Mini-Cart 0

Iconic Gipsy Moth Goes Under The Hammer

06 February 2024

Iconic Gipsy Moth Goes Under The Hammer

A truly wild little vintage plane made famous on the big screen is set to go under the hammer at auction next month. The 1929 De Havilland Gipsy Moth is, it is fair to say, to vintage planes what the Ford Model T is to classic cars; a dependable and nimble aircraft that brought this form of transportation to the masses.

And next month, on 1st March, at RM Sotheby's, it will be up for auction. The particular model was part of a run of hundreds that were built and flown in the 1930s. One of the Gipsy Moth's most notable pilots was the renowned British aviatrix, Amy Johnson, who was the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia in her Gipsy Moth, known as "Jason", in 1930.

This Gipsy Moth however, was one of the first imported to the UK from America, which initially flew on its US registration, N585M. It was registered to its current number, G-AAMY, in honour of Amy Johnson, in May 1980. Film lovers will no doubt recognise the plane, as it was used in the 1985 blockbuster Out of Africa, starring Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, when its then owner, Cliff Lovell, supplied it for filming, earning the temporary registration of G-AAMT.

It has changed ownership several times since the late 1980s, and is now currently in the care and faithful restoration of Henry Labouchere, who is a renowned expert on De Havilland Moth planes. Now the plane is set to be auctioned off at RM Sotheby's Miami auction house next month, with all profits of the sale going to the Zeitz Foundation, and the funds would be specifically used towards their efforts in building a new rhinoceros sanctuary in Central Kenya - one of the largest in the world - which would return critically endangered rhinos to the Segera Conservancy.

The auction estimate, at time of writing, is currently listed at $140,000 - 220,000 (£109,683 - 172,359), and Robert Redford himself has even submitted a signed letter in support of the sale, saying "raising funds to help protect one of Kenya's last remaining wilderness areas and save a species would be the perfect next chapter in G-AAMY's incredible story, and I am honoured to join the Zeitz Foundation in this endeavour."

If you've not got a spare six figure sum down the back of the sofa, but still fancy a bit of vintage time in the air, why not visit our Vintage Flying Experiences page today on the FlyDays website, and take a look at the impressive variety of vintage biplanes and jets we have available to take flight in at UK airfields and aerodromes. All available through purchase of our open Gift Vouchers!

IMAGE CREDIT: RM Sotheby's / Classic Driver
send to top