The only two remaining airworthy Lancaster bombers in the world are due to take to the skies over Clacton for the very first time.
The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) has once again signed up for both days of the event on August 21 and 22.
The BBMF Lancaster is to be joined by the prized Avro Lancaster owned by the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum (CWHM), which has been kept airborne by a $500,000 fundraising drive.
Now with its engines overhauled it will be appearing at a number of displays and activities in the UK during a month long visit to the country in August, including Clacton.
Mark Platt, TDC’s Cabinet member for Culture, Tourism, Events and Leisure Services, said it is a major coup for the show.
“To see two Lancasters flying together over our town will be an amazing sight to behold and I am sure it will pull in even more visitors this year,” he said.
“It will be a rare opportunity to witness the only two airworthy Lancasters in action and I can’t wait.
“Being a qualified pilot myself with a big interest in aircraft it will be an incredible experience not to be missed.”
The Canadian Lancaster is the jewel in the crown of the CWHM’s aircraft and it was only revealed earlier this month that it was all systems go for it to come over to the UK this summer.
“We had to wait for the final green light before we could make this announcement and it will be a memorable addition to our programme this year,” added Cllr Platt.
It has already been announced that the Clacton Air Show has secured the Red Arrows, one of the world’s premier aerobatic display teams on Friday August 22.
It is a significant achievement to have the team back as they are in great demand in their 50th display season.
The Red Arrows have been appearing at the Clacton Air Show for more than 20 years now.
Another aircraft definitely making it to Clacton is the Tucano and further announcements about the programme are due to be made by the air show team over the coming months.
Clacton will once again be the only seaside East Coast event of its kind as attempts to get Lowestoft and Southend off the ground again have met with failure.
Hopefully fans that would previously go to those shows in the past will be tempted to come along to Clacton as they did last year.
The Clacton Air Show is the signature event on Tendring’s tourism calendar and a vital boost to the District’s economy – bringing in around £4 million more than would be generated over the two days without the event.
Last year it attracted around 140,000 people over the two days.
Due to hard work and careful budgeting the event is getting to a point where it is close to breaking even and is sustainable.
Anyone wanting information about sponsorship opportunities, hospitality, or trade space should contact 01255 686683 or 01255 686654.
AIRSHOW NEWS: Midair Squadron’s Canberra PR9 is welcomed to home turf at Festival of Flight, Newcastle, Northern Ireland, flanked by both Hunter T7s
The Midair Squadron is delighted to confirm their appearance at the BE Aerospace Festival of Flight in Newcastle, County Down, Northern Ireland on the 9th August 2014, hosting a tangible link to the past.
Canberra XH134, the world’s only airworthy Canberra PR9, is one of only 23 of these aircraft to be manufactured by Short Brothers and Harland Ltd in Belfast between 1958 and 1962. The Canberra is believed to be the longest serving aircraft in RAF history, and was only retired from active operation in July 2006.
En route to Newcastle, the Midair Squadron will overfly where the Canberra’s sister, XH131, stands proud in the Ulster Aviation Society’s collection at Long Kesh.
Following the type’s retirement, XH131 was donated to the Ulster Aviation Society by Midair Squadron owner, Mike Davis, and was transported by road to the Society’s base in 2010 as part of a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) support project to conserve and explore the heritage of the aircraft.
Born and raised in Northern Ireland, Flt Lt Mike Leckey, Midair Squadron’s Chief Pilot, will be at the controls of XH134, which will be flanked by both Squadron Hunters. Schooled in Belfast, Leckey joined the Royal Air Force in 1988 and has flown over 2,700 hours on the Canberra during his time in the military.
Commenting on his and the Canberra’s homecoming, Flt Lt Mike Leckey, says, “To fly the Canberra over home crowds will be a fitting tribute and testament to the Midair Squadron and the force behind this historic and unique aviation team. The Canberra is an exceptional aircraft combining both power and beauty, and we are thrilled to be joining the line up at the Newcastle Festival of Flight.”
Jeff Salter, Festival of Flight organiser comments, “It was the Canberra B5 prototype which held the return Atlantic crossing record from Aldergrove to Gander and back in 10 hours 3 minutes. The record being achieved in 1952.
“We’re delighted to welcome the Midair Squadron to Northern Ireland, and are particularly excited to witness the spectacular sight and sound of the Canberra PR9 and her sister Hunters, and hear their famous howls.”
The Combined Ops Show this year commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the start of World War 1, the 75th Anniversary of the outbreak of World War 2 and the 70th Anniversary of the D-Day landings at the Headcorn Aerodrome, Ashford, Kent.
The First World War
Combined Ops will be commemorating the start of the First World War with demonstrations of WW1 weapons and equipment by re-enactors representing British and German soldiers of the period, as part of the multi-period living history. In addition they will take part in a recreation of a First World War battle, which will include a replica WW1 British Mark IV tank.
World War 2 and the D-Day Landings
From early 1944 until September of that year, Headcorn Aerodrome (then known as RAF Lashenden) was the operational base for RAF, Canadian Air Force and US Army Air Force fighter and fighter bomber aircraft which were flying from there in support of Allied landings in Normandy on D-Day and afterwards.
The Aerodrome still retains many of its wartime features, including the Mess Hall, various hangers and support buildings, as well as an almost unique example of the Hamilton retractable airfield defence gun turrets. All these can be seen on the aerodrome during the show, as well as the Lashenden Airwarfare Museum, which houses one of the very few surviving examples of the V1 Flying Bomb.
In the air, the show will feature the Lancaster, Spitfire and Hurricane aircraft of the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, who will be putting on their amazing display on both days. All these types of aircraft featured during the D-Day operations and of course the Hurricane was the principal RAF fighter plane at the start of WW2. The wartime role of RAF Lashenden will be particularly commemorated with flying displays by a USAAF P15 Mustang of the type which operated from the aerodrome in 1944, as well as other period military and civil aircraft.
On the ground the show will be host to numerous WW2 military vehicles, including tanks and other armoured vehicles, of both the Allied and German armies. There will be battle re-enactments of the D-Day Normandy fighting, and a 1940s village will recreate the atmosphere of civilian life throughout the war, such as having to cope with German bombing and food rationing. Displays will demonstrate 1940s cooking, clothing, hairstyling, firefighting, farming, etc.
A host of stalls will be offering, amongst other things, wartime uniforms and equipment, civilian clothes and visitors can Jitterbug and Jive to the famous wartime songs and music in the bar marquee.
Visit www.combinedops.co.uk as tickets can be pre-booked at a discounted price (and to avoid disappointment as may sell out) also for more general information.
AIRSHOW NEWS: Experience the unique atmosphere of the Flying Legends Air Show 2014
The Flying Legends Air Show is famous the world over for its unique presentation of historic piston-engined aircraft in rare combinations and remarkable flying displays.
Complementing the ‘wow!’ factor in the air is the authentic 1940s ambience that is enjoyed throughout the weekend. It’s the closest you can get to being back at RAF Duxford in its flying heyday. Here’s a taste of the unique atmosphere you can enjoy throughout the weekend.
Make yourself at home in our Vintage Village The Vintage Village is the perfect place to sit back, relax and watch the world go by.
The Manhattan Dolls make a welcome return to the Flying Legends Air Show, jetting in from New York to thrill the crowds with memorable 1930s and 1940s songs. Their first-class forties style and uncanny Andrews Sisters vocals bring a Home Front flavour back to our historic
The Winslow Concert Band will perform Swing and Big Band hits of the 1930s and 1940s. We’d love to see you all up and dancing or singing along in true wartime spirit.
There’s a couple of likely characters causing havoc in the Vintage Village this year, who you might recognise as Hollywood legends Laurel and Hardy. Haurel and Lardy lookalikes Jem Frazer (Ollie) and Graeme Hardy (Stan) are ardent Laurel and Hardy fans. They are considered by many to be the best Laurel and Hardy tribute act in the world. Prepare to come face-to-face with the kings of slapstick comedy. Here’s a taste of the fun to come.
Climb aboard the Home Front Bus for a trip back to the 1940s Home Front. As you explore this classic double-decker bus, you’ll see detailed reconstructions of a 1940s living room, a wartime shop, a bombed-out street and an air raid shelter. Containing period features and artefacts, the Home Front Bus replicates the sights, sounds and smells of the Home Front, creating an authentic trip back in time.
Make-up and hair styling expert Alice Cormie will be demonstrating vintage hair dos and glamorous make up fit for a forties pin up. Enter into the spirit of the Vintage Village with an elegant wartime look. You can’t beat a victory roll and a jolly red lipstick for a touch of patriotic glamour.
Complete your 1940s experience by sitting in a replica Supermarine Spitfire. Have your photograph taken as a special memory of your nostalgic day. Sit in a Spitfire costs £15 per person.
Adjacent to the Vintage Village will be a static display of up to 20 First and Second World War model aircraft. These precise miniatures range from 1/5 scale up to 1/3 scale. The display includes a 1/3 scale P-51 Mustang which was used in the film Empire of the Sun.
Our picnic area has traditional deckchair seating and jauntily decorated picnic tables, enabling you to luncheon in comfort. Enjoy the taste of summer with a glass or two from our Pimms Bar.
Why not pre-order a picnic lunch or afternoon tea from our catering partners Elior and dine in style? Elior’s Keep Calm and Picnic Box offers the perfect picnic lunch for two, with a smoked salmon and potato salad, asparagus and pecorino cheese tart, three bean salad, homemade chocolate brownie, strawberries and cream and traditional lemonade, all served in a disposable hamper including cutlery, plates and glasses. A picnic lunch for two costs £26.50. Please place your order a minimum of three working days prior to the Flying Legends Air Show. Your Keep Calm and Picnic Box can then be collected on the day, anytime from 11am, from Wing Co Joe’s Café.
New for this year is the Keep Calm and Drink Tea afternoon tea experience. Enjoy a traditional afternoon tea as you watch glorious historic aircraft soar in the skies above you. The Afternoon Tea box includes a range of dainty finger sandwiches (free range egg and watercress, gammon
ham and wholegrain mustard, cream cheese and cucumber), macaroons, homemade chocolate brownie and a selection of tea time cakes with a pot of English Garden tea. Your afternoon tea comes complete with a union flag tablecloth and an enamelware tea pot and mug to add to the vintage feel. Afternoon tea costs £16.50 per person and is served in either Wing Co Joe’s Café or The Mess Restaurant from 2.30pm. Please place your order a minimum of three working days prior to the Flying Legends Air Show.
To book your Keep Calm and Picnic picnic lunch for two or your Keep Calm and Drink Tea afternoon tea please contact Elior directly at email@example.com or by calling 01223 497 501.
The Bremont Flight Lounge
Make your visit to the Flying Legends Air Show even more memorable by purchasing tickets to the exclusive Bremont Flight Lounge. In addition to entry to the Flying Legends Air Show and the whole museum, you’ll also receive priority car parking close to the Bremont Flight Lounge and access to a private luxury marquee and garden with unrivalled views of the thrilling flying display.
You’ll be offered coffee and biscuits on arrival and you’ll have access to the flight line walk from 9am to 12.30pm, where you can get a closer look at the stunning historic aircraft that will be participating in the afternoon’s flying display.
Following a drinks reception with canapés, you’ll enjoy a gourmet buffet lunch with a choice of red or white wine. Relax in our television viewing area and peruse the daily newspapers and magazines on offer, or pore over your complimentary Flying Legends Air Show souvenir programme.
There’s afternoon tea, a complimentary bar serving wine, beer and soft drinks, and private luxury toilets within the Bremont Flight Lounge enclosure.
Entry to the Bremont Lounge costs £225 plus VAT per person per day. To book tickets for the Bremont Flight Lounge please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Gold Pass offers relaxed entertaining at its best. Enjoy a first-rate view of the flying action and access to our hospitality marquee, which will cater for all your refreshment needs. Choose a delicious dish from our in-house Gourmet Deli Bar or bring your own picnic lunch and relax in
comfort as you enjoy the afternoon’s flying display.
You’ll have access to VIP parking, will receive a complimentary copy of the Flying Legends Air Show souvenir programme and will enjoy entry to the flight line walk. When the flying display commences, you’ll be at the heart of the action in our seated outdoor garden enclosure.
Due to popular demand, we’ve increased the capacity for Gold Pass this year.
Ticket Prices are:
One Day Gold Pass £80
One Day Gold Pass with lunch £111.50
Two Day Gold Pass £145
Two Day Gold Pass with lunch £208
Gold Pass tickets can be purchased online at iwm.org.uk or by calling our box office on 01223 499 353.
We’ll be announcing the flying programme for the 2014 Flying Legends Air Show soon!
AIRSHOW NEWS: Duxford D-Day Anniversary Show Participation (01/04/2014)
The D-Day Anniversary Air Show commemorates the 70th anniversary of this decisive military campaign, demonstrating the vital role that aerial warfare played in the invasion of Normandy.
The air show will feature fighter, bomber and transport aircraft types that would have been seen over the beaches of France. Confirmed participation to date includes Douglas Dakota, Douglas Skytrain x4, Supermarine Spitfire x 5, a Supermarine Seafire and Piper L-4 Cub x 4.
The Red Devils will perform a parachute drop from a Douglas Dakota as part of this commemorative flying display.
16 Air Assault Brigade will present thrilling ground content, showcasing the Parachute Regiment’s contemporary capabilities.
IWM Duxford will be open from 8am to 6pm. The flying display will start at approximately 2pm and finish at approximately 5.30pm, leaving plenty of time in the morning to explore the whole of the museum and our exhibition spaces. You can also enjoy great shopping experience at our trade stands and take part in activities across the site.
Flying participation by aircraft type and operator
Douglas Dakota III and The Red Devils – The Red Devils supported by the Battle of Britain
Memorial Flight, RAF Coningsby
Douglas C-47A Skytrain – Aces High
Douglas C-47A Skytrain – Dakota Heritage
Douglas C-47A Skytrain – National Warplane Museum, Geneseo, New York
Douglas C-47A Skytrain – TBC
Supermarine Spitfire IX –
Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, RAF Coningsby
Supermarine Spitfire IXT – Air Leasing
Supermarine Spitfire IX – Old Flying Machine Company
THE Southend Airshow & Military Festival has been postponed until 2015!
A funding shortfall has lead organisers to postpone this year’s inaugural event.
They say they have been unable to raise the final £35,000 required to secure the show.
John Delaney and Thomas Curtis received final approval from Southend Council to run the airshow in July.
The pair stepped in after Southend Council said it could no longer afford to run the popular annual event.
In less than a year the team raised £185,000 sourced from sponsors including Headline Toomey Motor Group.
Thomas Curtis said: “Though it’s undoubtedly a sad day for myself and the team, postponing the event to 2015 does not remove the achievements we have made this year.
“From the creation of Southend Airshow CIC, ‘Gibson’ the Airshow Bear and raising an amazing £185,000 in just nine months. This is combined with the massive success we have found found on Facebook, where we have in excess of 23,000 supporters making us one of the largest, if not the largest Airshow Facebook page in the country.”
AIRSHOW NEWS: RAF line-up confirmed for Wings & Wheels 10th Show
Plans for the 10th annual Wings & Wheels have got off to a flying start with confirmation from the RAF that the Red Arrows, Tucano and Tutor as well as iconic legends from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight – Lancaster, Spitfire and Hurricane – will all be part of the weekend’s aviation line-up.
The Red Arrows are celebrating their 50th display season this year and recently unveiled a striking new Union flag tail design to their Hawk aircraft, the most significant change to the look of the Team’s famous aircraft in its history. Headlining the Show on Sunday 24th August, the Red Arrows will also help Wings & Wheels celebrate 40 years since the Hawk first flew from the Aerodrome.
Jamie McAllister, Event Director, Wings & Wheels comments: “We are delighted to confirm the RAF’s allocation at Wings & Wheels this year which is just the start of a series of announcements for our air and motoring programmes. The Show and airfield celebrate some very special anniversaries this year and plans are underway to make it the best event yet.”
As well as enjoying RAF aircraft in action, visitors to this summer’s Show will also get the opportunity to meet some of the pilots and crew, watch over two hours of motoring action on the Top Gear track and participate in the Zones and shows throughout the Arena.
The 10th annual Wings & Wheels will be held over the August Bank holiday weekend; Saturday 23rd & Sunday 24th August 2014, at Dunsfold Park near Guildford, Surrey, and is open to spectators from 09:00 until 21:00.
Tickets start from £20 for adults, £45 for a family (2 adults and 3 children aged 5 – 15yrs), £6 for children aged between 5 and 15yrs and under 5s are free. Hospitality packages start from £150 per person, weekend passes, grandstand tickets and camping are also available. For more information visit www.wingsandwheels.net or to book standard tickets call 08712 305 572.
Wings & Wheels is promoted by Dunsfold Park Limited and in 2014 will be assisting the fundraising efforts of Brooklands Museum Trust and Help for Heroes.
AIRSHOW NEWS: Midair Squadron’s Hunter XL577 to make debut display at Abingdon Air & Country Show alongside Canberra PR9 XH134
The Midair Squadron is delighted to announce that Hunter XL577 has been confirmed to display alongside PR9 XH134, in the first scheduled public display of the season for the Squadron.
Following an extensive and stringent restoration programme, using highly skilled engineers from C2 Aviation, this display will mark XL577’s much anticipated return to the public circuit. It was last seen in 2009.
Delighted with the news, Midair Squadron owner Mike Davis commented, “This announcement is extremely exciting for all who have enjoyed following the return to flight schedule of all three Midair Squadron aircraft. XL577 will be a welcome addition to the display circuit, with all three aircraft exemplifying the very finest of British engineering.”
The final member of the Midair Squadron trio, Hunter T7 XL600, is already prepared in the silver Squadron livery, and is expected to complete her restoration shortly.
Other confirmed flying display acts at Abingdon Air & Country Show on 4th May include the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Spitfire, Breitling Wingwalkers and Catalina.
The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will be sending one of their iconic Spitfires to this year’s Thundersprint on Sunday May 11.
The display will be a particularly moving one because the Darley Moor circuit, near Ashbourne in Derbyshire, was originally an RAF airfield.
Darley is less than a minute’s flight from the historic Rolls Royce factory in Derby where the Spitfire’s legendary Merlin engine was built.
Thundersprint organiser, Frank Melling, said: “The Spitfire display has been a key part of the Thundersprint for many years and having one of these wonderful aircraft fly over an airfield, and area, where it has so many intense connections will be a very moving experience.
“The display area is fantastic and will provide superb views of the aircraft.
“The Spit will be with us as part of the lunch-time celebrations at Sunday’s Thundersprint so it will make a great start to the Masterclass – and we’re not expecting to see a dry eye at the show.”
The world-famous RAF Aerobatic Team, the Red Arrows, will be making a very special return to Biggin Hill Airport on Saturday 14th June to mark the anniversary of their 50th display season.
The first public appearance in the UK by the fledgling team was at the Biggin Hill International Air Fair in May 1965 flying the Hawker Siddeley Gnat, the lead-in jet trainer of the era. Since then, the team have gone on to perform around 5,000 displays, many of them overseas where the team contributes to Defence Diplomacy and promotes the professional excellence of Royal Air Force. The team were re-equipped with the BAe Hawk T1 in 1980.
The Red Arrows anniversary display on 14th June will be the highlight of the 1st Festival of Flight at Biggin Hill, a new series of one-day air events at the airport that are planned to take place on an annual basis for the foreseeable future.
The Festival of Flight will be open to the public and will include a number of world-class display items during the afternoon and early evening. The flying programme will include Spitfires and Hurricanes from the airport’s Heritage hangar, the two iconic fighters that will re-enact the gallant days of RAF Biggin Hill in WWII when the airfield played such a crucial role in the defence of London.
Other display items will include the Breitling Team wingwalkers, specialist aerobatics, helicopter demonstrations and parachute displays.
Plans for an extensive range of ground events are being made. An arena will be a focus for classic car and military vehicle parades, a motor cycle display team and more. Interactive model boats on a special water facility and radio-controlled cars will provide engaging activities for families and younger generations. Army, Navy, Air Force and local community services career centres will be on site with special equipment for boys and girls to engage with.
A central feature in the public area will be a stage for interviews and public appearances that will also host a presentation the Red Arrows team to mark their milestone anniversary.
Airport Managing Director Will Curtis says that he wants to see that the airport is as neighbourhood-friendly as possible throughout the year.
“We value our local community and we want to encourage as many Biggin Hill people as possible to join us at the airport for an ‘open house’ afternoon of fun, interest and amazement. We shall be offering favourable rates only for local people on an allocation basis, so make sure that you apply for your tickets sooner rather than later” he says.
A maximum of 15,000 tickets will be available for sale for the Festival.
“While the new event should not be compared with the previous International Air Fair series, our plan is to make it a family friendly occasion with a variety of good entertainment and no overcrowding. Sales will close when we reach our stated level” says Will Curtis.