A two-ship role demo featuring BAE Systems’ Hawk T2s, a Spitfire/Typhoon ‘synchro’ display and the Red Arrows are among the list of RAF aircraft that will be on display in the air and on the ground at this summer’s Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford on July 17-19.
Following on from its 50th display season celebrations at the Air Tattoo last year, the Red Arrows will be displaying throughout the three-day event sporting a patriotic new design on their tail fins.
A newer model of Hawk will be featured in a routine making its public airshow debut at the Air Tattoo. This is the Hawk T2, BAE Systems’ latest version of the enduring design. No IV (Reserve) Squadron, stationed at RAF Valley on Anglesey, is putting together a new two-aircraft ‘role demo’ to showcase the type’s capabilities on the airshow circuit for the first time. The Hawks will demonstrate something of the training performed at Valley, being flown by two instructors on the unit, Flt Lts Ben Polwin and Toby Keeley. RIAT 2015 will be the role demo’s inaugural appearance in front of a public air display crowd.
Representing the ‘cutting edge’ of the RAF’s front line at the Air Tattoo, very appropriately given the event’s operational theme of Securing the Skies – Past Present Future, will be the solo Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4 display from No 29 (Reserve) Squadron at RAF Coningsby. This year’s pilot is Flt Lt Jonny Dowen. Representing the old and the new of UK air defence, a Typhoon will also team up with a Spitfire from the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight for an evocative and spectacular ‘synchro pair’ routine, this part of the service’s contribution to the Battle of Britain 75th anniversary commemorations taking place this year. Aside from the two Hurricanes and four Spitfires already confirmed as coming to RIAT 2015, the BBMF is also sending its majestic Avro Lancaster bomber.
In addition to those aircraft taking part in the flying displays, the RAF is also committing a number of assets to the RIAT 2015 static park. Especially notable among these are a Sea King rescue helicopter from ‘A’ Flight of No 22 Squadron, probably making its final Air Tattoo appearance before retirement, and a Tornado GR4 operated by No XV (Reserve) Squadron, a unit celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2015 with a specially-painted aircraft.
Other RAF support for the show is still in discussion.
Visitors will also be able to find out more about the RAF in the RAF Village, where there is the opportunity to experience first-hand what happens when the RAF responds to a humanitarian crisis. From pilot to chef, you’ll discover the vital role each unit plays to fulfill the mission. A wide variety of units will be represented there, including the Red Arrows and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
The Air Tattoo is staged annually in support of the RAF Charitable Trust. Tickets for the event on July 17-19 are only available in advance. Special Earlybird tickets priced from £31 are available until May 31 from airtattoo.com or by calling 0800 107 1940. All accompanied under-16s go free. Free parking.