Flying Legends Airshow – IWM Duxford – 10 July 2016

A pictorial look back at the UK’s premier warbird show.

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Shuttleworth’s Season Premiere – Old Warden – 8 May 2016

Shuttleworth’s opening show of 2016 offered the chance to confirm how the new display distances would effect the air displays held at this small venue – one which has become renowned for its photographic qualities. Clearly it wouldn’t be the same, but didn’t deserve much of the post-event criticism leveled at it. Like most things in life, it’s what you make of it – so here’s my glass-half-full offering from the day:

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Abingdon Air & Country Show – Dalton Barracks – 1 May 2016

The traditional opening airshow of the season at the former RAF airfield suffered a number of pre-event cancellations, but as always delivered a highly entertaining program of flying and ground activities. The unexpected highlights for many were the vintage helicopters, with the Westland Wasp in particular proving to be very agile and a type rarely seen displaying. The following images hopefully illustrate a little of what was on offer to the visiting public.

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Battle of Britain 75th Anniversary Flypast -Goodwood – 15 September 2015

On Battle of Britain Day 2015 a flypast of 33 aircraft took off from Goodwood Aerodrome to mark the 75th anniversary of that historic event. Wartime Hurricane and Spitfire pilot Wing Commander Tom Neil DFC, AFC, AE, who is 95, led the formation from the rear seat of a two seat Spitfire in the first group of four – ‘white section’. Tom was joined in the air by Cpl Alan Robinson and Nathan Forster, two wounded servicemen backed by the Spitfire Scholarship in partnership with The Royal Foundation’s Endeavour Fund, which Prince Harry launched in 2014, and who also attended. Prince Harry was due to also be a passenger in a two-seat Spitfire but unfortunately was unable to do so due to a technical issue with one of the aircraft.

Over 30,000 people attended the event inside the airfield with many thousands more viewing from the surrounding hillsides and on the routes taken as the sections (detailed below) ‘patrolled’ various locations around the south of England with historical links to the battle.

Most of the aircraft taking part in the flypast were already on the aerodrome having taken part in the weekend’s Goodwood Revival (seeĀ Goodwood Revival), with the remainder arriving in the morning.

The participating aircraft were:

White P7350, SM520, PV202, AB910

Red MK356, PZ865, LF363, TE311

Green R4118, PL965

Blue TD248, MV268, JT-10

Orange X4650, ML407, PP972

Yellow L6739, MH434, P7308, EP120

Purple TD314, N3200, BM597, P3700

Pink SX336 (should also have had RR232 but this aborted its take-off)

Brown TA805, P2921, TE184

Black AG224, 3W-17, MT928

RR232 did manage to take off at the back, and P-51 Mustang KH774 also followed as camera-ship

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Duxford Battle of Britain 75th Anniversary Airshow – 20 September 2015

There have been a number of outstanding moments commemorating the seventy-fifth anniversary of ‘The Few’, and one of those was the Spitfire formation and tail-chase at IWM Duxford’s September show. The following hopefully illustrates that, plus a number of the other display acts.

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VE Day 70th Anniversary Airshow – Duxford – 23 May 2015

This show was always going to be remembered for the public display debut of ARCo’s Bristol Blenheim Mk.IF, but it offered a great deal more, with HAC’s Hawker Fury also debuting, and a number of other new schemes and rarely seen aircraft – such as HAC’s Hurricane in Polish Sqn. colours, the beautiful ‘Mystery Ship’, Norwegian Spitfire Foundation’s Mustang ‘The Shark’ (previously a regular at UK airshows as ‘Old Crow’), and for many a final chance to see a Sea King display before the type is retired from service. Ground events focused on the VE Day theme, with visitors encouraged to join in with the celebrations. Sadly the weather remained overcast for most of the day, just about breaking for the final acts of a highly original and enjoyable flying programme.

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Duxford, Cambs, UK - 23 May 2015. Marking the seventieth anniversary of VE Day and seventy-fifth anniversary of the Battle of Britain, a Bristol Blenheim Mark I fighter carried out its first public display after many years of restoration. It is the only flying Blenheim in the world. Blenheims were in service with the RAF at the outbreak of World War Two, and this one was joined by two Mark I Spitfires of 1939/40 vintage recreating a sight possibly not seen since that era.Other flypasts and ground events also marked VE Day

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