This year’s Royal Airforces Association (RAFA) Shoreham Airshow being held on August 30th and 31st is now considered by many to be one of the major aviation events on the UK’s airshow circuit. This year’s show will be the nineteenth and promises to be as spectacular as ever with some stunning flying making it a real family day out.
“Last year on Saturday we saw the tragic accident involving the sad loss of Hurricane display pilot Brian Brown and it is planned to make a fitting tribute to him during this years event both in the air and on the ground’” said Don Beam MBE Airshow Organiser.
This years Patron will be His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent carrying on the long tradition of members of the Royal Family who have supported this airshow. The RAFA President Air Marshall Philip Sturley CB, MBE said’ “Shoreham has a special place in the heart of the RAFAssociation for all the hard work they do and for the amount of over one and a quarter million pounds raised from the shows – which all involved should be very proud of.”
A welcome return this year will be Christian Moullec and his micro light flying alongside his geese and cranes – it is best to get there early as Christian will be opening the show each day with his display – flying starts at 11-30am and lasts over 5 hours.
Set themes now so popular at Shoreham will once again take centre stage with the large Spitfire and Hurricane scramble following an airfield attack by German ME 108 and ME 109 aircraft. With more pyrotechnics than ever and ground action to support it will make an exciting scenario with the backdrop of Lancing College and the Sussex Downs.
The USAF set piece will contain the B25 Mitchell (a return visit from Holland) – Sally B – Kitty Hawk – Mustang – PBY Catalina showing their mighty power in some excellent formation flying.
The RAF returns with the Typhoon ‘The Eurofighter’ each day – Hawk – Tucano and Grob Tutor showing all elements of the RAF from training Aircraft right up to the latest in front line technology. Geoff Lees one of the UK’s top aviation photographers will be along to sign copies of his new book on the Typhoon.
The ‘Blades Aerobatic team’ under the leadership of Any Offer OBE and his team of ex Red Arrow pilots will show one what aerobatic flying is all about – reports say this year they are “Stunning to watch with some superb manoeuvres not seen before.” The Guinot wing walking team will be back with one extra aircraft making it a Five Ship Display – a first for Shoreham and one not to be seen at many other shows “Shoreham is an airshow that surpasses all others” says their leader Vic Norman.
The RAF Falcons free fall parachute team will be back both days hopefully in the Hercules – which surprised us all last year by its numerous landings and take-off’s.
The Royal Navy will bring their Swordfish aircraft along – which is steeped in history and their helicopter display team ‘The Black Cats’ – one of the crew has decided to get married the weekend of our show so there will only be one helicopter – so look out for some amazing solo display work.
Of course no show at Shoreham would be the same without the BBMF and the Lancaster and Spitfire with Hurricane – the later two which will be landing at Shoreham – adding to a magnificent line up of these aircraft type.
A first will be the Dukes of Cassutt racing team – these are three aircraft flown at speeds of up to 250 mph re-creating the formula one style of air racing that took place in the early 1950’s. Richard Grace is the son of display pilot Carolyn Grace who will be opening the show each day flying her Spitfire ML407.
One must not forget the glider flying of the ‘Swift Aerobatic Glider Display Team’ flown by Guy Westgate – look up-wards and you will see the new logos supporting the RAFAssociation and Absolute Media the later which will be producing a DVD of this years airshow.
What more can we say – it’s bigger and better – a true family day out – lots to do for the children with a Circus and Fun Fair – craft tent – stalls galore – a chance to meet members of the front line services alongside the popular look-alikes of Dad’s Army and Haurel and Lardy.
Final touches are still being put to the flying display as this is written so watch this space – there could well be more surprises to come!
“Most important of all we have kept the advance ticket prices the same as last year with children below the age of twelve admitted free. With the price of fuel this year higher than ever this was quite an achievement for the organisers,” said John Periam – Airshow Press Officer
This year sees a total of 16 sponsors on board – and we cannot do it without their support plus you the media – thanks for your support and we look forward to next year’s 20th Anniversary show.
For more information go to www.shorehamairshow.com or phone our credit card hotlines 01903 213386 (Argus) or 01903 215615 (Theatrical Experience)