Delivered to Oakley Airfield near Thame, then being used by Martin-Baker, on the 6
November 1945, EE416 was one of a production batch of 180 aircraft given the
Gloster type number G.41D and fitted with Rolls Royce Derwent Series 1 engines.
Considerable modifications were made to the forward fuselage structure to enable
the ejection seat to be fitted in the ammunition bay behind the existing cockpit. The
original seat bulkhead was removed and replaced by a new sloping bulkhead further
aft; the rear decking at longeron level at the front spar bulkhead was replaced by an
arched member and the floor beams were specially strengthened to withstand the
loads imposed by the ejection gun. On completion of this work (all done with the
blessing of the stress department at Glosters), EE416 began its new life at Chalgrove
on 8 June 1946 with a static ejection test being carried out with the aid
of a catch net.
On 24 June 1946 the first dummy ejection was made from the Meteor in flight at an
indicated airspeed of 415 mph and at an altitude of 2000 feet. Eleven more airborne
tests were carried out with EE416 before 24 July 1946. On this day two dummy
shots took place, both at 350 mph at 4500 feet before the first live ejection test in
this country. Undertaken by Bernard (Benny) Lynch, then one of Martin-Baker's
experimental fitters, at a speed of 320 mph, this ejection was perfect and was
undoubtedly a landmark in the development of aircrew escape equipment and a
highlight in the history of the Martin-Baker Aircraft Company. Since July 1946 Benny
Lynch went on to make a further sixteen live ejection tests from the Meteors, both at
home and overseas, and was awarded the British Empire Medal for his work.
Subsequently EE416 was used in over 400 airborne tests in the development of the