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  Battle of Britain Air Show
  100 Years Royal Air Force
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Text:

Urs Schnyder

Pictures:

Urs Schnyder & Michael E. Fader

   
   

Light transport

 

This type of aircraft is often overshadowed by the more glamourous fighters and the heavy transport aircraft. They nevertheless form an important part of any air forces inventory. This is especially true as some of them are also used for training.

The aircraft on display spanned the time from pre-war to post-war. Unfortunately, all four were only to be seen on Saturday. Due to the heavy rains on Sunday morning the De Havilland Rapide and the Avro Anson missed the Sunday show. Therefore, the de Havilland Devon and the Percival Pembroke had the stage for themselves.

   

Hunting Pecrival Pembroke C.1 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Avro Anson Mk.19 and DeHavilland Dominie  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHavilland Dominie  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Avro Anson Mk.19 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

DeHavilland Dove C.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHavilland Dove C.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHavilland Dove C.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Hunting Pecrival Pembroke C.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

Hunting Pecrival Pembroke C.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Hunting Pecrival Pembroke C.1 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Hunting Pecrival Pembroke C-1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Avro Anson Mk.19 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

   

Russian front

 

This set piece was a bit mysterious. It started with the opening tunes of the Battle of Britain film that was filmed fifty years ago at Duxford. So fittingly, some Hispano Buchons as Messerschmitts, attacked the airfield, as indeed they do in the opening sequence of the film.

With the appearance of two Jaks however the location switched to the Russian Front and the Jaks started to chase the Messerschmitts around the sky. By this time the weather had improved to the extent that there were actually areas of blue sky.

 

Yakovlev Yak-9 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Yakovlev Yak-9 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Yakovlev Yak-9  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Yakovlev Yak-9  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

 

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon and Yak-9 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

Yakovlev Yak-9  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Casa Bouchon (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Yakovlev Yak-9  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

 Korean Flight

 

Now this was something new. Instead of the Mig-15 flying together with the Sea Fury or an F-86 Sabre, there were two P-51 Mustang that kept the Mig company. Mustangs were still used in the Korean war. The Mustangs seemed to be well matched to the Mig when they did their formation flying.

 

Mijokan Mig-15 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Mustang and MIG-15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Mustang and MIG-15  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

MIG-15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Mustang and MIG-15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

MIG 15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Mustang and MIG-15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

MIG 15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Mustang and MIG-15 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

North American P-51 Mustang (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

   

American Wings

 

Both the B-17 and the Catalina also flew in RAF colours. No display of a Catalina misses to mention that it was this aircraft that located the German battleship Bismarck, leading to it being sunk by British naval units. The RAF didnít use the B-17 in its intended role as a day bomber. Most of them served either with Coastal Command or for special missions with 100 Group.

 

Consolidated PBY- Catalina (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Consolidated PBY- Catalina  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Consolidated PBY- Catalina (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Consolidated PBY- Catalina  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

Consolidated PBY- Catalina (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Consolidated PBY- Catalina  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Elly Salingboe owner of the B-17 Sally B (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Boeing B-17 Fortress Sally B (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

Boeing B-17 Fortress  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Boeing B-17 Fortress  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Boeing B-17 Fortress  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Boeing B-17 Fortress  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

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Early Jets and Jet Trainers

 

The Norwegian Air Force Historical Squadron Vampires were decorated with RAF colours for the occasion by putting coloured stickers on top of their regular Norwegian insignia. No such redecoration was necessary for both the Jet Provost or the Gnat. The Gnat was of course the first aircraft used by the Red Arrows. Fittingly one of the Gnats was painted in the colours of the Red Arrows predecessors, the Yellowjacks.

 

DeHaviland Vampire FB.5 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

DeHaviland Vampire T.11 (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

DeHaviland Vampire (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

DeHaviland Vampire  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

DeHaviland Vampire and BAe Strikemaster (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHaviland Vampire and BAe Strikemaster (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHaviland Vampire and BAe Strikemaster (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

BAe Strikemaster (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

DeHaviland Vampire (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

DeHaviland Vampire (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

BAe Strikemaster  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

BAe Strikemaster  (Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Foland Gnat T.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Foland Gnat T.1  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

Foland Gnat T.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Foland Gnat T.1  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Foland Gnat T.1 (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

Foland Gnat T.1  (Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

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Red Arrows

 

The Red Arrows were restricted to a rolling show due to the proximity of Stansstead airport. There is not much that needs to be said about the Red Arrows. So, without further ado, as their commentator likes to say, here are the pictures.

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

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Spitfires

 

The big finale and highlight of the day was of course a mass formation of Supermarine Spitfires. On Saturday there were 19 Spitfires in the air, 18 forming the big formation and one, a Mk.I doing the display flying while the others got into formation.

On Sunday, despite the better weather there were unfortunately only 13 aircraft in the formation. We suspect that besides technical problems, the heavy rain in the morning may have caused some aircraft to not be able to make it back to Duxford. 

It was a real pity that the weather was so bad on the weekend, especially as the weeks before and after were good. The program was impressive and would have deserved to be enjoyed in the sunshine.

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

 

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Urs Schnyder)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

(Picture courtesy Michael E. Fader)

Our thanks go to Esther Blaine from IWM for providing press facilities and for her support during the two days.

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