Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Bluebird Set to Ride the Lakes Again - at a Sedate 100mph; Boat to Return to Scene of 1967 Tragedy

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Bluebird Set to Ride the Lakes Again - at a Sedate 100mph; Boat to Return to Scene of 1967 Tragedy

Article excerpt

Byline: Kim Pilling

involving Bluebird

THE jet-powered boat in which Donald Campbell was killed can return to the water for a one-off bid to reach up to 100mph.

A bylaw that restricts vessels to a 10mph speed limit on Coniston Water was amended for the attempt using Bluebird K7.

Wallsend man Bill Smith painstakingly restored the famous craft after it was reclaimed from the lake..

Now a volunteer team wants to launch their bid on the same stretch of water where Campbell died.

He was killed instantly in January 1967 when Bluebird flipped over at a speed of more than 300mph as he attempted to set a world speed record.

Members of the Lake District National Park Authority, meeting in Kendal, Cumbria, agreed yesterday to allow a one-off trial to prove the restored vessel's seaworthiness ahead of any further forays on the lake.

The recommendation will now be submitted to the Government for approval.

A formal consultation will take place and a public inquiry could be ordered if there are any objections.

The wreck of the Bluebird was recovered from the lake in 2001 by diver

Mr Smith, who has led the project to recapture its glory days.

Following the decision, he said: "I am euphoric at the prospect of having the final objective in sight.

"We now need to prove that it works and is in the condition that it was just before the crash all those years ago.

"We hope to have Bluebird ready for its trial at the end of next year or the beginning of 2011.

"It will all be very weather-dependent as to exactly when because calm conditions are vital.

"This means so much to me personally because I started looking for the wreck in 1996 and to my mind it is obvious that Coniston is the right place to attempt to get it back in the water.

"Gina (Donald Campbell's daughter) will be thrilled. She wants to see her father's memory brought to the fore. She sees this as a fitting memorial. …

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