LONDON, May 4 (UPI) -- The Royal Air Force Museum has begun an effort to raise a German World War II bomber that crashed off southeast England in 1940.
If the salvage is successful, the Dornier DO17 will go on exhibit at the museum in Hendon, North London, the Daily Mirror reported.
On Friday, a floating crane was towed to the Goodwin Sands, a 10-mile sandbank under the English Channel off Kent. The salvage is expected to take about three weeks.
The Dornier was nicknamed the "flying pencil" because of its long fuselage. Most of the planes were scrapped immediately after the war for their aluminum and if the one on the Goodwin Sands is raised it will be the only surviving example.
A diver discovered the plane in 2008, 50 feet under the surface. The RAF Museum raised 500,000 pounds ($780,000) to salvage the plane.
The Dornier was returning from a bombing mission when it crashed. The pilot and one member of the crew survived and were taken prisoner, and the bodies of the other two crewmen washed up on the beach.