Windermere speed limit lifted for seaplane replica

The 10mph speed limit on Lake Windermere will be temporarily lifted in September to allow a seaplane replica to take to the skies

Motor boats have been subject to a 10mph speed limit on Lake Windermere for ten years now, but it seems that the authorities are willing to bend the rules – if you are at the helm of a seaplane.

The Lakes Flying Company has been granted permission to break the speed limit in order to get its seaplane project off the water.

Project Waterbird is a £160,000 replica of the historic E.W. Wakefield seaplane design (pictured below), which was the first of its kind to take off from water in the UK in 1911.

1911 seaplane waterbird

Contemporary supporters of the original project included Sir Winston Churchill, although local author Beatrix Potter was vocally opposed to the seaplane.

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Built near Lincoln, the modern equivalent will be piloted by former RAF serviceman Gerry Cooper at around 1845 on September 17.

Ian Gee, director of The Lakes Flying Company, hopes that this spectacle will attract worldwide attention.

“This is obviously a very exciting time for us, the culmination of years of work, planning and fund-raising to make a dream come true.

“We are very grateful to Lake District National Park Authority for allowing a byelaw exemption.”

Mr Gee added that suitable public viewing platforms are currently being planned, with further announcements due nearer to the lift-off date.


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