres.

"It is a piece of history and when you stand next to it you can feel that," said auctioneer Richard Edmonds.

"It comes with a lot of detail including record cards and its original delivery notes."

The tanker, which is going up for auction on 11 June, is expected to fetch up to £15,000.

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