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One of the most highly anticipated airshows of 2007 is the International Air Day at RNAS Yeovilton. "Falklands to the Future" is the theme of this years show and the Royal Navy have worked hard to make this years show the best yet. Paul Johnson/Flightline UK reports from RNAS Yeovilton. All photography copyright of author.

The 2007 International Air Day at RNAS Yeovilton will be the biggest public event held by the Navy. As such the Navy has put a lot of effort into making this the best show yet and it doesn't just involve the Fleet Air Arm with as many branches of the Navy involved as possible.

The main theme of the Air Day is centred around the Falklands Conflict 25th Anniversary. As such, historic aircraft from the conflict will take a starring role at the show. From the Royal Navy there will be examples of the Sea Kings and Lynx that are still in service today. Static airframes will also be on show including the Sea Harrier from the Boscombe Down museum and a Yeovilton based Wessex. One of the more interesting aspects of this theme will be the representation of the Argentinian Forces. The French Navy will be sending a pair of Super Etendards with one hopefully carrying an Exocet missle. But by far the biggest draw for the enthusiasts will be a A-4N Skyhawk from BAE Systems based in Germany for weapons training purposes. It is these aircraft that are iconic of the Argentinian actions against the British task force and will surely be an emotive sight lined up with the Royal Navy aircraft. In the flying display, Kennet Aviation will also display a Westland Wasp wearing it's Falklands colour scheme

As well as the Falklands, earlier naval aircraft will also be well represented. As ever the Royal Navy Historic Flight will take a leading role in the flying with the Sea Fury and maybe the Sea Hawk. Kennet have strong links with the flight and will display the Seafire and Skyraider during the afternoon. Rolls Royce will contribute with their Spitfire PR XIX and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, both represented the Royal Air Force's history. A Sopwith Pup replica will also fly in to represent the Fleet Air Arm's genesis as the Royal Naval Air Service.

An important part of Air Day is to allow the current Royal Navy to meet the public and share their experiences. A central part of the showground will feature much of the current Royal Navy's hardware and crews to talk to the public. Aircraft will include the Lynx, Sea Kings and Harrier forces as well as the camoflaged Lynx aircraft used to support the Royal Marines. In the air, the Navy will display pretty well all their assests ranging from a pair of Jetstreams from Culdrose to the Harrier GR9s from RAF Cottesmore. The FRADU from RNAS Culdrose and FR Avaiation will once again fly in with unique team of two Falcon 20ECM aircraft and four Hawk T1s while the Black Cats team will give a display over their home base. As ever there will be traditional Commando Assault finale, possibly the best finale of any airshow in the country with full pyrotechic support.



On the day

Adult £16.00 £20.00
Senior Citizens (60+)* £14.00 £20.00
Child (under 16)
Children under the age of 2 do not require a ticket
£3.00 £5.00

An interesting new aspect of this year's Air Day will be a hands on exhibition highlighting the future of the Navy. Various companies will be exhibiting different technologies with anything from equipment on the Type 45 frigate and the electronics from the Future Lynx aircraft. At the centre of this exhibition will be the latest full scale representation of the Navy's future fighter, the F-35B Lightning II.

One of the reasons this is one of the most anticipated airshows of the year is the scale of international involvement which is far greater than previous years. Headlining are the Patrouille Suisse making their only UK appearance at Air Day in 2007. The team rarely appear outside of their own country and are usually only seen at RIAT at this country so to attract them to Air Day is a major coup for the Navy. Also added to the international flavour in the air will be the solo F-16AM Fighting Falcon making it's first UK appearance of 2007 in it's striking new display markings. Standing over everything will be an Antonov An-124 from ACP Worldwide. Though it won't be giving a display it will arrive during the afternoon giving a flypast before landing and parking on the liveside - it's just too big to be dragged into the public area!

The static park too is full a variety with a welcome return of the United States Air Force with a pair of A-10A Thunderbolt IIs from the deployment at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk. Travelling much further will be a pair of A-7E Corsair II from the Hellenic Air Force. There will also be a number of aircraft from European navies including Germany, Portugal and the Netherlands.

For thoose looking for a little circus there will be displays by a Pitts Special and the Tiger Club Turbulent Team. Yeovilton International Air Day takes place on Saturday 7th July and will be an event not to be missed!! Be there!

Due to the recent postal strike the advance tickets booking service has been extended to Wednesday 4th July so everybody will be able to but tickets in advance should they wish. CLICK HERE for full Yeovilton Preview.

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