Closing warehouse selling Cold War fighter jet


A LUXURY warehouse is holding a closing down auction of rare whiskies, Persian rugs, designer handbags – and a fighter jet designed to drop nuclear bombs.

Charles Phillips and Sons Ltd, which is closing this autumn after 25 years, is selling 30,000 items from their wholesale luxury goods warehouse just outside Edinburgh.

The company is running a series of live auctions in the coming weeks, with the Cold War-era RAF Jaguar set to be sold in October.

The jet, which entered service in the mid-1970s and was used by the RAF and French airforce, was designed as a ground attack aircraft capable of causing massive destruction by dropping battlefield nukes.

The listing for the Jaguar fighter jet on Charles Phillips and Sons’ website shows the jet in a car park, and is captioned “tender bid only”.

Charles Phillips himself refused to reveal more information about how the aircraft came into their possession until closer to its sale date.

The Jaguar fighter jet up for auction
The Jaguar fighter jet up for auction

Prof Gerry Hughes, a lecturer in military history at the University of Aberystwyth said the item presented a rare opportunity to potential buyers.

He said: “This is a very rare item in terms of auctions. The Jaguar was a fantastic jet in its time, an Anglo-French collaborative project that prefigured later multinational aircraft projects, such as the Tornado and the Typhoon (Eurofighter).

“It will sell for up to £50,000 I imagine although if one wants to fly the thing the buyer’s financial burdens are only just beginning.”

The warehouse is holding its first auction of items this weekend (3 and 4 September).

One of the vintage cars for sale
One of the vintage cars for sale

Amongst the less exotic items due to be sold in the auctions are several vintage cars, a range of artworks and jewellery.

Among the items is a Tanzanite and Diamond ring , which is valued at £1,450, but expected to sell for £550-595.

They are also selling an oil painting by Venetian artist Luigi Rocca, valued at £7,000, but estimated to sell for less than £3,000.

An oil painting by Luigi Rocca

As well, they have an oil painting of Marilyn Monroe by British painter Anthony Orme. It is valued at £4,000 but expected to sell for just £1,500.

Jaguars jets were deployed to bomb Iraqi air bases during the Gulf War in the 1990s.

The RAF also used Jaguars during Operation Deliberate Force, an air campaign in the Bosnian War, to undermine the military capability of the Bosnian-Serb army.

The fighter jets dropped bombs on Bosnian targets, in what was the first RAF bombing raid in Europe since the end of the Second World War fifty years earlier.

There were 543 Jaguars built before production ceased in 1981.