North Bersted’s 330,000 matchstick spitfire

MATCHSTICK man Brian Croucher has created his biggest model to date.

Mr Croucher has assembled 330,000 matchsticks into a Supermarine Spitfire Mk IX of the RAF’s 43 Squadron.

The two-metre-square second world war fighter plane pays tribute to the Spitfires in the Battle of Britain 75 years ago.

Mr Croucher, 72, of Markfield, North Bersted, said: “It took me 554 hours to complete this model. I like Spitfires. They were the best plane built in the war.”

The extraordinary model, complete with wartime paintwork, is a scaled-up version of a 12-inch plastic kit. It follows Mr Croucher’s previous model of a Dalek.

“My wife asked me what else I was going to do when I had finished making the Dalek and then I saw a programme about Spitfires on the TV,” he said.

He spent about three years in all putting the Spitfire together.

He and his wife, Hazel, 70, both get involved in the models. Mr Croucher said: “It’s very relaxing. It’s nice to sit down in the evening together and make it together.”

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