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A Female World War II Pilot Aged 92 Just Flew A Spitfire And Had A Lovely Time

Joy Lofthouse, one of the few surviving women to have flown a Spitfire during World War II, took the skies in the famous plane 70 years on and said the whole thing was "lovely". Via BBC Radio 5 Live.

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A co-pilot handled the take-off and then Joy took the controls herself. "It's incredible to be in a Spitfire again after so long," she said during the flight. "I'm so lucky to have the chance to fly it again."

vine.co / Via bbc.co.uk

Joy described the flight as "lovely" and said the biggest difference from a genuine 1945 Spitfire was being able to speak to her co-pilot. "We had no radio and once you took off there was complete silence," she said.

Joy and her sister, Yvonne MacDonald, joined the Air Transport Auxiliary 1943 after answering an advert in a flying magazine

BBC / Via bbc.co.uk

They were two of the 164 woman to join the ATA – who became known as the "Attagirls" – and went on to transport 18 different types of plane around the country, including many in need of repair. They were often given no more than 30 minutes to study a plane's flight manual before having to take off in it and accidents were common.

Joy, who became a teacher after the war, told the Daily Mail in 2009: "When the war broke out all our boyfriends would talk about was flying.

"So when we saw the advert we both decided to apply. Once we were there was no sex discrimination.

"In fact, I don't think those words had been invented back then. It really was the best job to have during the war because it was exciting, and we could help the war effort. In many ways we were trailblazers for female pilots in the RAF."

Patrick Smith is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Patrick Smith at patrick.smith@buzzfeed.com.

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