Image © Paul Johnson/Flightline UK

Image © Paul Johnson/Flightline UK

Britain’s national airline will make a rare airshow contribution at this summer’s Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford.

A British Airways Airbus A318, one of the rarest aircraft in its fleet, will go on static display at the airshow on July 17-19.

The A318 serves a route aimed at the business community between London City Airport and New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport. It is unique among aircraft types in the British Airways fleet in operating with an all-business class interior comprising 32 seats, each convertible into a fully flat bed.

British Airways flies just two A318s, this being the smallest member of the hugely successful Airbus A320 family of aircraft. In order to be certified for operations at London City, the A318 was subject to a stringent steep approach test programme, the airport requiring specific operational procedures. This the Airbus passed with flying colours, the first example being delivered to British Airways in September 2009.

Air Tattoo spokesman Richard Arquati said: “For many years, British Airways has kindly supported the Air Tattoo, most memorably sending Concorde and, more recently, the giant A380. I am very pleased that our national airline is able to spare an A318 for a rare appearance at a British airshow.”

The BA A318 joins Vulcan bomber XH558, a C-130J Hercules from Qatar and a Super Puma from the Swiss Air Force as confirmed participants at this summer’s airshow. The Swiss are also sending their PC-7 aerobatic display team.

Mr Arquati added: “Though it’s still early days, the Air Tattoo is already shaping up to be one of the UK’s most exciting outdoor events this summer. Anyone planning to attend has until January 31 to take advantage of our special Super Earlybird ticket offer.”

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 Super Earlybird tickets priced from £26 are available until January 31 from or by calling 0800 107 1940.  All accompanied under-16s go free. Free parking.