AIRCRAFT wings assembled in Filton have been shipped to Spain ready for use on the first Royal Air Force A400M military transporter.

The wings have been put together by highly skilled employees at Airbus.

Following the closure of Filton airfield last year, the wings are being transported to a final assembly line in Seville by road and sea, being loaded onto a ferry at the Royal Portbury Docks, Bristol.

The RAF is expecting to receive the first of its order of 22 A400Ms airlifters next September, which are set to replace the current ageing Hercules fleet.

In March Airbus announced 50 temporary jobs were being created at Filton to assist production after an increase in A400M orders.

The model’s development has been dogged by delays, overspends and political rows.

Its maiden flight, originally planned for 2008, took place in December 2009.

Orders totalled 174 aircraft from eight nations as of July 2011 and the first A400M was delivered to the French Air Force in August.

Airbus employs around 4,500 staff at its factory in Filton, which has built aircraft from the Brabazon to Concorde and most recently the A380, the world's largest commercial aircraft.