|No buried Spitfires in Myanmar, stories of the stashed planes are merely "legend"|
Spitfire excavation project leader David Cundall (L) holding a model of a Spitfire aircraft as Tracy Spaight, director of special projects at Wargaming and an unidentified person (C) look on near the site of where the British-led excavation team believe there could be 36 of the iconic single-seat British fighter aircraft buried, at Yangon airport, a wartime airfield, in the Mingaladon district of the city. A British-led excavation team hunting for dozens of rare Spitfires in Myanmar said on January 9 they were confident of recovering the World War II-era planes after finding a crate buried in the ground. AFP PHOTO / Wargaming.net.
YANGON (AFP).- The sponsor of a British-led team hunting for dozens of rare World War II Spitfires said to have been buried in Myanmar has abandoned the search, saying stories of the stashed planes are merely "legend".
Rumours that dozens of the iconic single-seat aircraft were buried in 1945 by Britain, the former colonial power in what was then Burma, had excited military history enthusiasts, but surveys at Yangon airport in the Mingaladon district have failed to bear fruit.
The project backer, online game company Wargaming, said the team "now believes, based on clear documentary evidence, as well as the evidence from the fieldwork, that no Spitfires were delivered in crates and buried at RAF Mingaladon during 1945 and 1946".
Lead archaeologist Andy Brockman said the investigation into the stories of buried Spitfires was undertaken in the spirit of US television forensic police series "CSI" (Crime Scene Investigation).
"We followed the clues in the documents, period maps, pictures and air photographs; we talked to surviving witnesses, and visited the 'crime scene' in order to turn our study in the archives into facts on the ground," he said.
"As a result we believe that the legend of the buried Spitfires of Burma is just that: a captivating legend about a beautiful and iconic aircraft."
In a statement released late Friday, Wargaming said the search for Spitfires in Myanmar was rooted in persistent rumours that began among servicemen in "the bars and canteens of South East Asia" as early as 1946.
It added that no surviving witnesses had actually seen planes being buried and that its research in British archives had failed to produce any evidence of the arrival of the aircraft in Myanmar in the latter months of the war.
But a local businessman involved in the project, Htoo Htoo Zaw, on Saturday vowed to continue the planned digs in the northern city of Myitkyina and Yangon airport, signalling a split within the team.
"We haven't started any digging yet. So how can we say for sure whether there are Spitfires or not?" he told AFP.
It was unclear to what extent the excavations would continue and project leader David Cundall -- a farmer and aircraft enthusiast who has spent around 17 years chasing the Spitfires -- was not immediately reachable for comment.
© 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse
February 18, 2013
Mexican archaeologists discover two burials estimated to be over 500 years old
"Hilma af Klint: A Pioneer of Abstraction" opens at Moderna Museet in Stockholm
Mona Lisa Foundation says new results confirm 'earlier' Mona Lisa by Leonardo
Museo de Arte de Ponce to open curated exhibition of British art alongside contemporary installation
No buried Spitfires in Myanmar, stories of the stashed planes are merely "legend"
One of Scotland's finest landscape artists James Morrison retropsective opens at the Fleming Collection
PinchukArtCentre presents "agentic iced etcetera" by American artist Tony Oursler
"Rise and Fall of Apartheid: Photography and the Bureaucracy of Everyday Life" opens in Munich
First solo museum exhibition of New York-based artist Jeff Elrod on view at MoMA PS 1
Orange County Museum of Art organizes first retrospective of radical Los Angeles artist Richard Jackson
Madrid-based visual artist Daniel Canogar unveils first permanent piece of public art in the U.S.
Tate St Ives presents the first major exhibition of William Scott's work in the UK for over 20 years
Leslie Hindman Auctioneers' Fine Furniture and Decorative Arts Auction brings over $1.74 million
Legendary Tucker 48 Joins RM's Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance Sale
First UK solo exhibition from celebrated designer Karl Fritsch opens at Manchester Art Gallery
Ruth, Mantle and Gretzky highlight autographs in Heritage Platinum Night Sports Auction
Solo exhibition of work by Matthew Pierog and a group show open at Bernarducci.Meisel.Gallery
Stedelijk Museum presents new video work by Guido van der Werve
Group exhibition explores India's culture wars, adds new chapter to the global history of activist art
New series of works by Monika Sosnowska on view at The Aspen Art Museum
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Ancient erotic frescoes get makeover at the Contemporary Art Museum in Casoria
2.- One million dollar Pablo Picasso painting yours for just $135 in online charity raffle
3.- Robert L. Oswald, Brother of Lee Harvey Oswald Disputes Last Week's Sale of Coffin
4.- Australian psychedelic artist Martin Sharp, who designed posters for Jimi Hendrix and Bob Dylan, dies
5.- Skull find shows young women were sacrificed in China more than 4,000 years ago
6.- Istanbul monastery, considered the most important of Constantinople, 'to be turned into mosque'
7.- Detroit Institute of Arts statement regarding City of Detroit's eligibility to file for bankruptcy
8.- Christie's sets a new world auction record for a painting by Edward Hopper
9.- Ryan O'Neal defends taking ex-lover's Warhol picture in University of Texas lawsuit
10.- French film and installation artist Laure Prouvost wins Great Britain's Turner prize
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|