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Robin Reliant transformed into flight simulator at Deal Air Cadets

By Beth Robson

As he pulled up to the market in his Robin Reliant, Del Boy used to tell Rodney: "This time next year, we'll be millionaires."

Yet the big-thinking cockney hero of Only Fools and Horses could not have dreamed up the transformation which a three-wheeler has undergone in a seaside town.

A grant of £1,000 from house building firm Persimmon has helped Deal Air Cadets turn an old Robin Reliant car into a mobile flight simulator.

The Reliant shape is still visible (6467407)
The Reliant shape is still visible (6467407)

The 2235 (Deal) Royal Air Force Air Cadets in Deal applied to Persimmon Homes Community Champions Scheme, which invites local groups and charities to bid for a match-funded donation from a national fund.

Two donations of up to £1,000 are made locally every month and the charity, based in Hope Road, Deal, put theirs to a novel use.

Sue Fyfe, from the group, said: “Thanks to Persimmon’s fantastic grant of £1,000, along with the money raised at quiz nights, table top sales and a donation from Deal Town Council, this amazing project is almost complete.

“The simulator has now been vinyl ‘wrapped’ and the RAF Air Cadets’ logos added. We are so excited to let our cadets loose on it, and then hopefully launch it to the general public very soon.”

The flight simulator in its old life as a Reliant Robin (6467411)
The flight simulator in its old life as a Reliant Robin (6467411)
The shell of the Reliant Robin (6467409)
The shell of the Reliant Robin (6467409)
The ATC's Flight simulator cockpit (6467403)
The ATC's Flight simulator cockpit (6467403)
The cockpit (6467405)
The cockpit (6467405)

The Deal Cadets are a voluntary run youth organising that aims to give young people from all backgrounds and abilities the structure, encouragement and life skills to develop into young adults with the opportunity to gain qualifications.

Work on the flight simulator began back in August last year, and progress reports are posted regularly on the group’s facebook page.

Mrs Fyfe added: “Once the project is completed, we will take the flight simulator to community events enabling the general public to experience the thrill of flying – and hopefully encourage more young people to join the cadets.”

Martin Crick, sales director for Persimmon Homes South East, said: “This is such an unusual but exciting project that we were delighted to help the cadets reach their fundraising target, and we can’t wait to see the simulator put to good use.”

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